The Ann Arbor Jaycees began with a small group of young men meeting at the Michigan Union. For some time, the price of admission to those meetings was to bring along a new member. Chartered in 1936 with Franklin C. Forsythe as Charter President, the Ann Arbor chapter was one of the first in the state. An early President, H. Bruce Palmer, went on to become State President, and then President of the United States Junior Chamber of Commerce.
Over the years, the Ann Arbor Jaycees have maintained the Franklin C. Forsythe Neighborhood Park and ran the first Auto Seatbelt Installation Clinic in the country (back in the days when cars actually came without seatbelts). Legend has the Jaycees building the first single-family house in Ann Arbor after World War II.
Today, the Ann Arbor Jaycees are continuing to bring to the community such annual favorites as:
Moreover, in 1996, the Ann Arbor Jaycees took a giant step forward towards impacting the community by establishing the Ann Arbor Jaycees Foundation. In 1997, one of the key accomplishments that the Ann Arbor Jaycees achieved through the Foundation was to bring to the city of Ann Arbor one of the largest displays of the AIDS Memorial Quilt.
Perhaps most importantly, the Ann Arbor Jaycees have developed many prominent leaders in the community. Jaycees helped write Ann Arbor's City Charter, organized the first Ann Arbor Art Fair, and helped adopt the 1963 Michigan Constitution. Former Jaycee officers once formed the second largest caucus on the Ann Arbor City Council. A few even served as Mayors and one represented Ann Arbor in the State Legislature.
The Ann Arbor Jaycees have been continually living up to the reputation as THE leadership training organization in the community!