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History of the FBLA

1937
Hamden L. Forkner of Teachers College, Columbia University in New York City, proposes to business teachers across the country that a national organization is needed for the thousands of business clubs in the nation's high schools and colleges.

1940
The National Council for Business Education sponsors the proposed student organization. Committees are appointed to formulate the organization's general plans. The name "Future Business Leaders of America" is selected for the organization.

1942
An experimental chapter is chartered in Johnson City, Tennessee, on February 3. The second chapter is started two days later in St. Albans, West Virginia. By the end of the year, 39 chapters are added. Over the next three and one-half years, another 38 chapters are added.

1946
The United Business Education Association assumes sponsorship of FBLA. The headquarters for FBLA is established at the National Education Association Center in Washington, D.C.

1947
Iowa becomes the first FBLA state chapter. Indiana and Ohio quickly follow. Within the next three years, FBLA state chapters total ten.

1958
The post-secondary division, Phi Beta Lambda, is created. The University of Northern Iowa is the first PBL chapter.

1969
FBLA-PBL is granted independent status as a non-profit educational student association under the Internal Revenue Code 501 (c)(3). FBLA-PBL, Inc. acquires its own Board of Directors and full-time staff.

1973
FBLA-PBL, Inc. appoints Edward D. Miller as the association's first full-time executive director.

1979
The Board of Directors approved establishment of the FBLA-PBL Alumni Division.

1981
The Conrad N. Hilton Foundation of California purchases 1.6 acres of land in the Center for Education Associations, Reston, Virginia, as the site for a future national FBLA-PBL headquarters building.

1987
The 200,000th member joins FBLA.

1989
The Professional Division is formed to include alumni and professional businesspersons.

1990
The ground-breaking ceremony is held for the FBLA-PBL national office. FBLA-PBL counts 270,000 active members in 12,000 chapters. Construction begins on the new building.

1991
The grand opening of the FBLA-PBL National Center in Reston, Virginia, is held.