Dates and Origins of Administrative Professionals Day
Administrative Professionals Day Dates in 2019, 2020 and 2021
Administrative Professionals Day is celebrated at the following dates:
- Wednesday, April 24th 2019
- Wednesday, April 22nd 2020
- Wednesday, April 21st 2021
Administrative Professionals Day is observed on the Wednesday during professional administrators week during the last full week of April. It recognizes the work of secretaries as well as other administrative support professionals.
Because of the post-World War II economic boom2coupled with the birth decline from the great depression3, there was a shortage of skilled administrative workers. In order to attract workers to the field, support personal development and to recognize contributions of administrative professionals to the economy, the National Secretaries Association was founded in 19424. The name of this association was changed in 1981 to Professional Secretaries international and later to the International Association of Administrative Professionals (IAAP) in 199815.
U.S. Secretary of Commerce Charles W. Sawyer first proclaimed National Secretaries Week on the week of June 1 through June 7 with that Wednesday, June 4 as National Secretaries day in 19527. The official date was moved to the last full week in April in 1955 with the Wednesday of that week designated as Administrative Professionals Day. In 2000, the name changed to Administrative Professionals Week to accommodate ever-expanding roles and functions in corporate administrative functions1. The week-long observance was made in order to space out bookings at restaurants or other venues where administrative professionals would be taken out6.
There has been some criticism towards Administrative Professionals Day. Administrative Professionals have sometimes been considered as support staff, separate from the rest of the office and is therefore considered patronizing by some6. It is sometimes difficult to understand who exactly gets recognized on Administrative Professionals Day, as some work requires more "administrative" rather than "secretarial" work6. The nature of gifts given on Administrative Professionals Day can imply a gendered role and some accuse the flower and card industry of inventing a holiday between Easter and Mother's Day to boost sales.
Though not a public holiday, Administrative Professionals Day is generally celebrated by giving gifts of cards, flowers or chocolates as well as administrative professionals being taken out to lunch.