Jim (’65) and Raeceil Day
Jim Day (’65) was introduced to Gonzaga by his high school bookkeeping teacher, Keith Rostvold (’50), a WWII veteran who went to Gonzaga on the GI Bill. Rostvold recommended Gonzaga, and Dan Brajcich specifically, as the best accounting professor in the Northwest.
Day’s relationship with Brajcich evolved from professor and student to mentor and protégé and then to friends. Brajcich helped Jim get a job with a National CPA firm, provided advice in managing his career during the first few years, and worked with Day professionally along with Joe Keyes (one of Gonzaga’s first lay Trustees) at Radar Pneumatics. Brajcich’s influence and the Gonzaga education in business and liberal arts, along with the exposure to philosophy, logic and ethics provided a foundation that enabled Day to progress from a junior auditor to senior vice president and chief financial officer over his 32-year career.
Brajcich asked Day to volunteer for the Puget Sound Business Forum in 1985, which led to a connection with Carrie Ridgeway (’92), a Zag who was was referred to Day for help finding a job in the Seattle area. He helped Carrie and several of her friends in 1992 and formed what became GAMP in 1993, recognizing the opportunity for alumni to help students find good jobs. Gonzaga Alumni Mentor Program has worked with thousands of students and is currently expanding to help in finding internships.
Day has personally worked with more than 1,000 GU students and alumni, helping them define what they want to do and how to make it a reality. It has been a passion and purpose for him all these years. Gonzaga now has more than 2,500 alumni mentors and several Career Treks, during which students travel to cities like Seattle, Portland, New York, and San Francisco to visit companies and network with alumni.
Together with his wife, Raeceil, the Days have leveraged their successes by establishing a charitable gift annuity (CGA) to benefit both Gonzaga and themselves. A CGA is a gift that provides quarterly “life-income” payments, with what remains going towards the Jim and Raeceil Day Scholarship Endowment at Gonzaga, which has been providing students with scholarships since 2014.
The Days exemplify the kind of community support that makes the Zag Scholarship Promise possible. Dedicated alumni, families, friends, faculty and staff are helping students of all financial situations realize their dreams of attaining a Gonzaga education and the incredible alumni network that comes with it.
“My experience with Gonzaga did not end upon graduation, in fact our grandson is a sophomore there now” said Jim. The Days’ hard work and generosity are ensuring that the same can be true for Zags long into the future.