Administrative Professionals' Day (previously known as Secretary's Day) is an unofficial secular holiday observed on the last Wednesday of April, to recognize the work of clerical employees such as administrative assistants, receptionists, paralegals, etc. It is celebrated as part of a larger Administrative Professionals Week, which takes place during the last full week of April.
National Professional Secretaries Week and National Secretaries' Day was created in 1952 through the work of Harry F. Klemfuss of Young and Rubicam. Klemfuss recognized the importance and value of the position to a company or business. His goal was to encourage more women to become administrative assistants (called secretaries at the time). Using his skill and experience in public relations, Klemfuss promoted the values and importance of the job of administrative assistants. In doing so, he also created the holiday in recognition of the importance of administrative assistants.
The official period of appreciation/celebration was first proclaimed by U.S. Secretary of Commerce Charles Sawyer as "National Secretaries Week," which was held June 1-7 in 1952, with Wednesday, June 4, 1952 designated National Secretaries Day. The first Secretaries' Day was held in that year by the International Association of Administrative Professionals, with the support of an association of corporate groups. In 1998, the name of the holiday was changed to better represent the full range of administrative positions.
In the United States, the day is often celebrated by giving one's assistant flowers, candy, or small gifts, or by taking him/her out to lunch.