UO Libraries Featured in Phil Knight's NY Times Essay

Nike co-founder was "floored" by a discovery in Special Collections

Phil Knight examines collection materials in the Special Collections and University Archives with Jennifer O'Neal, Corrigan Solari university historian and archivist, and Dean of Libraries Adriene Lim

The University of Oregon's proud alumnus and staunch supporter, Nike co-founder Phil Knight, published a guest op-ed piece in the New York Times last Saturday (June 17, 2016).

"My Fill-In Father" details Knight’s relationships with two influential figures in his life: his father, Bill Knight, and his track coach at the UO, Bill Bowerman. We are flattered that Knight referenced a personal and unexpected discovery that he recently made while examining materials in the Bill Bowerman papers, held in the UO Libraries' Special Collections and University Archives.

“I was enormously moved reading Mr. Knight’s essay,” said Adriene Lim, dean of the UO Libraries. “We are fortunate to see the importance of archival curation and preservation every day as academic researchers and members of the public access these resources and make discoveries that have a meaningful impact in their lives. Our special collections contain precious artifacts vital to understanding Oregon’s history -- not just history writ large, but also families’ personal histories.”

Penny and Phil Knight have been a generous and longstanding supporters of the UO Libraries. In 1987 the main library on campus was named the Knight Library in honor of their family. They also endow many faculty positions including the Philip H. Knight Chair that is occupied by the dean of libraries.


Read Phil Knight’s op-ed piece in the New York Times