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Legendary Locals of Tempe book cover
February 2016
Legendary Locals

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Legendary Locals of Tempe

Stephanie R. DeLuse

Tempe started collaboratively, and its innovative citizens continue to work together, creatively solving problems and capitalizing on opportunities in the landlocked 40 square miles surrounded by Phoenix, Scottsdale, Mesa, Chandler, and Guadalupe. The vision began with freighter Charles Trumbull Hayden, who worked with Mexican settlers to optimize the productivity of the valley south of the Salt River with his ferry, canal building, and milling activities in 1870, and continued with the 1885 founding of the Territorial Normal School, now Arizona State University. Subsequently, Tempe has remained successful due to both individual innovations, like creating Big Surf, the first man-made wave pool in the United States, and city-led initiatives like the development of Tempe Town Lake, which reinvigorated the shore line of a river bottom frequently left dry since the implementation of a dam system.


Stephanie DeLusé is a principal faculty fellow in Barrett, The Honors College at ASU and a former member of the Faculty of Leadership and Interdisciplinary Studies. She earned a master's and a doctorate in psychology from ASU.