In the early 1970s, two students at the University of North Carolina, George Blackburn and Roger Kirkman, scoured the campus of UNC reclaiming portraits that belonged to the Dialectic and Philanthropic Societies. They saw the need for an organization dedicated to maintaining and restoring these portraits with more permanence than the 4-year student turnover rate. In pursuance of this, they incorporated the Dialectic and Philanthropic Societies Foundation in 1974 in order to ensure that DiPhi's portraits received the care and attention they deserved. Since that time, the Foundation has expended its mission to adding further works of art and acting as an unofficial alumni association.