On April 6, 1965, Governor Sam Goddard signed Senate Bill 98 into law, creating a change of name and status for Arizona State College at Flagstaff. The new Northern Arizona University officially came into being on May 1, 1966. This allowed the institution to expand program offerings and degrees, restructure the physical and administrative organization, and increase student enrollment.
Before the change, students, administrators, and the public debated the name of the university, as name and brand are critical in describing function. In more recent years, logo and branding changes reflect the evolution and development of the university.
As NAU grew and met outside challenges, a program of branding and trademarking developed to shape the university identity and to protect its intellectual property.