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A look at John Bogle’s career

A timeline of John Bogle's career as a pioneer in mutual funds and investing.

John C. Bogle, founder of the Vanguard Group, on the company's campus in Malvern.
John C. Bogle, founder of the Vanguard Group, on the company's campus in Malvern.Read moreRon Tarver

1929: John C. Bogle is born in Verona, N.J.

1951: Bogle graduates from Princeton University, writing his thesis on reducing fees for the emerging mutual-fund industry. After graduation, Bogle is hired by Wellington Management after he sends a copy of his thesis to Walter Morgan, founder of the Wellington Fund.

1965: Bogle become CEO of Wellington Management.

1974: Wellington fires Bogle after a disastrous merger and plunging stock prices.

1975: The Bogle-founded Vanguard Group launches with 11 funds (including the Wellington Fund) and $1.8 billion in net assets. Bogle structures Vanguard as a client-owned mutual fund company, redirecting profits to shareholders in the form of lower costs.

1976: Vanguard creates the first index mutual fund for individual investors, now known as the Vanguard 500 Index Fund. Bogle believes a fund that passively tracked broad-based stock market indexes would match the market’s average return and typically surpass the performance of actively managed funds.

1977: Vanguard eliminates loads, or sales commissions, and makes all of its funds no-load.

1986: Vanguard introduces the first bond index for individual investors.

1990: Vanguard’s total assets under management reach $56 billion.

1992: Vanguard’s Total Stock Market Index Fund becomes the largest mutual fund in the world at $343 billion.

1993: Bogle publishes his first book, Bogle on Mutual Funds: New Perspectives for the Intelligent Investor.

1996: Bogle retires as Vanguard’s chairman and CEO.

1999: Fortune names Bogle one of the investment industry’s four giants of the 20th century, and receives the Woodrow Wilson Award from Princeton for “distinguished achievement in the nation’s service.” He is also named chairman of the board of the National Constitution Center.

2000: Bogle retires as Vanguard’s senior chairman and becomes president of the Bogle Financial Markets Research Center on Vanguard’s campus.

2004: Time lists Bogle as among the 100 most influential people in the world.

2006: Vanguard’s total assets under management surpass $1 trillion.

2018: In an op-ed for the Wall Street Journal, Bogle warns that the concentration of ownership created by indexing firms presented a threat to the markets. Vanguard’s assets under management reach $5.1 trillion, with 380 funds and ETFs.