Sigma Pi Phi

Sigma Pi Phi

Infobox Fraternity
letters = ΣΠΦ
name = Sigma Pi Phi
motto = " "
crest = | founded = 1904
type = Social
scope = International
address =
symbol =
city = Atlanta
state = Georgia
country = USA
chapters = 112+
current chapter of the year = N/A
colors = Royal Blue and Pure White
Nickname = Boule, "a council of noblemen"
free =
homepage = http://www.sigma-pi-phi.net
birthplace = Philadelphia Pennsylvania
flower =
symbol = Unknown

Sigma Pi Phi is generally considered to be the first African-American Greek-lettered organization. Sigma Pi Phi was founded in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, on May 15, 1904. The fraternity quickly established chapters (referred to as "member boules") in Chicago, IL and then Baltimore, MD. [http://www.betalambdaboule.org/mserver/History_1.aspx] The founders included two doctors, a dentist and a physician [http://www.usip.edu/alumnifriends/profiles/] . When Sigma Pi Phi was founded, black professionals were not offered participation in the professional and cultural associations organized by the white community. [http://www.unityfirst.com/pressreleaseboule.htm] Sigma Pi Phi has over 5,000 members and 112 chapters throughout the United States and the West Indies. [cite press release|title=Sigma Pi Phi Fraternity Supports Scholarships for UAlbany Students|author=Olechowski, Carol|publisher=University at Albany, SUNY|date=April 25, 2002|accessdate=2006-10-07]

Founders

*Dr. Algernon B. Jackson
*Henry McKee Minton
*Dr. Edwin C. Howard
*Dr. Richard J. Warrick

Membership

Membership to Sigma Pi Phi is highly exclusive, number only about 5,000 [http://www.skipmason.com/hm/hm19.htm] . The organization is known as "the Boule," which means "a council of noblemen." [http://www.betalambdaboule.org/MServer/History_1.aspx] Founded as an organization for professionals, Sigma Pi Phi never established college chapters, and eliminated undergraduate membership during its infant stages. [http://www.skipmason.com/hm/hm30.htm] . However, Sigma Pi Phi has historically had a congenial relationship with college Black Greek-Letter Organizations, as many members of Sigma Pi Phi are members of both. Sigma founder Henry McKee Minton and Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. were both members of Alpha Phi Alpha, while Arthur Ashe was also a member of Kappa Alpha Psi. Vernon Jordan,Jr is a member of Omega Psi Phi. James Weldon Johnson was a member of Phi Beta Sigma. Members of Sigma Pi Phi have provided leadership and service during the Great Depression, World War I, World War II, the Civil Rights Movement, and addressed social issues such as urban housing, and other economic, cultural, and political issues affecting people of African descent.

Famous members

Members of Sigma Pi Phi include co-founder of the NAACP [http://www.naacp.org/about/history/timeline/] W. E. B. Du Bois, Former NAACP President Kweisi Mfume, former United Nations Ambassador Ralph Bunche, former Atlanta Mayor Andrew Young, former Virginia Governor L. Douglas Wilder, American Express President Kenneth Chenault, Bobby Scott, Ken Blackwell, Ron Brown, Vernon Jordan, Jr, Arthur Ashe, Mel Watt, [cite journal|author=Watt, Mel|authorlink=Mel Watt|url=http://www.washingtonwatchdog.org/war_and_peace/documents/cr/06/fe/28/cr28fe06-167.html|title=Honoring Black History Month|publisher=Congressional Record|date=February 28, 2006|accessdate=2006-10-08] and Hank Aaron. [cite|author=Lavelle, Lydia E.|title=Senator Leroy R. Johnson '57 - Our "Georgia Peach"|publisher=North Carolina Central University|date=2002] Numerous other American leaders are among the men who have adopted the fraternity’s purpose of "creating a forum wherein they could pursue social and intellectual activities in the company of peers." [http://www.unityfirst.com/pressreleaseboule.htm] Sigma Pi Phi is also open to members of all races, as can be demonstrated by its well known Jewish member Jack Greenberg who succeeded Thurgood Marshall as General Counsel of the NAACP. [http://209.85.165.104/search?q=cache:2kHXhy9xg24J:www.findarticles.com/p/articles/mi_m1077/is_11_59/ai_n6158341+thurgood+%22sigma+pi+phi%22&hl=en&gl=us&ct=clnk&cd=1] Lawrence Otis Graham talks about the organization, and his membership, in his book "Our Kind of People: Inside America's Black Upper Class". John Baxter Taylor, Jr. - First African-American Gold Medalist

References

ee also

*American Black Upper Class

External links

* [http://www.sigma-pi-phi.net Official Site]
* [http://www.sigma-pi-phi.net/journal/ Journal Articles]
* [http://www.betalambdaboule.org Site for Beta Lambda chapter in Hampton Roads, Virginia]
* [http://www.rochesterboule.org Site for Gamma Iota chapter in Rochester, NY]
* [http://www.sigmapiphiser.org/mserver Southeast Region Site]
* [http://www.gentsclub.org/sigma_pi_phi.htm The Gentlemen's Club Beautillion Service Project]
* [http://www.unityfirst.com/pressreleaseboule.htm Grand Boule of Sigma Pi Phi Centennial Celebration]
* [http://www.skipmason.com/hm/hm19.htm Finding the Good and Praising It--Sigma Pi Phi: The Boule]
* [http://www.findarticles.com/p/articles/mi_m1077/is_11_59/ai_n6158341 1904-2004: The Boule at 100: Sigma Pi Phi Fraternity holds centennial celebration]


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