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FROM THE DISTRICT DIRECTOR Brothers of the Florida District, Welcome to the Fall 2013 edition of The TORCH, the official newsletter of the Florida Federation of Alpha Chapters! Our District team has done a tremendous job putting it together and is excited to bring it to you! Today is a very significant day, not only in the history of the Florida Federation but in Alpha Phi Alpha as a whole. Jewel Charles Henry Chapman, founder Brother Bradford at the grave site Jewel of the Beta Nu Chapter at Florida A&M University, Charles Henry Chapman in Tallahassee, FL made his transition into Omega Chapter on this day in 1934. Although it has been 79 years since his passing, his lasting contributions to our dear fraternity live on. Improved communication remains invaluable to the overall success of the District and THE TORCH is one vehicle we will continue using to keep you informed. There is a great deal of positive work taking place within the District, of which many Brothers are unaware. The TORCH will continue to highlight the accomplishments of Brothers, Chapters, and Areas in an effort to show the positive impact we are making in our respective communities.

THE TORCH STAFF Matthew S. Bradford

We hope you enjoy the Fall 2013 edition of The TORCH!

District Director


Robert S. Whittinham Executive Director

Bro. Matthew S. Bradford District Director • Florida Federation of Alpha Chapters Alpha Phi Alpha Fraternity, Incorporated

Leslie Elus


Editor to the Torch

Dante’ D. Fillyau Art Director

Brothers, I greet you in the name of our Seven Jewels whose legacy we share and upon whose shoulders we so humbly stand. First, I would like to congratulate Bro. Matthew Bradford and Brother Ashton Soles for hosting an excellent and informative District Convention on October 18th – 20th in Jacksonville, Florida. I also want to thank the Brothers of Florida for their hospitality during my attendance at the District Convention. Because of your cordiality I can truly say that we are indeed the college of friendship. Congratulations to the Fall 2013 initiates of Alpha Phi Alpha Fraternity, Inc. The initiation which is the easy part of being an Alpha, is now behind you. The hard part of being an Alpha is upholding the aims, image and values of this most august fraternity. From this day forward, you must focus your efforts on remaining financial active and living up to the hopes, dreams and aspirations of our Jewels. SAVE THE DATE: The Southern Region Convention will be held March 20 – 23, 2014 in Chattanooga, Tennessee. The host hotels are the Chattanooga Marriott, the Sheraton Reed House, and The Chattanoogan Hotel. The pre-registration fee is $175 for Alumni Brothers, $125 College Brothers, and $125 for Senior Brothers. The pre-registration deadline is February 1, 2014. The Brothers in Chattanooga are planning an informative, stimulating and exciting convention. We look forward to seeing you there! I would like the wish the Brothers of Florida a Safe and Holiday Season! May God continue to spread his blessings to you and your family.

ISSUE CONTRIBUTORS Beta Beta Lambda Delta Xi Lambda Eta Delta Iota Pi Lambda Mu Zeta Lambda Omicron Beta Lambda Omicron Uplison Lambda Rho Omicron Lambda Sigma Beta Lambda Zeta Alpha Lambda

Ronald M. Natson, Sr. 26th Southern Region Vice President Alpha Phi Alpha Fraternity, Incorporated 2



Brothers Joseph Smiley, Landry Alexander, Randy Lightfoot, Jonathan Marina Rashad Brown, and Edward McKahand with the chapter’s Youth Development Initiatives participants.

Omicron Beta Lambda Partners with Clearwater to Promote Youth Development Initiatives

Clearwater • Omicron Beta Lambda recently developed a partnership with the City of Clearwater and its Youth Development Initiatives Program. To date, they have participated in the North Greenwood Back to School Health and Wellness Event and the City of Clearwater Coastal Cleanup Project. The back to school event took place at the city’s North Greenwood Aquatic Center in August. At this activity health screenings, physicals, backpacks, school supplies, and even immunizations were performed for area children and families. The Coast Cleanup took place at the end of September. The beautification project allowed the Brothers to join other local organizations in the removal of trash and debris along the Clearwater Causeway and Beach. The partnership with the City has also allowed OBL to move into a new office space, located at the Martin L. King Aquatic Center in the North Greenwood community. Coupled with a grant from the Juvenile Welfare Board, the chapter is now able to provide a number of outreach services where it is most needed.

Brothers Chris Stevenson and Leslie Elus with a few of the donated items.

Alpha R.E.A.D.S. Book Drive Donation

Miami • The Brothers of the Iota Pi Lambda

Chapter donated several boxes of books and literary aids to the Coral Gables Branch of the Miami-Dade County Public Library System. The donated items featured numerous works by noted African American authors that included the likes of Maya Angelou, Toni Morrison, Langston Hughes, W.E.B. DuBois, and Frederick Douglas. The retail value of the donation was a little over $1,000. For the chapter’s work in the South Florida community, the City of Coral Gables recognized IPL with a Certificate of Appreciation for its commitment to at-risk youth and education. Alpha R.E.A.D.S is an initiative ran jointly with the chapter’s education foundation to provide cultural enrichment opportunities and promote scholastic achievement in children residing in underserved communities.

Mu Zeta Lambda Shows How to Dress for Tomorrow Brother Desmond Haygood instructs the Men of Tomorrow how to tie a bowtie.

Lakeland • Earlier in November, Mu Zeta Lambda Chapter held its annual professionalism session with the Men of Tomorrow program. During the session, they focused on the importance of professionalism and making a good first impression. The workshop also included tips on professional etiquette and dress, how to tie a tie and public speaking. He has gone from earthly scenes but he is not forgotten by those who carry on in his place. We shall carry in mind his genial temper, his persistent loyal purpose, his ostentatious service to others and we shall endeavor to have these qualities live again in us.” -Brother Charles Wesley about Jewel Chapman • @FFAC1906



Brothers Froswell Wallace, Tareco Johnson, Juilan Sawyer, Peter Turnquest, Feraldo Joffre, Sonless Martin (BBL) and Ravanno Ferguson pose outside the site registration booth for the relay.

Bahamian Alphas Relay for Cancer Awareness Bahamas • The Brothers of the Sigma Beta

Lambda Chapter partnered with Grand Bahamas Fast Track to host the 2nd Annual G.B. Relay for Cancer at Pelican Bay Hotel. Grand Bahamas Fast Track is a local track and field club to which Bro. Ravanno Ferguson currently serves as its President. The G.B. Relay highlights Breast Cancer but also raises awareness for all forms of cancer. The race consisted of a four mile relay run around a mile route around the providence’s scenic landscape. The team categories were male, female or mixed in which each relay team had to consist of a minimum of two and maximum of four persons. This year, the event had a record number of 300 participants. A portion of the proceeds from this event went to the Grand Bahamas Cancer Association, a sum of $1,200.

Brothers and students of the Project Alpha in Jacksonville, Florida

Upsilon Lambda Chapter Project Alpha at District Conference

Jacksonville • The Brothers of Alpha Phi Alpha enjoyed a weekend

of competition and brotherhood during the Florida Federation’s annual district convention hosted in Jacksonville by the Florida North Area Chapters. Highlights included Attorney Bro. Daryl Parks stirring speech encouraging the brotherhood to continue Alpha’s social justice agenda and Bro. Bradford’s presentation of the Leadership Award to Bro. Dr. James E. Huger for his years of service to Alpha and the brotherhood. In supporting the District’s campaign “Service before Self” the brothers participated in Upsilon Lambda’s Go To High School Go to College program where more than 25 young boys and girls were instructed in the Project Alpha curriculum.

Brothers of the Beta Beta Lambda Chapter surround their president, Bro. Pierre E. Rutledge (center) to receive award

Brothers Joel Knight, Jake Herron, Cecil Stevens, Brian Miller, Christopher Craig, and Rob Houston pose for a picture during the March for Babies opening ceremony activity.

Brothers of Fort Walton Beach March for Babies Fort Walton Beach • The Rho Omicron Lambda

Chapter participated in the Okaloosa County Annual March for Babies. The event took place at the Fort Walton Beach Landing. The chapter walked a 3 mile course and raised $400 for the March for Babies campaign. 4

Beta Beta Lambda Chapter Receives Humanitarian Award Miami • The North Miami-Dade Chapter of Alpha Phi Alpha

Fraternity, Inc. was awarded the first Dr. Jacqueline Hartley Humanitarian Award by the Boys and Girls Choir of South Florida. The chapter received this distinguished honor as a result of its past philanthropic efforts in the community. “We must never lose sight of the fact that we must take part in the development, not only of ourselves but of all humanity… Jewel Charles Henry Chapman, 1931 OFFICIAL NEWSLETTER OF THE FLORIDA FEDERATION OF ALPHA CHAPTERS - VOLUME 2


Team Orlando Alphas strike a pose at 6th UNCF Annual Walk for Education event. Bro. Greg Murphy, JeTwan Asbury, William Asbury, and Bro. Ike Powell immediately following the presentation of a Black Educator Award.

Omicron Upsilon Lambda Salutes Black Educators

Delray Beach • The Alphas of Delray Beach, in collaboration with the Omicron Upsilon Lambda Foundation, presented their annual Salute to Black Educators Awards and Scholarship Gala. The event was held at the Woodfield Country Club in Boca Raton, FL. During the gala, OUL Brothers honored extraordinary educators for their exemplary leadership, excellence and service to students in Palm Beach County. The chapter also award several scholarships to deserving students from the community.


Alphas Walk to Raise Funds for UNCF

Orlando • Orlando Alphas participated in the UNCF 6th Annual Walk for Education at the city’s Millenia Mall. The walk brought together over 1,000 walkers and runners from across central Florida, representing corporate, government, education, nonprofits and individual sectors. Team Orlando Alphas was the largest Greek-lettered organization to participate, with 10 Brothers and 12 members of its Young Men of Distinction program participating in the event. Collectively, the team donated $585 to the UNCF. Brother Robert Foster is the Development Director for UNCF and was instrumental in the event surpassing its goal of $100,000. To date, the total raised from the walk is $106,000.

Miss Black and Gold Ms. Brittany Greene • Rho Xi Chapter, St. Leo University Bedford Lawson Oratorical Bro. Jarlens Princilis • Delta Psi Chapter - Miami Step Show Beta Nu Chapter • Florida A&M University - Tallahassee Charles W. Greene Bro. Brody Hartley Jr., • Beta Beta Lambda Chapter - Miami Augustus Witherspoon Bro. Michael Norwood • Omicron Upsilon Lambda - Delray Beach Charles H Wesley Brotherhood Award Beta Nu • Iota Delta • Gamma Mu Lambda - Tallahassee College Brother of the Year Brother Carl Sharpe • Iota Delta, Florida State University - Tallahassee College Chapter of the Year Iota Delta • Florida State University - Tallahassee Alumni Brother of the Year Bro. Anthony Jackson • Delta Xi Lambda - Orlando Alumni Chapter of the Year Zeta Alpha Lambda - Ft. Lauderdale • @FFAC1906

Bro. William Saunders picture prior to the DCC race.

UM Alphas Ride to Cure Cancer

Miami • Brother William Saunders, President of the Eta Delta Chapter at the University of Miami, participated in the Dolphins Cycling Challenge (DCC), a two-day tri-county charity cycling event. The DCC is dedicated to raising funds for lifesaving cancer research at the University’s Sylvester Comprehensive Cancer Center. Bro. Saunders rode along a 13 mile trail that started and ended at Sun Life Stadium, the home of the Miami Dolphins and the Miami Hurricanes football teams. This year, race participants donated over $2.5 million to support the University of Miami’s ongoing mission to cure cancer.


ALPHA BROTHER SPOTLIGHT Dr. Reginald K. Ellis, The Historical Faciliator Bro. Reginald K. Ellis, Ph.D. (Alpha Delta Lambda, Fall 2006), was recently selected to serve as a fellow in the 2013 National Endowment for the Humanities (NEH) Summer Institute at Harvard University’s Du Bois Institute on African-American Struggles for Freedom and Civil Rights. The NEH Institute is part of an ongoing effort to provide a deeper understanding of African-American efforts to secure full citizenship and civil rights, and to situate that movement within the broader context of American history. During the four-week-long program, Ellis, along with 29 teachers from around the nation, engaged in an intensive program of reading and discussion with leading scholars, reviewing new and recent scholarship as well as a rich array of sources – oral histories, memoirs, documentary films, music and archival sources. Participating teachers worked in small groups to revise courses they currently teach, develop plans for new courses, and/ or create units on specific topics or texts. Bro. Ellis specializes in the history of Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCUs) and African-American leaders during the Jim Crow era. His major area of concentration is African-American history with three minor areas of concentration — United States history since 1877, contemporary African history, and oral history. Along with being awarded the NEH Fellowship, Bro. Ellis was selected as one of thirty rising community leaders in Tallahassee, Florida to participate in Leadership Tallahassee (LT) Class 31. He is the founding president of the Graduate Association for African-American History (GAAAH), which currently hosts the African-American History Conference at the University of Memphis. Bro. Ellis also served as a teaching fellow for the ACE Academy Institute sponsored by the Benjamin Hooks Institute for Social Change at the University of Memphis. Currently, he is serving as one of 60 historians with the American Historical Association Tuning Project, to revamp history curriculums in higher education. Bro. Ellis is the chapter historian for the Gamma Mu Lambda Chapter, Tallahassee, Florida, and the Deputy District Historian for the district of Florida. Bro. Ellis received his bachelor’s degree in African-American Studies and master’s degree in United States History since 1865 from Florida Agricultural and Mechanical University. He later earned a doctorate in history from the University of Memphis. Presently, he is an Assistant Professor of History at Florida A & M University.

Alpha Brother Promoted to Army Lieutenant Colonel Bro. Robert S. Whittinham, FFAC Executive Director, was promoted to the rank of Lieutenant Colonel, U.S. Army. The ceremony took place at U. S. Southern Command (Miami) with Navy Rear Admiral (2-star) George W. Ballance presiding over the ceremony. Attendees included Brother Whittinham’s wife, their two daughters, his mother, mother and father-in law, extended family and friends, a Miramar City Commissioner, and co-workers. Several Fraternity Brothers joined him to celebrate this professional milestone including (pictured left-to-right) Brothers Ricky O. Stuart, Dante’ D. Fillyau, Quinton Washington, (center - Bro. Whittinham), District Director Matthew S. Bradford and Lt. Col. Blair J. Sawyer. 6


A NEW FACE TO AN OLD DREAM In various ways, the plight of youth today can be said to mirror those of their grandparents’ decades ago. The struggle for social acceptance is universal to us all and may be referenced from adolescent memories at one point or another. However, a great divide has been said to exist between the youth of the civil rights movement and the social attitudes of the present generation. In light of the victories achieved by their forefathers, today’s youth are often accused of being apathetic to the ongoing struggles for social justice and equality. Contradictory to this belief, there has been a growing resurgence of youth activism sweeping across the nation. One emerging leader in this movement is Bro. Phillip Agnew, a Fall 2005 initiate of the Beta Nu chapter, who works to guide the next generation of civil activists. Bro. Agnew began his career as a public servant during his tenure as student body president at Florida Agricultural and Mechanical University (FAMU). There, he worked with his peers from FAMU and neighboring institutions to call attention to community hate crimes and criminal profiling of young adults. He currently serves as the Executive Director of the Dream Defenders, a grassroots coalition whose mission is to improve our nation’s social condition by bringing an end to systems that target, disenfranchise, discriminate, and impoverish select groups. Their message is simple; it is a call to reform policies that purge the inalienable rights of all people. Dreamer activities are driven by youth and empower them to become catalysts of change through education, civic engagement, and political activism. The Dream Defenders maintain several progressive campaigns across the state of Florida. Recently, the Dreamers’ cause has received national attention for its organized efforts on Florida’s Capitol Hill in response to the controversial verdict in the wrongful death of Trayvon Martin. In this movement, the group is seeking the adoption of Trayvon’s law - an end to racial profiling, suspension of the school-to-prison pipeline, and the repeal of the Stand Your Ground Law. Within a month, protestors received support from a number of social groups from across the nation. Most notably, the NAACP, Jesse Jackson, Harry Belafonte, and Talib Kweli are the most prominent of the campaign’s endorsers. A number of Alpha men have also taken a stand with the Dreamers to champion this cause. Among them include Bro. Abuznaid (Iota Delta, Florida State University) legal counsel to the Dream Defenders and Bro. Kevin Powell (Delta Iota, Rutgers University) another rising community leader from the state of New Jersey making a mark in our nation’s capital. Despite a month of stage sit-ins, Governor Rick Scott did not fulfill the Dreamers request to convene a special session of legislature to address the state’s “youth crisis.” With the end of the group’s occupation of the state capital in August, a secondary phase of action has been triggered into effect. Though their original request for state legislative hearings on Stand Your Ground laws was denied, the Dream Defenders successfully persuaded Speaker of the House Will Weatherford to call for a subcommittee to host hearings in the fall. The Defenders have secured meetings with the heads of both the Florida Departments of Education and the Juvenile Justice to discuss “zero tolerance” school policies. Youth organizers authored a bill, Trayvon’s Law, which they hope will provide state lawmakers a blueprint to amending current policies that aversively target youth and minorities. In addition to filing this bill, the group prompted a legislative poll – a head count to assess legislators’ current position on the issue – to which over 30 state policy makers have noted their support for revision of Stand Your Ground laws. Lastly, the Florida Department of Law Enforcement has agreed to discuss racial profiling policies, where Defenders will have the opportunity to bring experts in the field to testify before the department. For more information on the Dream Defenders, please visit • @FFAC1906


DISTRICT OFFICERS Matthew S. Bradford District Director

Eric Baynes Virgin Islands Area Director

John D. Ellis, Jr. Esq. Immediate Past District Director

Karl Harmon Sr. Treasurer

Asthon Soles Assistant District Director A. Shawn Collins Deputy District Director Robert S. Whittinham Executive Director Dante’ D. Fillyau Deputy Executive Director Trever Wade, Sr. Chief of Staff Robert Houston Northwest Area Director Raynard Mayberry North Area Director Rodney Rackley East Area Director Barry Cole West Area Director Ryan Dobson South Area Director Dayan Bourne Bahamas Area Director

Andre McAden Financial Secretary Desmond Haygood Secretary David H. Jackson, Jr. Historian Anthony Jackson Parliamentarian Charles Gillette District Counsel Rev. John T. Warren Chaplain Terence Hood District Chief Dean Gregory J. Harris Director of Alpha University Leslie Elus Director of Communications Shontae White Director of Convention Vincent Jones Director of Technology

CONTENT SUBMISSIONS! The Torch Newsletter is the official organ of the Florida Federation of Alpha Chapters. Its purpose is to highlight the activities of Alpha chapters and their members across our state. The submission requirements are as follows: 1. Chapter article submissions may be no longer than one paragraph at length. 2. Submissions should clearly detail what took place at the event - date, location, event overview, purpose of the activity, and any significant strides or achievements made at or by the activity. 3. All articles should be written in third person. 4. College and alumni brother features may be no longer than one page long. 5. All submissions must be accompanied a high resolution photo with a caption detailing who is in the picture and what is taking place. To submit your articles or for general inquiries, please contact the editor via email at Thank you in advance for your support and cooperation. 8

FOOD FOR THE SOUL We live in a world where there are smart devices......Phones.....Tablets...Tv’s and other smart devices. We are often asked : Is there an App for that? God has a few App’s that you might want to down load or better yet just read. They are all found in the Holy Bible and guess what? They are Free!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Where to look when I am... 1. Afraid: Read Psalms34:4 2. Anxious: Read Psalm 46 3. Backsliding: Read Psalm 51 4. Bereaved: Read Matthew 5:4 5. Bitter-Critical: Read 1Corinthians 6. Conscious of Sin: Read Proverbs 28:13 7. Defeated: Read Romans 8: 31-39 8. Depressed: Read Psalm 34 9. Disaster Threatens: Read Psalm 91 10. Discouraged: Read Psalm 23 11. Doubting: Read Matthew 8:26 12. Facing Crisis: Read Psalm 121 13. Struggling in my Faith: Psalm 42:5 14. Unable to connect with my Friends: Read Psalm 41:9-13 15. Leaving Home: Read Matthew 10:16-20 16. Lonely: Read Psalm 121 17. In need of Gods Protection: Read Psalm 27:1-3 18. Inneed of Guidance: Read Psalm 32:8 19. In need of Peace: Read John 14:1-4 20. In need of Rules for Life: Read Psalm 4


College Brothers Empowerment Retreat February 7-9, 2014 • Atlanta, Georgia

Southern Region Convention

March 19 - 23, 2014* • Chattanooga, Tennessee

2014 FFAC Alpha University September 2014*

2014 FFAC District Conference October 2014* *TENTATIVE


The Torch - Volume 2 : Florida Federation of Alpha Chapters  
The Torch - Volume 2 : Florida Federation of Alpha Chapters  

The Official Newsletter of Florida Federation of Alpha Chapters / Alpha Phi Alpha Fraternity, Inc.