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The Bow WINTER 2016

An official publication of Pi Beta Phi Foundation for donors and special friends

Lifelong Commitment to Pi Beta Phi Thanks to Foundation donors, Pi Beta Phi has recently refreshed and relaunched a Leading with Values® program that aims to aid in the transition from collegiate member to young alumna. Targeted at senior members, Pi Phi For Life has three specific learning outcomes. Through engagement in this program, senior members will:

1. Articulate the legacy that will be left on the chapter by her and other soon-to-be graduates and act on that espoused legacy. 2. Commit to and understand how to live Pi Beta Phi values after college. 3. Appreciate the importance of remaining lifelong loyal members of Pi Beta Phi and choose to remain actively engaged with the Fraternity post-graduation.

To achieve these learning outcomes, members engage in a series of Signature Workshops, led by an elected Senior Member Coordinator. These workshops replace regular chapter meetings for the seniors and provide space for members to reflect on their Pi Phi experiences, their lasting legacy and giving and serving as an alumna.

“Pi Phi for Life gives us a new look at what it truly means to be a Pi Beta Phi. After graduation, I plan on being a lifelong member and giving back in as many ways as I can.” –West Virginia Alpha Samantha Stawarz

We asked West Virginia Alpha Samantha Stawarz and Ohio Eta Leisa Ebeling Lowrey to share with us their experiences with the program and its impact.

Serving as West Virginia Alpha’s First Senior Member Coordinator By Samantha Stawarz, West Virginia Alpha

INSIDE THIS ISSUE He Said it was the Best Money he Ever Spent


When I was elected to the new position of Senior Member Coordinator for my chapter, I took it as a big responsibility. As I’m sure many of you have experienced, senior year can be tough. Sisters are preparing to enter the “real world” and finishing some of their hardest classes. It’s easy to become too busy to make time for Pi Phi. And as the cycle can go, becoming an active alumna member becomes even less of a priority. Seeing senior members not actively participate in our chapter was something I wanted to change in the hope that it would positively impact our sisters’ engagement later on.

Lifelong Commitment to Pi Beta Phi Continued


Setting the Wheels in Motion for Literacy


$50,000 for Literacy


What I’ve Learned from the Ring Ching Roadshow


What I loved most about the program were the opportunities we had to reflect and have meaningful conversations. My chapter’s seniors had some amazing ideas of what legacy was to them and how to truly create one. Specifically, we started a senior philanthropy project we hope will continue to grow at West Virginia Alpha.

Top 10 Chapters


News & Notes


Lifelong Commitment to Pi Beta Phi continued on Page 3

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He Said it was the Best Money he Ever Spent

Foundation Trustee Jan Kincaid Clifford, Indiana Delta, shares why lifelong commitment is a value she doesn’t take lightly. Every sister has at least one Pi Phi story she loves to share. One of mine involves my dad a few years after my graduation from Purdue University. I was living in the Chicago area with one of my pledge sisters when I dropped by my childhood home. While sitting with my mom in the kitchen, my dad called me into the dining room where he had stacked two piles of canceled checks. He pointed at the checks and said, “That’s the best money I ever spent.” One stack were the checks he had written to Purdue for my undergraduate degree and the other stack were checks written to Indiana Delta of Pi Beta Phi Fraternity. It was a moment I will remember my entire life. At that time my father and I were the only college graduates in our family. He earned his undergraduate degree from Eastern Illinois University and had only attended college because his mother made him leave his tiny town in mid-eastern Illinois; she felt he needed to make something of himself and see the world. He worked his way through college doing various jobs and joined a local fraternity but did not have the experience I had. When I joined Indiana Delta my parents received a handwritten note from my Big Sister Bryn Johnson (now Jepson) which explained she would be guiding me through my pledgeship and how happy the chapter was to have me join 31 other women as new members. Back in the early 1980s my dad and I had no idea what role Pi Beta Phi would play in my post-graduation life, but what he showed me that afternoon reaffirmed my commitment to Pi Phi and helped me reflect on all it had given me in four short years. I was keenly aware of the sacrifice my parents made to send me to college AND provide me my Pi Phi experience. While I worked summer jobs and helped contribute, they were the ones who bore the majority of the expenses. Fast forward many years later, I look back and think, “What would my life be if I hadn’t stayed connected to Pi Phi?” Those best friends my dad saw me make in college are still my lifelong friends today. Through volunteering for Pi Phi I’ve had more growth opportunities than any other organization I’ve been a part of. And by donating to the Foundation, I hope I’m giving future generations an even better experience than the one I had at Indiana Delta.

Foundation Trustee Jan Kincaid Clifford, Indiana Delta

I’m not sure I’ll ever be able to “repay” Pi Phi for all it has given to me, but it won’t keep me from trying. In addition to serving at the alumnae club level, I’ve served at the chapter level; most recently at California Gamma on AAC and now on the same chapter’s CHC. I’m so in awe and impressed with the women that I have had the privilege of working with. Collegians juggle a great deal and carry so much more responsibility than I did in school. For many of them, Pi Phi is their major support system, so they rely and depend on each other. My hope is that those of us they work with help model the reasons to stay involved. I have no doubt their lives will be all the richer for it, and when that happens our greater sisterhood benefits too. If you are reading this newsletter it’s because you are a donor to the Foundation. You exemplify lifelong commitment by giving. To me you are exactly what our sisterhood is all about: sincere friendship, leadership and philanthropy. You inspire me and the sisters you will read about in this newsletter to continue to make Pi Phi a lifelong journey. Thank you for giving back so others can benefit. I know Pete Kincaid would support that too! I would love to hear your Pi Phi story. Feel free to email me at or call me at (626) 278–2051.

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Lifelong Commitment to Pi Beta Phi continued from Page 1 Additionally, our seniors decided to host a conversation workshop with younger members to give them more experience before recruitment. We thought it was a small gesture at first, but seeing how much the workshop helped these members brought joy to all of us. It also helped instill our confidence that we were leaving our chapter in great hands. Pi Phi for Life gives us a new look at what it truly means to be a Pi Beta Phi. As Senior Member Coordinator, I had the amazing opportunity to facilitate the workshops, and it really left an impression on me. After graduation, I plan on being a lifelong member and giving back in as many ways as I can. Being a Pi Phi sister has given me some of the best memories, and I want to continue to make memories as an alumna. Pi Phi has also given me my best friends, women I can count on through thick and thin. I’m going to give back so that other sisters can create amazing memories, find lifelong friends and build upon their strengths just as Pi Phi has done for me.

Seeing Pi Phi for Life in Action

By Leisa Ebeling Lowrey, Ohio Eta and Director Programming and Philanthropy for Pi Beta Phi The Foundation’s mission is to ensure the future of our sisterhood, and I strongly believe that the Fraternity’s newly relaunched Pi Phi for Life program is critically important to achieving that mission. We want all collegians to transition into alumnae life and support Pi Phi with their time, talent and treasure. Unfortunately, we know that lack of engagement during senior year often translates to lack of participation in alumnae life. I am excited that, thanks to funding from the Foundation, Pi Phi for Life can be a reality for every graduating senior member. I was blessed to see the reality of Pi Phi for Life modeled by my mom, Martha Bowman Ebeling, Ohio Delta. Throughout my childhood, I saw her enjoy alumnae club activities and serve as a club officer, and many of her dear friends were Pi Phis. “Ring Ching Ching” was one of the first songs I learned (although I thought the lyrics were “Ring, Ching, Ching! I baked a Pi-i-i ...!”) After graduating from Denison

West Virginia Alpha Samantha Stawarz served as her chapter’s first Senior Member Coordinator after the relaunch of Pi Phi for Life, a transition program for senior members. She is pictured here (front, center) with her pledge class.

University, I jumped right into being an active alumna. It never dawned on me to do otherwise. Working closely with the relaunch of Pi Phi for Life, I got to see firsthand the effectiveness of the new workshops on our members. For instance, while observing a pilot chapter conducting one of the Pi Phi for Life workshops, I saw the women, after hearing the benefits of joining an alumnae club, reconsider how they wanted to be involved post graduation. Their enthusiasm was palpable! If this example holds true throughout all of our chapters, we will see more and more new grads staying connected through a number of ways discussed during the workshops, like joining an alumnae club, paying dues and finding new ways to serve their communities. Graduating seniors are the future of our sisterhood — tomorrow’s AAC and CHC volunteers, alumnae club officers and Foundation volunteers and donors! Part of the Pi Phi for Life programming includes six signature videos focused on topics relevant to senior members. Visit to view the Pi Phi for Life workshop videos.

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Setting the Wheels in Motion for Literacy

Five nonprofit organizations around the country each recently received a $10,000 Foundation grant for their literacy programs, including Kids Need to Read in Mesa, Arizona.

Since 2008, Kids Need to Read has been on a mission to create a culture of reading by providing books to underfunded schools, libraries and literacy programs, especially those serving disadvantaged children. While their work serves children nationally, they focus extensively within the Phoenix metro area through targeted book donations and literacy-based programs conducted in conjunction with area schools. The need in the area is vast. In a 2014 report released by the Census Bureau, the Phoenix/Mesa/Scottsdale metro area was identified as having the third highest percentage of people living in poverty among the 25 largest metropolitan areas in the country, with at least 17.6 percent of the population living in poverty. Additionally, Mesa, Arizona, where the organization is headquartered, has been ranked as one of the country’s most illiterate cities. “When you aren’t sure where your family’s next meal is coming from or whether you have a place to sleep or proper transportation, reading falls low on the priority list,” said Denise Gary, Executive Director for Kids Need to Read. Along with a small staff, the organization receives ongoing volunteer support from the Phoenix, Arizona Alumnae Club, which has been promoting early childhood literacy alongside Kids Need to Read for the past two years.

“Literacy is a passion for many of our members, and our partnership with Kids Need to Read was the perfect opportunity for us to continue to make a difference in our community,” said club member Kim OBrien, Ohio Zeta. This year, alumnae club members will help Kids Need to Read launch their newest effort, The Page Coach, a mobile outreach program that quite literally sets the wheels in motion for an enhanced community impact. The club recently helped the organization apply and secure a $10,000 Special Impact Grant from the Foundation for The Page Coach. “We know one of our greatest obstacles to literacy is the lack of opportunities available in certain areas of our city, so The Page Coach will bring the books and resources to the children,” said Gary. “An additional goal is to battle the summertime lull by hosting summer reading events in the metro area, keeping children engaged and excited about reading through the long vacation months.” The mobile nature of The Page Coach also allows for reading experiences involving the entire family while reinforcing the importance of reading together at home. “Kids Need to Read has offered our members the opportunity to participate in The Page Coach’s outreach, and we couldn’t be more excited,” said OBrien. “By taking the message directly to the children in a fun, engaging atmosphere, The Page Coach can demonstrate more powerfully than ever, the true magic of reading.”

Kids Need to Read provides books to underfunded schools, libraries and literacy programs, especially those serving disadvantaged children.

To learn more about Kids Need to Read, visit

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Special Impact Grants Give $50,000 for Literacy

In addition to Kids Need to Read, four other organizations each received $10,000 for their literacy programs. Here’s a look at their missions and how they plan to use the grant dollars.


Website: Mission: $10,000 will:

Glen Ellyn, Illinois To help children from low-income families acquire the necessary skills in academics and social interaction to move successfully through grades K-12 and into adulthood. Support a cost-free, after-school and summer academic enhancement for low-income, immigrant and/or refugee children residing in Glen Ellyn.


Tyler, Texas Website: Mission: To eliminate illiteracy and change the lives of adults and their families forever. Through its supporters, staff, partners and volunteers, LCOT positively impacts the quality of life for thousands of Texans. $10,000 will: Support the Family Literacy Program at the Family Learning Center. The center provides literacy services to low-income children age birth to four years.


Greensboro, North Carolina Website: Mission: To provide and advocate for free, individualized adult literacy services to promote life changes for Guilford County residents and surrounding communities. $10,000 will: Support the Family Literacy Program in which parents receive basic literacy instruction using Motheread curriculum that integrates adult literacy instruction with parenting education.


Torrance, California Website: Mission: To teach adults to read, write and speak English for free. $10,000 will: Support English as a Second Language classes where women comprise 85 percent of the learners. In addition to English literacy, classes provide mothers confidence to speak and read with their children in English and to help with school activities.

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What I’ve Learned from the Ring Ching Roadshow (so far) California Eta Daphney Bitanga is traveling across the country with Libbie, the Ring Ching Roadshow car, gathering Pi Phi stories and spreading the excitement for Pi Phi’s upcoming 150th celebration. Daphney recently shared with us some of what she’s learned about herself, her sisters and Pi Phi during her travels.

About Myself I’m a master packer. Combined, Libbie and I have a lot of baggage. I’ve really learned how to live on the road (and pack and re-pack a car)! My younger self wouldn’t recognize me, but now when I am offered a home cooked meal, I ask for veggies! I love Pi Phi! Well, I’ve always known this, but this opportunity has made me appreciate our sisterhood even more.

About My Sisters They love Libbie! The excitement when we arrive at a chapter house or Pi Phi event is incredible. Pi Phis enjoy taking photos ... lots and lots of them. My sisters are so hospitable, everywhere I go. Even Pi Phi spouses, children and dogs have welcomed me with open arms (or paws)!

In anticipation of Pi Beta Phi’s 150th celebration, California Eta Daphney Bitanga is traveling the country with the Ring Ching Roadshow, meeting sisters and collecting stories along the way.

About Pi Beta Phi Our network is really amazing. Six degrees of separation? Forget Kevin Bacon. There should be five degrees ... everyone knows a Pi Phi sister! The impact of our Fraternity is grand, and far beyond what I expected as a collegian. I genuinely believe Pi Phi will always have a way for you to get involved when you are ready for it. We are an incredibly diverse group of empowered women with unique stories. It’s truly amazing to think about all of the sisters who have said yes to Pi Beta Phi for the last (almost) 150 years.

To follow Daphney and Libbie’s travels or request that the Ring Ching Roadshow come to your area, visit

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Celebrating Chapter Giving


At College Weekend in January, we announced the Top 10 chapters for Foundation giving for calendar year 2015. Top 10 chapters are determined by total gifts to the Foundation divided by the number of members in the chapter. This allows us to recognize the efforts of both our small and large chapters.


Together, our 138 chapters raised $1,311,901 in 2015, the most ever raised by chapters! Through their philanthropic passion and leadership, our collegiate sisters are making a difference in their communities and for Pi Phi’s future.

SAVE THE DATE FOR PI PHI GIVING DAY! On April 28, Pi Beta Phi will celebrate its first Pi Phi Giving Day. Show you are proud to be Pi Phi by:

2. Spreading the Word. Share your love of Pi Phi on social media using the hashtag #piphigivingday. 3. Getting involved. Update your contact information, sign up to volunteer or find a sister in your area using Sister Search. We hope you’ll share your Pi Phi pride on Founders’ Day. Stay tuned for more information!

University of California, San Diego University of Missouri


Arizona State University


University of Southern California

Missouri Alpha Arizona Beta

California Gamma


University of Southern Mississippi


Oklahoma State University

Mississippi Alpha Oklahoma Beta


University of Memphis


Texas A&M University


Auburn University

The Foundation honored the Top 10 chapters for 2015 at College Weekend in St. Louis. They are pictured here with Foundation Executive Director Hallee Winnie, Michigan Gamma.

California Kappa



1. Making a gift. Give $18.67 to the Foundation in honor of Pi Phi’s founding.

Winter 2016

Tennessee Delta Texas Eta

Alabama Gamma Florida Beta

Florida State University


1154 Town & Country Commons Drive Town & Country, Missouri 63017

Shared Vision of Pi Beta Phi

To be recognized as a premier organization for women by providing lifelong enrichment to its members and contributing to the betterment of society.


Pi Beta Phi Foundation enables the Fraternity to realize its mission and ensures the future of our sisterhood.


Integrity Philanthropic Passion Fraternal and Community Commitment Trustworthy Stewardship

Board of Trustees

President Beth Seidelhuber Sordi, California Kappa Vice President Finance Janice Worthington Lisko, Oklahoma Beta Vice President Development Jan Kincaid Clifford, Indiana Delta Secretary Mary Rakow Tanner, Maryland Beta Trustees Kathy Wager Ewing, Alabama Gamma Vivian Long, New York Eta Kate Blatherwick Pickert, Kansas Alpha Rena Rodeman Thorsen, Maryland Beta Beth Torres, Illinois Zeta Ex Officio Paula Pace Shepherd, Texas Epsilon Lisa Gamel Scott, Colorado Alpha President Emerita Ann Dudgeon Phy, Texas Alpha


Executive Director Hallee Winnie, Michigan Gamma Director of Operations and Programs Betsy West McCune, Missouri Alpha Development Director Jenny Miller Pratt, Indiana Alpha Director of Strategic Initiatives Shawn Eagleburger Finance Director Rosemary Barczewski Marketing & Communications Director Jill Pampel Development Database Specialist Joanna Sell Foundation Assistant Amber Moore

News & Notes Thank you Sign of the Arrow Sign of the Arrow, a needlepoint and gift shop established by the St. Louis Alumnae Club of Pi Beta Phi, awarded the Foundation a grant for the Emma Harper Turner Fund at its annual philanthrophy brunch. Thank you Sign of the Arrow for supporting our sisters in need! Scholarship Recipient Announcement Scholarship recipients for the 2016–2017 academic year will be announced in May! Thank you to all of our donors who make these scholarships possible for our members. Help us Reach 200 Evelyn Peters Kyle Society Members The Foundation’s Development Committee has a goal to reach at least 200 Evelyn Peters Kyle Society members by June 30. Members of this society give $1,000 or more annually to the Foundation. If you know a sister who is passionate about Pi Phi, please connect us! Email Stay connected all year long! Visit our website at or follow us on Facebook and Twitter.

/pibetaphifoundation @pibetaphifndn

The Bow - Winter 2016  

An official publication of Pi Beta Phi Foundation for donors and special friends.

The Bow - Winter 2016  

An official publication of Pi Beta Phi Foundation for donors and special friends.