Our Cause Fall 2008

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Regional Board Hon. Darryl Williams (24th Regional Director)

Leonard Lockhart (Vice Director)

Dennis Donaldson (Associate Director)

Darrick Fuller (Treasurer)

Curtis Banks (Secretary)

Brad Leak (Dir. Of Social Action)

Jean Lamothe (Dir. Of Education)

BALTIMORE, MD - In April the brothers of Phi Beta Sigma Fraternity, Inc. gathered once again to conduct the business of Sigma. We were called to the historic city of Baltimore, MD for the 93rd Anniversary Eastern Regional Conference. The gathering was a time to reflect on past community service, evaluate our current initiatives and plan our future programmatic course. Zeta Sigma and Gamma chapters, Baltimore graduate and Morgan State University chapters respectively, served as hosts for the much anticipated gathering. The Region would emerge from this conference with a newly elected director and several new faces on the Regional Board. Brothers, our sisters of Zeta Phi Beta Sorority, Sigma Betas and guests converged on Baltimore to enjoy all the city had to offer. The Sheraton Baltimore City Center Hotel served as our base of operations during our stay.

Van Rosebrough (Dir. of BBB)

Milton Savage (Legal Counsel)

Greville French (Immediate Past RD)

Todd Le Bon (Dir. Of Publicity)

Newsletter Staff Gerald Smith (Editor)

Craig Arthur Terrance Barker Brandon Brown Brad Leak Todd Le Bon Artel Smith Tyrone Williams

The pre-conference Regional Board Meeting kicked off the conference Thursday evening. Hon Bro. Greville French presided over the meeting and set the tone for the remainder of the weekend. A reception in his honor capped off the evening’s scheduled activities. The reception was an opportunity for brothers and chapters to express their appreciation to Hon Bro. French for his service as our 23rd Regional Director. Following the reception guests were invited to wind down in the hospitality suite, sponsored by Zeta Sigma Chapter. Friday morning began with a breakfast for all registered attendees. This was an opportunity for brothers to reconnect and prepare for the business of the day. The Opening Ceremony was the highlight of the morning’s activities. We received greetings, on the behalf of Mayor Sheila Dixon, from Baltimore City Council President Stephanie Rawlings-Blake. Greetings were also extended from our sisters of Zeta Phi Beta Sorority, Inc., the Baltimore chapter of the National Pan-Hellenic Council and the Sheraton. Attendees were also treated to several selections by the Boys Choir of Pawhattan, directed by Ms. Joeann Otis. Hon. Bro. French extended greetings to all attendees and the city of Baltimore on the behalf of the Region. The closing of the ceremony signified the start of official business for the brothers and a full day of activities for our guests. 1

The First Plenary Session began with the call to order, followed by the seating of the delegates. After the adoption of the conference rules, agenda and minutes from the 91st Anniversary Eastern Regional Conference; the conference was officially in session. The Nominating Committee gave its report and announced their recommended slate for the election. Following their announcement the floor was open for nominations. Upon completion of the nominations from the floor a single vote was cast for all uncontested position. The following brothers were congratulated on their election to the new board; Bros. Darryl T. Williams (24th Regional Director), Darrick Fuller (Treasurer), Curtis Banks (Secretary), Brad K. Leak (Director of Social Action), Van Rosebrough (Director of Bigger and Better Business) and Jean B. Lamothe (Director of Education). The positions of vice director, associate director and director of publicity would be decided by vote during the Third Plenary Session.

the Sigma Wellness brand in the upcoming months. Friday evening’s African American Image Awards Banquet is the Region’s opportunity to acknowledge local contributions in the area of education, social action and business. The Region presented the Hon. Bro. Dr. Parlett L. Moore and Hon. Bro. Richard M. Ballard scholarships to deserving high school students. Awards were also presented for our three national programs, Entrepreneur of the Year and Trailblazers. The highlight of the evening was the presentation of the Trailblazer awards to Bros. Dr. Cyril O. Byron and Lemuel A. Lewis; both are distinguished members of the legendary Tuskegee Airmen. Entertainment was provided by baritone Bro. Kevin Carr, accompanied by Marcus D. Smith on the piano. The Step Show Competition and jam closed out the night’s activities. Saturday started early with the Awards Breakfast. This is the time to recognize those Men of Sigma for their commitment and service. The Second Plenary Session followed the breakfast. The session was presided over by Vice Regional Director Darryl Williams. Our 32nd International President, Hon. Paul L. Griffin, Jr., gave the brothers an update of the state of the Fraternity. Bro. Griffin also took time to answer questions from the floor. Hon. Bros. Carter Womack and Peter Adams gave a presentation and update on the Centennial Celebration. Brothers were given the opportunity to sign the Centennial Signature Book during the conference and purchase the Centennial Pin from the Sigma Exchange. Bro. Jimmy Hammock, International 1st Vice President, introduced his membership drive initiative, Mission Possible: Vision 2010. The goal of the initiative is to have 10,000 financial

Brothers gathered for the Omega Ceremony after the completion of the morning business session. This is always a solemn event and an opportunity to acknowledge and remember our fallen brothers. We completed the morning activities with the Rededication Ceremony. Brothers left the ceremony recharged and recommitted to the principles of Sigma and ready to address the issues impacting our communities. After lunch committee meetings and presentations by our national program directors filled the early afternoon agenda. The program directors rolled out the national Sigma Wellness Initiative. All three national programs now fall under the Sigma Wellness brand. The initiative is intended to provide some symmetry among all our organizational and community initiatives. Chapters will receive more information on 2

members by 2010. The State of the Region address from our 23rd Eastern Regional Director, Hon. Bro. Greville French, closed out the morning session. Bro. French thanked the brothers for their support and recapped the progress and accomplishments of his two terms. Brothers received the address warmly and expressed their thanks to Bro. French for a job well done.

Holmes (Zeta Delta Sigma/Hampton, VA) and Daniel J. Tann, Esq. (Nu Sigma/Philadelphia, PA). This announcement was well received by the Body and congratulations were extended to these brothers. The Elections Committee would be the last to take center stage. Bro. Jonathan Mason, Committee Chair, called all committee members to the front of the room to prepare for the voting of the delegates. Once the committee was ready to proceed, the official conference voting took place. Delegates were called to the microphone to cast their votes for their respective chapters. Once the voting was completed, the Committee gathered to count the votes. This gave the brothers in attendance a chance to take a break and debate the final outcome. The anticipation in the room was high as brothers waited for the official count. The official outcome of the voting was as follows: Leonard O. Lockhart(Vice Director), Dennis Donaldson(Associate Director) and Todd D. Le Bon(Director of Publicity). The newly elected Eastern Regional Board was called to the front of the room to be received by the Body. The Board received a warm reception and well wishes from the Body. Following some brief announcements the business of the 93rd Anniversary Eastern Regional Conference was completed.

Brothers gathered for lunch at the Radisson Hotel Ballroom to celebrate the contributions and accomplishments of our undergraduate brothers and chapters. The Collegiate Awards Luncheon is always well attended by Sigma Men young and old. We gather to show our support for the wonderful light our undergraduate brothers shine on campuses and communities up and down the east coast. The Third Plenary Session would be the close of official business for the conference. Bro. William C. Kellibrew, Associate Regional Director, presided over the session. We had a presentation from our International Executive Director, Bro. Marco W. McMillian. Brother Director gave us an update of the changes taking place at the International Headquarters and a breakdown of issues currently being addressed by the staff. He also shared a presentation on the website update on the behalf of our Technology Director, Bro. Ian Heisser.

The instillation of the Regional Director took place later that evening in a small ceremony attended by brothers and guests. Hon. Bro. Greville French had the honor to pin our 24th Eastern Regional Director, Hon. Bro. Darryl T. Williams. All members of the newly elected Eastern regional Board participated in the ceremony and were pinned by their fellow brothers. It was now time to relax and unwind at the Grand Orchid Ball. This would be the first public event attended by the new board. Brothers enjoyed the event with their families,

We heard reports form several committees during the final session. The Time and Place Committee announced the hosting of the 2014 Eastern Regional Conference was awarded to Kappa Beta Sigma Chapter (Brooklyn, NY). The Distinguished Service Committee (DSC) announced the following names to be presented to the 2009 Conclave for consideration: Bros. Greville French(Epsilon Sigma/Harlem, NY), James 3

brothers of Sigma, sisters of Zeta and invited guests. The highlight of the Grand Orchid Ball is always the thundering march of the Men of Sigma at the stroke of midnight. The singing of “We are the Men of Sigma” signifies the end of another gathering of Sigma Men. It is now their charge to return to their respective communities and campuses and speed our cause on its way. All roads lead to the state of Delaware and the 2010 Eastern Regional Conference. March On, March On . . . T. Le Bon

in Baltimore, MD was a success and will also be practiced in 2010. Save the date cards and a conference website are scheduled to be ready by midSeptember. Some tourist sites in or near Dover include the following: Dover Down Slots and Raceway, Delaware Agricultural Museum, Biggs Museum Of American Art, Jolly Time Family Fun Center, DNR Paintball and Club Kids.

DOVER, DE - The newly renovated Sheraton Hotel and Resort in Dover, Delaware will be the host hotel for the 2010 Eastern Regional Conference. Host chapters, Lambda Delta Sigma and Gamma Delta Sigma, are currently in the early stages of negotiations with the hotel and communicating with our Regional Director. The tentative dates for the conference are Thursday, April 8th to Sunday, April 11th, 2010.

To learn more about the host hotel, visit www.sheratondover.com B. Brown

Class of 2008

Brother Thomas Bond, President of Lambda Delta Sigma, and conference Co-Chair, stated, “the 2010 Conference will be the beginning of the new look Regional Conference for the Region.” Without getting into much detail, Brother Bond eluded that the structure and events of 2010 will set the template for Eastern Regional Conference moving forward. The elimination of on-site registration at the 2008 Regional Conference 4

SIGMA ON CAMPUS Associate Regional Director’s Address: On behalf of the Eastern Regional Board of Phi Beta Sigma Fraternity, Inc., I hope this letter finds each of you well. As the Associate Regional Director of the Eastern Region I acknowledge the importance of not only the collegiate brothers of the Eastern Region but the entire fraternity. With the support of the entire brotherhood, various institutions and supporting communities, improving the overall collegiate experience will continue to be a focal target. Additionally, increasing membership is imperative along with tackling the everyday issues that plague collegiate chapters and brothers. Moving forward, I would also encourage chapters to continue and increase the utilization of our Sigma Wellness Programs as they truly provide insight into what Phi Beta Sigma is about and the great work we do! Please do not hesitate to contact me with any questions and/or concerns. I look forward to working with you all. Fraternally, Dennis Donaldson Associate Eastern Regional Director

LEXINGTON, VA - Bro. Phillip Jameson Graber, of Arlington, Texas, graduated as valedictorian of Washington & Lee University’s class of 2008. Bro. Jameson is a dual mathematics and physics major with a cumulative grade point average of 4.2. He is also the current President of Beta Beta Nu (ΒΒΝ) chapter, is heavily involved in various community service initiatives, is a recipient of the national fellowship Goldwater scholarship, the President of the Students for Life chapter on his campus, and an active member of the Reformed University Fellowship. He is an accomplished musician who 5

plays guitar, drums, and sings in the university’s Chamber Singers and Joyful Noise Gospel Choir. Bro. Jameson is also busy being an all-around, full-time, true blue Sigma brother. Bro. Graber was initiated into our wondrous band via the ΒΒΝ chapter at Washington & Lee University in Lexington, Virginia on April 23, 2006. Since then, he has been very active in Sigma by serving as his chapter’s delegate or alternate delegate at our 2007 Conclave in Charlotte, NC, the 2007 Virginia State Meeting at St. Paul’s College, and the 2008 Eastern Regional Conference in Baltimore, Maryland. He also served ΒΒΝ as treasurer from 2006 to 2007. In the fall, Bro. Jameson “Blu Knowledge” Graber will be making use of his Jefferson scholar designation at the University of Virginia in pursuit of both Master’s and PhD degrees in mathematics and physics. He also plans to continue to be a financially and physically active Sigma brother by transferring his membership to the Iota Sigma (ΙΣ) chapter immediately after graduation. Both ΒΒΝ and ΙΣ chapters are incredibly proud of Bro. Graber’s accomplishments. We are sure that he will continue to work hard for Sigma and his community. GOMAB Bro. Graber! Our Cause Speeds on its Way! C. Arthur


Bowie State University ∆Μ John Dahunsi (Biology) Kenneth Roach (Telecommunications) Morgan State University Γ Ali Blesson Popoola (Philosophy) Charles Haggins (Architecture) Andre Murdock (Engineering Physics)


Albertus Magnus College ΟΘ Christopher L. Larose (Communications) Eastern CT State University ΖΛ Mark Anthony Robinson (Communications)


Johnson & Wales University ΑΑΤ Jermaine Barker Graphic Design) Ernest Boston (Criminal Justice) Isaiah Kelsey (Food Service Management) Darryl Pratt (Marketing) Mass. College of Pharmacy Dr. Chukwuma Obi (PharmD) Southern CT State University ΟΘ Maurice Edwards (Psychology/Comm.) Brian Mason (Exercise Science) University of Connecticut / UCONN ∆ΙΣ Christopher Bethune (Masters/Social Work) University of Hartford Barney School of Business ∆ΠΣ David Oliver (MBA)

Montclair State University KE (cont.) Paul Timacomb (Biology) Rowan University ΘΨ Joel Hernandez (Business Management) Chinasa (Nas) Nworu (Communications) Louis Ward (Business Management) Richard Stockton College ΒΒ∆ ΒΒ∆ Larry Daniels (Criminal Justice) Rutgers University ΜΖ Pat Henry Mike Henry Fabian Jenkins Garrett Richardson Rutgers University ΛΛΣ Jacqueem Winston (Masters Degree)



College of New Jersey ΞΠ Brandon P. Smith (Criminal Justice)

Hofstra University ΑΑΙ Karl Williams (Exercise Physiology) Wendell Wilson (Accounting)

Montclair State University ΚΕ Vantavis Allan (Biology) Lamar Scott (Sociology)

State University of New York SUNY @ Oswego ΡΞ Durrell Queen (Psychology) 7

Norfolk State University ∆Ζ Shakeem Ffrench (English)


George Mason University ΡΤ Brandon O. Thompson (Admin. of Justice)

University of Virginia ΖΗ Princeton Carter (Engineering) Edmund Dixon (History) Kyle Miller (Sociology) David Ojumu (Engineering) Bryan Thomas (Sociology) Mikiyas Tsgaye (Engineering)

George Mason University ΘΤΣ George K. Hewan, Jr. (Masters/Special Education)

Virginia Commonwealth University ∆Υ Bryan Concepcion (Criminal Justice) Matt Sevier (Accounting) Virginia State University AAA Yusuf House (Accounting) Anthony Quildon (Criminal Justice) Virginia Polytechnic Institute ΜΝ Virginia Tech George Blake (Interdisciplinary Studies) Mark Brown (Industrial Systems Engineering) Thomas Williams (Management) Washington & Lee University ΒΒΝ Phillip Jameson Graber (Mathematics/Physics)

L. Lockhart

SIGMA MILESTONE Bro. Wesley T. Carter Born on August 22, 1907 Initiated into Lambda Chapter in 1927 Virginia Union University




OCTOBER (cont)



VIRGINIA / WEST VIRGINIA Petersburg, VA (Virginia State Univ.)

NEW JERSEY New Brunswick, NJ







NEW YORK Brooklyn, NY

New Haven, CT



MARYLND / DC / DELAWARE Baltimore, MD (Morgan State Univ.)

Philadelphia, PA

When one thinks of South Africa, visions of oppression and political unrest come to mind as Africans struggled to wrestle free from the grips of apartheid. Although apartheid was abolished in 1994 reminders of the injustice remain fresh in our consciousness. Bro. Harris was selected as 1 of 8 finalists, chosen from hundreds of applicants, to represent Rutgers at the prestigious University of KwaZulu-Natal. The University is the most acclaimed research school on the continent of Africa. One of the institution’s most notable alumni is Steven Bilko, the anti-apartheid activist. While Harris is being educated on the history of South Africa, he will also study the teachings of Nelson Mandela, Marcus Garvey and Steven Bilko. The discipline and precepts of “Conflict Transformation,” “Social Justice in Intercultural Relations,” and “Sustainable Development,” will be his course of study at the university. Standing

SOUTH AFRICA - “Am I my brother’s keeper? Should I be my brother’s keeper? Will I be my brother’s keeper?” The answers to these questions have been a challenge within the Black community since the days of the Civil Rights Movement. Our responsibility to those less fortunate continues to create a void in the fabric of our communities. Our Founders believed we are defined by our commitment and service to those less fortunate. Brother Corey Harris (Mu Zeta Chapter, Fall 06, and Rutgers University) represents the vision of our Founders as he travels to the motherland, South Africa, participating in the educational opportunity of a lifetime.


earliest childhood influences to see how purpose, vision and understanding began transforming his life. Hearing stories about slavery and how hard times were for Black folk in the deep south had a lasting affect on his psyche. These accounts were given by his parents, grandparents and countless relatives. Brother Harris states; “I would hear stories of despair on how we as Black folks suffered through slavery, and through a period of virtual second class citizenship in America. My family had limited rights while residing in the small town of Moultrie, Georgia.” He recalls stories of relatives forced to be buried at an “all black cemetery” and the impact it had on him. “Blacks could not be buried in White cemeteries or enjoy many of the same rights Whites took for granted”.

on the same soil as Nelson Mandela, Marcus Garvey and countless other Africans who died during the struggle will undoubtedly inspire Brother Harris in his personal journey. As Brother Harris embarks on this educational experience, we must not forget the plight and despair many of our South African brothers and sisters still live under today. As part of the continuing maturation process, Brother Harris will spend time working at an AIDS orphanage. The HIV/AIDS crisis in South Africa has grown to pandemic proportions since the first reported case in 1982. The African Medical and Research Foundation estimate that by 2010, there will be at least 18 million AIDS orphans in Africa. By the end of 2003, estimates indicate that 5.3 million people from South Africa were affected with HIV/AIDS, the highest number of people to be living in the world with the virus. Projections estimate that 1.2 million children (aged 0-17) will become orphaned as a result of the HIV/AIDS crisis in South Africa alone. For the majority of children affected with the virus, orphanages are providing the only safe haven in a country where incidents of violence against women are high and have contributed overwhelmingly to the spread of HIV/AIDS. According to the United Nations AIDS/World Health Organization, in 2005, an estimated 320,000 people died of AIDS in South Africa; about 900 citizens daily. Harris will experience first hand how this devastating disease has taken a virtual grip on the African continent.

Hearing those stories, he says, was part of what helped shape his ideals of Brotherhood, Scholarship and Service. Those stories served to transform his view of the world. The vision of our Founders was ingrained in his spirit long before he became a “SIGMA” man. The history of racial disparity in America began to shape Brother Harris in ways that became fully recognizable during his senior year of high school and his freshman year at Temple University. Intertwined in shaping his world value was the education he received from the Newark and Irvington New Jersey public school systems. At an early age he became

Why would a 20 year old college student, pursuing a degree in Africana Studies, desire to study abroad on a continent so ravaged by disease and political disparity? What inspires an individual to take on such a daunting task? You have to first look at his 10

In an effort to become part of the movement for change he traveled down to Louisiana to participate in the Jena 6 protest march. He now realized he could no longer stand by and watch, but needed to take action in order to produce change. Bro. Harris finally had the answer to his questions. His life’s work would now be dedicated to helping those less fortunate and sharing his gifts. He left for South Africa in the spring on the next leg of his journey in an effort to serve humanity.

disenchanted with the educational process. “All I was learning was European history and nothing about my own Black history”. As his early years were shaped by the reminders of the schisms of racism suffered by his family, he now began to see injustice through his own eyes. The under pinning of society began to shape and challenge his way of looking at this world. The question would arise in his mind, “How could we have forgotten about those less fortunate?” For him Hurricane Katrina served to reaffirm his belief that America has not only forgotten about the less fortunate in this county, but about our brothers and sisters on the African continent. He spent a week in New Orleans, during spring break 2006, assisting home owners to clean out what was left of their homes. He experienced first hand conditions many of us could not imagine and the television news can not fully capture. What was transpiring in the most industrialized country in the modern world was beyond feeling. The beliefs and teachings of Marcus Garvey began to reverberate in his mind. Bro. Harris was now searching for a way in which he could interject and assist in making necessary changes. “Culture for Service and Service for Humanity” began to be a driving force in his life long before Phi Beta Sigma added to his maturation process.

His studies will keep him abroad for both the spring and summer semesters. He needs your support. Donations of any amount will further aid in his mission. Donation can be sent to: Corey Harris 560 Main St, Apt # 314, Orange, New Jersey 07017. You can correspond with Brother Harris via e-mail at coreyhar@eden.rutgers.edu. Every donation given will effect change and answer the question, “I am, I should and I will be my brother’s keeper.” T. Williams

The state of West Virginia had remained dormant for a number of years. The once proud Sigma presence in the Mountain State had disappeared. Recently the state witnessed a rebirth of Sigma when Zeta Lambda Sigma Chapter (Charleston, West Virginia) was placed back onto the regional grid. With the reactivation of the Charleston graduate chapter there was talk about bringing Sigma back across the state. Zeta Lambda Sigma has made the reactivation, reclamation and recruitment of Sigma in West Virginia a priority. 11

The effort to revive Sigma in the state received a enormous boost when Bro. Ken Daniel (Theta Tau Sigma Chapter/Northern VA) was appointed West Virginia State Director. To say Bro. Daniel hit the ground running is an understatement. Over the last four months he has remained in constant touch with the graduate chapter and made contact with the administrations at six universities in the state. During the month of August he will visit each of those universities to meet with university officials. Those meetings will serve to give Sigma a better understanding of university policy and help lay the groundwork for fall intake. While each university has welcomed Sigma back with open arms, two were very excited to assist in bringing Sigma back onto the campus. The Eastern Regional Board, brothers of the Region and the Fraternity owe a debt of gratitude to Bro. Daniel for his tireless effort. He is raising the bar for us all. We will update this story in the future as events unfold. Thank you, Bro. Daniel. March On. March On . . . T. Le Bon

Dr. Harry S. Crawford, Jr. Richmond, VA Icon Called Home RICHMOND, VA - Bro. Dr. Harry Stephenson Crawford, Jr., a 1940 initiate of Lambda chapter, joined the ranks of the Omega chapter on June 19, 2008. Dr. Crawford, son of Lambda Chapter & Iota Sigma Chapter charter member Hon. Bro. Harry Stephenson Crawford, Sr. and Iota Sigma’s Sigma Wives organization founder Ruth S. Crawford, was a graduate of Armstrong High School, Virginia Union University, Meharry Medical School and also attended Howard University’s School of Medicine. Bro. Dr. Crawford practiced medicine in Richmond for more than 40 years. During his career, he was the team physician for the Armstrong and Maggie Walker High Schools. Upon retirement, he volunteered his time with the Church Hill Clinic and the Sickle Cell Initiative Program. Dr. Crawford served, for more than 25 years, as the treasurer of the Richmond Medical Society. The Boy Scouts of America, originally brought to Richmond’s Black community by his father, was another organization that garnered his time and energy. Two of his three sons, Brother Daniel Crawford (deceased) and Brother Franklin Crawford, are also Sigma men. Dr. Crawford will be missed by the brotherhood and the Richmond community. C. Arthur


Eta Phi Sigma Chapter Reactivates In NJ JERSEY CITY, NJ - On Saturday, July 14, 2007, a meeting was held to discuss the rechartering of a graduate chapter to service the Hudson and Bergen County, NJ areas. The initial meeting was held at Fairleigh Dickinson University – College at Florham Campus in Madison, NJ. Eleven brothers assembled in the Student Center’s Sammartino Room to discuss the possibility venture. A chapter in the area would help to expand Sigma’s influence and the reach our programmatic thrust into uncharted territory. Five of the brothers in attendance were financially active with an existing graduate chapter. Those five Brothers; Bros. Terrance J. Barker, Ross Hamilton, Jr., Trevor Harmon, Jason Jones, and Robert Rogers became the charter members of Eta Phi Sigma Chapter. The Chapter originally serviced the Middlesex and Somerset County, NJ areas, until the chapter became inactive in 2000. Several brothers answered the call and became active with the newly re-chartered chapter, Bros. Tyrone Bates, Brian Beckwith, Bill Ince, and Walter Reid, III. One of the Chapter’s main objectives is to bring about a much needed change in the community. The communities under our watch have been suffering from neglect for decades. It is our charge to address those issues impacting the community in an effort to return the community to a positive and productive path. I often echo the words of Dr. Cornel West to the Chapter, “You can’t lead the people, if you don’t love the people and you can’t save the people, if you won’t serve the people”. The brothers of Eta Phi Sigma will continue to live by these words as we work to have a positive impact on the community. Black men in general have stood on the sidelines idle for far too long, watching as our communities and families crumble. It is the time for Sigma Men to stand up and be the example for all to follow! Since being chartered the Chapter has hit the ground running. The chapter hosted a community panel discussion on the economic and racial disparities exposed as a result of hurricane Katrina. The program was inspired by the HBO film, directed by Spike Lee, “When the Levees Broke”. A Voter Registration/Education Drive kicked off a series of community activities focusing on national and local politics. Future Chapter programs will address several issues impacting the black community via community forums. The proliferation of guns and drugs in the Black community, Black male and female incarceration, the HIV/AIDS epidemic, and police brutality are some of the issues they will address. It is our goal to set the example for all other organizations to follow through our community service. Our work in the community will make Sigma a household name in the Hudson and Bergen counties. T. Barker 13

A CITY ON THE MOVE Bro. Eldridge Hawkins elected Mayor of Orange, NJ Hawkins is the son of former state Assemblyman Eldridge Hawkins Sr. and Linda Cofer-Hawkins. He was raised in West Orange, graduated from Seton Hall Prep and received a Bachelor of Science degree in Business from Rider University. While at Rider he became a member of Phi Beta Sigma Fraternity, Inc. (Xi Pi Chapter). The decorated police officer also attended the Professional School of Business; while there he earned his Real-Estate License Prerequisite Certification and became a New Jersey Licensed Realtor Associate for Jordan Baris, Inc. in West Orange. ORANGE, NJ - In the late 1950’s, legendary soul singer Sam Cooke eloquently stated in song that, “A Change is Gonna Come”. On July 1, 2008 that change came to the city of Orange, NJ as Bro. Eldridge Hawkins was sworn in as mayor. Flanked by numerous dignitaries such as New Jersey Governor John Corzine, state Senator Frank Lautenberg, State Senate President Richard Cody and Newark Mayor Corrie Booker; city residents came out in full support to bless and congratulate the 28 year old West Orange police officer on that historic day. Now residing in Orange, Bro. Hawkins is the Chairman of the Orange Democratic County Committee and General Manager and Founder of Black House Investment Group, LLC.

Mayor Hawkins ran on a platform of safer streets, economic development and community support. His progressive platform has the support of the city council in efforts to revitalize the city’s economy and to spur growth and development. Mayor Hawkins confidently states “at the end of our first 100 days of our new administration, people will know that Orange is a city on the move.” Plans are also in the works to revamp the Orange Police Department and to “bring it into the 21st century”.

The Lambda Lambda Sigma chapter congratulates our Brother Eldridge Hawkins and wishes him all the best in his new position. T. Williams


Sigma Tradition Returns PHILADELPHIA, PA - Nu Sigma Chapter’s Presidents’ Ball will make its triumphant return on Saturday, October 11, 2008 at the Renaissance Philadelphia Airport Hotel. This formal affair will honor all of the past Presidents of Nu Sigma Chapter for decades of Sigma leadership in Philadelphia. The event will begin at 7:00 P. M. Tickets for the event are $75.00.

Bro. Darryl Coates (Past International Sigma Beta Club Liaison) Bro. Clifford Roane (Past PA State Director) Bro. Brandon Brown (Past Regional Director of Education) Bro. Clarence Johnson (Past International Auditor)

B. Brown

At one time in our history The Presidents’ Ball was a fraternal icon. Attendance for the event included brothers from across the country. The Ball was a premier event in Philadelphia, and was covered in the Crescent. The Ball has always been an expression of thanks and well deserved accolades for those brothers serving our organization with distinction, dedication and humility.

New York State Sigmas FOCUS ON HEALTH . . . BROOKLYN, NY - On June 7, 2008 the Social Action Committee of Kappa Beta Sigma Chapter participated in the Annual New York State Health Fair. The main focus of this year’s event was the New York Blood Center. The brothers of Sigma were charged to encourage the community to donate blood and assist the center in addressing the blood shortage in New York City. Donors save lives and make many of today's medical miracles and treatments possible. Our goal was to have 25 people donate towards the cause. Although we fell short of our goal the event was a success. Information was passed on to the community covering various topics in an effort to encourage a healthier lifestyle.

Proceeds from this event will go to the Dennis White Memorial Scholarship Fund, which supports Philadelphia students as they continue their educational pursuits. The Fund was named in honor of the last living founder of Nu Sigma Chapter, Brother Dennis White. Brother White retired from the School District of Philadelphia after 32 years of service. He also had a distinguished military career receiving the Bronze Star, Purple Heart and Infantryman’s Badge; all received during World War II.

The New York Blood Center appreciated our participation and expressed an interest in partnering with Phi Beta Sigma in the future. We encourage all brothers to donate to their local blood bank.

For information and to purchase tickets, contact; Brother Shirl Gilbert at (215) 7830553.

Kappa Beta Sigma Chapter extends thanks to all participants and looks forward to next year’s event. The Committee is currently exploring a Voter Registration Drive and Blood Drive for the fall.

Some of this year’s honorees include: Hon. Bro. Wilfong Wilson Hon. Bro. Henry L. Moore Hon. Bro. Emanuel J. Kenny, Jr. Bro. Daniel J. Tann (Past Regional Director) Bro. James Bradford (Past Regional Secretary)

A. DeCoteau 15

interesting people and rediscover some long forgotten facts about Sigma and its members. Through his research he has managed to close some long standing gaps existing in Sigma’s history in Virginia. He does not know where this journey will lead. However, he is eager to continue and let the ancestors guide his steps.

The Merriam-Webster dictionary defines history as, a chronological record of significant events (as affecting a nation or institution) often including an explanation of their causes. History can not only provide a glimpse of your past and explain how you arrived at your current state, but can also have an impact on your future. Too often we do not realize how important history is to an institution, a culture or a people. Sigma has a rich history which can be traced across this nation and to foreign shores. However, in the past we have neglected that history and have not done what is necessary to preserve it and pass it on. Fortunately we have a small group of dedicated Sigma brothers working hard to turn the tide on this issue. They have rolled up their sleeves and are making it their personal charge to fill in the blanks of our history.

1. When did you become a member of our wondrous band? I was initiated into the Phi Beta Sigma Fraternity, Inc. via the Iota Sigma chapter on January 11, 2007. 2. Why did you join Phi Beta Sigma Fraternity, Inc.? I never seriously considered joining a fraternity until I was introduced to Sigma by the brothers of Mu Nu Chapter (Virginia Tech). Two brothers specifically, Bros. Samir Abdosh and Clinton Edwards, helped me to understand that one of Sigma’s strengths is our real diversity culturally, professionally, spiritually, politically, and in terms of perspective. I feel strongly, as a white brother, that Sigma will and should always be predominately African American. Bros. Clinton, Samir, and my prophytes helped me to understand, non-African American brothers are not indicative of a larger “problem” in Sigma; a non-African American-focused agenda would be, however. These brothers introduced me to the sincere nature of Sigma. They helped me to realize I too could

Our Cause sat down with one of those brothers, Bro. Craig Arthur (Iota Sigma Chapter/Richmond,VA/www.RichmondSigma s.org, to discuss his efforts to research, collect and share the rich history of Phi Beta Sigma Fraternity in Virginia. Bro. Arthur has dedicated a great deal of his personal time and money to conduct his research. His work has allowed him to meet some


The late Bro. Lawrence Charity (Iota Sigma Chapter Historian for many years) laid the foundation for what I’m doing today. If it wasn’t for him, my chapter’s archive wouldn’t be anywhere near the caliber it is. Although I, unfortunately, never got the opportunity to meet this good brother, I’m incredibly thankful for his dedication.

be an asset to the organization. Thank you, brothers. Sigma provided me with the brotherhood I always felt I was missing by not having any biological brothers. It affords me endless opportunities to serve my community on a larger scale than I could ever accomplish on my own. I feel strongly that pursuing Sigma is one of the best decisions I’ve made yet.

Bros. Kevin Christian and Mark “Mallet” Pacich inspired me to further research the inner-workings of our history of the Fraternity and to always back it up with source documents. Those brothers are simply incredible; the knowledge

3. Who is your Sigma mentor? There are quite a few… Two of my chapter brothers, Hon. Bro. Millard “the Dean” Watkins and Bro. Malcolm Holmes, have always inspired me and continue to do so. Bro. Holmes was responsible for guiding my line on our journey to Sigma. A former Squire Club and Crescent Club President, Undergraduate Chapter President, Graduate Chapter President, and State Director, he has continuously served our wondrous band for 21 years now. But most importantly, he’s a dedicated professional, family, and community man. Bro. Holmes is truly an inspirational brother. Hon. Bro. Watkins, even with 60 years of continuous service (including serving as Area IX Director, VA State Director, Iota Sigma Chapter President, etc.), is still as energized and excited about Sigma as our newest neophyte brothers. I’ve learned so much from Hon. Bro. Watkins, not just about our Fraternity, but life in general. I’ll forever be indebted to “The Dean”.

base they posses is, as far as I’m concerned, unrivaled. Their dedication of time, money, and other resources is worthy of far more praise then they receive. Bros. Victor Cox and Linden Houston are no joke either. The info that Bro. Linden has uncovered regarding MHF Charles I. Brown continues to inspire and motivate me. Bro. Vic is my go-to brother for rare photos, scans of documents, etc. when all else fails. 17

Seeing long out-of-print Sigma history books sell on E-bay for ridiculous amounts of money for example, inspires me to continue doing what I’m doing. There’s absolutely no reason why our history should be unavailable to any interested brother.

Thank you Bros. Charity, Kevin, Mallet, Linden & Vic!!! 4. What sparked your interest in the research and collecting of our rich history? I’ve always loved history, as long as I can remember. Naturally, shortly after I was initiated, I started to dig a little deeper. It truly was a blessing to have such incredible resources and brothers available to assist me in my efforts. The more I find out the more questions come up, and in turn, the more research I have to do. I love finding information that requires me to look at our history and our current state of affairs in a completely new way…fortunately, it happens all the time. 5. In your opinion, why is the researching, collecting and sharing of Sigma history so important? All too often, our history is lost. Passing history down verbally is an important, time-honored tradition of our brotherhood. However, to guarantee permanence and accuracy, I feel strongly that it needs to be recorded.

At the end of the day, the little bit of work that I’ve done pales in comparison to what many other brothers currently are doing/have done. From the beginning, I’ve tried to keep in mind that it’s not about any individual brother, though…it’s about honoring our beloved Fraternity’s legacy.

More often than not we don’t realize what we had until it’s too late. Important Sigma historical documents and items are destroyed more often than we would like to know, without our knowledge. Some history has been lost forever. It’s a disgrace, but it’s ultimately each brother’s responsibility to protect our history.

6. In your research do you only focus on local Sigma history or does your research cover all aspects of our history? At this point, I’ve mostly focused on the history of Sigma in the Richmond area and the state of Virginia. Sigma has enjoyed a presence in Richmond for nearly 90 years. However, there are still important gaps and questions I’ve yet to rectify. Once – if ever – I answer those questions, I will be able to focus on the bigger picture in good conscience.

Also, the commoditization of our history is something I simply can’t tolerate. Sigma History should be available to all Sigma brothers.

7. Researching history is often a frustrating and time consuming process. Share one of your most rewarding experiences. 18

brother or two in the faculty, as well. For more info, check out www.christiansburginstitute.org

One of my chapter brothers, Bro. James Quash, was initiated into Alpha Theta chapter (West Virginia State University) in ’48 and has been working hard for Sigma ever since. With a few calls to the university’s archives department, I was able to obtain a copy of a Founders’ Day program from his neophyte days. The look on the brother’s face when I gave it to him was priceless.

Discovering that Bro. A.M. Walker was one of thirteen children in a rural Eastern Virginia family also really spoke to me. It’s amazing to think of the sacrifices that many of our early brothers made to get the opportunity to attend college. Bro. Walker’s parents were farmers and it’s documented that he taught in his community’s school prior to - and to fund - his time at Howard.

8. Has the research allowed you to connect with some of our senior brothers? Yes it has. In my experience, most of the senior brothers I know want to pass the torch; they just demand that the younger brothers prove themselves first. After that, any perceived “generation gap” seems to disappear.

11. Can you provide s few basic tips for brothers interested in researching history? I highly recommend contacting the library/archives departments of any and all colleges/universities that have chapters. It may take some patience and a little bit of money to cover duplication, but more often than not, these archives are sitting on all types of Sigma documents/photos/etc.

9. Do you keep in touch with these brothers? My girlfriend jokes that some of my best friends are 60 years older than me. Specifically, I try to catch up with Hon. Bro. Watkins a couple times a week.

I’ve found that if you simply show interest in our history to our more seasoned brothers, you’d be amazed how generous they’ll be.

10. Tell us about a fact you discovered during your research that surprised you. What most surprised me, at least this far, is the Sigma connection to the Christiansburg Institute in what was once called Cambria, Virginia. Bro. Robert Moton was instrumental in supervising the school, Bro. George Washington Carver would come to visit and guide the school’s agricultural curriculum, and Bro. Abraham McCartney Walker was the Institute’s Principal from ’26-’41. There may have been another Sigma

12. Can you share some research tools and/or resources that have helped you? Census records have been incredibly helpful. Local historical societies and governments usually have ready access to that information. Oddly enough, the Mormon Church has a website that is a great source for basic birth and death certificate information too(www.familysearch.org).


Most importantly, our history book, “Our Cause Speeds On” (now 51 years old), is an incredibly valuable resource. I discovered Bro. Walker’s link to the Christiansburg Institute in our history book. Old Crescent Magazines have been instrumental in my research as well.

versions of the magazines with minimal cost. It’s going to take quite a bit of work and time, but it’s long overdue. T. Le Bon


13. Without giving too much away, what project(s) are you currently working on? I’m currently working (about 90% done) on a presentation highlighting Sigma’s history in Central and Western Virginia. Special attention is paid to my home chapter and the collegiate chapters that we advise or have advised over the years. If interested, Bro. Phil Eugenio has been kind enough to let me store it on his website, for download go to:

On Friday, May 9, 2008, history was made as Beta Psi Sigma Chapter initiated six young men into Omicron Gamma Chapter thus bringing the fraternity back to Iona College after a long hiatus. The ceremony took place at the Epsilon Sigma house in


14. What are your plans for future projects? The two most pressing projects I’m researching for the short term are: 1.) Continue to research and follow leads concerning Bro. A.M. Walker. 2.) I hope to eventually expand the presentation I am working on and make it more reflective of the entirety of Sigma’s history in Virginia.

Harlem. Bros. Maurquise Moultrie, Kyle Granby, Stephen Wallace, Jamaal Tillery, Gary Clark and Gene Johnson will bring the blue & white pride back to the New Rochelle campus.

For the long term, I would like to ensure our historical Crescent Magazines are available for our brothers to view and enjoy. It’s a shame that in the 35th Anniversary Crescent (published in ’49), one of the goals for the General Board was to collect and bound copies of older Crescents; yet, almost 60 years later it still has not been realized. My goal is to have these magazines scanned and create a secure website to house digital

The history does not stop there. As a result of this initiation, the Granby family legacy was extended to a third generation. When Bro. Kyle Granby crossed the burning sands he joined his father, Rev. Bro. Lamont Granby and his grandfather, Bro. Samuel Granby. D. Fuller 20

of ΦΒΣ, in the Hudson County area, the NPHC was the next logical step. “For me, it only made sense to form a chapter of the NPHC. Jersey City had more than two recognized organizations in existence, a requirement to form a local council”. I truly believe in the strength of unity. We can no longer allow ourselves to exist on an island. It is in our best interest to cooperate, assist, and support one another. “Through the collective work of the NPHC member organizations we can have a greater impact on the community”. The proposed council will apply for a charter by the end of 2008.

NPHC Chapter Started to Service Hudson County, NJ JERSEY CITY, NJ - On Saturday, May 3, 2008 an organizational meeting was held to discuss the formation of a National PanHellenic Council (NPHC) chapter in Jersey City. This proposal was initially presented in September 2007. All NPHC organizations with chapters in the Hudson County, NJ Area were invited to participate in the meeting. Sha-Nieka Muniz(Rho Kappa Omega Chapter/ΑΚΑ) and Stacy Simmons(Sigma Zeta Zeta Chapter/ΖΦΒ) were instrumental in the initial organization and planning of

T. Barker

Bro. Devon Henry:

Raising The Bar Bro. Devon Henry, Virginia State Director, has been actively involved with the March of Dimes since 2004. In those four short years, he has raised a record-smashing sum of $25,500+. To recognize his dedication, the March of Dimes appointed him to the Board of Volunteers for the Hampton Roads area and also invites him to speak regularly at their events. the proposed council. To date we have solicited the participation of Alpha Kappa Alpha, Kappa Alpha Psi, Omega Psi Phi, Delta Sigma Theta, Phi Beta Sigma, Zeta Phi Beta, and Sigma Gamma Rho. The Council will meet on the first Saturday of each month as we move towards the official chartering of our council.

When asked about his formula for success Bro. Henry stated, “It is important for each individual brother to feel passionately connected to the efforts to decrease premature births in his community”. Bro. Henry’s passion was realized when his five year old daughter, Taylor, was born prematurely. She weighed

The idea of forming a NPHC chapter in Jersey City was the “brain-child” of Bro. Terrance J. Barker (Eta Phi Sigma Chapter/ΦΒΣ). After laying the ground work for the formation of a graduate chapter 21

Bro. Henry has displayed, Bro. John White (International Director of Social Action) has named the Henry family the National Sigma Family Ambassadors.

a mere 1lb 12oz at birth. He credits Bro. Jonathan Mason (a fellow Delta Zeta chapter alum and former International Director of Social Action) for helping him realize the potential impact he could make working with the March of Dimes.

We wish Bro. Henry well in his future efforts with the March of Dimes and all the best to his family. He is a shining example for all Sigma men to follow.

Devon often jokes that he must have been on “PCP” to raise this amount of money; not an illicit drug but rather a constant state of Persistence, Commitment, and Prayer. His specific prescription for success is as follows: 1.) Approach potential donors individually. Cold form emails simply won’t cut it.

C. Arthur


Future’s Fund

2.) Set goals for each donor. Aim high but not so much as to turn them off from donating all together 3.) Intensify your efforts a month or so before your local walk. This strategy tends to “light a fire” under donors and create a sense of urgency 4.) As a token of appreciation, Devon sends out t-shirts and photos of his daughter to his large-sum donors. This demonstrates his appreciation and also allows the donor to feel personally connected to the effort.

WASHINGTON, DC – Phi Beta Sigma Fraternity has a rich and proud history of serving others. “Service for Humanity” is at the core of what Sigma is all about. Under the leadership of the 23rd Eastern Regional Director, Bro. Greville French (Epsilon Sigma Chapter/Harlem, NY) and Bro. Charles C. Holt, Jr. (Theta Tau Sigma Chapter/ Northern VA), the Eastern Region launched the Future’s Fund. The purpose of the fund is to provide modest financial support to any brother experiencing a financial academic hardship while in pursuit of his academic goals. The fund is an opportunity for Sigma to give back to its own.

It’s amazing to think that one brother has raised large sums comparable to entire regions of our Wondrous Band. However, if we each follow his recipe for success, there is no doubt we, as a Fraternity, region, chapters, and individual brothers can increase the amount of donations we receive. In an effort to showcase the hard work and commitment

The Future’s Fund Committee consists of brothers throughout the Eastern Region of the Fraternity. The Phi Beta Sigma Federal Credit Union houses the Fund’s account. 22

All brothers currently in pursuit of higher education are eligible to apply. Proof of temporary financial difficulty or hardship must be provided with the application. Eligibility criteria have been established however, solicitations from the Fund will be considered on a case by case basis as the committee recognizes that all needs are different. Monies allocated from the Fund are not in the form of a loan, but a brotherly gesture of support. The Committee members are passionate about this endeavor and take the phrase “I am my brother’s keeper” literally. The fact that we are willing to invest in Sigma’s greatest asset, the membership, proves our commitment to the brotherhood.

compiling it in a viable user-friendly databank that student brothers can access when seeking financial assistance. The interest in the Future’s Fund is slowly growing. Chapters and Brothers have begun to take up the cause by committing financially. Several chapters have contacted me concerning making pledges in the very near future. The Fund has already begun to make a difference, through contributions already received and housed in our PBSFCU account. A deserving brother, attending graduate school, has been the first to receive assistance from the Future’s Fund. The Committee encourages brothers and chapters to get involved and make a financial commitment to assist our brothers in achieving their academic goals. For more information, to apply for assistance or to join the cause, do no hesitate to contact me at the e-mail address provided above. On the behalf of the Committee, I thank all whom have made the commitment and welcome all others aboard.

In an effort to reach out the brothers, brochures have been disseminated throughout the region. A Yahoo list serve was also created to allow brothers the opportunity to ask questions, make requests and dialog with committee members (http://groups.yahoo.com/group/FuturesFun d). Brothers also have the option to email the committee (pbseastfuturefnd@aol.com). The Committee presented at the 93rd Anniversary Eastern Regional Conference in April. During the conference a table was set up to answer any questions and to sign up new members. A raffle was held in an effort to raise additional funds, and it was an overwhelming success. A special mention of thanks goes to Bro. Daniel Tann (Nu Sigma Chapter) for the donation of an` iPhone, the grand prize in the raffle. Another special note of thanks goes to Ms. Natascha Leak, wife of Bro. Brad Leak, for supplying the raffle baskets.

C. Holt

Beginning in the fall the Future’s Fund will explore broadening its scope. The Committee is exploring the possibility of the Future’s Fund also acting as a referral service, garnering information and 23

VOTER EDUCATION AND REGISTRATION The 2008 presidential race is history in the making. This nation has never experienced a presidential race in which either major party has had a woman and/or African American candidate seriously contend for the party’s nomination. This historic event has placed a major focus on American politics and has enjoyed a global appeal. The interest in the race has resulted in record voter turn out across the nation. In this climate of increased participation and interest voter education and registration is more important than ever. The Eastern Region, of Phi Beta Sigma Fraternity, Inc., recognizes the importance of our participation in the political process and challenges every chapter to register 50 new voters. Our continued commitment to register new voters will allow individuals, whom might otherwise be on the outside looking in, to participate and have their vote counted during this critical time in our history. The following is a list of registration deadlines for states within the Eastern Region: Connecticut Delaware Maryland Massachusetts New Jersey New York Pennsylvania Rhode Island Virginia Washington, DC West Virginia

October 21, 2008 October 28, 2008 October 11, 2008 October 14, 2008 October 15, 2008 October 14, 2008 October 10, 2008 October 6, 2008 October 4, 2008 October 6, 2008 October 6, 2008 October 14, 2008

(postmarked) (in person) (postmarked) (postmarked) (postmarked) (postmarked) (postmarked) (postmarked) (postmarked) (postmarked) (postmarked) (postmarked)

Chapters must check with their local election officials for requirements to conduct a voter registration drive. For example, Delaware requires the successful completion of a training class before a drive can be conducted. These classes can answer important questions you might have on voting requirements, such as your state’s rules on voting rights for felons. It is important to be prepared for the questions potential new voters might have, laws vary by state. The election officials can also provide information and some assistance on conducting voter education events in your local community.


Barber shops, beauty salons, supermarkets, malls and community events are great locations to initiate voter registration drives. Seek out locations with a heavy traffic flow of potential new voters. These are exciting times in the history of American politics. Sigma must continue to attack those issues impacting the communities we serve. Let’s continue to stay involved and encourage communities to get involved and control the politics of their respective communities. Meet the challenge and register 50 new voters in your community. B. Leak

Eta Phi Sigma: Voter Registration and Education Initiative JERSEY CITY, NJ - On Saturday, April 26, 2008, Eta Phi Sigma Chapter (Hudson/Bergen County, NJ graduate chapter) held a Voter Registration/Education Drive at the Martin Luther King, Jr. Shopping Center Hub, on MLK Drive. The shopping hub was chosen due to its central location. This location allowed us access to those we are here to serve. The event was the chapter’s first opportunity to inform and educate the African-American community on the importance of voting and voting procedures, while also engaging them on issues impacting our communities. Approximately fifteen Brothers of Phi Beta Sigma and Sisters of Zeta Phi Beta attended and participated in the day’s activities. Brothers and Sorors handed out leaflets and answered commonly asked questions regarding the voting process and voting rights. The chapter was able to register twenty individuals over the course of the day. Several hundred self-addressed voter registration applications were distributed to shoppers. Several shoppers complimented the brothers for simply doing something positive, and greatly needed, in an area that experiences very little if anything positive involving Black males. Although many shoppers chose to ignore us as we attempted to register new voters, we were more than happy to engage those taking the time to stop and discuss the issues with us. Bro. Tyrone Bates encountered a gentleman in his mid 60’s who was not, and had never been, a registered voter. While assisting the gentleman with his voter registration application, Brother Bates proceeded to ask him why he waited so long to register. The gentleman simply stated, “I


was never asked”. After sharing the encounter with the event participants a sense of an even greater urgency seemed to emerge as they sought to register more shoppers. The event was the first in a series of activities the Chapter has planned in the area of voter registration/education. A forum titled, “The Role of the Media in the National Election”, is planned for the fall. Another voter registration/education drive is planned prior to the registration deadline for the presidential election. It is the Chapter’s goal to ensure everyone eligible and interested in voting has the opportunity to exercise that right and have their vote counted. T. Barker


SPRING HILLS, FL - he Phi Beta Sigma Federal Credit Union Board held its Quarterly face-to-face board meeting in Spring Hills, Florida, the weekend of May, 16, 2008.The meeting was planned to be combined with a visit/celebration with the Hon. Col. Lucius Young. Bro. Young had turned 99 years young on May 8. The Board wanted to pay tribute to him for all his hard work as the first manager/treasurer of the Credit Union, founded in 1986, and his dedicated service on the Board. Happy to say that the Board found Bro. Young, Manager/Treasurer Emeritus, although confined to bed, in good spirits, with great spurts of energy and good-natured responses for his Brothers. The Board presented him with a certificate of appreciation for service and Sigma paraphernalia. All were warmly received by Mrs. Young in their home. Everyone was enthralled and excited, especially when Bro. Young lead the Fraternity Hymn with such full-throated vigor and enthusiasm. [Board members not pictured are Hon. R.O. Sutton, Vice

President, and Bro. Keith Spinner.] Editor’s Note – In addition to serving as the Manager/Treasurer Emeritus, Brother Young also served as a full-time volunteer member of the National Headquarter’s Staff from 1976 – 1989. Hon. R. Greaux

Project S.E.E.D. In Action LONG ISLAND, NY - From its inception, the importance of achieving and maintaining homeownership has been a key component of the Sigma Economic Empowerment Development Project, better known as Project S.E.E.D. In 2006 the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) designated the month of June as National Homeownership Month. In June 2008, under the direction of Bigger and Better Business Chairman Brother Curtis Alan Banks, the brothers of Mu Delta Sigma Chapter embraced the opportunity to educate the Long Island community in various areas of the home buying process. Through daily emails, the brothers distributed valuable information to anyone interested in purchasing a home. The e-mails highlighted pitfalls and unfair industry practices impacting home buyers in the 27

communities we serve. The information addressed varied topics such as; the importance of inspections, septic system and well water flow, surveys and title insurance, emergency assistance and the senior citizen rent increase exemption. The information utilized case law and best practices to provide readers with a wealth of information. All of this information was culminated in the “Caveat Emptor” Summit, a first time home owners seminar open to the entire community, held June 23, 2008 at the Roosevelt Free Library.

New Jersey, while serving his country in the United States Army, as he was struck by lighting. While recovering at the Fort Dix Hospital from 2nd and 3rd degree burns, one of Bro. Granby’s duties was to take the deceased persons to the morgue. This was his introduction to Mortuary Science and the care of the dead. Bro. Granby’s interest in Mortuary Science became an extension of his love and caring for people. Bro. Granby enrolled and later graduated from the McAllister School of Embalming in August 1957. After completing his apprenticeship with the Wiley Funeral Home, Bronx, New York in 1958, he received his New York State Funeral Director’s License. Mr. Walter H. Wiley permitted him to “hang his license on the wall” and this was the beginning of the Granby’s Funeral Service, located in the Bronx, New York. After serving twenty-five (25) years in business, and with the great support of his wife, Ayris, and family, Bro. Granby began the search for a building of his own. On April 27, 1984, his dream was realized when he purchased the building where Granby’s Funeral Service, Inc. is now located.

As we strive to increase our impact in the communities we serve, through our Bigger and Better Business initiatives, Mu Delta Sigma has set the bar. Congratulations to Brother Banks and the Mu Delta Sigma Chapter on a job well done! C. Banks

Additionally in 1984, Bro. Granby’s children, Soror Ayris Granby and Reverend Bro. Lamont S. Granby , both joined him in business. Soror Granby is a charter member initiated into the Lambda Lambda Chapter of Zeta Phi Beta Sorority, Incorporated in the Fall of 1981. Soror Granby is a past New York State Zeta of the Year and has been and still is financial and faithfully serving in the Gamma Xi Zeta Chapter. Reverend Brother Lamont S. Granby was initiated into the Epsilon Kappa Chapter of Phi Beta Sigma Fraternity, Incorporated in the Spring of 1982. Brother Lamont S. Granby is financial and faithfully serving in the Beta Psi Sigma Chapter. (Editor’s Note:

A Blue & White Family Success Story BRONX, NY - It all began when Brother Samuel Granby Jr. was initiated into the Alpha Delta Chapter of Phi Beta Sigma Fraternity, Incorporated on October 23, 1954. Brother Granby, a Sigma Man for over 50 years is still active and financial in the Fraternity faithfully serving with the Epsilon Sigma Chapter. Brother Granby’s career first took shape on September 3, 1953 at 4:00 PM at Fort Dix in 28

On Friday May 9, 2008, Kyle Granby, son of Lamont and Grandson of Samuel, was initiated into the Omicron Gamma Chapter (Iona College) of Phi Beta Sigma Fraternity, Inc. making him the third generation Granby SIGMA man). Upon completion of their bachelors’ degrees, they both entered and graduated from their father’s alma mater, American Academy McAllister Institute for Funeral Service. They both served their residencies with their father and today they are New York State Licensed Funeral Directors.

scholarships within our community to support the need to educate our youth. Over the years, the compassion of the Granby Family is unrelenting. The success of their business can be attributed to the compassion and professionalism of the Granby Family and their staff.

In 1994, the Granby Family realized the need to expand their business; therefore, they began the planning for the construction of the second floor of their building. In 1996, within five months the construction of the second floor was completed. In November 1996, the second floor was dedicated. The two chapels are named in honor of the mothers of Mr. and Mrs. Samuel Granby. The staff lounge was named after one of their dedicated employees and friend.

Granby's Funeral Service, Inc. 4021 White Plains Road Bronx, NY 10466 718-519-6047

“Service to Mankind” Since 1958, Granby’s Funeral Service, Inc. (the Granby Family), considers themselves as advocates for the community through community service and outreach. This service and outreach is exemplified in their desire to help others within our community whether it may be with the funeral of a loved one, or with scholarships for the college bound students, or sponsorships of activities which empower our youth, or with donations to various learning centers, or with a donation to a charitable organization.

BALTIMORE, MD - Since May, Brother Brian Conyers has been transitioning into his new role as General Manager of the Radisson Plaza Lord Baltimore Hotel in Baltimore, MD. The Radisson was the site of the Collegiate Luncheon and Orchid Ball during the 93rd Anniversary Eastern Regional Conference in April. Prior to arriving in Baltimore, Brother Conyers served as the General Manager of Radisson Plaza Warwick Hotel in Philadelphia, PA.

As you can tell by their company motto and family beliefs, the Granby Family is carrying forth the High Ideals of BROTHERHOOD, SCHOLARSHIP and SERVICE.

D. Fuller


Bro. Brain Conyers

The June edition of “Managed Today”, the Carlton Hotel and Resorts in-house management newsletter, highlighted Brother Conyers’ climb up the corporate ranks of the hospitality industry. This journey has afforded him the opportunity to operate luxury hotels across the country while

“Quality Education must be available to our young people.” Through the vision of Mrs. Ayris Granby, Granby’s Funeral Service, Inc. has help to establish numerous


holding a variety of positions in some of the largest hospitality companies in the world. He has served on the board of directors of the Orange Orlando Convention and Visitor Bureau, the Connecticut Lodging Association, the Southeastern Connecticut Chamber of Commerce, Greater Philadelphia Hotel Association and the Philadelphia Multicultural Affairs Congress. Born and raised in Virginia, Brother Conyers is a devoted husband and father. In joining our wondrous band (Delta Upsilon, FA ’78), he followed the footsteps of both his father and older brother, whom are both active in Iota Sigma Chapter. Brother Conyers serves as an example of what a Sigma man should ascribe to be in his personal and professional pursuits. We wish him continued success in the future. V. Rosebrough

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have a positive impact in the lives of these boys and the community at large. The men of Sigma served as role models, mentors, teachers, friends and big brothers for these young boys. Their charge was to interact with these boys, and their families, to encourage and foster future success. The interaction proved to be just as rewarding, if not more so, for the brothers as it was for the boys.

BOSTON, MA - The dropout rate for Black and Latino boys is the highest among all students in the Boston, MA public school system. This factor is the norm rather than the exception in school districts across the country. The Boston Public Schools recognized the problem and their goal was to search for a solution. How would they provide the support and environment necessary to help these students succeed? The answer was the 10 Boys Initiative, introduced to the school system by Dr. Ingrid Carney, Deputy Superintendent of Triad A. The Initiative required each school’s principal to identify 10 students scoring in the “needs improvement” category of the MCAS exam. These students would participate in a variety of academic and social exercises with the goal of scoring in the “proficient” or “advanced” category upon taking the test later in the school year. Schools were granted the opportunity to cater the program to their specific needs. However, each program contains some elements which are consistent across the board.

Brothers accompanied the boys on field trips to Boston College, the Museum of African American History/Boston and other venues. These field trips were not only an excellent opportunity to bond with the boys, but had their educational value as well. The brothers also engaged the boys during study sessions and other academic exercises in an effort to teach them better study habits and encourage discipline. The boys responded well to the positive interaction and the program was a success. The brothers received thanks and praise from the boys, their families and the school for the time and commitment, both to the program and to the boys.

Upon hearing about the Initiative the brothers of Zeta Kappa Sigma Chapter, Boston graduate chapter of Phi Beta Sigma Fraternity, Inc., decided to get involved. The Chapter partnered with Farragut School’s program under the guidance of Sharon Radcliffe. The 10 Boys Initiative is similar in focus to tFraternity’s Sigma Beta Club. This was an opportunity for these brothers to

Dr. Carney hopes to expand the program throughout the Boston Public School 31

system. “We are seeing more focus and engagement in class, better attendance, and fewer discipline referrals. These young men will help lead the next group, and so on and so on. We are expecting great results.”

Wilson and Rivera Elementary Schools. The Pilot program goes into effect for the 20082009 school year. T. Williams

T. Le Bon


RICHMOND, VA - On Saturday, July 19, the men of Iota Sigma Chapter gathered at the Fifth Street Baptist Church in Richmond, Virginia. The church was the venue for the 1st Annual Community Impact Awards and Brotherhood Luncheon. The brothers were there to recognize members of the community who personified “Service for Humanity” in the fields of Education, Social Action, and Business.

TRENTON, NJ - Sigma brothers and Greeks alike were in attendance at Trenton’s Board of Education meeting on Monday evening May 27, 2008. As active members of the National Pan-Hellenic Council, both Sigmas and Zetas represented the Blue and White Family. The mass gathering was a show of support for the much welcomed infusion of the SIGMA BETA CLUB into the fabric of the Trenton Public School System. Soror Gwendolyn Jennings, Principal at Woodrow Wilson Elementary School (Epsilon XI Zeta), presented the proposal and explained the Council’s mission to provide mentorship, and support for the children of Trenton Public Schools. Each Greek organizations role in this historic collaboration was presented during her presentation. Implementation of the Council’s proposal will be a vital step in laying a foundation in both Woodrow

Dr. Deborah Jewell-Sherman, former Richmond Public Schools’ Superintendent, was the Education award recipient while Dr. Melvin Law, President of the Richmond NAACP Chapter, received the Social Action award. Our own Bro. Jesse Moore, owner and operator of Moore’s Auto Body, Inc., was honored for his outstanding business acumen. Several of our own were honored for their dedication and hard work. Bro. Wesley Carter (Lambda ’27, age 100) was honored as the Sigma Brother of Year for his many years of service to the brotherhood. Bro. Carter is believed to be the oldest living Sigma in the nation. We honored our Distinguished Service Chapter brothers, Hon. Bro. Moses C. McClendon and Hon. Bro. Millard J. Watkins. Hon. Bro. T. Harding Lacy was unable to attend due to a prior engagement. Bros. James Quash (Sigma Beta Club Director Emeritus) and Dana Davenport (Social Action Chair and 1st 32

Vice President) received awards as well. Sigma men with 35+ years of service, Iota Sigma’s “Legacy Brothers”, were also saluted. The program concluded with the Fraternity Hymn.

Milton Savage LegalCounsel@pbseast.org

Greville French PastDirector@pbseast.org

Iota Sigma chapter would like to salute Bro. James Ricks and the Luncheon Committee for going above and beyond expectations for this event. We look forward to continuing this new tradition of recognizing Richmond’s finest public citizens again next summer.

Todd Le Bon Publicity@pbseast.org

C. Arthur

REGIONAL BOARD e-mail contact list Hon. Darryl Williams Director@pbseast.org

Leonard Lockhart ViceDirector@pbseast.org

Dennis Donaldson AssociateDirector@pbseast.org

Darrick Fuller



Our Cause Online

Curtis Banks

Friday, October 31, 2008


Brad Leak

OUR CAUSE Magazine


Friday, October 24, 2008

Jean “Jet” Lamothe Education@pbseast.org

Van Rosebrough BBB@pbseast.org 33

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