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Sorority celebrates 90 years on campus

Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority Inc. was founded at Howard University Jan. 15, 1908, and is the oldest Greek letter organization established by African-American women.

Since then, it has become an international service organization, hosting graduate and undergraduate chapters in the United States, the U.S. Virgin Islands, Liberia, the Bahamas, Bermuda, Canada, Dubai, Germany, Japan and South Korea.

UT President Sharon L. Gaber, center, presented a proclamation in honor of the 90th anniversary of the Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority Inc.’s Alpha Lambda Chapter to, from left, Morgannia Dawson, president of the Zeta Alpha Omega Chapter; Cheryl Wallace, graduate adviser of the Alpha Lambda Chapter; Marisa DuPree, president of the Alpha Lambda Chapter; and Carrie Clark, regional director of Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority Inc.

On Dec. 10, 1928, the Alpha Lambda Chapter was established at The University of Toledo.

Fast-forward to Oct. 7: More than 100 guests attended the chapter’s 90th anniversary celebration in Toledo.

“We are honored to be part of the oldest Greek letter organization founded by African-American women,” said Cheryl Wallace, graduate advisor of the Alpha Lambda Chapter and UT alumna who received a bachelor’s degree in business administration in 1984. “Our event was well-represented by members who have more than 50 years of service within the organization, and former chapter members traveled from Los Angeles, Atlanta and Houston to help us celebrate.”

Dignitaries in attendance included Dr. Sharon L. Gaber, president of The University of Toledo; Catherine Crosby, chief of staff to Toledo Mayor Wade Kapszukiewicz; and Toledo City Councilman Larry Sykes.

Proclamations were provided by Congresswoman Marcy Kaptur and the Lucas County Commissioners.

“Alpha Kappa Alpha prides itself on being grounded in academic excellence and service to everyone,” said Wallace, who retired after 25 years in the pharmaceutical industry at Sanofi and is a fitness trainer at Essence Mind and Body Studio in Maumee. “Supported by the University Wellness Coalition, the Alpha Lambda Chapter spearheads health education initiatives, grounded in topics such as health, wellness, the arts and economic well-being.”

Gaber read a proclamation at the anniversary event and thanked the chapter for 90 years of service to the Toledo area.

“The University expresses its sincere appreciation as we celebrate your successful programming efforts alongside your members,” Gaber said.

The UT proclamation stated Oct. 7 shall be known as Alpha Lambda Chapter’s Day of Service on campus.