NEWS FROM THE GRAND BASILEUS
 
International Grand Basileus  
Deborah Catchings-Smith
Greetings Sorors, Philos, and Rhoers!
 
We are finishing strong! We have indeed hit our stride. Even with only a few weeks remaining in the 2018-2019 Sorority Year, we are continuing to serve our community with excellence and impact.
 
Many chapters will be hosting retreats over the next few months in order to reflect, rejuvenate, and refuel as we gear up for the 2019-2020 Sorority Year.   It is important that all of us, Sorors and Affiliates, take time out for self-care and spend time with our families and friends. May each of you enjoy your summer activities, travels, and vacations!
 
Facebook
On May 6, 2019, our Sisterhood joined with other National Council of Negro Women (NCNW) Affiliate Organizations at the NCNW Round Table. The event was held at Facebook's Washington, D.C. office. The meeting with Facebook was requested by NCNW and the Affiliate Organizations to address issues, next steps, and action plans relative to several concerns raised by the African American community. Facebook COO Sheryl Sandberg and her leadership team provided invaluable information during the forum. Please know that the dialogue will continue.  
 
Photos Left to Right: 1)Participants from the discussion. 2) Discussion in process. 3) Photo with Dr. Johnetta B. Cole NCNW National President. 
   
 
USA Swimming
Your national leadership team participated in the USA Swimming National Partnership
Summit held in Colorado Springs, CO on May 8, 2019. The productive engagement with USA Swimming provided us with the opportunity to network with other national partners. Our interactions were both enlightening and informative. We are excited about the growth and impact that is upcoming with this partnership as we continue to work diligently to tackle the drowning rates in African American Communities.
 
North Carolina Legislative Day
Sigma Gamma Rho and fellow members of the National Pan-Hellenic Council (NPHC)
Sorors at the Divine 9 Legislative Day in North Carolina.  
met in Raleigh, North Carolina at the State Capital Building on May 15, 2019 for the Divine 9 Legislative Day. More than 600 members from across the state attended the press conference and breakout sessions.
 
Members were able to meet with legislators to discuss several issues including Criminal Justice, Gun Control, Prison Reform, Access to Quality Education, Voting Reform, Affordable and Accessible Health Care, Economic Empowerment, Housing Justice, and the 2020 U.S. Census. Special thanks to National Social Action Chair Soror Anita Laster Mays, Esq., Northeastern Region Syntaktes Thomasina Gore, Esq, and all Sorors who participated. We made an impact!
 
Black Women's Agenda Spirit of Change Town Hall
Northeastern Region DMV Sorors represented our sisterhood during the Black
Women's Agenda Spirit of Change Town Hall held on May 18, 2019. The event was moderated by TJ Holmes, ABC News Anchor and Correspondent. In a nation that is deeply divided, the forum brought together a multicultural audience with some of our nation's greatest spiritual leaders, public figures, and subject matter experts.
 
The goal of the event was to find common ground regarding some of the most prevalent political and social issues of our time. The Spirit of Change Town Hall was a call-to-action for us all to be a catalyst for
Sorors at BWA Town Hall.
positive change as we seek to create a future of peace, clarity, respect and healing in our nation and our lives. Our sisterhood had the largest delegation of the Divine Nine Organizations.
 
We appreciate the support of Northeastern Region Syntaktes Thomasina Gore, Esq., Area 1 Coordinator Soror Dawn Stanton, Past Northeastern Region Syntaktes Deborah Walsh, Northeastern Region Social Action Chair Tracy Brown, and all Sorors who attended the forum.
 
Centennial Passage of the 19 th Amendment by the U.S. House of Representatives
It was an honor to represent the Sisterhood at the reception hosted by U.S. Speaker
With Nancy Pelosi U.S. Speaker of the House of Representatives 
of the House of Representatives Nancy Pelosi on May 21, 2019. The event was held at the United States Capitol to honor the Centennial of the House of Representatives Passage of the 19th Amendment, which gave women the right to vote.   There will be several events and activities held across the nation during the next year leading up to the August 18, 2020 Centennial Celebration when the 19th Amendment was ratified and became law.
 
Upcoming National Events and Webinars 
Here is a list of the national events and webinars happening during the month of June:
  • National On-Line Dues Submission Pilot Webinar - Tuesday, June 11, 2019 at 9:00 PM ET
  • National Swim 1922 Swim Clinic, Brooklyn Queens, NY on June 22, 2019
  • Essence Festival, New Orleans, LA - July 4-7, 2019 
 
June and July Holidays and Observances
Father's Day
This month, we will be celebrating Father's Day. Please make sure to thank all the fathers, grandfathers, godfathers, uncles, and positive male role models in your life! 
 
Juneteenth
On June 19th, we will commemorate the June 19, 1865 announcement of the abolition of slavery in the U.S. State of Texas. It also serves as a way for African Americans across the nation to collectively celebrate our emancipation from slavery. 
 
Independence Day - 4th of July 
On July 4th, we celebrate the signing of the Declaration of Independence and the establishment of the United States of America.  
 
GLOBAL MEMBERSHIP UPDATE
Sigma Gamma Rho Sorority, Inc. is expanding its reach to the  
United Arab Emirates!
International First Grand Anti-Basileus  Rasheeda S. Liberty
 
We are excited to announce that we are well on our way to chartering a chapter in the United Arab Emirates (UAE). The charter date is confirmed for September 28, 2019. More information will be forthcoming on a registration plan for sorors looking to attend the charter festivities, our beautiful hotel of choice, and ideal travel dates for members.
 
Special thanks to the Global Membership Liaison Tezra Woody,Esq., our Western Regional Leadership Team, Event Planner Amy Mbaye, and the Sorors in the UAE. 
Stay tuned for more details.   
 
Photos Left to Right: 1) Sorors living in the UAE. 2) Dubai, UAE Skyline 3)Global Liaison Soror Tezra Woody, Esq. and Sigma Event Planner Amy Mbaye.
JUNE 2019 UPDATE 
 
International   
Grand Epistoleus 
Tamika Nicole  
Williams-Clark, MA  
Thank you to everyone who attended the International Social
Media Committee's  Webinar- "Optimizing Marketing Through Photos, Videos, and Flyers". Information on how to view the webinar, the slide deck, and supplemental tools with be forthcoming. We appreciate your support.    
 
A SPECIAL THANK YOU FOR YOUR SERVICE 
 
Jacqueline Greely, MPA 
National Programs Coordinator
Greetings Sigma Family,
 
On behalf of the National Programs Committee, THANK YOU for an impactful, productive Sigma year! Sigma Sorors and Affiliates were change agents on the global stage. This year, we participated in campus chapter activities, national partnership walks, exceeded fundraising goals, did joint chapter programming, implemented
national essential programs, and engaged in local communities.
 
We stood for women's rights. We advocated for equal rights and justice as well as championing for inclusive health and reproductive rights. Because of your dedication and service, women and children in the communities that we serve are living fuller, healthier, and changed lives.
 
The National Programs Committee will be releasing the 2019-2020 Program Guide within the next few weeks.  Please be sure to report any outstanding community service and programming for this sorority year to Golden Service by June 30, 2019.
 
Save these Key Dates for Sorority Year 2019-20
*November 9, 2019 - International Day of Service
*March 14, 2020 - Annual Youth Symposium
 
UPCOMING MEMBERSHIP CELEBRATION - JULY 2019
 
Celebrating Our Legacies
The month of July will kick off our 2019-20 Sorority Year with an opportunity to begin our Celebration of Membership. We will be promoting legacies. Through our
membership surveys, we realize that connection to another member, especially a family member is a catalyst for recruitment and ultimately helps retention. 
 
With respect to the Sigma family, legacy relationships extend to our affiliates when we celebrate. We are asking all members and affiliates to proudly showcase their legacies on social media using the hashtag #SGRHOLEGACY.
 
In addition to photo sharing, we are asking chapters and members to be creative in their celebrations. Take this time also to look at other potential members within your family, such as aunts, sisters, mothers, grandmothers and share information about Sigma Gamma Rho and our affiliate organizations with them.
 
We celebrate legacy. We honor legacy. We build legacy.
#SGRHOLEGACY
June 2019