The National Pan-Hellenic Council, Inc. (NPHC) is currently composed of nine International Greek-letter sororities and fraternities: Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority, Inc.; Alpha Phi Alpha Fraternity, Inc.; Delta Sigma Theta Sorority, Inc.; Zeta Phi Beta Sorority, Inc.; Iota Phi Theta Fraternity, Inc.; Kappa Alpha Psi Fraternity, Inc.; Sigma Gamma Rho Sorority, Inc.; Phi Beta Sigma Fraternity, Inc. and Omega Psi Phi Fraternity, Inc. NPHC promotes interaction through forums, meetings and other mediums for the exchange of information and engages in cooperative programming and initiatives through various activities and functions.

On May 10, 1930, on the campus of Howard University, in Washington, D.C., the National Pan-Hellenic Council was formed as a permanent organization with the following charter members: Omega Psi Phi and Kappa Alpha Psi fraternities, and Alpha Kappa Alpha, Delta Sigma Theta and Zeta Phi Beta sororities. In 1931, Alpha Phi Alpha and Phi Beta Sigma fraternities joined the Council. Sigma Gamma Rho Sorority joined in 1937 and Iota Phi Theta Fraternity completed the list of member organizations in 1997.

On Feb. 4, 1995, The Nassau, Bahamas Pan-Hellenic Council was officially chartered by the NPHC, becoming the first international council, outside of the United States to be chartered.

The stated purpose and mission of the organization in 1930 was “Unanimity of thought and action as far as possible in the conduct of Greek-letter collegiate fraternities and sororities, and to consider problems of mutual interest to its member organizations.” Early in 1937, the organization was incorporated under the laws of Illinois and became known as “The National Pan-Hellenic Council, Incorporated.”

Here are the “Divine Nine” in order of founding year and site:

ALPHA PHI ALPHA FRATERNITY, 1906 Cornell University; Ithaca, New York

It has seven founders, known as the “Jewels” of the fraternity: Henry Arthur Callis, Charles Henry Chapman, Eugene Kinckle Jones, George Biddle Kelley, Nathaniel Allison Murray, Robert Harold Ogle, and Vertner Woodson Tandy. Current (general) president is Everett Ward, and its international headquarters is in Baltimore, Md.; colors are black and gold.

ALPHA KAPPA ALPHA SORORITY, 1908 Howard University; Washington, D.C.

Founders: Anna Easter Brown, Beulah Burke, Lillie Burke, Marjorie Hill, Margaret Flagg Holmes, Ethel Hedgeman (Lyle), Lavinia Norman, Lucy Diggs Slowe and Marie Woolfolk (Taylor). Its international president is Dr. Glenda Baskin Glover. The headquarters is in Chicago. Their colors are pink and green.

KAPPA ALPHA PSI FRATERNITY, 1911, Indiana University; Bloomington, Ind.

Founders: Elder Watson Diggs, Ezra D. Alexander, Byron Kenneth Armstrong, Henry Tourner Asher, Marcus Peter Blakemore, Paul Waymond Caine, George Wesley Edmonds, Guy Levis Grant, Edward Giles Irvin, and John Milton Lee. Its international president or grand polemarch is Reuben Shelton III. Its international headquarters is in Philadelphia, PA. Their colors are crimson and cream.

OMEGA PSI PHI FRATERNITY, 1911 Howard University

Founders: Edgar Amos Love, Oscar James Cooper and Frank Coleman and joining them was their faculty adviser, Ernest Everett Just. Its grand basileus is David Marian. Its headquarters is in Decatur, Georgia. Their colors are purple and gold.

DELTA SIGMA THETA SORORITY, 1913 Howard University

Founders: Osceola Macarthy Adams, Marguerite Young Alexander, Winona Cargile Alexander, Ethel Cuff Black, Bertha Pitts Campbell, Zephyr Chisom Carter, Edna Brown Coleman, Jessie McGuire Dent, Frederica Chase Dodd, Myra Davis Hemmings, Olive Claire Jones, Jimmie Bugg Middleton, Pauline Oberdorfer Minor, Vashti Turley Murphy, Naomi Sewell Richardson, Mammie Reddy Rose, Eliza Pearl Shippen, Florence Letcher Toms, Ethel Carr Watson, Wertie Blackwell Weaver, Madree Penn White and Edith Motte Young. The national president and CEO is Beverly Smith. Its headquarters is in Washington, D.C. Its colors are crimson and cream.

PHI BETA SIGMA FRATERNITY, 1914 Howard University

Founders: Abram Langston Taylor, Leonard Frances Morse and Charles Ignatius Brown. International president is Micheal E. Cristal. Its headquarters is in Washington, D.C. Its colors are royal blue and pure white.

ZETA PHI BETA SORORITY, 1920 Howard University

Founders: Arizona Cleaver Stemons, Viola Tyler, Pearl Anna Neal, Myrtle Tyler Faithful and Fannie Pettie Watts. International basileus is Valerie Hollingsworth-Baker. Headquarters is in Washington, D.C. Its colors are royal blue and pure white.

SIGMA GAMMA RHO SORORITY, 1922 Butler University; Indianapolis, Indiana

Founders: Mary Lou Allison Gardner Little, Dorothy Hanley Whiteside, Vivian White Marbury, Nannie Mae Gahn Johnson, Hattie Mae Annette Dulin Redford, Bessie Mae Downey Rhoades Martin and Cubena McClure. International president is Deborah Catchings-Smith. Headquarters is in Cary, North Carolina. Its colors are royal blue and gold.

IOTA PHI THETA FRATERNITY, 1963 Morgan State University; Baltimore, Maryland

Founders: Albert Hicks, Lonnie Spruill Jr., Charles Briscoe, Frank Coakley, John Slade, Barron Willis, Webster Lewis, Charles Brown, Louis Hudnell, Charles Gregory, Elias Dorsey Jr. and Michael Williams. Its grand polaris/president is Andre R. Manson. The headquarters is in Baltimore, Maryland. Its colors are charcoal brown and gilded gold.

(0) comments

Welcome to the discussion.

Keep it Clean. Please avoid obscene, vulgar, lewd, racist or sexually-oriented language.
Don't Threaten. Threats of harming another person will not be tolerated.
Be Truthful. Don't knowingly lie about anyone or anything.
Be Nice. No racism, sexism or any sort of -ism that is degrading to another person.
Be Proactive. Use the 'Report' link on each comment to let us know of abusive posts.
Share with Us. We'd love to hear eyewitness accounts, the history behind an article.