"When you're a Black woman, you seldom get to do what you just want to do; you always do what you have to do." - Dr. Dorothy Height
Delta Sigma Theta Sorority is celebrating 106 years of sisterhood, scholarship and service. Since 1913 the organization has made it their mission to serve the community while working to address challenges that disproportionately affect African Americans.
Through what they call their Five-Point Programmatic Thrust, members confront these issues through: Educational Development, Economic Development, International Awareness and Involvement, Physical and Mental Health and Political Awareness and Involvement.
In a recent interview with Rolling Out, the sorority’s 25th National President, Beverly E. Smith, reflected on the charge the organization has issued to encourage and prepare members to be actively involved in steering our country in the right direction.
"You have to be at the table. Sitting outside protesting is one thing, but sitting at the table making the rules is where we are really going to be able to make a difference," Smith said. “We have seminars on how to run for office. We have training sessions on how to select a good judge. We want people to use their voting power."
And the sessions and seminars have paid off.
During the installation of the 116th Congress, the sorority celebrated the swearing in of its member, Lucy McBath, to represent Georgia’s 6th Congressional District. McBath, the mother who turned the heartbreak of her son, Jordan Davis’ murder, into relentless determination, was welcomed by other members of the sorority who also happen to serve as congresswomen. A trail that was blazed by sorority member, Shirley Chisholm, when she became the first African American Congresswoman.
From L to R: Lucy McBath of Georgia, Brenda Lawrence of Michigan, Yvette Clarke of New York, Marcia Fudge of Ohio, Joyce Beatty of Ohio and Val Demings of Florida
Each year members of the Divine 9 wait in anticipation for their founding date. It is not only an opportunity to flood social media with photos, quotes and videos that reflect their strong connections to the organizations, but it is also an opportunity to recommit themselves to the values and ideals that make the fulfillment of their respective missions possible.
This year, to help celebrate their 106th Founders Day, Smith took to the sorority’s Facebook page to announce an official Delta Sigma Theta Subscription Box to add another innovative way to engage members in the sorority’s monthly focus and activities.
"Delta's always looking for ways to deepen the connection within our sisterhood and strengthen our commitment to service through our members," Smith said. "The Delta Box is a fun, exciting and fashionable way to achieve this goal. We want all Sorors on trend and on message as we deliver the next 106 years of sisterhood, scholarship and service."
Congratulations to the women of Delta Sigma Theta on 106 years!