As a result of the turbulent civil rights movement of the 60s and early 70s, an onslaught of young, African-American professionals initiated another major migration of African Americans to all parts of this country. The Chicago western suburbs were a great recipient of this group; doors opened to job opportunities never imagined. Gradually, it was realized that numerous individuals were members of one of the Greek-lettered organizations of the National Pan-Hellenic Council (NPHC). Lambda Alpha Omega Chapter was the first sorority chartered in the Chicago western suburbs on May 29, 1976. Subsequently, other Greek-lettered chapters were established in the Chicago western suburbs.
The beginnings of what will be known as Lambda Alpha Omega originated at a tea in the home of Ethel I. Gary of Wheaton, Ill. Ten members were in attendance: Goldie V. Brown, Carla Edwards, Beverlynn A. Ivory, Arthalia E. Jackson, Ruth Lawson, Joyce Luckett, Lue Ellen (Magee) Moore, Edna Randolph, Vivian J. Sturgis and Rose M. Thompson; Patricia A. Bauldrick joined the group at subsequent meetings. While continuing to organize, the size increased and until chartering, the name of the group was Western Suburban Associates of Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority. Four officers were named as organized efforts continued:
- Rose M. Thompson - Chairman
- Ethel I. Gary - Co-Chairman
- Joyce M. Luckett - Secretary
- Lue Ellen Moore - Treasurer
The first fundraiser, a social outing/dance at Northlake Hotel in Northlake, Ill. was held in February 1976. The theme for the first fundraiser was Leaping into ’76 with AKA. Proceeds from this activity were donated to the United Negro College Fund (UNCF) and the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP).
On May 29, 1976, the group received its charter at the Hyatt Oak Brook Hotel (currently the Doubletree) where the beautiful ceremony was led by 18th Central Regional Director Gloria E. Bond of South Bend, Ind. Following the installation of officers, the chapter’s donations of $500 each to the UNCF and the NAACP were formerly presented. The second national president of Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority, Loraine R. Green of Chicago, Ill., Theta Omega Chapter, was the luncheon speaker.
This newly-formed chapter was definitely impacting the local communities, supporting Alpha Kappa Alpha’s International Programs and globally making a difference by its mission by extending service to all mankind.
Since the beginning, Lambda Alpha Omega has grown and continues its legacy of Service to All Mankind into the 21st century. We continue to address community needs as recommended by the sorority’s international leadership.