Chi Omegas Flourish en-us Tue, 24 May 2016 16:28:17 -0500 Update on Zeta Delta Sisters, Chi Omega is aware of the recent media attention surrounding a disciplinary situation regarding a now-former member of our Zeta Delta/U of Nebraska - Omaha chapter.

As you know, personnel matters are handled by our local chapters. Chi Omega's process offers a series of checks and balances to ensure any sanctions imposed are reasonable and fair. This woman opted to voluntarily resign her membership, despite being educated about the appeal process, which is offered to those who do not voluntarily resign.

Regardless of a member's status, Chi Omega owes it to all of our current and former members to ensure personnel matters are kept private to the best of our ability; therefore, we will not be commenting further on the specifics of this matter.

Wed, 13 Apr 2016 00:00:00 -0500
Convention 2016 Awards Convention Award Applications

The Chapter of Excellence Award and the Certificate of Advancement were created in 2012 by the Supreme Governing Council of Chi Omega Fraternity to reward exceptional performance and recognize continued development of active chapters. A chapter receiving 85% of higher on the Performance Scorecard receives the Chapter of Excellence Award. Chapters who do not meet the 85% score, but have made an improvement of 10% or more on their Performance Scorecard receive the Certificate of Advancement.


In addition to the Chapter of Excellence Award and the Certificate of Advancement, collegiate chapter awards during Convention years will include:

Note: All Convention 2016 Award Applications are due April 1, 2016.

Founders' Cup: The Founders' Cup is awarded by the Governing Council to the top 5 performing chapters during the biennium. There is an emphasis on scholarship standings on campus, recruitment standings on campus and Performance Scorecard score over the biennium. Chapters who have been designated with a status other than Good Standing during the biennium may not be eligible.

Spirit of Service Award: The Spirit of Service Award is given to a chapter striving to improve their community. Applications should focus on philanthropic work as well as volunteer hours and contributions to community efforts. Areas to highlight include:
  • Philanthropic events;
  • Make-A-Wish® support; and
  • Community, Panhellenic and/or campus service
Criteria also includes:
  • Community service information submitted by the chapter on Dashboard; and
  • Programming and operations checklist scores on the Performance Scorecard in the community service area.

Outstanding Advisory Board Award:
This award is given to a collegiate advisory board focused on supporting the active chapter with excellent leadership. Applicants should demonstrate an ability to actively and positively recruit new members and exhibit a solid structure and communication plan with one another as well as the Executive Headquarters, active chapter and house corporation board.

Outstanding Advisor Award:
This award recognizes outstanding continuity and counsel of an individual advisor for the communication, commitment, service, support, and overall dedication provided by the advisor to the collegiate chapter.

Outstanding House Corporation Board Award:
This award is given to a house corporation board focused on supporting the active chapter with excellent leadership and innovation in facility management. Applicants should demonstrate an ability to actively and positively recruit new members and exhibit a solid structure and communication plan with one another as well as the Executive Headquarters, active chapter and advisory board.

Outstanding House Corporation Member Award:
This award recognizes outstanding continuity and management of an individual house corporation board member for the communication, commitment, service, support, and overall dedication provided by the member to the collegiate chapter through service on the house corporation board.

Jobelle Holcombe Panhellenic Award- Outstanding Chapter:
This award is given in memory of Jobelle Holcombe's long and respected history with the National Panhellenic Conference (NPC). "Miss Jobelle," as she was affectionately known, served as Chi Omega's representative at several of NPC's earliest meetings and later helped write the constitution of NPC. This award recognizes collegiate chapters who have made outstanding contributions to panhellenic, have furthered panhellenic goals and ideals, fostered inter-fraternal relationships, and made an impact on their campus and community.

Mary Love Collins Panhellenic Award- Outstanding Greek Professional:
This award is given in memory of Mary Love Collins' long and respected history with the National Panhellenic Conference (NPC). It recognizes a University or College Greek professional who has made outstanding contributions to panhellenic, has furthered panhellenic goals and ideals, fostered inter-fraternal relationships, and made an impact on their campus and community.

Chi Omega Alumnae Chapter of Excellence:
Alumnae chapters strive to live and demonstrate Chi Omegas purposes through sisterhood, philanthropy and service. The Chi Omega Alumnae Chapter of Excellence Award recognizes outstanding alumnae chapters who provide a fulfilling and lasting Chi Omega experience for their members.

Chi Omega Lifelong Alumnae Service Award:
The Chi Omega Lifelong Alumnae Service Award recognizes a Chi Omega who has provided decades of service to the Fraternity and its members. This award highlights a Sister exemplifying Chi Omega's purposes primarily through volunteer service on the local level. Exemplary volunteers may include: alumnae chapter member/leader, collegiate chapter advisor, house corporation board member, alumnae recruitment volunteer, anniversary committee, or alumnae Panhellenic representative.

Mon, 25 Jan 2016 00:00:00 -0500
Why Travel with Chi O: The Magic of Spain and Portugal Beach near Porto Portugal.jpeg

- by Cynthia McKellar Day, Epsilon Delta/U of Southern Mississippi

This trip was my first visit to Portugal and coastal Spain, although I have traveled to France and Italy with Chi Omega. As an artist, I found the beautiful scenery on this trip inspiring to my work with oils.

Porto Portugal.jpeg

My favorite scenic spot was San Sebastian in Spain. The bay is in the shape of a sea shell, and the downtown area is very picturesque. We savored amazing food and wine! Portugal has some delicious soups and stews, and I especially enjoyed the seafood.

Monastery at Batalha.jpeg

Oh, yes, did I mention the amazing, unique, and beautiful hotels we stayed in? Such a luxury! These trips are unique because we travel with other Chi Omegas in small groups, which make traveling easier and more fun.

Interested in traveling with Chi Omega? Visit for more information!

Wed, 28 Oct 2015 00:00:00 -0500
Help Sisters Affected by Severe Storms
If you or another Chi Omega you know is need of financial assistance due to devastation from severe storms, please reference either the Collegiate Short Form Application or the Alumnae Short Form Application for financial assistance through the Helping Hands Fund Disaster Relief Program.

Grants from this program are restricted in their use to the payment of basic necessities arising directly out of a Presidentially-declared major disaster or emergency, and relief funds must be dispersed within six months of the disaster.

For those who wish to join other donors from across the country in providing financial assistance to affected Sisters, please click here to make your donation online or mail your check, payable to Chi Omega Foundation, to The Chi Omega Foundation, 3395 Players Club Parkway, Memphis, TN 38125. Reference the "Helping Hands Fund for Disaster Relief Program". Your gift will mean so much!

If you have any questions about the Chi Omega Helping Hands Fund Disaster Relief Program, please contact Saranne "Punky" Penberthy at or Chi Omega Foundation Executive Assistant Linda Landon at (901)748-8600 or

On behalf of all of Chi Omega, we will continue to keep those affected by these tragedies in our thoughts and prayers as you continue to rebuild your lives, your homes, and your communities.


Jane Rogers
Chi Omega Foundation President]]>
Mon, 08 Jun 2015 00:00:00 -0500
Impacting our Sisterhood through Aspirational Giving

Joellyn has generously offered to give $1,000 to recognize the first twenty-five 1895 Society members who increase their 2014 gift to the $2,500 or $5,000 level in 2015 with a gift to the annual fund. Of course, gifts at every level are needed and appreciated. Regarding her motivation for issuing this challenge, Joellyn shared:
The Foundation's support of the Fraternity is critical in assuring that our membership experience is everything it should be. Gifts to the Foundation contribute to the leadership skills and personal development of our Sisters. Giving to the Foundation impacts so much more than Chi Omega. Sisters make a difference every day as leaders in their universities, communities, and the world at large. It is important to support the Foundation with any gift, but the habit of annual giving is absolutely impactful. And giving should be aspirational-as one achieves a giving level, one should look for the next goal for giving. Giving to the Chi Omega Foundation is one of the ways I can give back to our Sisterhood and also impacts the forces for good in our world.
Join Our Charge!

Our Sisterhood Never Stops Campaign provides the opportunity for our entire Sisterhood, as well as Chi Omega family and friends, to join the charge in reaching our $20 million goal. Every gift, no matter what size, given before December 31, 2015-including one given through the Sullivan Challenge-brings us one step closer to this goal, and reminds us that our collective efforts empower us all.

Click here to help Chi Omega create lifelong leaders, informed decision makers, and thoughtful citizens.

For more information, contact Terry Boynton Clevenger, director of annual giving, at 901/748-8625 or
Fri, 28 Aug 2015 00:00:00 -0500
Empowering Programming 0115-cropped.jpg
In July, twenty volunteer Risk Management and Mock Trial Facilitators visited the Executive Headquarters in Memphis for training. The knowledge they gained will help them lead workshops for hundreds of Sisters across the nation. Risk Management facilitator Joslyn McGriff, Psi Delta/U of Wyoming, shared:

"Chi Omega's Risk Management programming is empowering to women because we look closely at choices and consequences, and emphasize that they are in the hands of each individual woman. I love facilitating this programming because for a long time there was a 'Just Say No' message on campuses that just wasn't educational. Instead we say, here's the law, and here's Chi Omega's policy-you decide the path you want to take. The role of the facilitator is to be a big sister or trusted friend to the collegians-someone the women can rely on and confide in. Through candid conversations, we say, 'We've been where you are, there are lots of pressures, so let's have a conversation about it.' Every woman is an individual so there is no single plan that will work for everyone. We share experiences and we give real life suggestions. We challenge the women and often ask, 'If you were to change this, what would be the result?' Our women face many difficult decisions in life and this program does an incredible job of equipping women with tools to make the best choices possible not only when it comes to alcohol and substances, but when it comes to whatever decision that lies ahead for them."

Our Fraternity is strengthened tremendously by the leadership of dedicated facilitators such as Joslyn who are passionate about shaping tomorrow's leaders. The Foundation is honored to partner with these incredible volunteers and with our donors nationwide who continue to give generously to ensure that in Chi Omega, Sisterhood Never Stops
Wed, 12 Aug 2015 00:00:00 -0500
Chi Omega Leadership Opportunities Prove Sisterhood Never Stops Alumnae Rainy Fields, Pi Gamma/U of New Mexico, shares why leadership training is transformational for Chi Omega women, why she serves as a facilitator for The Nancy Walton Laurie Leadership Institute of Chi Omega, and why investing in our members through the Chi Omega Foundation is essential. 
Rainy's own experience with donor-funded programs drives her to volunteer and give:

"I was selected to attend the Nancy Walton Laurie Leadership Institute Flagship Session at Convention 2008 in St. Louis. The Flagship forever changed my life...the main message that I took away from it was to embrace who I am as a leader. In 2012, I was asked to be a facilitator for The Leadership Institute. I return from Flagships with a new self-awareness and that irreplaceable Chi Omega high. The programming that our Fraternity provides due to Foundation donor support is superb. I feel so lucky and blessed to be a part of an organization that truly invests in its members. Chi Omega is for a lifetime. I have gained more from my experience as an alumna than I ever expected. I am forever thankful for the Chi Omega Foundation and all the inspirations it has given me!"

The Foundation thanks Chi Omega volunteers and donors who ensure that leadership education continues to transform the lives of our members, reminding all Chi Omegas that Sisterhood Never Stops. ]]>
Tue, 21 Jul 2015 00:00:00 -0500
Congratulations to the 2014-15 Collegiate Chapter Award Winners Hoots to our 37 chapters that received the Chi Omega Chapter of Excellence Award for their outstanding performance during the 2014 - 2015 school year, as well as our 17 chapters that received the Certificate of Advancement!

Chapter of Excellence Award Winners

Alpha Beta/Auburn University
Beta Gamma/University of Louisville
Chi Epsilon/University of Evansville
Delta Alpha/University of Tennessee - Chattanooga
Delta Theta/Oglethorpe University
Epsilon Delta/University of Southern Mississippi
Eta Gamma/University of South Carolina
Gamma/Florida State University
Gamma Lambda/Rose-Hulman Institute of Technology
Iota/University of Texas at Austin
Iota Alpha/Southern Methodist University
Iota Gamma/Centenary College of Louisiana
Kappa Beta/Rhodes College
Kappa Mu/Sacred Heart University
Lambda Alpha/University of Kentucky
Lambda Gamma/University of Virginia
Mu Delta/Bradley University
Nu Zeta/Emporia State University
Omicron Lambda/Birmingham-Southern College
Phi Delta/Mississippi State University
Phi Gamma/Louisiana State University
Pi/University of Tennessee
Psi/University of Arkansas
Psi Beta/University of Iowa
Rho Epsilon/Texas Christian University
Sigma Epsilon/Vanderbilt University
Sigma Mu/Babson College
Tau/University of Mississippi
Tau Beta/Oklahoma State University
Tau Theta/William Woods University
Theta Kappa/Baylor University
Upsilon/Union University
Upsilon Lambda/Hanover College
Xi Delta/University of Toledo
Xi Kappa/Texas A & M University
Zeta Delta/University of Nebraska - Omaha
Zeta Zeta/Samford University

Certificate of Advancement Recipients

Beta Beta/Washington State University 
Chi Alpha/Tufts University
Epsilon Beta/University of North Carolina - Chapel Hill
Iota Mu/Quinnipiac University
Kappa Lambda/University of California, San Diego
Nu/University of Wisconsin - Madison
Omicron Kappa/University of California, Davis
Pi Beta/University of Minnesota
Pi Delta/New Mexico State University
Pi Kappa/Appalachian State University
Psi Lambda/Valdosta State University
Tau Alpha/Ohio University
Theta Mu/Worcester Polytechnic Institute
Theta Zeta/Eastern New Mexico University
Upsilon Delta/University of Miami
Zeta/University of Colorado
Zeta Mu/University of Denver

Mon, 20 Jul 2015 00:00:00 -0500
Why Should You #GoChiO? Join our 26,000 undergraduate Sisters nationwide who chose to #GoChiO! 
We are...Sisters, inspired by our values,
who serve the world while keeping Chi Omega ever at heart.

Search #GOCHIO and follow Chi Omega
on Instagram, Tumblr, Facebook, and Twitter
to see what our Sisters are up to
and why YOU should Go Chi O!
Tue, 14 Jul 2015 00:00:00 -0500
Chi Omega Addresses Sexual Violence
As we gradually move towards the end of the fall semester, I want to reiterate the importance of the safety and well-being of our members. Over the past year, the Governing Council has taken time to listen to our members' thoughts about sexual assault on college campuses and ideas for how Chi Omega can help educate our members on this important issue.

This topic continues to be at the forefront of public discussion. As national president, I feel it is important for you to know that Chi Omega has taken steps to protect our community, and will continue to have a strong voice in the national conversation on how to prevent these violent and criminal acts.

Chi Omega provides each of our collegiate Sisters with risk management training every year, including a new module on sexual violence awareness and intervention, designed by experts to help protect the health, safety, and well-being of our members. Chi Omega will also continue to offer bystander behavior workshops where appropriate, participate in the National Panhellenic Conference's Something of Value programs and encourage participation in any related campus-sponsored programming. In addition, we will continue to support the increased effort of the National Panhellenic Conference to have meaningful conversations about this topic in sorority and university communities. 

Chi Omega continues to monitor discussions about this serious topic. In spring 2014, Chi Omega Executive Director Leslie Herington was personally invited to the White House, along with other fraternal leaders, to participate in a listening session regarding sexual assault, and best practices around prevention, responding, and adjudication. The National Panhellenic Conference continues to engage in dialogue with members of Congress, as well as other women's organizations, to find ways to end violence against women.

We understand that there is great interest in discussion around the topic of legislation regarding sexual assault and campus safety. Chi Omega supports National Panhellenic Conference efforts and remains committed to advancing solutions to improve campus safety.

Chi Omega supports our Sisters, and all survivors. Should anyone share her story of sexual assault with you, I encourage you to listen. Remember, you don't have to be an expert; you just have to be a friend. It's important we continue this dialogue for the safety of our members, and encourage Sisters to seek information and support through campus and community resources across the country. 

Sisters, the Governing Council cares deeply about each of you. There is absolutely nothing more important than your safety and well-being. Look out for one another, and continue to keep your Sisters "ever at heart."


Shelley Potter
Chi Omega National President

For more about how the National Panhellenic Conference is continuing the discussion on sexual violence and other important topics that could impact our members, click here.  You may also email to share your feedback.  Comments will be compiled and shared with the Governing Council.
Mon, 03 Aug 2015 00:00:00 -0500
Chi O Travel Adventures: Waterways of Holland & Belgium The Waterways of Holland and Belgium
April 14 - 21, 2015

"Flowers and cheese in the Netherlands - Waffles and chocolates in Belgium! You would think that this is enough for an amazing vacation, but we saw so much more during our wonderful river cruise on the MS Ama Lyra! Pre-cruise days in Amsterdam introduced us to a city of art treasures, bicycle culture, flower markets, and Golden Age history. We connected with a Chi O Sister now living in the The Hague and learned about day-to-day life in Holland. Cruising through the towns of Holland and Belgium on the MS Ama Lyra was peaceful, informative, and delicious! What a great way to travel. The excursions were varied, including art appreciation, windmills, modern day flood control, World War II history and much more, all led by amazing guides! Touring the glorious, tulip-filled Keukenhof Gardens was the perfect end to a wonderful trip.

Traveling with Chi Omega is the way to go!"

Katheryn Stillwell Gibbons, Pi Alpha/U of Cincinnati




Thu, 14 May 2015 00:00:00 -0500
Study Abroad Scholarship Opportunity Humphreys Chi Omega Scholarship for Study Abroad. Cathey and Don Humphreys are philanthropists committed to helping young people pursue their academic and career goals through the experience of student abroad.

The award is available for a Chi Omega collegian in good standing who wishes to expand her academic and career goals through the experience of student abroad during the fall 2015 and/or spring 2016 semesters, for a minimum of eight weeks. Up to $5,000 is being offered depending on the cost of the program. Please view the application to learn more about the specific requirements.

Applications and all required materials must be submitted online by May 6, 2015 to be considered.

To access all of the Chi Omega Foundation's scholarship applications online, click here.

If you have any questions, please contact Scholarship and Foundation Ambassador Coordinator Angela Reynolds at
Tue, 24 Mar 2015 00:00:00 -0500
Kate Arends Peters: The Voice of Wit & Delight Blogtreprener. Social media darling. Designer. Brand curator. These are just a few of the words that could be used to describe Kate Arends Peters, founder of and voice for the much-beloved blog, Wit & Delight. Of course, Chi Omega is proud to be able to use the word "Sister" to describe her as well.

140909-wittanddelight-target-012 - Copy.jpgAn initiate of the Eta Beta Chapter at Iowa State University, Arends Peters began blogging as a creative outlet after she graduated from college with a degree in graphic design.

Since the launch of Wit + Delight in 2009, Arends Peters has racked up nearly 2.7 million Pinterest followers, (Real Simple, Martha Stewart Living, and HGTV combined still trail Kate by a million) and has collected a wide array of impressive media endorsements, including recognition from Elle Décor and Fast Company.
Perhaps one of her biggest career highlights took place this past fall when Arends Peters was selected to collaborate with Target to create a limited-edition product line based off of her blog's aesthetic. Maintaining a sense of charming minimalism, Wit & Delight for Target debuted in stores nationwide in September 2014, and included party supplies and décor such as growlers with chalkboard labels, geometric candle holders, and fun snack and condiment sets.

The Eleusis was fortunate to have the opportunity to chat with Arends Peters about her success, Sisterhood, and what's been inspiring her lately.

...on her time as a Chi Omega collegian at Iowa State University. I joined Chi Omega as a freshman and got involved right away and had the benefit of getting to be around the older girls and learn from them. As a graphic design major, I really became close to the other graphic design majors in the chapter, especially when we worked late nights in the dining room together. I learned so much from my time in Chi O, especially my sophomore year when I had a leadership role in homecoming. It's because of Chi Omega that I learned how to stand up in front of a group and speak confidently. It was just so great to be around a group of motivated women who had similar values.

...on Wit & Delight's success. When I started my blog in 2009, I was working at as a graphic designer at an agency in Minneapolis. I started Wit & Delight as a hobby for me, but soon realized it was speaking to a broad audience of women in a way that hadn't been done before. Wit & Delight was reaching women in a way that was more than just aesthetics and or a lifestyle point of view - it was different than Martha Stewart or Gwyneth Paltrow's lifestyle site. The cornerstone of my blog is the "wit" in Wit & Delight. It captures the spirit of working to become your best self - and that's a true lifestyle. 

...on her biggest learning curve.
As I've turned my online persona and vision into a business, it's ironic that my biggest learning curve has been trying to make sure I am sure what Wit & Delight really means - really defining it for myself.  Of course, another learning curve is when I have to force my creative mind to become non-creative to handle the business side.

...on her typical workday. Oh, that's hard! I recently started using a shared workspace with other entrepreneurs, so that's been new. A typical workday includes tons of emails, sometimes events, status meetings with my project manager. We pitch to clients, negotiate hard numbers, spruce up media kits, think ahead about content, determine what the holidays will look like for Wit & Delight. We think about bigger questions: How should we pitch to larger media outlets? How should we get the larger content out to readers? I recently hired someone to be my project manager because I was really missing things that I felt were important and I didn't have bandwidth to do it alone. When you're creative at heart, there are some things that don't come quite as naturally, and finding someone to complement them, brings new point of view. It's been a big transition, but I realized I really needed a counterpart to make it a well-oiled machine.

...on finding out Target wanted to collaborate on a product line. I was in shock. I got the email from someone in New York and just couldn't believe it. Being in Minneapolis {where Target is headquartered} I'm so used to it, but hearing they wanted to collaborate on a national product line was definitely a "pinch me" moment.
...on her Chi Omega support system. I've stayed so close with my Eta Beta Sisters. They have always been so supportive of me, even when I questioned it. In fact, I think they knew before I did that Wit & Delight would go national and then international. We have the kind of friendship where we will go through life together and maintain that kind of support for each other.

...on what she would serve for at an impromptu dinner party of Chi Omega Sisters. What's important is creating a warm, comfortable atmosphere. I would have a lovely bruschetta and ricotta cheese prepared as an appetizer, and would serve roast chicken with crispy skin and a rice pilaf for the meal. It's something really homey and simple, but elevated enough that it feels special. It's all about pairing easy elegance with comfort of your friends.

...on what she's not good at (as if we believe her).
(Laughs) Oh, gosh, I'm not good at lots of things. I am terrible at time management, yet I have a tendency to rush. I have bad hand-eye-coordination. Oh, I am pretty bad at building IKEA furniture too. Last week I was building a shoe rack in our living room and my husband was like "What are you DOING?"

...on what's been inspiring her lately. Lately I've been inspired by less of a thing and more of a practice. I've been really trying to get into the idea of mindfulness, especially as we approach the winter season. It's so easy to get hurried and busy during the holidays; I'm trying to soak up little moments, and making sure to take time to reflect.]]>
Tue, 10 Mar 2015 00:00:00 -0500
Joanna Shields: Baroness and Businesswoman "Who is Britain's answer to Sheryl Sandberg, the Google and Facebook whizzo brain whose book Lean In teaches women to run the world? Step forward Joanna Shields.

She looks and sounds like Sandberg — neat dark hair, fast-talking. Both women are from America's East Coast and their career paths are spookily similar. They both started in Washington DC, before moving to Silicon Valley. They both worked at Google and Facebook. They're even friends. 'I see Sheryl when she comes to London,' says Shields. While Sandberg has become the queen of Silicon Valley, Shields is the ruler of Silicon Roundabout. She is the first boss of Tech City UK, the government-backed cluster of hi-tech firms mainly located around Old Street. It is her job to 'incubate and accelerate' — geek speak for grow — tech firms and create a British answer to Google, Facebook or Twitter." -The Evening Standard, November 2013

JoannaShields.PNGLong before Joanna Shields held the title of "Baroness" she was a young girl from Pennsylvania who suffered through her teenage years, due to incessant bullying from her peers.  She left home at 17 for Pennsylvania State University where she joined the Nu Gamma Chapter of Chi Omega, and, for the first time in her life, met women she could trust and count on. To this day, she credits her Chi Omega Sisters as her greatest blessing.

Joanna arrived in the UK in 1997 with her baby son, Ben, to run Veon, an interactive video technology company later acquired by Philips. Following her time there, she held power positions at Google, Bebo, and Facebook, helping lead the UK, Middle Eastern, and European branches of these companies.

In 2012, UK Prime Minister David Cameron asked her to lead Tech City, a government initiative to spawn the growth of UK tech endeavors.

Though Joanna recently stepped down as Tech City CEO, she remains its chairman. She has shared "I wanted to focus on the bigger remit of making Britain the leading digital country in the world. I've been made a non-executive director of the London Stock Exchange, and I've got the US/UK taskforce on internet safety. It's going to work with the industry to eliminate internet abuse. We have to make it much safer for kids."
Now, she works tirelessly alongside Britain's political leaders to ensure that children are protected against bullying and abuse online.

In October 2014, Joanna was inducted into the UK's House of Lords. She told the Wall Street  Journal that she believes she may be the first American who earned the title of "Baronness" on her own without marrying in. "'I used to work at Google so I'm pretty good with search,' she said with a laugh."

The Eleusis got to speak with Baroness (and Sister!) Shields about her work ethic, business women she admires, and maintaining her Chi Omega friendships from across the pond.

Read the full article featured in The Eleusis, here.

Born: 1962, Pennsylvania
Penn State University; George Washington University
Current jobs: chairman of Tech City UK and UK ambassador for digital industries; heads US/UK taskforce on internet safety
Previous jobs: Senior executive with Electronics for Imaging, RealNetworks, Google, Bebo, Aol, Facebook
Family: Married to Andy Stevenson, manager of F1 team Force India. One son, Ben
Accolades: Named most influential woman in UK IT by 'Computer Weekly', and one of the 100 most powerful women in the UK by Radio 4
Got first job: By telling boss of a computer firm: "You don't know me, but you need me."
Tue, 10 Mar 2015 00:00:00 -0500
The Marriott Brands: Family Business, Family Values Five Marriott women, all Chi Omegas, share their business savvy and family memories with The Eleusis.

Chances are good that you've slept at a Marriott hotel, for it's one of the world's largest hospitality companies, with almost 3,000 locations around the world. Chi Omega is proud to count seven Marriott women among its members.

Read the article featured in the digital edition of The Eleusis, here.

Elyse Marriott, Iota Alpha/Southern Methodist University, Initiated 2010

What is one piece of advice you would give to a young person hoping to start his or her own business?

Do it. Don't let other people's opinions change your mind and don't wait too long because you'll comfortable (in your current job) and you will end up letting the opportunity pass. There is never really the "perfect" time to start a business because there will always be barriers, so start planning ahead so that you can prepare yourself for those challenging moments (no steady income and no senior management to teach you and provide resources and timelines to help you be successful). You need to do your homework because no one gives you a step-by-step handbook on how to start...and it's not an easy process. It's hard work and frustrating at times, but we do it because it's rewarding, and if we don't challenge ourselves, we limit our opportunity to grow. You might fail, but that's part of the process and you'll learn from your mistakes. (Elyse is the great-granddaughter of Alice and J.W.)


In your opinion, what has made the Marriott business endure for many generations?
Work ethic and values. My great-grandfather, the founder of Marriott, was a farmer; he had no background in hospitality, food and beverage, finances, nor marketing. Yet, his determination and persistence allowed him to grow a single root beer stand into a successful hotel business, which would eventually turn into a Fortune 500 company because of the hard work and commitment his sons and future grandchildren invested in the company. Because Marriott started as a family business, family values are very much present and a large part of the company's culture, which I think generates respectful work relationships. Overall, I think Marriott has been able to endure for many generations because the people who have had the most influence on the company never gave up. They were, and are, diligent and hold high standards for themselves and those who work for the company.


Nancy Peery Marriott, Xi Alpha/University of Utah, Initiated 1960

What is one piece of advice you would give to a young person hoping to start his or her own business?
Do your homework. Work hard. Have a passion for what you do. Never sacrifice your integrity. Treat others like you would like to be treated.

Who is the business person whom you admire?
My father, H. Taylor Peery, who was a very successful businessman and practiced all of the qualities mentioned above.

When it comes to business, what are some of the benefits of being in a sorority?
Networking is a big part of today's world. You learn to interact with others, stand up and pull together, and earn each others' loyalty and respect in a Sisterhood.


What makes a job candidate stand out to you?
First of all, show up on time for an interview. Dress appropriately. Know something about the company or job that you would like to be a part of. Look your interviewer in the eye and be sure to answer all questions honestly and with real enthusiasm and intent.

In your opinion, what has made the Marriott business endure for many generations?
My father-in-law, J.W. Marriott, Sr., started the company from nothing, working long and hard hours together with a few employees for the future success of the company. They looked out for each other and sincerely cared about producing quality product. This attitude continued for years with his two sons Richard and Bill, Jr.



Nicole Marriott Avery, Iota Alpha/Southern Methodist University, Initiated 2007

What is one piece of advice you would give to a young person hoping to start his or her own business?
My great-grandfather, J.W. Marriott, Sr., once said, "Entrepreneurs are never satisfied. They want to do things better. They strive for perfection and use all the ingenuity to their command to achieve it." He also said, "Only close attention to the fine details of any operation makes the operation first class," and "Success seems to be connected to action. Successful people keep moving. They make mistakes, but they never quit." I would advise to go at starting a business head on, with a smart plan in place. Hard work and dedication will pay off.

When it comes to business, what have been some of the benefits of being in a fraternity or sorority?
On the first day of my internship at mcgarrybowen in New York City, my boss told me she was also a Chi Omega Sister. I was also interviewed by a Chi Omega and a Tri Delta Panhellenic sister before working at my first full-time job at mcgarrybowen in Chicago. There is a special bond shared between Panhellenic women. My leadership positions in Chi Omega prepared me for the future in many ways-I am more organized, I can lead a group, and am now comfortable communicating to a small group or while public speaking.
What makes a job candidate stand out to you?
Someone who is driven and sincere. Questions are great - it shows you want to learn. It's ok to ask questions, and even ok to make mistakes. If both are done sincerely, with a driving desire to take initiative to learn and grow, then I know that person will make a good employee and colleague. At the end of the day, I have to work with this person, sit next to her and rely on her to work as a team to get the job done.

In your opinion, what has made the Marriott business endure for many generations?
Family, love, sincerity, drive, religion, forward thinking. The business is first and foremost a family business. "If you take care of your people, your people will take care of your customers, and your business will take care of itself." Most of our family works with Marriott International, so "take care of your people" extends beyond the office walls and into the home. We take care of each other and love each other. That love and sincerity keep the company working to the same family values since the beginning. 

Tell us a little about your views on the importance of philanthropy and giving back.
Service and charity have been indoctrinated in me from a young age. Like many, I have participated in school community service trips, church service projects, Chi Omega philanthropy events and have been looking to offer service in my daily life for as long as I can remember. One of my favorite church hymns offers the advice, "because I have been given much I too must give...Because I have been sheltered, fed by thy good care, I cannot see another's lack and I not share..." Giving back comes in many forms - and does not have to be through the traditional forms of physical labor or monetary donations. Giving back stems from generosity and having an open heart and can be manifested by calling a friend to say hi, writing a thank you note, putting in a little extra time at work or at home, picking up the house without being asked, offering a ride to someone unable to drive. I have found personally that continuing my involvement with Chi Omega has been warming and fulfilling. My fondest memories from SMU were those surrounding Chi Omega. My roommates were all Chi O's, my sisters are both Chi O's, every formal and boulevard, community service activity, recruitment week, new member activity, were spent with my favorite people and best friends - truly sisters - and I'm grateful I can give back to this organization  by being on the Donor Relations Committee. I have gotten to know a new group of talented and strong women, and I can continue to say "thanks" to everyone who also understands the importance of continuing Chi Omega's growth.

Michelle Marriott, Initiate of Iota Alpha/Southern Methodist University, Initiated 2012

When it comes to business, what have been some of the benefits of being in a fraternity or sorority?

There are many facets of sorority life that prepare women for meaningful careers such as personal growth and social responsibility, but the most important lesson that I have learned as a Chi Omega is the unmeasurable power and strength of women.  Being apart of a community that consists only of women acts as a constant reminder in my life that I, as a woman, am capable of great achievements.  Everyday, I am surrounded by women that are diverse, strong, and successful.  We hold each other to high standards and we support each other because we recognize our potential as individuals and as a whole.  Because women are often undervalued in the workforce, it is important that we recognize our strengths as individuals and as women so we may continue to prove to ourselves and others that we are capable of great achievement.

Donna Garff Marriott, Initiate of Xi Alpha/University of Utah

Who is a businessperson you admire?
Well, of course, my husband. He is hard-working and loves what he does. He has grown the business from the restaurant business to the first motels to over 4,000 hotels!

In your opinion, what has made the Marriott business endure for many generations?
Culture. The same culture that was established from the beginning. If you take care of your employees, they'll take care of the customers and the customers will keep coming back. There are always stories about the excellent level of customer service in our hotels. Stories about guests that are sick and getting medicine or being taken to a doctor by someone in the hotel, or someone forgetting their tux or shoes for an event and the concierge taking them shopping or picking up shoes or a tux for them. It's all part of the culture and is what my daughter Debbie, and before my son Stephen, speaks and preaches about. She helps keep the culture alive and in tact. In the old days, when the company was much smaller, Bill Sr. used to visit his employees at home, and Bill did too until we got too big. He would visit them to see how they and their families were. If they were sick he would pay for a doctor or surgeon. There was a doctor in Bill Sr.'s ward [church] that he put on Marriott's payroll to take care of the employees. Another funny story is about Sammy Davis Jr. stayed in one of our hotels in New York. He wore a lot of gold chains and jewelry and he left it all behind. One of the housekeepers found it and brought it to loss prevention to be returned to him. He called and left her a big tip for taking the time to return his pieces when she could have easily taken or sold it!

Fri, 20 Feb 2015 00:00:00 -0500
Why Mu Beta Father Gives to Chi Omega Foundation W. Paul Waits - father of Alex Waits, Mu Beta/U of Georgia chapter treasurer - shares why he is honored to give to the Chi Omega Foundation:

"When Alex was in her senior year of high school, searching for a university home, I promised her I would actively support whatever school she selected, and her chosen activities. My only request was she respect and take pride in where she attends school, and her academic performance. Her mother being a past President of the University of Houston Chi Omega chapter, Alex has always been motivated to join Georgia's Chi Omega chapter and serve in a leadership capacity. Alex was model initiate for her pledge class, and will finish her tenure as chapter treasurer in December. Being chapter treasurer is a difficult job, since accounting and treasury functions are either perfect or wrong. Collecting dues and payments and responding to emails from parents have taught Alex diplomacy, patience, and tenacity.
Alex continues to be a student focused on her academics, and enjoys bonding with her Chi Omega sisters and serving those in need through charity events. When Alex comes home to Houston, she makes time to 'shadow' surgeons at Houston's Memorial Hermann Hospital. Having a sweet spirit with excellent academic performance, parents could not hope for more. My donation to Chi Omega's Foundation is in honor of Alex's dedication to University of Georgia, devotion to her Chi Omega chapter sisters, and academic excellence. Since Alex is now in her junior year, the long-term value of any donation to the Chi Omega Foundation is to 'pay it forward' and pass love to the next series of pledge classes through educational opportunities."

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Mon, 24 Nov 2014 00:00:00 -0500
Three Decades of Chi Omega Commitment  v\:* {behavior:url(#default#VML);} o\:* {behavior:url(#default#VML);} w\:* {behavior:url(#default#VML);} .shape {behavior:url(#default#VChi Omega is especially honored by our Sisters who sustain our Fraternity by giving loyally year after year. We would like to acknowledge the dedication of one alumna whose gifts have educated and touched countless Chi Omega women during her 31 years of annual giving.

carol barrett 2.jpgCarole Westphal Barrett, Omicron Beta/College of William and Mary, still treasures the important aspects of her collegiate life in Chi Omega.

For Carole, Chi Omega provided, "A home away from home with family away from family; a life of balance in academics, philanthropy and fun; Sisters laughing and crying together; friendship and support built in an atmosphere of love and trust; and learning to commit to that which is worthwhile.

Fifty years later, I know that lifelong friendships are part of a special bond that makes life a 'Symphony.'"
Carole continued, "Those four years are long past, but I know that my contribution, small as it may be, is helping to provide scholarships for promising young women, leadership training for my younger Sisters in the midst of their college educations and for alumnae, monies for the continuing support of our national organization, and the comfort of knowing that Chi Omega will be there for generations to come. Today, it may be the sight of a Chi O sweatshirt in the crowd in old Prague or a personal call—instead of a Christmas card—from a pledge class Sister. Whatever it is that stirs my memory or my dreams means that Chi O is, was, and always will be, a very important part of my life, and supporting her financially throughout my life keeps that warm spot in my heart ever vibrant."

Fri, 17 Oct 2014 00:00:00 -0500
Apply for the 2016 Flagship Session 0115-cropped.jpg

Eighteen women from across the country will be selected to travel to Chi Omega Executive Headquarters in Memphis, Tennessee this spring for our premiere leadership training program, open to Chi Omega collegians and alumnae from any chapter and sponsored by the Chi Omega Foundation.


The Laurie Leadership Institute, supported by a grant from the Chi Omega Foundation, provides leadership training and education for women to foster personal growth and to prepare them to lead in their communities, workplaces, homes and in Chi Omega. The Flagship Session brings together a select group of Chi Omega collegiate and alumnae members from across the nation at Chi Omega Executive Headquarters for this premier leadership experience.

The Spring 2016 Flagship Session will be the debut of The Laurie Leadership Institute's newest learning module: The Resilient Leader.

In our complex world, resilience is an important attribute for Chi Omega leaders in any stage of life. Participants will focus on understanding their own strengths and learning to leverage them through an individual strengths assessment, moving forward from setbacks and adversity, and exploring the ways that failure can lead to growth.


Who may attend the Nancy Walton Laurie Leadership Institute?
Any initiated Chi Omega, collegian or alumna, may attend the session.

What are the commitments for attending the Laurie Leadership Institute?
Time: The session will take place February 26-28 at Chi Omega Executive Headquarters in Memphis, Tennessee.

Financial: The Chi Omega Foundation provides funding assistance for all costs associated with the program including lodging and travel expenses. Participants are responsible for a $50 registration fee. If you are an ACTIVE member of a collegiate or alumnae chapter, that chapter may be receptive to covering the cost for one of their members to attend if selected. If accepted to the program, you can ask the Chapter President or Treasurer of your current, active chapter if this is something they might consider.

Click here to apply! Email with further questions.

Wed, 28 Oct 2015 00:00:00 -0500
Chi Omega Fraternity Elects 2014-2016 Supreme Governing Council Chi Omega names Supreme Governing Council at 60th National Convention in Orlando, Florida.

At the 60th biennial National Convention of Chi Omega held in Orlando, Florida from June 25-June 29, 2014, the delegates elected the Supreme Governing Council of Chi Omega to serve the Fraternity as national officers for the 2014-2016 biennium. The officers are as follows:
  • S.H. Shelley Eubanks Potter (National President), founding member and initiate of Xi Kappa Chapter at Texas A&M University
  • S.T.B. Anna Funderburk Buckner (National Vice President), initiate of Alpha Beta Chapter at Auburn University
  • S.K.A. Jane McWilliams Tankersley (National Secretary), initiate of Epsilon Delta Chapter at the University of Southern Mississippi
  • S.N.V. Laura Shrode Miller (National Treasurer), initiate of Rho Epsilon Chapter at Texas Christian University
  • S.M. Missy Ganaway Pask (National Ritual Officer), initiate of Sigma Alpha Chapter at Miami University
From the beginning, strong leadership has been the hallmark of Chi Omega. The Fraternity is flourishing today because of the untiring efforts and wisdom displayed by Governing Council members over the past century. 

The Council is directly responsible for policy-making and the governance of Fraternity business. The Council members are dedicated volunteers who work day-to-day with the Executive Headquarters staff, NPC delegates, Foundation Board, Chi O Creations Board, national teams and committees and other Chi Omega volunteers. National President Shelley Potter will also continue to serve as President of the Chi Omega Foundation until her successor is appointed in the near future.

The women elected have many accomplishments and involvement with Chi Omega. Complete biographies will be posted soon to Chi Omega appreciates the commitment to excellence exemplified by these women and looks forward to the next two years of their collective leadership!

To reach a Governing Council member, please email, fax, or write them in care of the Chi Omega Executive Headquarters.

Founded in 1895, Chi Omega Fraternity is the largest women's fraternal organization in the world with over 320,000 initiated Sisters and 178 collegiate chapters. Chi Omegas bring the Fraternity's founding purposes to life, one woman at a time, through friendship, personal integrity, service to others, academic excellence and intellectual pursuits, community and campus involvement, and personal and career development. Chi Omega's shared values inspire Sisters to serve the world for a lifetime. 

Thu, 03 Jul 2014 00:00:00 -0500
Meet the Malinda Jolley Mortin Woman of Achievement Award Recipient Chi Omega Foundation proudly announces Eleni Christopoulos Gianopulos (Iota Alpha/Southern Methodist U), as the 2014 Malinda Jolley Mortin Woman of Achievement. Gianopulos has accepted the invitation of the Board of Trustees to receive the award, the highest honor the Foundation can bestow on one of its members, and will be honored at the Woman of Achievement Dinner. The commitment of Malinda Jolley Mortin to the Fraternity is recognized by the establishment of the Malinda Jolley Mortin Woman of Achievement Award of Chi Omega. An initiate of the Upsilon Delta Chapter at The University of Miami, Malinda is a charter member of the Chi Omega Foundation Advisors and has a family full of Chi Omegas. Since 1986, Chi Omega alumnae have been recognized with this prestigious award biennially at Convention. The award pays homage to a member's distinguished accomplishments in service to the Fraternity, the community, and the nation. Past recipients include an impressive list of women with a spectrum of backgrounds as entrepreneurs, authors, teachers, lawyers, business executives, political and spiritual leaders, designers, and even an astronaut. Many honorees have become household names, not only inspiring members of Chi Omega to follow their passions, but earning the admiration and respect of citizens worldwide through service and dedication.                 

Gianopulos was initiated into the Iota Alpha Chapter of Chi Omega at Southern Methodist University in Dallas, Texas in 1983. After graduating from SMU with a BA in Psychology, she moved to New York City to begin her career in media at Time Inc., eventually moving to the editorial division of Life Magazine. Gianopulos, wanting to be a "dessertrepreneur," began a small cookie business in her New York City apartment. The business quickly outgrew her home and evolved into a full-fledged cookie business. Since 1997, Eleni's New York has been a must-stop at Manhattan's iconic Chelsea Market. Gianopulos developed a line of crisp cookies sold in over 3,000 stores today, such as Whole Foods, Zabars, Dean & Deluca, and Crate & Barrel. Her website brings intricately designed custom "conversation cookies" to fans nationwide and are favorites among celebrities, Fortune 500 companies, and avid cookie lovers across the country.

Gianopulos received the Mobius Award for her "Conversation Cookies" for Packaging Design, the National Association in Specialty Food Trade "sofi Award" for Innovation in Packaging Design and Function, Modern Bride's Trendsetter Award, and was an Ernst & Young Entrepreneur of the Year Finalist for the New York Metro Area. Gianopulos is honored to be a panelist at the She Summit June 5th in New York City.
Gianopulos lives in Manhattan with her husband, two children, and two dogs. Several of Gianopulos' Iota Alpha Sisters reside in the New York City area. They are some of her closest friends and biggest supporters of Cookie HQ today, more than two decades after meeting on the SMU freshman floor and pledging together in 1983. 

Thu, 26 Jun 2014 00:00:00 -0500
The Owl: What to Wear This Week Want to know what to wear this week?
Check out this fun video!

Tue, 24 Jun 2014 00:00:00 -0500
The Owl: Meet the Supreme Governing Council Model Initiates Sisters, we were so excited to officially welcome Isabelle Graham (Xi Kappa/Texas A&M U) and Ellis Millard (Psi/U of Arkansas) into Chi Omega this morning!

Isabelle and Ellis were selected as the 2014 Supreme Governing Council Model Initiates and both women truly reflect the values of Chi Omega. It was particularly special to honor these women, because both of their mothers were also selected as Supreme Governing Council Model Initiates at Conventions that were held back in the 1980s!

Additionally, both of these women have some pretty big Chi Omega connections:
  • Isabelle's relatives include former Governing Council S.N.V. Punky Penberthy and Winnie Bowker, former Chi Omega national President.
  • Ellis's Chi Omega family ties include 15 Chi Omega women, including a great, great, great aunt named Jobelle Holcombe...we know you may recognize that name!  
The Psi Chapter officers and Xi Kappa Chapter officers performed the ceremony beautifully, and we couldn't be prouder of these officers and our wonderful new SISTERS! Congratulations to Sister Isabelle and Sister Ellis!

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Ellis Millard, Psi Chapter at the University of Arkansas

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Isabelle Graham, Xi Kappa Chapter at Texas A & M University

We are so excited to officially welcome Sister Isabelle Graham and Ellis Millard to our Sisterhood! Way to go, Isabelle and Ellis! 
Fri, 27 Jun 2014 00:00:00 -0500
The Owl: Daily Schedule for Wednesday, June 25 panarama_2.jpg
Major Arrival Day for Convention Delegates

Attire: Business Attire (PreCon Sessions); Cardinal & Straw (Opening Dinner)
  • Check In & Pre-Con Sessions: Travel Attire (slacks, capris, skirts, blouse, sweater, sandals, loafers)
  • Opening Dinner & Workshops: Cardinal & Straw Attire  No jeans, t-shirts, tennis shoes or flip-flops.
Convention On-Site Check In & Chapter Connections
1pm - 5:30pm
Ritz Carlton Ballroom Pre-function

All attendees must stop by the check in booth to pick up materials. Reminder: You must register for Convention online in advance!

Pre-Con Session: Roundtable for Advisors
2pm - 5pm
Plaza II
Attendees: Advisors
This workshop will provide tools to help advisors support members from the new member program to becoming an alumna.

Pre-Con Session: House Corporation Basics Bootcamp
2pm - 5pm
Plaza I
Attendees: House Corporation Board members
Whether new to the House Corporation Board or looking for a refresher course, this workshop is an opportunity to learn about the basics including corporate structure, budgeting, taxes, and financial controls.

Opening Dinner, Chi Omega: A Symphony of Sisterhood
6pm - 8pm
Palazzo Ballroom, JW Marriott
Attendees: G.H., G.M. Advisors, House Corporation Representative, Alumnae Chapter Representative, Leadership Track Participants, Sisters at Large, Convention Staff
Kick off Convention at our opening dinner, filled with fun and excitement! We'll celebrate our "Symphony of Sisterhood" and Chi Omega's lifetime membership experience.

Dinner at Fairways Restaurant
Ritz-Carlton Golf Club
6pm - 9 pm
Attendees: Sisters at Large and Special Guests
A short, scenic walk takes you to the elegant Ritz Carlton Golf Club where you can reunite and celebrate Chi Omega friendships. Savor a delectable three-course dinner while enjoying spectacular views of the resort and Greg Norman's Signature Championship Course. This event is open to alumnae at-large, spouses, and guests over the age of 21. Attire: Summer dressy; jackets for men (no tie). Space is limited and is not open to full-time nor leadership track delegates.

Workshops: House Corporation: Be Discouraged Never
8:15pm - 9:30pm
Attendees: House Corporation Board Members
In this session meet members of the NHCT and Governing Council, learn about valuable resources, and develop a network of support.

Workshops: ACLC: Recruiting Always and All Ways
8:15pm - 9:30pm
Attendees: ACLC Track Participants
This workshop will introduce alumnae leaders to specific marketing and communications tools that will effectively reach alumnae of all ages and keep them engaged.

Workshops: You Advisor Toolkit
8:15pm - 9:30pm
Attendees: Advisors
This workshop will review the new advisor toolkit and resources.

Workshops: Facilitation Fun
8:15pm - 9:30pm
Attendees: G.M.
In this workshop, G.M.s will learn practical tips for developing and improving their facilitation skills as well as ways to make their meetings fun and engaging. 

Leadership Track: More than "Likes" and Retweets: Building Authentic Relationships
8:15pm - 9:30pm
Attendees: Leadership Track Participants
The Leadership Track consists of 6 consecutive workshops facilitated by the Nancy Walton Laurie Leadership Institute of Chi Omega. The topic focuses on building relationships that are meaningful, with a look at how social media has posed challenges in this area.

G.H. Parade Practice
8:15pm -9:30pm
Attendees: G.H.
Chapter presidents are required to attend this practice in preparation for the Parade of Flags at the first business meeting.

National Consultant PR Event
9:30pm - 10:30pm
Attendees: Collegiate Members
Collegiate members are encouraged to meet with our national consultants to learn more about this incredible career and leadership opportunity!

Advisor/House Corporation Mingling
9:30pm - 10:30pm
Attendees: Advisors and House Corporation Board Members
Great opportunity for Advisors and House Corporations to mix and mingle! Enjoy the sharing of ideas and the Sisterhood!

Wed, 25 Jun 2014 00:00:00 -0500
The Owl: Why Give to the Owl Tree? Why Give to The Owl Tree? 

Collegians Shared Their Answers from Convention 2012

Thank you to everyone who has donated to The Owl Tree so far! 

If you haven't had a chance to honor someone with your donation to The Chi Omega Foundation yet, be sure to make time to stop by The Owl Tree and give a $5 gift or more in honor of someone you love.

Wed, 25 Jun 2014 00:00:00 -0500
The Owl: Convention Awards J7TI6-8HAHa8TPOUvmreNzRnkuOYWg5JY-O99Oro02I.jpeg

Congratulations to the following chapters and individuals for their successes! It is an honor to get to recognize your achievements!

Spirit of Service Award
Lambda Alpha/U of Kentucky

Advisory Board Excellence
Rho Mu/DePaul U

Advisory Board Excellence
Alpha Alpha/U of North Texas

Outstanding Advisor
Terry Baxter, current Panhellenic Advisor for Omicron Lambda/Birmingham Southern
Kellie Hayes, current Personnel Advisor for Psi Alpha/U of Oregon
Janet Hill, recent Personnel Advisor for Xi Theta/South Dakota State U
Melissa Teaford, New Member Advisor for Lambda Delta/Kent State U

House Corporation Excellence
Sigma Beta/Montana State U

Outstanding House Corporation Board Member
Jeanne Mitchell - Lambda Zeta/U of Missouri-Kansas City

Lifelong Service Award
Barbara Hale - Upsilon Alpha/Syracuse U (current Personnel Advisor for Eta Kappa/Missouri U of Science & Tech)

Lifelong Service Award
Kelly Brest van Kempen - Phi Alpha/The George Washington U (current House Corporation Board President for Xi Chapter)

Alumnae Chapter of Excellence
Atlanta, GA Alumnae Chapter
Downtown Chicago Alumnae Chapter

Certificate of Achievement
Delta Kappa/University of North Carolina - Charlotte
Epsilon Kappa/St. Lawrence University
Iota Beta/University of Massachusetts
Nu Theta/West Liberty University
Nu Zeta/Emporia State University
Sigma Beta/Montana State University
Theta Delta/Carroll University
Theta Gamma/Queens University
Theta Zeta/Eastern New Mexico University
Xi Theta/South Dakota State University

Chapter of Excellence
Alpha Kappa/North Carolina State University
Beta Gamma/University of Louisville
Beta Lambda/Carthage College
Chi Delta/Millsaps College
Chi Epsilon/University of Evansville
Chi Kappa/George Mason University
Delta Alpha/University of Tennessee - Chattanooga
Epsilon Delta/University of Southern Mississippi
Epsilon Gamma/University of Tulsa
Epsilon Theta/Morehead State University
Eta Gamma/University of South Carolina
Gamma/Florida State University
Iota Alpha/Southern Methodist University
Kappa Beta/Rhodes College
Kappa Mu/Sacred Heart University
Lambda Alpha/University of Kentucky
Lambda Zeta/University of Missouri - Kansas City
Mu Lambda/University of Dayton
Omicron Lambda/Birmingham-Southern College
Omicron Mu/Cal Polytechnic State University - San Luis Obispo
Phi Delta/Mississippi State University
Phi Zeta/McNeese State University
Psi Beta/University of Iowa
Rho Epsilon/Texas Christian University
Rho Gamma/Hillsdale College
Rho/Tulane University
Sigma Epsilon/Vanderbilt University
Sigma Mu/Babson College
Sigma Zeta/Texas A&M University - Commerce
Tau/University of Mississippi
Theta Kappa/Baylor University
Upsilon/Union University
Xi Kappa/Texas A & M University
Xi Zeta/University of Tennessee - Martin
Zeta Zeta/Samford University

Persephone's Circle Awards
Celebrates chapters who encourage their members to make a gift of $15 or more each year!

Greatest number of members participating:
Xi Gamma/Michigan State

Honorable mentions:
Zeta Gamma/College of Charleston
Pi Kappa/Appalachian State

Greatest amount of money raised:
Zeta Gamma/College of Charleston

Honorable mentions:
Xi Gamma/ Michigan State
Zeta Beta/U of Arizona

Fri, 27 Jun 2014 00:00:00 -0500
The Owl: Meet the Ann Lee Konneker Keynote Speaker!! Dr. Martha Saunders.jpgMartha Dunagin Saunders (Epsilon Delta/U of Southern Mississippi) has been selected to give the Ann Lee Konneker Keynote Address at the first business meeting at Convention 2014. She was initiated into Chi Omega in 1966 and has held leadership roles in higher education for nearly 30 years. 

During her tenure as the first woman president at her alma mater, The University of Southern Mississippi, the University enjoyed record enrollment, all-time high fundraising, and significant growth of facilities. 

She came to Southern Miss from the University of Wisconsin-Whitewater, where she had served as its first-ever female Chancellor. Prior to that, she served as Vice President for Academic Affairs at Columbus State University, and Dean of the College of Arts & Sciences at The University of West Florida.

Her training and experience in the field of communication have led to numerous publications on crisis communication and public relations; widely anthologized published speeches; and two Silver Anvil awards, the Public Relations Society of America's highest national honor. She is a 2011 national winner of the Stevie Award for Women in Business.

A native of Mississippi, Dr. Saunders earned her B.A. in French from The University of Southern Mississippi; her M.A. in journalism from the University of Georgia; and her Ph.D. in communication theory and research from Florida State University.
She is married to Joseph Bailey, who retired from the telecommunications industry in 2005. Together they reared a blended family of seven children.

Dr. Saunders stepped down from her post as USM's president and retired from the university in 2012. Shortly thereafter, she and Joe moved back to their house on Pensacola Beach and Martha accepted the position as Provost at The University of West Florida, where she had begun her academic career.
Thu, 26 Jun 2014 00:00:00 -0500!
The Owl: Fun Facts from Convention 100 Years Ago!! Facts About the 8th Biennial Convention in 1914:
One Hundred Years Ago

  1. Chi Omega held its first camp convention in 1914 at The Chautauqua Grounds in Boulder, Colorado.
  2. The delegates took "an automobile ride" through the Rockies to Estes Park, CO for a luncheon.
  3. They visited the Zeta Chapter house at the University of Colorado, as well as the Pi Beta Phi chapter house. They were greeted by a member of Pi Beta Phi, Kappa Kappa Gamma, Delta Gamma, Delta Delta Delta, and Alpha Chi Omega.
  4. Chi Omega's eighth biennial convention? In a sentence, it gave proof that Chi Omega is fulfilling the intention it expressed as follows to university authorities several years ago: "Chi Omega, through its several thousand members, desires to take a fair part, by way of cooperation with college authorities, in refilling with new meaning the ideals of education."
  5. Former S.H. Mary Love Collins shared that Chi Alpha Chapter, Chi Chapter, and Theta all received awards based on scholarship, grades on the fraternity examinations, and promptness in correspondence with members of the S.G.C.

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Wed, 18 Jun 2014 00:00:00 -0500!
The Owl: Welcome to Convention from S.H. Letitia Fulkerson!!
It is an honor to welcome you to Chi Omega's 60th biennial Convention.  Convention is a fabulous event that you are sure to remember for years to come! The theme of Convention 2014 is "A Symphony of Sisterhood" and will focus on the new member program and the lifetime membership experience in Chi Omega.
Your personal contribution to this Convention will be your attendance, participation, and attention in:
  • All Business Meetings - Important updates about the state of our Fraternity will be shared and the new Governing Council will be elected. Please bring this printed packet with you to each business meeting.
  • All Educational Workshops - New processes and resources will be presented to assist you and other leaders to wisely manage your chapter operations and successfully conduct your recruitment process.
  • Model Initiation - Witness our beautiful ritual that provides inspiration and guidance to all Chi Omegas.
The National Convention Team, Governing Council, Chi Omega Foundation Board of Trustees, Chi O Creations Board of Trustees, national volunteers, and Executive Headquarters staff have been hard at work putting this Convention together to make it an unforgettable experience for everyone in attendance.

It has been a privilege, honor, and joy and to serve as your S.H. for the 2012-2014 biennium.  Thank you for your trust, support, and the opportunity to serve our Chi Omega Sisters across the country.

I hope you will walk away from Convention with pride in your Chi Omega membership, an awareness of the new Chi Omega Membership Experience, the encouragement to share this experience with your Sisters, and many fun memories to last a lifetime. Your presence at Chi Omega Convention 2014 is shaping the future of Chi Omega.


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Letitia N. Fulkerson, S.H.

Tue, 24 Jun 2014 00:00:00 -0500!
Inspiring Owl Tree Challenge
geyer 2 2014-smaller.jpgGeyer Wise Dybesland, Rho/Tulane U, of Houston, TX has agreed to underwrite the 2014 Convention Owl Tree Challenge!

The compelling history that led Geyer to join Chi Omega is a reminder to us all of the enduring legacy of leadership that members throughout generations have experienced through our Fraternity:

"My earliest interest in Chi Omega was with my mom's (Susan Duncan Wise, Rho Epsilon/Texas Christian U) charm bracelet which was festooned with owls, Xs and Horseshoes, the Chi Omega Crest and her pledge pin—I was so fascinated! That interest brought forth the amazing history of Mom's great aunt, Ida Pace Purdue (founder of The Eleusis and former National President of Chi Omega), and of Ida's sister, Ada Pace Smith (also a Chi Omega who played a role in extending Chapters throughout California). The pride Mom had in being a Chi Omega and in our Chi Omega legacy was the driving force behind my own quest to pledge Chi Omega. Today, I relish knowing my support will provide leadership training and educational resources." 


Our Foundation Owl Tree is always a point of pride and festive fundraising event. As Sisters band together to see just how high dedication to our Fraternity can soar, we watch those numbers translate into leadership and growth opportunities for our members. We want to thank Geyer for challenging us to give to the Owl Tree!

Wed, 21 May 2014 00:00:00 -0500
Love You Like... #XO2014

Introducing...Chi Omega's official Convention 2014 hashtag! Here is an Instagram challenge to inspire you to connect with us as soon as your arrive in Orlando for Convention. Whoooo will complete the challenge?! Hoot, hoot!

Convention Instagram Challenge

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Step 1: Follow @ChiOmegaXO on Instagram!
 Step 2: Post photos, based on the prompts below!
 Step 3: Tag @ChiOmegaXO and mention #XO2014

  • Take a photo of your view from your hotel room window and tell us what you are MOST excited about at Convention 2014.
  • Take a screenshot using your Convention app. What's your favorite part?
  • Take a photo with the Chi Omega Owl. Remind him to SMILE!
  • Take a photo with the National Archivist Lyn Harris. Quiz her on Chi Omega history!
  • Take a photo with Sisters as your try to spell out C-H-I-O! You know, just like "YMCA!"
  • Take a photo shopping in Chi O Creations. What treasure did you find?
  • Take a photo with your favorite "Founder." What would you ask them if you could?
  • Take a photo giving to the Owl Tree. You are helping our Sisters flourish!
  • Take a photo of the most influential workshop session you attended. What did you learn?
  • Take a photo with all of the Sisters representing your chapter at Convention. Pull in those Sisters who are from your initiating chapter (who might be attending for another reason), too!
  • Take a photo with your chapter advisor. What has been her best piece of leadership advice?
  • Take a photo with a chapter delegation who is from your same division of sports!
  • Take a photo with a national consultant! If you could visit any other Chi Omega chapter, which one would it be and why?
Fri, 09 May 2014 00:00:00 -0500
UPDATE: Chi Omega at UCF Files Appeal UCF.jpg
Photo courtesy of the University of Central Florida.

UPDATED MAY 29, 2014, 10:40 a.m.

Chi Omega has submitted its suspension appeal, per the University of Central Florida's appeal process. Click here to read the appeal.

UPDATED MAY 14, 2014, 5:50 p.m.

Dear Sisters,

The Chi Omega national organization is disappointed to share that the University of Central Florida's Office of Student Rights and Responsibilities issued a letter to the Psi Mu Chapter of Chi Omega stating for the Chi Omega sorority to be placed on organizational suspension today, effective through the fall semester. This suspension is due to the alleged hazing incident conducted solely by three (now former) members that took place on April 4, 2014.

Despite the fact that Chi Omega reported the incident to UCF officials, and there has been no evidence to date that it was anything more than an event conducted by three individuals on their own accord in direct violation of Chi Omega's rules and policies, UCF has made it clear the entire chapter is being held accountable, under the school's "principles of group responsibility."

The Chi Omega national organization is working with the Psi Mu Chapter to appeal this decision to UCF. In an instance such as this, when local chapter leaders and the Chi Omega national organization immediately reported the event, including the names of the UCF students involved to the university, we are disappointed that UCF's default response is to suspend the entire chapter, rather than punish the three students allegedly at fault.

Our outrage with organizational suspension in this situation spans far beyond our own self-interest; Chi Omega is exceedingly concerned that UCF's action in suspending an entire student organization for the acts of a few will prevent students from reporting safety-related issues in the future, for fear that their entire group will be penalized. We continue to applaud Psi Mu Chapter leaders who reported this incident, ensuring the safety of Chi Omega chapter members moving forward.

Further, while Chi Omega has been proactive and fully cooperative with the university throughout this process we believe there were irregularities in fairness and the stated procedures that affected the outcome of the hearing. Chi Omega will be calling attention to these procedural inconsistencies, as well as the inherent unfairness, in the appeal. We will provide a link to our appeal paperwork when it has been filed.

Our concerns with UCF's handling of this situation have not gone unnoticed by other organizations. Over the past month, Chi Omega has received inquiries from other national fraternal organizations that have expressed concern over how UCF is choosing to suspend an entire organization in this particular situation. This incident was a missed opportunity for Chi Omega to partner with the university, support student leaders who make wise decisions and hold their peers accountable, and, at the same time, to reexamine whether UCF's broad interpretation of "principles of group responsibility" is truly in the best interest and safety of its student body. Chi Omega is incredibly proud of the collaborative relationships that have been fostered with administrators where we have chapters.

As we have stated previously: There is nothing more important than ensuring the safety and well-being of our members. Chi Omega does not tolerate harassment, hazing, or bullying of any kind. Our goal is for our leaders to hold members accountable when they do not uphold our organization's values, policies, or rules.

In this particular instance, our leaders did just that.


Letitia Fulkerson

National President



Dear Sisters and Friends,

It is very important for us to share a message about a recent development involving our Psi Mu Chapter at the University of Central Florida (UCF), and to commend our chapter's strong leadership.

On April 8, 2014, the collegiate officers at our UCF Chi Omega chapter learned about a potential, isolated hazing incident conducted by three of its members involving two new members. Upon learning of the incident, our Psi Mu Chapter leadership immediately reported it to the Chi Omega Executive Headquarters which, in turn, alerted UCF campus authorities.

Since then, the three members involved in the alleged hazing incident have all voluntarily resigned their Chi Omega membership as a result of our internal disciplinary process; however, despite information to date indicating this incident was the action of three former members and not a chapter-wide event, the University has placed our entire UCF chapter on interim suspension.

While we are obviously deeply disappointed in the actions of these three former members, the Chi Omega national organization remains incredibly proud of the UCF chapter leadership and alumnae advisory board for taking swift action to report the incident immediately and for implementing our internal disciplinary process. Refusing to be bystanders, these women put the safety of their Sisters first. Further, Chi Omega recognizes the great courage it took for two of our new members to share this difficult situation, and we are proud of their cooperation with authorities.

Chi Omega has found the recent media coverage of this story, both inside and outside the state of Florida, to be very disheartening. We believe that broadcasting the names and images of these courageous women who, with the help of the collegiate officers, came forward and self-reported the incident is gratuitous and subjects them to further emotional harm.

We have been told by UCF's Office of Fraternity and Sorority Life, as well various university administrators, that our chapter leaders handled this situation appropriately.

The Chi Omega national organization and Psi Mu Chapter will continue to cooperate with the UCF process until the length and severity of our sanction is determined. We are concerned about the negative message our chapter's suspension will send to other UCF students and student groups who are faced with a decision to report a situation like this in the future. We will work together with the other National Panhellenic Conference organizations to identify better communication pathways on our host campuses to protect the safety of our collective members.

Regardless of the UCF administration's final judgment, Chi Omega wants to be absolutely clear: There is nothing more important to Chi Omega than ensuring the safety of our members. Chi Omega does not tolerate harassment, hazing, or bullying of any kind and prohibits any activity that endangers the mental or physical health or safety of a person. In fact, Chi Omega members are educated on expectations for membership, and as a condition of membership, each individual bears the personal responsibility to abide by applicable federal, state and local laws and college/university rules and regulations, as well as Chi Omega policies, rules and procedures.

The Psi Mu Chapter remains in good standing with the Chi Omega national organization, as do these two new members.

Letitia N. Fulkerson
Chi Omega Fraternity National President
Wed, 14 May 2014 00:00:00 -0500
50,000 Facebook Fans HOOT, HOOT! We are THRILLED to share that
Chi Omega's Facebook page has reached 50,000 fans!
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To celebrate with us, use the code "FB20" to get 20% off your purchase at Chi O Creations!

A huge thanks to our fans for each "Like", comment, and share! Your support for our page truly helps us tell the story of our beloved Fraternity!

Click to follow Chi Omega on all of our social networks: 

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Thu, 20 Mar 2014 00:00:00 -0500
119 Years of Chi Omega Sisterhood Chi Omega will be celebrating 119 years
of Sisterhood on April 5, 2014! 

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Click on the "Chapter Locator" to find an alumnae chapter near you and learn more about their celebrations! 

Additionally, if you are an alumnae chapter or collegiate chapter leaders and would like Eleusinia talking points, click here!
Thu, 20 Mar 2014 00:00:00 -0500
Winter '14 Online Exclusives Winter 2014 eleusis.JPGIf you haven't checked out this winter's issue of The Eleusis, take a look at the digital version, linked here!

This issue is filled with great articles, such as:
-Modern Manners
-To Speak Kindly
-The State of the Fraternity
-Meet the National Consultants!

Read The Eleusis Winter 2014 Online Exclusives, below!

Sister and Husband Assist With Summer Camps in the Philippines

In April 2013, Jessica Carter O'Brien and her husband, Kelly, took a two-week trip to the Philippines, where they helped with activities at church-sponsored summer camps. Based in Iloilo City, they also helped with camps in Cebu and Sara, partnering with churches in each city.

This was Jessica's third trip to the Philippines and the first for Kelly. Comments Jessica, an initiate of Psi Mu/U of Central Florida, "We both had a great time trying different foods, taking in the sights, and, of course, having fun with the kids."

The O'Briens and the children at one of the camps

Memory Quilts Made for Chi Omega Sister

quilt1.jpgWhen Pam Hirschbach Batten, Kappa/U of Nebraska, described how she'd been keeping a box full of her deceased Chi Omega daughter's garments, pledge Sister Bev Ferris Thurber suggested that Pam make a quilt. A year later, when Pam, a non-quilter, hadn't started the project, Bev said, "I would love to make it," and Margrethe Plum Ahlschwede, also a pledge Sister, said, "I'll help."

What developed over the fall of 2012 became three quilts; one for Pam and one for each of her granddaughters, Quincy and Kennedy, crafted with love in memory of Pam's daughter, Britni Osterhout Cooper, Zeta Beta/U of Arizona. Britni and her younger brother, Matt both died of Sudden Arrhythmic Death Syndrome, Matt in 1987 and Britni in 2002, when Britni's daughters were six and eight.
Though Pam lives in Tucson, she has participated in Kappa Chapter's annual Eleusinia for many years. And while the three Kappa sisters had kept in touch since graduation, it was during the 50th reunion of their pledge class that the conversations began that resulted in the three quilts.

These gifts of Sisterly affected were presented to Pam at a small gathering the weekend of 2013 Eleusinia where, by popular request, one of the quilts and the story behind them became part of the luncheon program.

Rho Alpha Celebrates 100 Years at the U of Missouri-Columbia

Rho Alpha Centennial Logo 1913-2013