Here at Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority, Incorporated, Upsilon Mu Omega Chapter, we are driven by a single goal; to do our part in making the world a better place for all. Our decision-making process is informed by comprehensive empirical studies and high-quality data evaluation. We strive to build productive relationships and make a positive impact with all our pursuits.
Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority, Incorporated. Upsilon Mu Omega Chapter is in the business of changing and shaping lives. The work we do at our Non-Profit Organization is aimed at providing a holistic approach to solving some of our society’s biggest challenges. We make sure our partners are empowered by creating opportunities for individuals and communities.
Brigitte Hyler Richerson
Vice President - Candice Wright
Secretary - Jonda Joseph
Corresponding Secretary - Darice Landon
Second Secretary - Jasmine Aleem
Recording Treasurer - Jessica Janz-McKnight
Public Relations Manager - Laurel Taylor
Hostess - Diamond Hanson
Parliamentarian - Cheryl Cox-Newsom
Sergeant at Arms - Melody McDowell
Historian - Sandra Melcher
Chaplain - Shawnee Daniels-Sykes
Graduate Advisor - Susie Canady
Custodian - Denise Bradshaw
Graduate Member at Large - Berthena Brister
Dorothy Buckhanan Wilson, 29th International President
LaTisha Brownlee Gray
Priscilla Hightower Thompson
Confined to what she called “a small circumscribed life” in the segregated and male-dominated milieu that characterized the early 1900s, Howard University co-ed Ethel Hedgeman dreamed of creating a support network for women with like minds coming together for mutual uplift, and coalescing their talents and strengths for the benefit of others. In 1908, her vision crystallized as Alpha Kappa Alpha, the first Negro Greek-letter sorority. Five years later (1913), lead incorporator, Nellie Quander, ensured Alpha Kappa Alpha’s perpetuity through incorporation in the District of Columbia.
Together with eight other coeds at the mecca for Negro education, Hedgeman crafted a design that not only fostered interaction, stimulation, and ethical growth among members; but also provided hope for the masses. From the core group of nine at Howard, AKA has grown into a force of more than 290,000 collegiate members and alumnae, constituting 1,007 chapters in 42 states, the District of Columbia, the US Virgin Islands, the Bahamas, Germany, Liberia, South Korea, Japan, Canada, South Africa and the Middle East.
Because they believed that Negro college women represented “the highest—more education, more enlightenment, and more of almost everything that the great mass of Negroes never had" — Hedgeman and her cohorts worked to honor what she called “an everlasting debt to raise them (Negroes) up and to make them better.” For more than a century, the Alpha Kappa Alpha Sisterhood has fulfilled that obligation by becoming an indomitable force for good in their communities, state, nation, and the world.
The Alpha Kappa Alpha program today still reflects the communal consciousness steeped in the AKA tradition and embodied in AKA’s credo, “To be supreme in service to all mankind.” Cultural awareness and social advocacy marked Alpha Kappa Alpha’s infancy, but within one year (1914) of acquiring corporate status, AKA had also made its mark on education, establishing a scholarship award. The programming was a prelude to the thousands of pioneering and enduring initiatives that eventually defined the Alpha Kappa Alpha brand.
Through the years, Alpha Kappa Alpha has used the Sisterhood as a grand lever to raise the status of African-Americans, particularly girls and women. AKA has enriched minds and encouraged life-long learning; provided aid for the poor, the sick, and underserved; initiated social action to advance human and civil rights; worked collaboratively with other groups to maximize outreach on progressive endeavors; and continually produced leaders to continue its credo of service.
Guided by twenty-nine international presidents from Nellie M. Quander (1913-1919) to Glenda Baskin Glover (2018-2022), with reinforcement from a professional headquarters staff since 1949; AKA’s corps of volunteers has instituted groundbreaking social action initiatives and social service programs that have transformed communities for the better— continually emitting progress in cities, states, the nation, and the world.
Our Organizations History
The Upsilon Mu Omega Chapter (UMO) of Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority, Incorporated® was chartered March 29, 1997 in Milwaukee, Wisconsin by the 23rd Central Regional Director Martha Perine Beard. Organized as the Diamond Jubilee Pearls Interest group, UMO was the largest graduate chapter to be chartered at that time. UMO’s 76 chartering members were committed to “Service to All Mankind.”
The chapter continues today with an authentic desire to provide vibrant, innovative and bold services to the community. Upsilon Mu Omega is home to the 29th Supreme Basileus Soror Dorothy Buckhanan Wilson.
Chapter programs include ASCEND, Family Fun Day, Miss Fashionetta® and the AKA 1908 Playgrounds Project. Partnering with local schools, churches, libraries and community service agencies, UMO’s annual service projects include Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Day of Service in January, Pink Goes Red for Heart Health Day, Adopt-A-Poll, 1908 Playground Mobilization Day, The Longest Day™ Alzheimer’s Support activities, Mental Health Awareness Day, and Childhood Hunger Awareness Day in October.
The chapter established its Diamond Jubilee Pearls Foundation in 1999 and has provided over $80,000 in scholarships to students in need. UMO Chapter is now comprised of 129 active members, focused on programs that Exemplify Excellence Through Sustainable Service.
UMO Charter Members:
Brown, Shavonn M.
Buckhanan, Dorothy W.*
Carlisle, Annie J.
Crawford, Keely L.
Edwards, Deidra Y. A.
Elam, Sarah Martin
Gillespie, Dawn E.
Harrell, Michelle L.
Houston, Stephanie L.
Johnson, Gwendolyn D.
Jordan, Fran Ashley
Ledbetter, Deborah D.
Lewis, Gwendolyn F.
Little, Daphne D.
Lockridge, Crystal M.
Lucas, Linda F.
McKissick, Lois A.
Pace, Toni M.
Pope, Janie M.
Rice, Jacquelyn A.
Sledge, Tari L.
Taylor, Lena C.
Teasley, Marquita M.
Thomas, Bowie Iris
Tillman, Jennifer A.
Towns, Julie A.
Turner, Carol Brown
Wanzo, Lisa S.
Watts, Michelle E.