Zeta Phi Beta Sorority, Incorporated was founded on January 16, 1920, at Howard University in Washington, DC. The Sorority was founded by five coeds: Arizona Cleaver Stemons, Pearl Anna Neal, Myrtle Tyler Faithful, Viola Tyler Goings, and Fannie Pettie Watts
These five trailblazers envisioned a sorority which would directly affect positive change, chart a course of action for the 1920s and beyond, raise consciousness of their people, encourage the highest standards of scholastic achievement, and foster a greater sense of unity among its members. These women believed that sorority elitism and socializing overshadowed the real mission for progressive organizations and failed to address fully the societal mores, ills, prejudices, and poverty affecting humanity in general and the black community in particular.
The Sorority was the first Greek-letter organization to charter a chapter in Africa (1948) and to form adult and youth auxiliary groups, the Amicae, Archonettes, Amicettes, and Pearlettes. Zeta Phi Beta Sorority, Inc. is the only Sorority to be constitutionally bound to a fraternity, Phi Beta Sigma Fraternity, Incorporated.
Zeta’s national and local programs include the endowment of its National Educational Foundation, community outreach services, and support of multiple affiliate organizations.Zeta chapters and auxiliaries have given countless hours of voluntary service to educate the public, assist youth, provide scholarships, support organized charities, and promote legislation for social and civic change.
Well known for its uniqueness and high spirit, the Plainfield Chapter of Zeta Phi Beta Sorority,
Incorporated prides itself on building upon the foundation of its founders. Embracing the Zeta legacy enables these women to build on past traditions of service, education, and community outreach. Eta Omicron Zeta Chapter was the fifth graduate chapter to be formed in the State of New Jersey. It was chartered on March 17, 1972, to serve the city of Plainfield and its surrounding communities. The charter members consisted of Minnie R. Gary, Elizabeth Thompson, Lula Crawford, Jacqueline White, Evelyn Crawford and Marie Lattimore.
Since its inception, Eta Omicron Zeta has initiated numerous programs that promote service,
empowerment, and scholarship. As a result, the chapter’s service area expanded to include Union and Middlesex counties. A few examples of the work Eta Omicron Zeta provides to the community include an annual Community Health Fair; the Plainfield Senior Center Holiday Feeding Program; the JFK/Muhlenburg Adult Day Care Center Toiletry Drive; and the Coat Drive sponsored by the Central Jersey Pan Hellenic Association, in which the chapter is a charter member. Eta Omicron Zeta members participate in the Breast Cancer and March for Babies Walkathons, Read Across America, Habitat for Humanity, Jersey Cares projects and many other service-oriented activities.
Eta Omicron Zeta chapter is the sponsoring graduate chapter for Gamma Kappa of Rutgers University, New Brunswick and Zeta Lambda of Kean University. The chapter also sponsors The Amicae Auxiliary (Friends of Zeta) and Youth Auxiliaries.
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