As presented at the 2011 Delta Lambda Founders’ Day Celebration
The Delta Lambda Foundation Outreach Center, Baltimore, MD
Five score and five years ago those known as the seven (7) Jewels brought forth on this continent a movement; and as the Gettysburg Address states, “conceived in liberty and dedicated to the proposition that all men are created equal” – no matter the sign of the times. Henry Arthur Callis, Charles Henry Chapman, Eugene Kinkle Jones, George Biddle Kelley, Nathaniel Allison Murray, Robert Harold Ogle, and Vertner Woodson Tandy – had the fortitude to create an organization that would focus on “Manly Deeds, Scholarship and Love for All Mankind.” An organization based upon the fact that its greatest usefulness lies outside of itself; a focus of selflessness.
The Jewels of Alpha Phi Alpha Fraternity paved way for a remarkable institution. This torch has been carried on since 1919, by so many more that were stalwart members of Delta Lambda, but are no longer here to share the blessings of life. Men such as Bro. Joseph Yates, Bro. Charles Salters, Bro. Eugene Swain, Bro. Charles Wesley Shelton, Bro. Harlow Fullwood, Bro. Dr. Alonzo Paul Moss and Bro. Dr. Clifton Jones. These men gave much to and for the name of Alpha.
In 1936 Jewel Robert Harold Ogle said: “I wish to urge upon all of the brothers the necessity for a broader bond of brotherhood in the communities where you reside. After allegiance to your God, family and country, let nothing shake your love for the fraternity and its ideas. Let every Brother be truly a Brother, promote his interest as if it were yours and show to the world that Alpha Phi Alpha stands for more than mere words.”
We’ve seen Brothers work tirelessly on behalf of Alpha. Brothers such as Bro. Dr. Clayton Stansbury and Bro. Dr. Russell Kelley who work to stimulate the ambition of our members; Brothers such as Bro. Wilbur Walker and Bro. Dr. Joseph Durham who work to prepare them for the greatest usefulness in the causes of humanity, freedom and dignity of the individual; Brothers such as Bro. Hilton Friend and Bro. James Benton who work to encourage the highest and noblest form of manhood; and Brothers such as Bro. Dr. Jim Haynes and Bro. Dr. Sam Billups who work to aid down trodden humanity in its efforts to achieve higher social, economic and intellectual status – for these elements make up the objectives of Alpha Phi Alpha Fraternity.
Our members’ dedication to the cause for which we exist ensures Alpha Phi Alpha will benefit others for generations to come. It is incumbent upon us to shed the ways of the world around us, as they’re focused more on “me” and “I,” because we exist to ensure there is a body of men that remain steadfast to a more noble cause.
Over the past 1,236 months hundreds of thousands of men have gathered in “The House of Alpha” all for the “…better making of men.” Alpha men are among the last hope for our boys and girls. Every boy yearns for an honorable man, a principled man, one who is not impetuous, to serve as an example for his life. The look in every girl’s eye is all the evidence needed to prove she’s enamored at the site of her knight in shining armor – a covering emblazoned with old gold and black.
We are blessed with over 2,592,000 seconds (that’s 43,200 minutes) in a month for the men of Alpha Phi Alpha continue to “…onward and upwards towards the light…” Let us stand tall and again claim that which only an Alpha man can…the cloak of leadership to deliver our community to the mountain tops of greatness.
Good afternoon ladies, honored guests and Brothers of Alpha Phi Alpha Fraternity, Inc., we gather again to celebrate the founding of the first African-American Inter-Collegiate Fraternity.
Therefore, let us resolve this is the occasion:
“…We hold ever aloft, noble ideals and aims,
Carrying out earth’s and heaven’s grand command,
Our true hearts ever strive, success’ goal to gain,
That our fraternity’s praises may be sung…”
And let us humbly submit to our God that the “…true spirit of fraternity, rule our hearts, guide our thoughts and control our lives so that we may become through Thee, Servants of All.”