Gamma Phi Delta Sorority, Inc.

The Southern Region

The Southern Region Past and Present Directors Leadership


Soror Kay Davis Soror Rosa Cochran Soror Gertude Sanders Soror Junnie Craig
Soror Mary Hardick Soror Mary Blankenship Soror Jo Jean Sherman Soror Deborah Hudson

The first appointed Southern Regional Director of Gamma Phi Delta Sorority, Inc. was Dr. Kay Davis. She accepted the task of expanding the sorority. She sat in her Willard High School classroom in Dayton, Ohio, in the Northern Region wondering how she would accomplish her goal of organizing a chapter in the Southern Region. At the spur of the moment, she walked across the hall to her co–worker’s classroom and asked her if she knew anybody in the south. The reply was “Yes, Mrs. Susie B. Whetestone in Montgomery, Alabama.”

At the close of the school day, she placed a long–distance call to Mrs. Whetestone explaining who she was and how she had obtained information about her. Continuing the conversation, she told Mrs. Whetestone the purpose of her call was to secure a contact person who would recruit potential members with two or more years of college education to join Gamma Phi Delta Sorority, a national organization of business and professional women, with headquarters in Detroit, Michigan. Mrs. Whetestone accepted to serve as the contact person, and in two weeks she telephoned to Dr. Davis saying

that there were 18 eager professional young women ready to accept the challenge. One week later, Dr. Davis arrived in Montgomery on a late Friday night flight. She spent the

night in the home of Mrs. Whetestone, who then rolled out the red carpet welcoming

mat of southern hospitality. The time spent was memorable.

Saturday evening 18 ladies gathered at the residence of Mrs. Whetestone to be introduced to Dr. Kay Davis. The group was given explanation of phases of Gamma Phi Delta Sorority in the organizing of a Pledge Club. The material was distributed to the group for learning, getting a transcript for college, and two letters of recommendation with joining fee payment.

Saturday, March 10, 1956, marked an important date for 18 professional women who assembled on the Campus Center of Alabama State College (now Alabama State University) for the initiation ceremony into Gamma Phi Delta Sorority. Presiding at the Installation was Dr. Kay Davis, first appointed Southern Regional Director. The first Basileus of newly formed Alpha Alpha Chapter was the late Mrs. Susie Whetestone.

Alpha Alpha Chapter (Alabama) was the first chapter organized in the South Region, which later included Florida, until the split in 1988. These historical facts were gathered by the late Soror Empsie G. Cummings of Alpha Alpha Chapter.

Past Southern Regional Directors: Soror Dr. Kay Davis; Regional Director Emeritus Soror Rosa R. Cochrane (Beta Nu) served 13 years; Soror Dr. Gertrude C. Sanders (Alpha Xi); Soror Junnie Craig (Alpha Pi); Soror Mary C. Williams (Beta Nu); Soror Jo Jean Sherman (Alpha Alpha); Soror Mary B. Blankenship (Gamma Rho); 2nd term Soror Mary C. Williams Hardrick (Beta Nu); and Soror Deborah Hudson (Alpha Pi).

T h e Southern Region is comprised of Alabama, Kentucky, Mississippi, and

T e nn essee . Chapters include the following:

Alpha Pi Montevallo, Alabama

Delta Alpha Jackson, Mississippi

Delta Gamma (Undergraduate) Jackson, Mississippi

Gamma Gamma Greenville, Mississippi

Gamma Rho Birmingham, Alabama

Omicron (Undergraduate) Montevallo, Alabama

Zeta Alpha Memphis, TN

Gamma Phi Delta Sorority, Inc.

42 n d Biennial Southern Regional Conference

Birmingham, Alabama

M a r c h 6-8, 2015

The Southern Region works diligently “Preparing Today to Lead Tomorrow: One Mission, One Sisterhood.” At the local and regional levels, this dynamic group implements activities that include the youth, community service, health promotion, education, social action, and economic development with professionalism. During the

41 st Regional Conference, “Where Will You Spend Eternity?” was implemented prior to

the Memorial Service.

The Southern Region also believes that communication is key to achieving goals and improving the “The Solid South.” Monthly teleconferences are held for chapter officers and sorors to enhance communication. In addition, meetings and training via video conferences are conducted for economic efficiency.

2015 - 2 01 7 Southern Regional Officers

Regional Director Soror Kartessa Bell (Life Member)

Assistant Regional Director/Organizer Soror Z. Marchelle Williams

Grammateus Soror LaShonda Eades

Financial Grammateus Soror Deborah Hudson (Life Member) Tamias Soror Keisha Kimbrough

Editor Soror Linda McCray

Anti-Grammateus Soror Dorothy Turner

Nominating Representative Soror Katherine Thicklen

Chaplain Soror Vernita James Parliamentarian Soror Daphne Hull Youth Advisor Soror Melinda Matanmi

Pictured left to right: Supreme Basileus Soror Rebecca Ford, Regional Director Soror Kartessa Bell, Assistant Regional Director/Organizer Soror Z. Marchelle Williams, Grammateus Soror LaShonda Eades, Financial Grammateus Soror Deborah Hudson, Tamias Soror Keisha Kimbrough, Editor Soror Linda McCray, and Anti-Grammateus Soror Dorothy Turner

T h e r e are two past National Officers and one present National Officer from the

S o u t h e r n Region:

Birmingham, Alabama

· Supreme First Anti Basileus Shirley Carey from Jackson, Mississippi

Dr. Gertrude C. Sanders leaves us with a challenge. She stated that one word written across the very zenith of the educational skies, high above all others is one word: SERVICE.

S h e postulated that to implement the five–point programs, Sorors should

S See a need and fill it

E Enter a program and complete it

R Recognize an opportunity and seize it

V Visualize an obstacle and avoid it

I Internalize one's potentials and use them

C Capitalize on your expertise and share it

E Educate youth for the 21st century

Remember . . . THE SOLID SOUTH WE CAN DO IT!!!!!

by Soror Mary C. Williams Hardrick, Past Regional Director

Updated by Soror Deborah Hudson, Past Regional Director, and Soror Kartessa Bell, Regional Director


National Theme: 2016 – 2018
“The Power of Vision: Empowering Women and Inspiring Leaders”