The Phoenix Panhellenic Association (PPA) celebrated its 95th anniversary this weekend. I had the pleasure of being among the women of the PPA; they spend their year raising money to fund scholarships for sorority women attending Arizona universities. Since 1975, the PPA has awarded more than $700,000 in scholarships. Many of this year’s scholarship winners attended the luncheon. In addition, a raffle of gift baskets raised funds for the Circle of Sisterhood. It was wonderful to be among such an impressive group!
In 1920, Phoenix had no air conditioning and 29,000 residents. Some of those residents were sorority women. A 1919 Alpha Phi Quarterly included a short blurb titled “A DESERT PANHELLENIC.” I suspect the organization had a meeting or two before it was officially chartered. The article continued, “A city Panhellenic in far off Phoenix, Arizona, is the latest addition to the roll. Sixteen fraternity women representing eleven national sororities organized at a lunch and laid the foundation of a permanent Panhellenic group. The sororities represented were KKΓ, KAΘ, ΠBΦ, ΓΦB, ΣAΙ, XΩ, ΔΔΔ, AΟΠ, AΓ (likely a typo, my guess is ΔZ), BΣΟ and AXΩ.” Margaret Mae Hurley, an Alpha Omicron Pi from the University of California – Berkeley was the first president of the PPA.
In 1938, there were more than 300 members of the PPA. At that point, a dance in the spring helped raise money for a scholarship loan program which was available to women attending college in Arizona.
To read more about the PPA see http://www.phoenixpanhellenic.com/ and to read the wonderful history compiled by Susan Norman, Delta Zeta, see http://us3.campaign-archive2.com/?u=b3aad23c91eb472f2cf21b6c2&id=ae4c8c62aa
I’ve been wanting to post this, but just didn’t get the opportunity. Kudos to the Gamma Phi Betas at the University of Southern California. They coordinated a fund raising effort among the chapter alumnae, undergraduates and their parents and presented their long-time housekeeper, Fannie Randle, with a check to purchase a car.
© Fran Becque, www.fraternityhistory.com, 2015. All Rights Reserved. If you enjoyed this post, please sign up for updates. Also follow me on twitter @GLOHistory and Pinterest www.pinterest.com/glohistory/