Pomona Valley Alumnae Chapter Charter Members
Established January 21, 1979 - Farwest Region, Graduate Chapter
Janice H. Barbie, *Erma B. Booker, Shirley J. Butler, Gloria S. Coleman, Carriel Colton, Daisy L.M. Cook, Alexis Dotson, *Elanor F. Duncan, Estella E. Duncan, *Martha E. Ferguson, Agnes Moreland Jackson, Geraldine Jackson, Dorothy M. Jenkins, *Georgia M. Marion, *Ella P. Mitchell, Else D. Rogers, *Hortense R. Randolph, *Juanita E. Snead, Frances Washington, Barbara J. Watson, Helen V. Witt
The Pomona Valley Alumnae Chapter was chartered on January 21, 1979 at Claremont United Methodist Church by 21 dynamic members of Delta Sigma Theta Sorority, Inc. These women were comprised of graduates from colleges and universities across the nation, from diverse backgrounds, and from a multitude of educational disciplines. The impetus for chartering the Pomona Valley Alumnae chapter grew out of the tremendous unmet needs in the local community as well as the knowledge that there were significant numbers of talented, energetic and influential members in the Pomona Valley who were committed to serving the community. With their firm commitment to sisterhood, scholarship, and service, the chapter was charted to promote the programs of Delta Sigma Theta Sorority, Inc. Their journey to charter a chapter in the growing Pomona Valley began in the fall of 1977. In March of 1978, they had enough members to apply and the new chapter was chartered January 21, 1979 with 21 members.
The newly chartered chapter continued to meet in member's homes and the members were encouraged by the talent and eagerness displayed. The chapter's first community service event was a Black Cultural Festival. The event was designed to entertain, enlighten, educate and highlight both the history and the culture of Black people across the Black Diaspora. The original event included an art exhibit presented by local artists, workshops by local professionals on topics of interest to the black community, health screening by nursing professionals and entertained by local talent. The first two years the festival was held at the Student Union on the campus of California Polytechnic University in the city of Pomona. In 1982, the city of Pomona partnered with the Pomona Valley Alumnae Chapter and the Black Culture Festival was permenatly moved to the Pomona Civic Center Plaza. When vendors were added in 1986, the event became self-sustaining.
The chapter's first major fundraiser was our Miss Jabberwock pagent, a traditional Delta fundraiser. Our first Ms. Jabberwock was a talent show and a Miss Jabberwock pageant. Funds raised were awarded to local graduating high school seniors, who were in need of financial assistance in order to attend college. There was also a mentoring program, which was housed at Primm Tabernacle A.M.E. Church, in Pomona. A program entitled, "The Nuts and Bolts of getting a Job" was presented to high school students and covered completing a job application, preparing for the interview and developing good work habits. Presenters included local professionals.
Over the years, the Pomona Valley Alumnae Chapter has initiated a number of projects. The ones were are most proud of include Deltech, a computer literacy program, for which we received a $30,000 grant from Verizon and were able to award 15 laptop computers to the participants age 8 to 18. Dine with the Authors is an Arts and Letters event which exposes our community and its youth to nationally acclaimed best selling Black authors and finally, the Jeanne L. Noble Delta GEMS and Dr. Betty Shabazz Delta Academy Programs, both national projects.
Currently the Pomona Valley Alumnae Chapter is over 100 members strong and is initiating Social Action projects which include Town Hall Meetings held in out local communities to address and remedy serious social issues including police brutality, educating our youth and the need for Black representation in local government.