Chi Sigma Omega
Chartered: December 5, 2004
In July 2002, several graduate general members of Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority, Incorporated proposed to established a new chapter in Bolingbrook, Illinois. Their interest in forming a new chapter of was driven by their desire to serve the African American community in the far southwestern suburbs in and around Bolingbrook and the surrounding areas. In addition, they also wanted a chapter culture that addressed the needs of career women in varying family stages, which was a common thread amongst the interested parties.
During the previous decade, census studies revealed that there was a surge in the population of the far southwestern suburban communities and in particular, of African Americans in those areas. This growth resulted in the economic development of housing, schools and businesses in these areas as well. These local graduate members of Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority, Incorporated quickly recognized that as families moved into the areas, community service and partnership would be paramount in assisting to manage successful community development and expansion. The group seized the opportunity to become a community stakeholder by requesting an official chapter be chartered in The Village of Bolingbrook. It was their goal to bring Alpha Kappa Alpha into these developing communities as an organization that could be instrumental given the historical service initiatives delivered from our international organization through local chapters.
The first organizational meeting took place in October 2002. This group was deemed the original organizers. After the meeting, the original organizers recruited additional local general members of Alpha Kappa Alpha to help promote and execute the objective of forming a new chapter. In addition, the group began documenting service opportunities based on the current needs in the community. They met with local officials, schools, churches, families and businesses to further understand where Alpha Kappa Alpha could assist. In September 2003, the group received official interest group status and was named The Spirited Pearls Interest Group of Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority, Incorporated.
After several years of service, the Spirited Pearls Interest Group was chartered as Chi Sigma Omega Chapter on December 5, 2004. There were 30 charter members. Charter members were as follows:
Emile Pendarvis-Murden (President), Sharon Allen, Marcia Banks, Glenda Blakemore, Elizabeth Boone-Merritt, Joslyn Bowling-Jones, Verena Briley-Hudson, Tammie Brooks-Lewis, Kim Chism, Megan Clark, Adrienne Cochrane, Melody Coleman, Lisa Coleman-Dioro, Sheila Givens, Linda Gresham, Marcella Hall, Tanya Haughton, Romelda Jordan, Lachie’ Jennings, Brenda Ladipo, Karen Lexing, Monica Martin, Angela Pieters, Lynette Phillips, Janet Pittman, Sandra Pulliam-Johnson, Naquisha Smith, Rebecca Smith-Andoh, Lisa Wright and Wendolyn Swims.
The goal of Chi Sigma Omega chapter is to adhere to the purpose of Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority, Inc. and serve as a model of chapter efficiency and sisterhood. The chapter focuses on the business of the sorority and does not give lip service to “we help each other”. Through our commitment to the principles of Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority, Incorporated and our dedication to each other, using our intelligence and strength, we are effecting positive change in our community, the international organization and ourselves.
Since inception, Chi Sigma Omega has instituted community service programs designed to address the prevailing needs of Bolingbrook and the surrounding communities, inspired by program thrusts from our international organization. Areas of service include Bolingbrook, Romeoville, Plainfield, Naperville, Oswego, Aurora, in addition to others.
Programs and partnerships offered from inception were: IVY Reading AKAdemy (K-3 tutoring), Young Author’s Program (K-5 writing contest), Presidential Freedom Scholarship, Tour De Cure (American Diabetes Association), MS Walk (National Multiple Sclerosis Society – Greater Illinois Chapter), Plant-It-Pink (Breast Cancer Awareness), Children’s Fall Harvest Picnic, CoAch House Community Baby Shower, Diabetes Expo Volunteers (American Diabetes Association), DuPage AME Church – Celebration of Arts Program, West Chicago Library - Books Drive, Bolingbrook Chamber of Commerce –Golf Event Registration, Girl Scouts - Underground Railroad Re-enactment.
Chi Sigma Omega Signature programs are: Martin Luther King Jr. Day Clothing Drive, T-Rose Teen Group, and the Chi Sigma Omega Scholarship. Additional programs currently offered are: Entrepreneurial SMART Fair, Financial Literacy Workshops, Health & Wellness Workshops, Teen Summit, Adopt-A-Family, Mental/Physical Health Information & Resources (Bolingbrook Picnic). For more details on our current programs, please visit the programs tab on this website.
All Chi Sigma Omega programs are funded from the net proceeds of our signature fundraiser – Golf Classic & Tournament. For more information regarding our annual fundraiser, please visit the event tab on this website.
Chi Sigma Omega is a local graduate chapter of Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority, Incorporated, which serves the Southwest suburbs of Chicago. Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority, Incorporated is an International organization founded for and by women. We strive to cultivate and encourage high scholastic and ethical standards while implementing programs which promote and support the economic keys to success through educational advancement, financial literacy, entrepreneurial empowerment, economic development of the community, health management resources; both mental and physical concerns. The success of our programs is directly dependent upon the participation of our group members, community partners and corporate sponsors.
Former Chapter Presidents:
Emile L. Pendarvis-Murden 2004 - 2006
Marcia Banks 2007 - 2010
Glenda Blakemore 2011 - 2012
Romelda Jordan 2013 - 2014
E. JaNiece Bell 2015 - 2016