Alpha Phi Alpha is the first intercollegiate fraternity established by African Americans. Founded on December 4, 1906, on the campus of Cornell University in Ithaca, New York, as a social fraternity, Alpha Phi Alpha has initiated over 175,000 men into the organization and has been open to men of all races since 1940. The fraternity utilizes motifs and artifacts from Ancient Egypt to represent the organization and preserves its archives at the Moorland-Spingarn Research Center, which is located on the campus of Howard University in Washington, D.C.
The founders, Henry Callis, Charles Chapman, Eugene Jones, George Kelley, Nathaniel Murray, Robert Ogle, and Vertner Tandy, are collectively known as the "Seven Jewels". The fraternity expanded when it chartered a second chapter at Howard University and a third chapter chartered at Virginia Union University in 1907. Beginning in 1908, Alpha Phi Alpha became the prototype for other Black Greek Letter Organizations. Today, there are over 680 active Alpha chapters in the Americas, Africa, Europe, Asia, the West Indies, and the Virgin Islands.
The Fraternity initially served as a study and support group for minority students who faced racial prejudice, both educationally and socially, at Cornell. The Jewel founders and early leaders of the Fraternity succeeded in laying a firm foundation for Alpha Phi Alpha principles of scholarship, fellowship, good character, and the uplifting of humanity.
Alpha Phi Alpha chapters were developed at other colleges and universities, many of them historically black institutions, soon after the founding at Cornell. While continuing to stress academic excellence among its members, Alpha also recognized the need to help correct the educational, economic, political, and social injustices faced by African-Americans.
Alpha Phi Alpha has long stood at the forefront of the African-American community's fight for civil rights through leaders such as: W.E.B. DuBois, Adam Clayton Powell, Jr., Edward Brooke, Martin Luther King, Jr., Thurgood Marshall, Andrew Young, William Gray, Paul Robeson, and many others.
Over the past 42 years, Xi Delta Lambda has been involved with many programs in the Richmond community. We strive to excel with all we do and look forward to having productive endeavors within the years to come.
Xi Delta Lambda has positioned itself to be leader amongst leaders in a time in history where the aims our Fraternity are of the utmost importance. "Manly Deeds, Scholarship, and Love for All Mankind" are not only the aims of our Fraternity, but are the substance of which Xi Delta Lambda operates in an effort to improve our community, our nation and our world.
The founding fathers of our organization became innovators in all areas of society and Xi Delta Lambda continues that tradition with our mentoring of young men, education of our community on political procedures and the need for participation in the voting process. We are committed to being our "Brother's Keeper" as we support one another to strengthen our community.
Xi Delta Lambda has been deeply involved in the educational, health, and political fabric of the community. The chapter has sponsored Career Awareness Programs in the public schools, health fairs, March on Henrico County, March on Washington (1983), Martin Luther King, Jr. Community Learning Week sponsor, voter registration, sponsor students to Eastern Regional Leadership Workshop, Project Alpha, and our Weldon H. Smith scholarship golf tournament.
Xi Delta Lambda has been a mainstay in the Virginia Association of Chapters of Alpha Phi Alpha Fraternity, Inc. (VACAPAF) since the chapter was chartered. Chapter brothers, elected or appointed, have served as area director, president, first vice president, financial, corresponding, and recording secretary, director of college affairs, and director of conventions. Xi Delta Lambda has maintained a visible presence on the regional level where chapter brothers have served as area director, area coordinator, risk management coordinator, district director, regional convention chairman, and regional treasurer.
Fraternity Mission and Vision Statement:
Fraternity Mission Statement:Alpha Phi Alpha Fraternity develops leaders, promotes brotherhood and academic excellence, while providing service and advocacy for our communities.
Fraternity Vision Statement:The objectives of this Fraternity shall be to stimulate the ambition of its members; to prepare them for the greatest usefulness in the causes of humanity, freedom, and dignity of the individual; to encourage the highest and noblest form of manhood; and to aid down-trodden humanity in its efforts to achieve higher social, economic and intellectual status. The first two objectives- (1) to stimulate the ambition of its members and (2) to prepare them for the greatest usefulness in the cause of humanity, freedom, and dignity of the individual-serve as the basis for the establishment of Alpha University.