Local History

 

Epsilon Omega Zeta Chapter was chartered on May 4, 1958 at the residence of Anita T. Anderson, 431 Cedar Street in Coatesville, PA. To commemorate the establishment of the chapter were Zeta Founder Arizona Cleaver Stemons, Ms. Borders, the Regional Director, who officiated the chartering ceremony, Ms. Esther Peyton of Washington, D.C., who acted as the secretary during the organizing, Ms. Sadie Fernandes and Alberta Meekins of Camden, NJ, Ms. Gladys Warrington of Philadelphia, Pennsylvania also one of the signers of the Sorority’s articles of incorporation, and Ms. Hanna Hall and Charlotte Johnson of Wilmington, DE. During the meeting, two women were initiated, Sarah Prout and Ruby Jones. The new chapter elected officers and immediately following the ceremony held a banquet at Coach and Four Inn in Coatesville, PA.

 

The charter members of Epsilon Omega Zeta chapter are: Anita T. Anderson, Lucille Chapman, Martha Batchelor, Sarah Prout, Ruby Jones, Viola Morgan and Alice Roye.

 

Prior to the founding of Epsilon Omega Zeta chapter, Ms. Esther Peyton organized the Sorority’s first national service project, the Coatesville Project, which aided children of miners in the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania. The Coatesville Project was promoted under the leadership of International President, Violette N. Anderson’s term from 1933-1937. Ms. Gertrude Hamm, one of the members involved, worked for 5 weeks directing handcraft and leisure time activity programs for women and girls. For many community members in Coatesville, this was their first knowledge and interaction with members of Zeta Phi Beta Sorority, Inc. The Coatesville Project left a lasting legacy and feelings of warmth for Zeta on the members of the Coatesville, PA community.

 

All Charter Members of Epsilon Omega Zeta chapter were very prominent within the Chester County PA community. Most of them were highly respected educators.

 

Ruby Jones, one of the Charter Members of Epsilon Omega Zeta Chapter has a building named in her honor on the campus of West Chester University of Pennsylvania. She was the first African American Faculty Member at West Chester University of Pennsylvania.

 

Anita T. Anderson was a prominent teacher who was married to T.J. Anderson, principal of the James Adams Community School, located on the East Side of Coatesville, PA. Today, in Coatesville, there is a school bell and monument marker where the school once stood. Additionally, there is a mural on the corner of 10th & Merchant Streets in Coatesville commemorating the school and Soror Anita T. Anderson. Also, a book was written that included the life of Soror Anita T. Anderson by Jeanita W. Richardson, a professor at the University of Virginia.

 

In March 1980, one of the last Sorority events Founder, Arizona Cleaver Stemons, attended was Epsilon Omega Zeta chapter’s Finer Womanhood event. Epsilon Omega Zeta chapter is proud to have two Past Pennsylvania State Directors currently active in the chapter, Marilee K. Jones and Priscilla Johnson.

 

Currently, Epsilon Omega Zeta chapter holds its monthly meetings at Milestone Events in West Chester, PA in the Inez E. Debaptise Building. Inez E. DeBaptiste was a prominent member of the Chester County Community and Epsilon Omega Zeta chapter. In 1954, Inez DeBaptiste, and her husband Clifford, founded DeBaptiste Funeral Home.

 

Over the years, Epsilon Omega Zeta Chapter has maintained a Storks Nest in Coatesville, PA at the Atkinson Center. The Storks Nest has served hundreds of expectant mothers. The Storks Nest has been recognized on the National and State level for continued service to the Chester County PA community.

 

Additionally, the chapter has received awards for excellence and membership development at the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania Leadership Conferences. Epsilon Omega Zeta sponsors and participates in the March for Babies, Voter Registration Drives, Financial Aid Workshops for High School students, Diabetes Education Workshops at Chester County Hospital, Thanksgiving Clothing Drives, Canned Food Drives, Volunteer activities at a number of local shelters and religious organizations and awarding thousands of dollars in scholarships to deserving high school students in Chester County PA.

 

Mission

Zeta Phi Beta Sorority Incorporated, Epsilon Omega Zeta Chapter is a Community Conscious, Action Oriented Chapter that supports the Chester County Pennsylvania Community through our innovative programming, education and scholarship support for high school students, health awareness initiatives and community service.

 

Our Vision

Zeta Phi Beta Sorority, Inc., Epsilon Omega Zeta Chapter will be the preeminent organization in Chester County Pennsylvania that provides avenues for women to effectuate social change through volunteerism, scholarship, education, and the expression of sisterly love and finer womanhood.  We will serve as a beacon of inspiration for all of humanity to achieve social civility and embrace altruism in its purest form.

 

Our Values

Quality - We achieve and maintain the highest standards of excellence in everything we do individually and collectively.Positive Results – We care about bottom line results, but not everything is about money. We partner with other organizations to bring about positive change that sometimes can only be measured in smiles, hugs, and the good feelings that are created because of what we do.  Altruism is at the very heart of our mission and is the nucleus of our service initiatives. 

 

Ethics & Integrity -We actively promote and encourage ethical behavior paramount to none other.  We recognize and uphold all laws and regulations relating to the ethical discharge of our responsibilities. We uphold the integrity of our great sorority by always communicating internal and external statements in a truthful and accurate manner. 

 

Reputation - We remain loyal to Zeta Phi Beta and pursue its objectives in ways that are consistent with the public interest to achieve maximum results for the people who benefit from our work.  Constantly aware of what our name means to our constituents and supporters, we work diligently to associate with those who foster programs and ideas that advance the sorority’s purpose.

 

Standards & Values - We are committed to upholding the principles, standards, and values of Zeta Phi Beta Sorority, Inc.

Adopted from Zeta Phi Beta Sorority Incorporated, Atlantic Region