TAMPA Alumni KAPPAs Celebrate Founders Day
It was a night of history, fellowship and rededication as nearly 100 members participated in the Founders’ Day celebration of Kappa Alpha Psi Fraternity, Inc. presented by Tampa Alumni Chapter and assisted by the Zeta Chi undergraduate chapter from the University of South Florida.
Brother Clinton Paris was the Master of Ceremony and excellent in breaking up the ceremony with his knowledge of not only presenters’ year of initiation but also their line names, while keeping the program flowing. Brother Henry Bell gave a brief description of the Tampa Alumni 92 years of history. The Tampa Alumni Chapter was chartered June 11th 1928 by brothers James Hamilton, Dr. S.J. Johnson, E.E. Broughton, R.R. Williams, Dr,L.A. Howell and S.W. Curtis. In 1972 the Tampa Alumni helped launch Zeta Chi Chapter at the University of South Florida. In 1998 the Kappas formed the Diamond Club, Inc. and bought what’s known as the Diamond House located at 3412 E, Lake Ave..
Members, whose time in the fraternity ranged from three months to 69 years, were treated to a program that honored the 10 founders of the fraternity as well as celebrated the history of Kappa, from the days of Kappa Alpha Nu to becoming Kappa Alpha Psi on Jan. 5, 2011. Affectionately known as J5, the 109th anniversary event was held on Friday at the Tampa Heights Junior Civic Association to accommodate those who work on Monday. This allowed local as well as visiting Brothers from Georgia, Virginia and as far as California to be in attendance.
During the program, former Tampa Alumni Polemarchs Watson T. Ragin, Ron Hubbard, Lesley Miller, Robert Irvin and Edwin Narain and presented the chapter with a beautiful wooden Kappa Alpha Psi Coat of Arms shield. Following the program, the members had dinner donated by Konan’s BBQ and a wonderful cake. The highlight of the evening was when our oldest brother Sydney Green and our youngest brother Stephen Harris, cut the first slice of the cake in a wonderful showing of fellowship.
Kappa Alpha Psi was founded on the campus of Indiana University. Its main purpose was to serve as a support system to black men in college at the time. As the fraternity expanded to other colleges, the leaders felt support was needed beyond the collegiate years and to the communities. Thus, they chartered alumni chapters and opened the fraternity to all men. For 109 years, Kappa Alpha Psi has sought to inspire service in the public’s interest.
Tampa Alumni was chartered in 1928 and has been in the forefront of serving and community assistance in the Tampa Bay area to this day – sponsoring programs, offering scholarships and mentoring youth through the chapter and the Tampa Guide Right Foundation.
By: Brother Rick Brown, Tampa Alumni Chapter