GAMMA DELTA ZETA
Gamma Delta Zeta Chapter of Cleveland, Ohio was organized in the Fall of 1946 by eight charter members Maxine Vann, Mable McCaskill, Jeannette Glover, Catherine King, Maudelle Jones, Lucy Perkins, Irma Clark, and Helen Hill. Shortly thereafter, Ruby Scott and Lou Bynum were added to the list of charter members. In the tradition of scholarship, service, sisterhood, and finer womanhood, Gamma Delta Zeta elected its first officers: Maxine Vann, President, Ruby Scott, Vice President, Maudelle Jones, Program Chairman, Jeannette Glover, Secretary-Treasurer, Lucy Perkins, Corresponding Secretary, Catherine King, Chaplain, and Mable McCaskill, Reporter. The first pledge club had the following women: Sallie Hopson, Phyllis Davis, Earnestine Hollman, Nettie Jenkins, Gladys Townsend, Myra Dixon, and Pauline Johnson. Past Presidents of Gamma Delta Zeta Chapter include Maxine Vann, Ruby Scott, Jeanette Glover, Carolyn Chaney, Gretna Freeman, Evelyn Jackson, Eloise Blocker, Janice McKee, Ethel Keith, Delores M. Wilson, Marjorie Hopson, C. Levy Vaughn, Ora L. Sims, Hester Shoto, Christabel M. Bradford, Ruth J. Earl, Irene Spears, Bettye Ware, Mary Curtis, Priscilla H. Sumpter, Kimberly M. King, Linda Jones, Andrea Aarons-Payne, Gina S. Jackson, Georgette Weatherspoon (Present).
Over the years, Gamma Delta Zeta Chapter has made numerous strides toward community uplifting. The Cleveland Stork's Nest, administered by Gamma Delta Zeta Chapter, was launched on October 21, 1994 with the Honorable U.S. Congressman Louis B. Stokes, of the 21st Congressional District performing the ribbon cutting. The Nest made national history as the first nest with four collaborative partners, namely the March of Dimes Birth Defects Foundation, the Greater Cleveland Metro Health Family/ Healthy Start, the Liberty Hill Baptist Church and Zeta Phi Beta Sorority, Inc. The “Nest” opened January 1995, making national history with then-Basileus, Bettye Ware (deceased) and Director/Coordinator, Priscilla H. Sumpter, a former Gamma Delta Zeta Basileus. The Cleveland Stork’s Nest was the first to open with collaborative partners. In attendance were several city officials, including then County Commissioners, Jane Campbell and Timothy Hagan. The honorable Louis Stokes, former United States Congressman of the 11th District of Ohio, performed the ribbon cutting, which took place in October 1994.
The Cleveland Stork’s Nest closed its doors at Liberty Hill Baptist Church in January of 2016. On March 19, 2016, the Stork’s Nest partnered with the Thea Bowman Center, located in the Mt. Pleasant Community which is a highly recognizable resource center, for a grand re-opening under the direction of Basileus, Gina S. Jackson and Stork’s Nest Coordinators, Malinda Winters, Sheryl Sumpter, Kim King, and Stork’s Nest Advisor Priscilla Sumpter. This was also in a collaborative effort with the March of Dimes Foundation and the Thea Bowman Center. In attendance were several board members of the Thea Bowman Center, Executive Director Ella Thomas, Coordinator Cheryl Johnson, Councilman Zachary Reed, and members of Zeta Phi Beta Sorority, Inc. Gamma Delta Zeta Chapter.
On October 1, 2016 Gamma Delta Zeta Chapter celebrated 70 years of Service, Sisterhood, Scholarship, and Finer Womanhood. The evening included a live band (Spirit Plus), DJ, dinner, and praise dancers. Gamma Delta Zeta Chapter honored their five doves; Soror Priscilla Sumpter, Soror Bertha Brown, Soror Christabel Bradford (deceased), Soror Ora Sims, and Soror Lula Kennedy. In attendance was then-State Director LaRita Smith, family members of Dove Christabel M. Bradford, other members of the Divine 9, and members of Gamma Delta Zeta Chapter Amicae Auxiliary group. Gamma Delta Zeta Chapter celebrated 75 years of service to the Cleveland community in 2021.
Gamma Delta Zeta Chapter sponsors and advises two undergraduate chapters: Delta Nu and Sigma Alpha. Delta Nu was chartered on June 17, 1985 as a city-wide chapter that currently has students at Case Western Reserve University, Myers University, Ursuline College, John Carroll University, and Notre Dame College. Sigma Alpha was chartered on June 5th, 1971 on the campus of Kent State University. Gamma Delta Zeta Chapter currently has four active auxiliaries: Amicae and Youth Groups- Archonettes Club, Amicettes and Pearlettes. The Amicae’s colors are light blue and royal blue. The Youth Groups- Archonettes, the Amicettes, and the Pearlettes colors are navy blue and white.
Maxine Vann, Ruby Scott, Jeanette Glover, Carolyn Chaney, Gretna Freeman, Evelyn Jackson, Eloise Blocker, Janice McKee, Ethel Keith, Delores M. Wilson, Marjorie Hopson, C. Levy Vaughn, Ora L. Sims, Hester Shoto, Christabel M. Bradford, Ruth J. Earl, Irene Spears, Bettye Ware, Mary Curtis, Priscilla H. Sumpter, Kimberly M. King, Linda Jones, Andrea Aarons-Payne, Gina Jackson, Georgette Weatherspoon, Shawana Brown (Current)
*listed in chronological order