|A keepsake program for the ages|
What gave it all away Saturday night were those unmistakably special and unique colors--Royal Purple and Old Gold. You knew then the Ques were in the house. And this was Gamma Pi's house -- and it was the culmination of the chapter's yearlong 40th anniversary celebration in conjunction with Founders' Day and the annual Achievement Week observance.
A sold out crowd -- including a long list of dignitaries -- packed the Ballroom venue to celebrate "40 Years of Purple Reign," Gamma Pi's stellar record of 40 years of Omega Friendship and community service involvement in Prince George's County. Now the third-largest graduate chapter of the 700 chapters in the entire Fraternity, Gamma Pi used the occasion to look back on its meager beginning and look ahead to a promising future built on its accomplishments and growth.
For those unfamiliar with the story,. it was recounted in person at Saturday night's program through an interconnecting thread of Gamma Pi Brothers representing almost every era of the chapter, from the Founding members who conceived the vision to the brand new leadership team just installed last week. Gamma Pi was born in the early 1970's simply as the result of a small knot of "Ques", many from North Carolina, wanting to remain active with the Fraternity and maintain their cherished friendship bond while serving their community a little closer to their homes in Prince George's County. It was that simple. It was really no more complicated than that. And those seeds sown over four decades led directly to the historic event that took place Saturday night.
Strong at the Mike: The 39th Grand Basileus
|Grand Basileus Dr. Ray Lights up the Audience|
Dr. Ray's message was loud and clear and appropriate in a historical context -- you never know when you will see certain people in your life again in the future or what your relationship might be with them later. How will you treat them when you first encounter them? Brother Dr. Ray told an interesting story of how a recent surgery he had to have was performed by a doctor who had been a student of his years ago. Brother Dr. Ray recalled how the doctor and former student looked down at him on the gurney and assured him calmly,"Don't worry Dr. Ray...I got you." Dr. Ray then asked the audience rhetorically, to laughter: "What if I had treated that boy bad?" He drew a standing ovation and really brought the house down with his remarks. Brother Dr. Ray left the audience and Gamma Pi with three bywords for success in providing community Uplift:-- Hindsight, Insight and Foresight. Dr. Ray's message was powerful and uplifting. It carried the night.
|Immediate Past Basileus Gordon Everett, Sr. - Omega Man of the Year,|
with Emcee, Vice-Basileus Bro. Tony Lee, Program Chair Bro. William Smith,
newly installed Basileus Bro. Brian Long and the Grand Basileus.
Star Power at the Gamma Pi Anniversary
The dignitaries were lined up: U.S. Rep. Donna Edwards, Prince George's County Executive Brother Rushern Baker (who entered the Fraternity at Howard University, Alpha Chapter), State Senator Brother Ulysses Currie, Brother Dr. Mickey Burnim, President of Bowie State University, Omega Psi Phi Second District First Vice Representative Milton Harrison, Maryland Administrative Judge Brother Richard Moore, and state delegate an Attorney General candidate Aisha Braveboy, were among local officials in attendance for the memorable occasion. The Rev. Dr. Grainger Browning of Ebenezer AME Church in Fort Washington, also an Omega man, was there as well to support his wife, Rev. Dr. Jo Ann Browning, who received the Religious Leader of the Year Award (see below).
|Rev. Dr. Jo Ann Browning, one of the community award winners|
The Year in Review
|U.S. Rep.Donna Edwards Brings Greeting|
The top and bottom photos are provided by Brother Jamal Parker, who is the Second District photographer. The other photos are from Gamma Pi Brother Don Cook. More photos and videos will be coming.
Want to see more available photos? Go to Facebook and to Gamma Pi's special web page
Want to see the archived live video telecast? Go to Gamma Pi's Ustream TV Channel