Sunday, December 1, 2019

Gamma Pi's Achievement Week 2019 Shows Why Omega Psi Phi is UniQUE

The proud Gamma Pi Achievement Week 2019 award winners 
Gamma Pi's 2019 Achievement Week program had all the right touches and showed why we are The Super Chapter when it comes to Omega Psi Phi Fraternity, Inc. In a one week period from Saturday, November 9 through Sunday, November 17, the Achievement Week Committee sponsored two major community service projects, a well-attended community awards program, a packed dinner for Omega men only and a caravan of Brothers who attended the annual Rededication Service at Howard University, where our Fraternity was founded on November 17, 1911,

The week began with an outstanding community awards program on Saturday, November 9, at the Ernest Everette Just Middle School in Largo, MD., an appropriate venue given the special week. The Hon. Bro. Derrick Leon Davis, of the local Prince George's County Council, brought a challenging message as keynote speaker. His point: we are obligated to reach back, and especially to help our youth.

Award Winners
In addition to Brother Davis' remarks, the communitywide event was highlighted by the always-anticipated individual awards for chapter and community excellence. In the community, the award winners were The Hon. State Del. Jazz Lewis, Citizen of the Year; teacher Stevie Prather, Educator of the Year;  Metropolitan Baptist Church pastor the Rev. Dr. Maurice Watson, Religious Leader of the Year; and Miss Brianna F. Davis, Athlete of the Year. Within the chapter, Gamma Pi honored Bro. Kevin Greenwood, outgoing Social Action Chair and incoming Assistant Keeper of Records and Seal, as Omega Man of the Year; Bro. Sheku Alieu, for Super Service; and stalwart Brother Maurice Calhoun for the Founders Award for lifetime achievement.

Suits collected for drive
On Sunday, November 10, about 20 Brothers trekked to the PG House Men's Shelter for homeless men to deliver 200 suits and assorted accessories for the residents. Led by the Social Action committee, the in-person donation triggered emotions of joy and sincere appreciation from the staff. In this one activity, Gamma Pi demonstrated in clear terms just how Omega Psi Phi works. Brothers -- like-minded men of high ideals -- used their foundation of Friendship to provide a much-needed service to a forgotten part of the local community.

There was nothing especially elaborate about the project. It was just simple hard work and dedication and perseverance. Quite simply Brothers used their persuasive skills to encourage members of the chapter and the Fraternity as well as members of the greater community to dispose of too-big, too-small and outdated suits through giving to other local residents they did not know, rather than dumping them on the trash pile.  In two months time, the incredible number of wearable suits collected was achieved. It truly made a difference.

Brothers after Reading Across the District project
A few days later following the community awards program and the suit drive, the Gamma Pi Brothers participated in the Second District "Read Across the District Day" on Tuesday, November 12. The District called on all Omega Men throughout "2D" to gather at a local school and read to Fourth and Fifth graders.  Gamma Pi read to students at Gaywood Elementary School in Seabrook, where Bro. Damien Goins is Principal, and the Mary Harris Jones Elementary School in Adelphi, where Bro. Rev. Brian King teaches.

When Omega Men Get Together
In their "usual and customary fashion," Gamma Pi along with guest Brothers from around the DMV broke bread during the Annual Brothers Only dinner at the upscale Martin's at Camelot in Upper Marlboro. Approximately 120 Brothers attended the dinner, headlined by Grand Keeper of Records and Seal Bro. Mark Jackson as the guest speaker. While most of his message was about "in house" business, he implored Brothers to always make Friendship #1 and to find ways to get involved in the Fraternity.

Brothers enjoy fellowship after the Brothers Only dinner
As an Omega-only event, the Brothers Only Dinner allows Fraternity members to fraternize and fellowship in a way that only Omega men appreciate and understand.  After the formal program, Brothers spent the remainder of the evening sharing their Omega experiences through the years and swapping stories about their time in the Fraternity as well as when they were seeking to enter Omega's realm.

Finally, the weeklong celebration of Omega Psi Phi concluded with another Brothers Only event, which was the Annual Rededication program held at Howard University on November 17, where the Fraternity was founded on November 17, 1911.The Grand Basileus, Bro. Dr. David Marion, led the ceremony at a packed house in Howard's Cramton Auditorium.

Achievement Week was also a time for Gamma Pi to transition in leadership. During the week, Brothers Steven A. Walls and Vice Basileus Richard Allison III and their leadership team entered office as the team of Bro. Tony Lee (Immediate Past Basileus) and Don Norwood (Vice Basileus) finished up three terms of service. The new leadership, elected in June, was sworn in on November 16.

For the Super Chapter, it was a memorable week and a great reminder about why Omega Psi Phi Fraternity, Inc. is so special. Thanks to Brothers Jeff Adkisson and Cruiz Alexander for heading this year's Achievement Week activities.




Other photos courtesy of Bros. Teddy Taylor, Ken Jones and Tony Kelly 

SPECIAL VIDEO FEATURE BELOW: Bro. Derrick Leon Davis on Gamma Pi TV

Grand Keeper of Records and Seal Mark Jackson at Brothers Only

Fraternity members welcome Grand Basileus Bro. Dr. David Marion to Howard

Brothers after completing "Reading Across America" at Gaywood 

The sold-out crowd at Brothers Only dinner

Gamma Pi men pose after delivering 200 suits

Brothers assemble to deliver the suits to homeless men