5 Keys to Success from Brother Smith

5 KEYS TO SUCCESS FROM BROTHER SMITH

If you still haven’t heard of billionaire Robert F. Smith, it’s time to start paying attention.

The Chairman and CEO of Vista Equity Partners has lived his life mostly under the radar, granting limited interviews about how he’s built a private equity empire and net worth of $2.5 billion. He is No. 274 on the Forbes 400 List of Richest Americans and is richer than basketball legend Michael Jordan and BET founder Bob Johnson.

Although the 54-year-old Smith has kept his life and work mostly behind the scenes, his business moves to support the black community are hard to ignore.

Smith’s $20 million gift to the National Museum of African-American History and Culture (NMAAHC) came only second to Oprah Winfrey. He’s also backed up his commitment to increasing the number of black students in STEM (Science Technology Engineering and Math) with support for youth coding programs and a $50 million gift to his alma mater, Cornell University, to bolster African-American and female students in the College of Engineering.

And he isn’t just writing checks.

Recently, hundreds of young black professionals and graduate students filled the International House at the Columbia Black Business Student Association’s 35th annual conference to hear him speak. Smith, a Columbia Business School alum, dropped knowledge on everything from economic empowerment to how to build the next generation of leaders in the black community.


Alphas from FIU Greek Day of Service

ALPHAS FROM FIU GREEK DAY OF SERVICE

“The city of Miami Beach is grateful to Florida International University’s Alpha Phi Alpha Fraternity for leading the beach clean-up effort after a day filled with Spring Break activities. We hope all visitors follow suit by keeping Miami Beach clean when visiting our beautiful beaches.”


Brother Collier Working to Change Trajectory

BROTHER COLLIER WORKING TO CHANGE TRAJECTORY

Brother Collier [Kappa Eta ’16], who was born in Gallaway, Tennessee, moved to Memphis when he was 6 years old, and his mother raised him alone. Being raised in a single-parent household created obstacles during his childhood.


Brother Robinson Making Music Work

BROTHER ROBISON MAKING MUSIC WORK

A Business Administration major at Clark Atlanta University, Calvin Robinson [Alpha Phi ’13], a.k.a. youngcalimojo, knows that making it as a rapper is about more than just music.


Welcoming Brother Best

WELCOMING BROTHER BEST

It gives us great pleasure to officially introduce you to Brother Daniel Best, the new national program manager for Go to High School, Go to College (GHGC).Brother Best is a 2012 initiate of the fraternity through Epsilon Nu Lambda Chapter seated in Portsmouth, Virginia. Brother Best has years of experience in federal and state grant administration having worked as a grant compliance auditor for the Virginia Department of Housing (VHDA) as well as a grant administrator and compliance officer for several municipalities within the Virginia area. In these roles, he has administered many grants ensuring that programmatic activities, budgets, and performance align with objectives and regulations set forth by grantors. Brother Best earned a Bachelor of Arts (B.A.) in International Relations from Shaw University in Raleigh, NC and a Master of Arts (M.A.) in Urban Affairs from Norfolk State University.

Please join me in welcoming Brother Best into his new role within the fraternity. You may contact Brother Best via email at GTHS-PM@apa1906.net or by phone at 757-270-4798 regarding the Go to High School, Go to College Grant funded by the U.S. Department of Justice.


Brother Davenport Enters Omega Chapter

BROTHER DAVENPORT ENTERS OMEGA CHAPTER

Horace Alexander Davenport, the first African American judge in Montgomery County, died in his home on Tuesday, March 21, 2017. He was 98.

Judge Davenport was a first in many areas of his life. Though he never sought praise, his life was filled with professional accomplishments, community service and charitable giving well beyond what might have been predicted for a farmer’s son born on February 22, 1919 in Newberry, S.C.


Congratulations, Brother Gregory J. Vincent

CONGRATULATIONS, BROTHER GREGORY J. VINCENT

Dear Brothers:

It’s with great excitement that I share some phenomenal news. Our good brother, Dr. Gregory J. Vincent [Alpha Rho Lambda ’87], national chairman of the Commission on Racial Justice, has been appointed as the new president of his alma mater, Hobart and William Smith Colleges located in Geneva, N.Y. Brother Vincent, a 1983 graduate of Hobart, will serve as the 27th president of Hobart College and the 16th of William Smith College. He is the first alumnus to lead the colleges.

As a national expert on civil rights, social justice, and campus culture, Brother Vincent has an extensive career as an attorney, campus leader, and professor. Throughout his career, he has displayed a fervent and unwavering commitment to diversity, equity, and inclusion and has made it his mission to remove systemic and institutional barriers to success and equality.

Early in his career, he served as Ohio’s assistant attorney general, where he successfully argued several civil rights cases before the state’s Supreme Court. He also served as the director of regional and legal affairs at the Ohio Civil Rights Commission and vice president and lead counsel for Bank One.

Later in his career, Brother Vincent was appointed as assistant vice chancellor for academic affairs at the University of Wisconsin-Madison. He was then named vice provost for academic affairs and campus diversity and law professor at Louisiana State University (LSU). Following his time at LSU, Brother Vincent was appointed as the vice provost for Institutional Equity and Diversity at the University of Oregon where he also served as a professor of law.

In 2005, Brother Vincent began leading the Division of Diversity and Community Engagement (DDCE) at the University of Texas, Austin. He also serves as the W.K. Kellogg Professor of Community College Leadership and Professor of Law. Through Brother Vincent’s hard work, leadership, and fervent commitment to racial and social justice, the DDCE has grown to encompass a $50 million budget with more than 400 employees and 50 units, as well as 400 local and regional partners, and now serves as a national model. For his service and community engagement, Brother Vincent has received numerous awards and recognitions, notably the Educator of the Year Award from the University of Pennsylvania Graduate School of Education. He is a member of Sigma Pi Phi Fraternity (The Boulé) where he serves as the grand sire archon-elect (president-elect).

Brother Vincent attended public schools in New York City where he graduated from the Bronx High School of Science. A Statesman on both the Hobart basketball and cross-country teams, he majored in history and economics at Hobart, served as a resident advisor, and was presented the Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Leadership Award at graduation. He earned a law degree from the Ohio State University Moritz College of Law and his doctorate from The University of Pennsylvania.

I am confident in saying that this achievement is a great honor for both Brother Vincent and the fraternity. His hard work and commitment to diversity and inclusion have certainly been respected and admired and I am excited to see him take that same level of commitment with him as he leads Hobart and William Smith. Given our current climate as a society, his leadership is needed more now than ever before. As a fraternity, we share in his joy as he joins the legacy of Alpha men serving as college and university presidents.

The men of Alpha stand ready to support Brother Vincent as he moves forward in this new role. May he find all the resources needed to succeed on this journey from our proud organization. It is men like Brother Vincent who lift Alpha’s profile in the world and give us our reputation as the College of Friendship, the University of Brotherly Love and the School for the Better Making of Men.

Join me in congratulating our good brother, Dr. Gregory J. Vincent, on his new appointment. Well done, brother!

Onward and Upward Always,

Everett B. Ward, Ph.D.
General President


Remembering Brother King, 49th Anniversary of MLK's death

Remembering Brother King, 49th Anniversary of MLK's death

Remembering Brother King
49th Anniversary of MLK’s death

Members of Alabama State University student government and Alpha Phi Alpha fraternity laid a wreath on campus to remember Martin Luther King Jr. on the 49th anniversary of his death.

King, a member of Alpha Phi Alpha, studied for his doctorate on ASU’s campus during the civil rights movement. He also gave the commencement speech in 1954.

“I pray that (King’s) dream continue to live on through us,” said Shane Parks, SGA president.

King was assassinated in Memphis on April 4, 1968.


Congrats, Brother Barry Jenkins #Oscars

Congrats, Brother Barry Jenkins #Oscars

My Brothers of Alpha:

It was a fantastic night of many things.

It was a night of historical firsts as Brother Barry Jenkins [Iota Delta ’99] became the first African American to score nominations for best director, best picture, and best writing adapted screenplay in the same year. The film’s co-editor, Joi McMillon, becamethe first African American to earn a nomination for achievement in film editing. Mahershala Ali, who played a sympathetic drug dealer mentoring a bullied young man in the film, “Moonlight,” is the first Muslim actor to win best supporting actor. And Viola Davis,who won best supporting actress, became the second black woman to win an Emmy, an Oscar, and a Tony for acting.

It was also a night of twists and turns. Brother Jenkins and Mr. Tarell Alvin McCraney, who wrote the play that became “Moonlight” and co-wrote the screenplay, won the Oscar for best writing adapted screenplay. And although Brother Jenkins lost the award forbest director, the biggest award of the night, the Oscar for best picture, went to “Moonlight” despite some confusion at the time.

To some, this win is a direct response to the #OscarsSoWhite controversy of years past, but regardless of the issues that have brought us here, “Moonlight” is a powerful movie with a message all black men, especially Alpha men, should discuss and use as a conversationstarter in our communities. Brother Jenkins and his team did a fantastic job weaving a story of sexuality, drug abuse, mass incarceration, and school violence, ultimately asking the question: What is the nature and meaning of manhood?

Brothers, if you haven’t watched this movie, please take the time to do so. Do me a favor, send congratulations to Brother Jenkins on Twitter @BandryBarry,letting him know that his brothers in Alpha stand beside him as his star shines.

Onward and Upward Always,


Everett B. Ward, Ph.D.
General President


Schedule for Submitting Constitutional Changes

Schedule for Submitting Constitutional Changes

As we approach the 111th Anniversary Convention in Baltimore, Maryland, the Committee on Constitution provides this memo to offer key dates and direction to brothers, chapters, and regions when submitting proposed changes to the constitution and bylaws of Alpha Phi Alpha Fraternity.

Constitution
Pursuant to Article VI, Section 1.1, Amendments of the Fraternity’s Constitution, “any member or chapter wishing to amend the General Constitution shall submit the proposed change to their respective Regional Vice President not less than 60 days prior to the next succeeding Regional Convention.” The due date, by region, for submission to the RVP is:

  • Midwestern Region – January 15, 2017*
  • Southern Region – January 23, 2017*
  • Eastern Region – January 30, 2017*
  • Western Region – February 5, 2017
  • Southwestern Region – February 20, 2017

*Dates have passed. Please consult your RVP.
In submitting proposals, it is important that the following format is used per Robert’s Rules of Order, Newly Revised 11th Edition (RONR):

I, [insert your name], move to amend/add…by striking/inserting…

Original Article / Section / Subsection Proposed change Rationale

For example, I, Cash Sutton III, move to amend Article IV, General Offices, Section 3, Election Procedure, Subsection 3.2, by striking the word “mailed” and inserting the word “distributed” after “ballots” and “be.”

Original Language:Article IV, General Offices, Section 3, Election Procedure, Subsection 3.2: Except as provided for in Section 3.22, election to the office of the General President shall be by ballots mailed to each member who is in good standing according to the records of the Executive Director, as of the first (1st) day of April of the year in which an election is held. Ballots shall be mailed not later than the twenty-first (21st) day of April of an election year, and sent by the Elections Committee. The candidate receiving the largest number of votes cast shall be declared elected to the office. Proposed Change:Except as provided for in Section 3.22, election to the office of the General President shall be by ballots distributed to each member who is in good standing according to the records of the Executive Director, as of the first (1st) day of April of the year in which an election is held. Ballots shall be distributed not later than the twenty-first (21st) day of April of an election year, and sent by the Elections Committee. The candidate receiving the largest number of votes cast shall be declared elected to the office. Rationale: Removing the word “mailed” opens the opportunity for the fraternity to distribute ballots via other means (electronic, paper, etc.) as presented by the Elections Committee and adopted by the General Convention.

Please take care in reviewing the fraternity’s constitution and bylaws to ensure the proposed change does not conflict with another article, section, or subsection. If the committee determines a conflict and a proposed change was not offered, the committee will have no other option but to recommend the proposed change not be approved.

Upon receipt, the RVP must submit proposed changes to chapters within 30 days of their regional convention. Chapters should expect to see the proposed changes by:

  • Midwestern Region – February 15, 2017
  • Southern Region – February 23, 2017
  • Eastern Region – February 28, 2017
  • Western Region – March 5, 2017
  • Southwestern Region – March 20, 2017

Upon approval by simple majority of the delegates present and voting, proposed amendments must be submitted immediately to the executive director to ensure he meets the submission due date to chapters: May 12, 2017.

Adoption of proposed amendments requires a three-fourths (3/4) vote of the delegates present and voting at the General Convention in Baltimore, Maryland.

Bylaws
Article XII, Section 1.1, Proposals for Amendment of the Bylaws states, “all proposed amendments to the General By-Laws shall be submitted in writing to the Executive Director not less than sixty (60) days before the next succeeding General Convention.” All proposed amendments to the bylaws must be submitted by May 10, 2017, in time for the executive director’s distribution to chapters on May 12, 2017.

Again, in submitting proposals, it is important that the following format is used per RONR:

I, [insert your name], move to amend/add…by striking/inserting…

Original Article / Section / Subsection Proposed Change Rationale

Adoption of proposed amendments to the bylaws requires three-fourths (3/4) vote of the delegates present and voting at the general convention in Baltimore, MD.

Official Governing Policy Guidance and Regulations of Alpha Phi Alpha Fraternity
Please take care when submitting proposed changes to our constitution and bylaws by NOT offering administrative changes. Administrative changes (due dates, etc.) belong in the Official Governing Policy Guidance and Regulations of Alpha Phi Alpha Fraternity, which was created by the delegates at the 2007 General Convention in Orlando, FL, when they bifurcated the fraternity’s constitution and bylaws, removing all administrative items. If the committee determines the change is administrative in nature, the committee will have no other option but to recommend the proposed change not be approved.

Time Until an Amendment Takes Effect—Constitution and Bylaws
Upon ratification by chapters, the amendment shall take effect on December 8, 2017, unless the amendment provides a due date; the due date cannot supersede the approval process contained in the constitution and bylaws. For example, an amendment cannot become effective immediately upon the adoption by the delegates at the General Convention because chapters must vote on the action taken by the convention. However, an amendment may become effective later than December 8, 2017, provided it is stipulated at the time it is offered.

Finally, please take care in crafting proposed changes. The fraternity’s historical practice is to greatly limit delegates from amending amendments, which is consistent with RONR. “If bylaws require previous notice for their amendment…no amendment to the bylaw amendment is in order that increases the modification of the article or provision to be amended. This restriction prevents members from proposing a slight change and then taking advantage of absent members by moving a greater one as an amendment to the amendment.… The same principle applies to an amendment in the nature of a substitute for sections or articles.… The proposed amendment substitute is open to amendments that diminish the amount of change, but not to amend to increase it or to introduce new changes” (RONR, 11th ed., p. 595). For reference, when RONR mentions bylaws, it means in principle constitution and/or bylaws.

If you have any questions or you need assistance, please do not hesitate to contact the constitution committee chair, Brother Cash Sutton III, at constitution@apa1906.net.