Dr. MARY LOU ALLISON GARDNER LITTLE
Dr. DOROTHY HANLEY WHITESIDE
Dr. VIVIAN IRENE WHITE MARBURY
Dr. NANNIE MAE GAHN JOHNSON
Dr. HATTIE MAE ANNETTE DULIN REDFORD
Dr. BESSIE MAE DOWNEY RHOADES MARTIN
Dr. CUBENA McCLURE
On Friday, May 7, 2022, Butler University President James Danko posthumously conferred an Honorary Doctorate of Humane Letters upon each of our seven beloved founders during the University's degree conferral ceremony.
Says President Danko, “Sigma Gamma Rho’s founders were seven courageous women who overcame the barriers created by racial segregation to form an organization that has not just survived, but thrived, for 100 years. I am honored to use the occasion of Sigma Gamma Rho’s Centennial Celebration as a platform to recognize and applaud its founders, and all those who have followed in their footsteps.”
Madame Grand Basileus Rasheeda Liberty accepted the honor and was hooded in their stead. She was joined by Soror Madame Grand Anti-Grammateus Dr. Khalilah A Shabazz, great-granddaughter of Founder Dr. Vivian Irene White Marbury who also spoke to the assembly.
“Our Founders—all educators—were young women committed to a vision of empowering communities by uplifting women and youth,” says Madame Grand. “These courageous women believed that education was the key to unlocking opportunities. As we embark on our Centennial year with 100,000 members globally, we are honored to witness this historic moment where the progressive work of these powerful visionaries is being recognized by Butler University.”
Watch the full ceremony including Madame Grand's and Madame Grand Anti-Grammateus' addresses below.