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Delta Delta Delta

Delta Delta Delta
Founded November 27, 1888
Boston University, (Boston, Massachusetts)
Type Social
Scope International
Motto Let us steadfastly
love one another

     Silver      Gold

     Cerulean Blue
Symbol ΔΔΔ
Flower Pansy
Tree Pine
Jewel Pearl
Mascot Dolphin
Patron Greek divinity Poseidon
Publication The Trident
Philanthropy Children's Cancer Research, partnered with St. Jude Children's Research Hospital
Chapters 139
Members 200,000+ collegiate
Headquarters 2331 Brookhollow Plaza Drive
Arlington, Texas, U.S.

Delta Delta Delta (ΔΔΔ), also known as Tri Delta (or "Tri-Delt"), is an international sorority founded on November 27, 1888 at Boston University. With over 200,000 initiates, Tri Delta is one of the largest National Panhellenic Conference sororities.


  • History 1
    • Tri Delta firsts 1.1
  • Symbols, emblems, and insignia 2
  • Philanthropy 3
  • Member development initiatives 4
    • Fat Talk Free Week 4.1
      • BodyImage 3D 4.1.1
      • Sponsor program 4.1.2
  • The Trident 5
  • Delta Shop 6
  • Controveries 7
  • Chapter positions 8
  • Notable members 9
    • Beauty pageant contestants 9.1
    • Business and education 9.2
    • Entertainment media 9.3
    • News media 9.4
    • Literature 9.5
    • Politics and public service 9.6
    • Sports 9.7
  • See also 10
  • Notes 11
  • External links 12


Delta Delta Delta was founded by Sarah Ida Shaw, Eleanor Dorcas Pond, Florence Isabelle Stewart, and Isabel Morgan Breed at Boston University. Three women's groups were already represented at Boston University in 1888 (Kappa Kappa Gamma, Gamma Phi Beta and Alpha Phi). Shaw enlisted the help of Eleanor Dorcas Pond and told her, "Let us found a society that shall be kind alike to all and think more of a girl's inner self and character than of her personal appearance."

The two young women began the work of creating a new national fraternity. Later Sarah wrote "...The two enthusiastic friends were unaware of the fact that there was something stupendous about the task they had set hands, heads and hearts to accomplish. They were working for a principle, and it never occurred to them that there could be such a thing as failure. Earnestness of purpose, energy and enthusiasm had brought them both success in college and why should not these same qualities bring assurance of good fortune to the new venture."

Shaw and Pond wrote the rituals and constitution and designed the emblems. Choosing the name was a mutual decision. Pond suggested a triple letter while Shaw chose the actual letter and developed Greek mottos and passwords. Inspiration came from Egyptian Lore, Hindu mysticism, Greek and astronomy, reflecting Shaw's wide and various interests.

The Founders of ΔΔΔ:[1]

Sarah Ida Shaw
Eleanor Dorcas Pond
Florence Isabelle Stewart
Isabel Morgan Breed

Tri Delta firsts

Tri Delta was the first sorority to:

  • be founded as a national organization with complete plans for governmental structure and expansion.
  • regularly publish its quarterly magazine, The Trident, published continuously since 1891.
  • organize an alumnae system.
  • pioneer chapter visitation in 1905, appointing an officer to visit all chapters.
  • publish a book-length history: A Detailed Record of Delta Delta Delta, 1888–1907.
  • hold a national Leadership Conference.
  • finance proper housing for collegiate chapters and has a large investment in houses, lodges and suites.
  • concentrate its national philanthropic efforts on higher education through the Founders' Anniversary Fellowships, the Zoe Gore Perrin Scholarships and the endowment of the National Humanities Center.
  • adopt a central accounting system for its collegiate chapters.

Symbols, emblems, and insignia


Colors: The colors of Tri Delta are silver, gold and cerulean blue. Green is also a significant color, symbolizing the union of the three colors.

Symbols: Using the Greek alphabet the name Delta Delta Delta is depicted above. The Greek letter Delta is the fourth letter of the Greek alphabet and is commonly seen as an isosceles triangle.

Jewel: The pearl is the jewel of Tri Delta. The one jewel that grows, it symbolizes the new member, developing from a tiny grain of sand into a thing of great value and beauty.

Tree: The pine tree is a symbol of Tri Delta's collegiate members. As a tree able to grow in very challenging conditions, it represents the collegiate members ability to thrive in hard times and adversity. Flower: The pansy is Tri Delta's flower. It is a symbol of alumnae membership and the third and final step in the lifetime development of Delta Delta Delta's members.

Mascot: The dolphin is recognized as an additional symbol of importance as it was considered to be a good omen by the ancient Greeks. It symbolizes rebirth, friendship and leadership.


The coat of arms consists of a shield quartered, first and fourth quarters in blue on each of which is a silver trident, second and third gold on each of which is a green pine tree. Above the shield, the crest, consisting of a torse with six folds alternating gold and blue, from which rises a white, gold and blue pansy. Below the shield the open motto, "Let us steadfastly love one another," is inscribed in Greek on a scroll.

Official insignia:[4]

New member pin The new member pin is worn prior to initiation. It is a green and silver enamel badge described in the 1888 constitution as an "inverted Delta, surrounded by three Deltas."

The Trident The trident symbolizes the first degree of initiation and is returned prior to initiation into the Stars and Crescent degree. A gold trident may be worn as a badge guard.

The Stars and Crescent Three golden stars, crown set with pearls, within a gold crescent of three hundred degree bearing three deltas in black enamel is the official badge of the Fraternity. Tri Delta initiates receive a Stars and Crescent Badge with her initials, the Greek letters of her chapter, and her chapter Initiation number engraved on the back. The badge belongs to Tri Delta and is "lent" to each member during her lifetime or as long as she remains a member.


In the early 1970s, a national survey established that Tri Delta chapters were interested in children, hospitals, and cancer. At the 1974 Tri Delta Convention the three were combined to support children's cancer charities as the designated philanthropy.

Many chapters observe "Sleighbell Day" on the first Tuesday of December, following the tradition of Sleighbell Luncheon, first held in the 1940s by 13 Southern California chapters to benefit a doctor researching blood diseases at Children's Hospital Los Angeles.

In 1999, Tri Delta partnered with St. Jude Children's Research Hospital. St. Jude (through the fundraising branch, ALSAC) assists Tri Delta chapters in planning philanthropy events that benefit the children and subsidize research costs at St. Jude. Many chapters coordinate fundraising activities such as pancake breakfasts and football tailgates on their campuses each year. Since 1999, Tri Delta has raised more than $30 million for St. Jude.[5]

In 2002, Tri Deltas committed to raising $1 million to build a Teen Room at the St. Jude Hospital in Memphis, Tennessee. Tri Delta fulfilled the commitment in 2005.

In July 2006, Tri Delta committed to raise $10 million in 10 years to build a new patient treatment floor focusing on brain tumor research at St. Jude. Tri Delta instead raised $10.4 million in 4 years.

In 2010 a new philanthropic goal was announced to raise $15 million in 5 years.[6] During the 2012–2013 academic school year, Tri Delta raised $5.6 million for a total of $14.2 million toward their "$15 million in 5 years" pledge to benefit St. Jude.

On February 1, 2014, it was announced that Tri Delta surpassed the $15 million goal in just 3.5 years.[7] On July 4, 2014, Tri Delta announced a new philanthropic goal to raise $60 million over 10 years, the largest single commitment by a partner of St. Jude in the history of the hospital. Their pledge funded the Tri Delta Place, a housing facility for families of hospital patients. Tri Delta was also named the St. Jude partner of the year for 2014, making Tri Delta the first non-corporation to receive this honor. Tri Delta has raised more money than any sorority or fraternity in the world and accounts for more than 25% of philanthropic dollars raised by all Greeks combined.

In addition to the national partnership, Tri Delta continues to raise money for local Children's Cancer Charities, including the long-running Sleighbell Luncheon.

Every year, chapters host many events to help raise money. Greeks at Bat is a common spring philanthropy event. Greeks at Bat is a baseball competition between all of the participating fraternities on campus. Tri Delta members get assigned a team and coach them through a weekend of baseball. Another annual event is Dhop. Dhop is a pancake breakfast hosted by the Tri Delta chapter. Tri Delta members help prepare and serve pancakes to hundreds of college students. All of the money earned goes to St. Jude.

Member development initiatives

Fat Talk Free Week

Launched in 2007, Fat Talk Free Week is a five-day campaign hosted by Tri Delta chapters to promote positive body image by educating campuses on the negative impact of the "thin ideal" on women in society.[8]

BodyImage 3D

Tri Delta launched BodyImage 3D in 2012 to provide a multi-dimensional approach to body image awareness and education for its members and students year-round. While continuing body image education and the Fat Talk Free Week campaign every fall, the BodyImage 3D campaign aims to provide a more well-rounded approach to personal well being by also focusing on mental and spiritual health. BodyImage 3D provides online resources for members to host on-campus events and inform their chapters. Every school year, the program selects collegiate Tri Delta members to provide a face and a voice for members. These Body Image Ambassadors contribute to the website with articles and advocate for a healthy body, mind, and spirit.

Tri Delta provides each of her new members with a sponsor, often referred to as a "Big Sister", to guide them through their New Member period. Each sponsor works as a peer mentor to provide advice and insight into life as a Tri Delta woman, and a college woman.

The Trident

The Trident is Tri Delta's award-winning publication, published continuously since 1891. The Trident's purpose is to bring to life shared values and reflect on the Tri Delta experience. The publication includes news about current members and alumni.

Delta Shop

Delta Shop is a new addition to the sorority website that sells Tri Delta apparel, accessories, jewelry, stationary and other gifts. All products can be purchased online.


In 2015, the chapter at the University of West Georgia was shut down for violating the university's policy and code of conduct.[9] Serious allegations of hazing was charged against women of the sorority.[10]

In 2011, the chapter at the University of South Carolina was placed on probation after a party they hosted had 31 citations for underage drinking.[11] The sorority was forced to temporarily suspend all social activities as a result.

In 2009, the chapter at Pennsylvania State University was shut down due to hazing and endangering new pledges.[12]

Chapter positions

Each Tri Delta chapter slates members to lead the chapter.

  • Administration Team - This team consists of the house manager, secretary and VP Administration
  • President - In charge of the whole house
  • VP Administration - In charge of monthly schedule and assists President
  • VP Chapter Development - Incorporates ritual into Tri Delta's everyday life
  • VP of Finance - In charge of chapter budgets and member invoices
  • New Member Educator - Works with new members
  • VP Academics - In charge of member academics
  • VP Public Relations - Represents and promotes the chapter and events
  • Treasurer - Assists with Finance Team
  • VP of Membership - In charge of recruitment and ensuring the current chapter abides by Panhellenic guidelines during the recruitment process
  • House Manager - Works with the chapter, and local and national house corporations to maintain a safe and comfortable living environment
  • Secretary - Tracks chapter attendance and house points
  • VP Member Development - In charge of sisterhood events
  • Licensing Chair - Designs apparel for the chapter and all chapter events
  • Alumnae Relations - Keep in touch with Tri Delta Alumni
  • Chapter Correspondent - Oversee internal and external chapter outreach and prepares chapter agenda for meetings
  • Reference Chair - Gather references for recruitment
  • Internal Philanthropy Chair - In charge of chapter's philanthropy events and raising money for St. Jude
  • External Philanthropy Chair - Promotes other sorority/fraternity chapter events on campus
  • Social Chair - In charge of planning chapter events

Notable members

Beauty pageant contestants

  • Donna Axum (Delta Iota) – Miss America 1964[13]
  • Elizabeth Safrit (Alpha Lambda)- Miss United States 2014, Second Runner up at Miss World
  • Maryam Ahmadinia (Phi Kappa) – Miss International Tourism 2010
  • Ashlyn Alongi (Delta Gamma) – Miss Alabama Teen USA 2010, Top 15 at Miss Teen USA
  • Brittany Brannon (Gamma Rho) – Miss Arizona 2011, Top 15 at Miss USA[13]
  • Catherine Brown (Theta Eta) – Miss Wyoming 2011[14]
  • Alicia Clifton (Theta Gamma) – Miss Oklahoma 2012, 2nd Runner-up to Miss America 2013
  • Leanza Cornett (Beta Gamma) – Miss America 1993 and television host[13]
  • Bethany Gerber (Theta Gamma) – Miss Kansas 2010
  • Courtney Gifford (Theta Eta) – Miss Wyoming 2009, Miss Wyoming USA 2013
  • Alicia Grove (Theta Eta) – Miss Wyoming 2010
  • Julie Hayek (Theta Pi) – Miss California 1983, Miss USA 1983
  • Lynn Herring (Delta Omega) – Miss Virginia 1977[15]
  • Nicole Jordan (Delta Mu) – Miss Tennessee 2010
  • Kimberly Kuhn (Theta Eta) – Miss Rodeo Wyoming 2012, 4th Runner Up to Miss Rodeo America
  • Crystal Lee (Omega – Stanford) – Miss California America 2013 - First Runner up to Miss America 2014
  • Lexie Madden (Theta Eta) – Miss Wyoming 2012, 3rd Runner-up to Miss America 2013
  • Carly Mathis (Alpha Rho) – Miss Georgia 2013, Top 10 At Miss America
  • Brook Matthews (Delta Iota) – Miss Nebraska 2004
  • Rebecca Podio (Theta Eta) – Miss Wyoming 2013
  • Ashley Puleo (Alpha Omega) – Miss North Carolina USA 2004, 2nd Runner-up to Miss USA 2004
  • Jaclyn Raulerson (Beta Lambda) – Miss Florida USA 2010
  • Jaclyn Stapp (Alpha Delta) – Miss New York USA 2004 and Mrs. Florida America 2008
  • Shawn Weatherly (Beta Theta) – Miss Universe 1980, Actress[13]
  • Tyler Willis (Phi Eta) – Miss Texas USA 2005, Top 15 at Miss USA 2005[13]
  • Melissa Witek (Alpha Psi) – Miss Florida USA 2005, 4th Runner-up at Miss USA 2005[16]
  • Robbin Lee Wasson (Lambda) – Miss Kansas 1991, third runner-up, Miss America Pagaent [17]

Business and education

Entertainment media

News media


Politics and public service


  • Sophie Caldwell (Gamma Gamma) – Finished 6th in the 2014 Winter Olympics in the Olympic Women's Cross Country Freestyle Sprint. This is the best finish by any American woman in this event.[27]
  • Meryl Davis (Iota) – 2014 Olympic Gold Medalist Ice Dancer[28]
  • Muffy Davis (Omega) - Paralympic cyclist, Sit-Skier and Mountain Climber[23]
  • Annika Dries (Omega) – 2012 Olympic Gold Medalist Water Polo[29]
  • Abby Johnston (Alpha Omicron) – 2012 Olympic Silver Medalist Synchronized Diving[30]
  • Mariya Koroleva (Omega) – 2012 USA Olympic Synchronized Swimming Duet Team[31]

See also


  1. ^
  2. ^,%20Emblems%20and%20Insignia/AboutUs/symbols
  3. ^ "Emblems". Tri Delta. Retrieved 2014-08-20. 
  4. ^ "Insignia". Tri Delta. Retrieved 2014-08-20. 
  5. ^ "St. Jude Fundraising Update". Delta Delta Delta. January 11, 2012. Retrieved 2012-02-07. 
  6. ^ "$15 Million in 5 years". Delta Delta Delta. Retrieved 2012-02-28. 
  7. ^ "$15 Million Raised for St. Jude in 3.5 Years". Tri Delta. Retrieved 2014-08-20. 
  8. ^
  9. ^
  10. ^
  11. ^
  12. ^
  13. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k l m n o p q r s t u v w x y z aa ab ac ad ae af ag ah ai "Distinguished Deltas". Delta Delta Delta. Retrieved 2010-03-25. 
  14. ^ "The Miss Wyoming Pageant". 
  15. ^ "Winners of Miss Virginia USA". 
  16. ^ "Melissa Witek -About Me". Melissa Witek Online. Retrieved 2007-10-02. 
  17. ^ 
  18. ^ Marshall, Ken (April 17, 2008). "Dr. Madeleine Wing Adler named President Emerita". Pennsylvania State System of higher Education. 
  19. ^
  20. ^ programme.pdf
  21. ^
  22. ^ "The Soap Opera Digest Awards: 1989".  
  23. ^ a b "Distinguished Deltas". Retrieved 2015-09-18. 
  24. ^ "Duke University's Tri Delta Sorority Makes Your New Favorite TERRIBLE Recruitment Video".  
  25. ^ "Distinguished Deltas". Tri Delta. Retrieved 2014-08-20. 
  26. ^ Didion, Joan. "The White Album". New York Noonday Press, 1994, p. 207.
  27. ^ "Olympics: U.S. skier Caldwell surprises, Randall disappoints | The Salt Lake Tribune". Retrieved 2014-08-20. 
  28. ^ "Meryl DAVIS / Charlie WHITE: 2013/2014". International Skating Union. Archived from the original on February 10, 2014. 
  29. ^
  30. ^ "Abby Johnston". USA Diving. 1989-11-16. Retrieved 2014-08-20. 
  31. ^ "USA Synchronized Swimming". Retrieved 2014-08-20. 

External links

  • Tri Delta National Web Site
  • Reflections: Body Image Program Web site
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