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Alumnae Awards

2017 Alumnae Award Winners

To see the full list of alumnae award winners, click here.  

Read details about the award winners by scrolling down. Congratulations, winners!   

Premier Club

Large Club: Phoenix, Arizona Alumnae Club

  • At least 50 percent of the club’s 200 members participated in the club’s literacy initiatives, contributing more than 670 literacy-related volunteer hours, $4,000 in-kind book donations and $1,490 in other contributions to support literacy projects. In addition, the Phoenix Alumnae Club raised almost $7,000 for The Literacy Fund at the Pi Beta Phi Foundation.
  • Implemented the theme, “Our AIM is True,” to focus on the club’s goal to find the deeper meaning in what Pi Phi means to members. Events were specially designed to increase involvement and focus on fun, friendship and philanthropy.
  • Restructured the club’s officer positions to promote delegation and involvement, including adding an assistant communications role to focus on social media and more than 30 other leadership opportunities.

Premier Club

Small Club: San Diego, California Alumnae Club

  • Increased membership by almost 60 percent over the previous year by applying a “personal touch” in order to attract and retain members, including following up to invitations, sending thank you notes after events and asking members to attend the next event.
  • Collected and sourced more than 1,000 new and gently-used books for a local school distribution, received FDS500 Grant and celebrated Fraternity Day of Service along with the collegians from California Epsilon at San Diego State University.
  • Implemented creative and consistent communication via evites and social media posts, and customized a mass mailing by parsing the club roster into groups that might prefer a mailed newsletter versus email.

Premier Club 1st Runner Up

Large Club: Nashville, Tennessee Alumnae Club

  • Increased the club’s overall membership and asked new members to hold positions early on so they can meet other members. 21 percent of the Pi Phis in Nashville are dues-paying members.
  • Donated 500 books to The Afterschool Program (TAP) through a Fraternity Day of Service 500 grant and donated $14,500 to Pi Beta Phi Foundation.
  • Organizes and operates Christmas Village, an annual charity event with more than 30,000 shoppers, to benefit the Vanderbilt Bill Wilkerson Center for Hearing and Speech, the Pi Beta Phi Rehabilitation Institute, the Mama Lere Preschool and Arrowmont.

Premier Club 1st Runner Up

Small Club: Peoria, Illinois Alumnae Club

  • Celebrated Fraternity heritage by inviting Fraternity Historian and Archivist Fran Becque, a Pi Beta Phi Foundation representative and the women of Illinois Theta at Bradley University to a special event.
  • Partnered with Heart of Illinois United Way Success by Six, as well as the Kappa Kappa Gamma Alumnae Club, to read and perform the book “Soup Opera” to 18 pre-K classrooms. Each classroom received a kit with props, the book, and a fully orchestrated CD.
  • Increased membership by conducting personal outreaches to Pi Phis in the area. 24 percent of the Pi Phis in the area are dues-paying members.

Premier Club 2nd Runner Up

Large Club: Oklahoma City, Oklahoma Alumnae Club

  • Held a “Gathering of Angels” luncheon as the club’s primary fundraising event where Pi Phi's 2011 Member of Distinction award winner, Barbie Tootle, spoke on literacy advocacy. Donations went to support Pi Beta Phi Foundation and Santa Fe South Elementary School through a Pi Beta Phi Foundation Local Impact Grant.
  • The club’s most successful interest group is the Book Club, which meets year-round and focused last year on Pi Phi’s Fraternity Heritage. The Book Club took a segment of each meeting to explore Fraternity heritage and incorporated specific Pi Phi songs to sing.
  • 25 percent of the Pi Phis in the Oklahoma City area are dues paying members.

Premier Club 2nd Runner Up

Small Club: Southlake, Texas Alumnae Club

  • Incorporated the theme “Sisters are Forever” into club meetings with Forever Friends for a kickoff meeting, Reading is Forever for Literacy events and a Future Sisters get-together to write Recruitment Information Forms (RIFs) for Potential New Members (PNMs).
  • Conducted the CAR Literacy program at Morningside Elementary School in Fort Worth in honor of Fraternity Day of Service. Alumnae and spouses gathered over the course of a month for a reading carnival, year-long reading buddies, Literacy Night and ongoing book collection.
  • Placed fun and friendship as the club’s focus, including having welcoming attitudes.

Emma Harper Turner Leadership Award

Emily Ziobrowski Van Ostern, D.C. Alpha at The George Washington University, representing the Northern Virginia Alumnae Club

  • Emily is a truly forward-thinking servant leader. She encourages her Executive Board to focus on delegating, following through, informing others and keeping the club fun.
  • Dues collection exceeded membership goals due to Emily’s leadership. She uses targeted communication to quickly engage new members.
  • She successfully expanded club programming based on input from members. The more popular events remained the same, while “meetings” became “meet-ups” to increase the number of gatherings held each month.

Evelyn Peters Kyle Angel Award for Club Service

Madalyn Marchman Jones, Arkansas Alpha at University of Arkansas, representing the Cypress Creek-NW Houston Alumnae Club

  • As a volunteer since 1973, Madalyn has served at the local, regional and international levels. She served the alumnae club in every leadership role and played a pivotal role in forming the local alumnae Panhellenic group.
  • She consistently demonstrates Sincere Friendship and is always happy to provide advice. She helps other members understand the changes made at the international Fraternity level along the way. She attended Convention with the current club president to help her navigate the event and introduce her to others.
  • Madalyn continues to work at the club’s annual fundraiser and also speaks to the seniors at the Texas Eta Chapter at Texas A&M on the value and advantage of alumnae membership.

Young Alumna Achievement Award

Callie Joe Rutherford, Mississippi Beta at University of Mississippi, representing the Dallas, Texas Alumnae Club

  • Callie’s dedication to the Fraternity and the community demonstrates Pi Phi’s values of servant leadership and Sincere Friendship daily.
  • She embraces several leadership roles, including sitting on multiple alumnae club committees, is a member of the Texas Beta Chapter at Southern Methodist University Alumnae Advisory Committee (AAC) and serves on Pi Beta Phi Foundation’s Finance Committee.
  • In addition to her service to Pi Phi, Callie is a valuable volunteer in her community with the Junior League of Dallas, Our Friend’s Place, Reading Partners and Young Women’s Preparatory Network.

Alumnae Excellence Award Winners

Excellence in Chapter Support

Large Club: Bostonian, Massachusetts Alumnae Club

  • Partners annually with the Massachusetts Gamma Chapter at Massachusetts Institute of Technology for Founders’ Day. Program is jointly presented by the chapter and the alumnae club presidents. Officers from the chapter and club provide a summary of the year and celebrate accomplishments.
  • Both the chapter and club participate in the Champions are Readers (CAR) program and volunteer at other literacy-focused organizations such as More Then Words. Chapter members attended the club’s Fraternity Day of Service event, and the club provided an alumnae team in the chapter’s volleyball tournament Arrowspike.
  • Alumnae promote Sincere Friendship by performing acts of kindness for the chapter, such as baking and delivering cookies. Alumnae Club members make themselves available to the chapter, especially seniors, for professional guidance by hosting network and professional skills events.

Excellence in Chapter Support

Small Club: Manchester Area, Connecticut Alumnae Club

  • Coordinates a spring Pink Party with the seniors of the Connecticut Alpha Chapter at University of Connecticut. In addition to the array of pink-themed refreshments, the seniors who attend learn about alumnae life and how they can continue their Pi Phi journey.
  • Hosts an alumnae club/chapter member mentoring program. Members use a Google form to share information about their field of work or degree to help alumnae mentor women as they prepare to enter the working world.
  • Hosts a large tea party-style Founders’ Day celebration for both alumnae and collegians. They celebrate the Founders and their golden arrows, demonstrating Lifelong Commitment. Members of the alumnae club also attend initiation.

Excellence in Community Service

Large Club: NYC-Manhattan Alumnae Club

  • Demonstrated Philanthropic Service to Others through established and new volunteer opportunities — American Cancer Society’s Making Strides Walk in Central Park, making holiday cards for nursing home residents, participating in Adopt-a-Family and multiple reading events.
  • Hosted inaugural event with Reveal, an organization that fosters uplifting “pampering” experiences with women survivors of domestic violence and sex-trafficking.
  • Donated books from an FDS500 grant throughout Harlem and partnered with the New York Eta Chapter at New York University for Fraternity Day of Service volunteer opportunities.

Excellence in Community Service

Small Club: Naples, Florida Alumnae Club

  • Organized a Just Book It program for Shadowlawn Elementary School’s literacy program. Members contributed 25 volunteer hours, donated more than 1,200 books and raised $5,000.
  • Members gathered to assist Pi Phis and the community during Hurricane Irma. The club raised $6,500 and volunteered more than 300 hours in assisting others in need.
  • Generated more than 650 volunteer hours with 65 percent involvement from a club which experiences “seasonal” members who are in town for six months each year.

Excellence in Literacy Initiatives

Large Club: Northern Virginia Alumnae Club

  • Partnered with five children’s literacy organizations and conducted a wide variety of activities including Diapers and Books, Ronald McDonald House, Guest Chefs, TuTu Tuesday and an FDS500 book distribution event.
  • Hosted a week-long event which generated 1,000 service hours. The week ended with a literacy ball raising more than $30,000. 60 percent of the clubs members were involved in the successful event.

Excellence in Literacy Initiatives

Small Club: Peoria, Illinois Alumnae Club

  • Partnered with Kappa Kappa Gamma's alumnae club and United Way for Fraternity Day of Service to celebrate Read Across America week. The club read and performed the book “Soup Opera.”
  • Partnered with the Illinois Theta Chapter at Bradley University and “Look! It's My Book” to label and donate 500 books.
  • Maximized partnership in the local community to benefit literacy awareness, including holding a fundraiser and literacy advocacy event at a clothing store.

Excellence in Membership and Recruitment

Large Club: Nation's Capital, D.C. Alumnae Club

  • Utilized a number of members to host events that encourage better connections within the club.
  • Utilized the club’s “Relocation To” report to send personalized messages to those new to the area.
  • Newsletters and a weekly digest included a sister spotlight on a different club member each month, as well as Angel Antics to share news about club members. After providing these personal touches, the club membership increased 30 percent.

Excellence in Membership and Recruitment

Small Club: San Diego, California Alumnae Club

  • Communicated with members through multiple platforms such as e-mail, texts, Instagram and personal handwritten notes. This type of personal communication helped increase paid membership by nearly 60 percent over the previous year.
  • Club meetings were purposely scheduled and held in areas that were convenient for current members and potentional members to focus on growing club membership.

Excellence in Programming

Large Club: South Coast, California Alumnae Club

  • Started “Launch into Literacy” to incorporate and connect with kids during the summer months. Due to the success of this event, the club continued to host the program throughout the year.
  • Designed programming to make the club more accessible and friendly to all ages based on the club’s goal to “Share, Inspire, Donate and Lead.” For example, the club broadened its communication to include electronic and hard copy, as well as personal notes welcoming new members to the area and club.
  • Incorporated numerous interest groups, gatherings, book clubs and historical lectures to include the club’s varied member interests and ages.

Excellence in Programming

Small Club: Cypress Creek-NW Houston, Texas Alumnae Club

  • Conducted a member survey and used the feedback to plan programming based on members’ geographic location. The implemented changes increased membership and meeting attendance.
  • Returned from Convention 2017 and shared videos, brought back new Pi Phi songs and new ideas for celebrating and conducting community service.
  • Changed “brag” basket to “praise and prayer” basket resulting in 100 percent participation and the opportunityto share sisterhood experiences.