Light Blue      Navy Blue

     Gold Symbol Quill Flower Pink rose Jewel Pearl, diamond Publication The Quill of Alpha Xi Delta Philanthropy Autism Speaks Chapters 130 active (217 total) Members 175,000+ collegiate Mascot BetXi Bear Headquarters 8702 Founders Road
Indianapolis, Indiana
United States Website http://www.alphaxidelta.org/
Alpha Xi Delta House at the University of Texas at Austin
Alpha Xi Delta Sorority house at Ohio University.

Alpha Xi Delta (ΑΞΔ or A-"Zee"-D ) is a sorority founded on April 17, 1893[1][2] at Lombard College in Galesburg, Illinois, United States. It is one of the oldest women's fraternities as well as one of the ten founding fraternities of the National Panhellenic Conference (NPC). It has over 175,000 initiated members and maintains active chapters at 130 institutions across the United States. By its Constitution, Alpha Xi Delta is one of the few social sororities that can accept graduate students as well as undergraduates.[3]


In 1893, ten women at Lombard College in Galesburg, Illinois shared a vision and a dream of a national organization dedicated to the personal growth of women. Their dream became Alpha Xi Delta, one of the oldest women's fraternities in the United States. It is referred to as a fraternity due to having been founded before sororities were present.

The ten founders of Alpha Xi Delta were:

  • Cora Bollinger Block (1869-1944) was the first President of Alpha Xi Delta. She went on to be the first Grand President. She married a Sigma Nu.
  • Alice Bartlett Bruner (1878-1966) taught music at the Lombard Conservatory. She had two daughters who later joined the sorority as a legacy. She married a Sigma Nu.
  • Bertha Cook Evans (1874-1957) had three daughters, two of whom joined Alpha Xi Delta. Later in her life, she served as a fraternity house director. She married a Sigma Nu.[4]
  • Harriett Luella McCollum (1874-1948) and Cora, roommates at Lombard, were the first to make the plan for Alpha Xi Delta. She married a Sigma Nu.
  • Lucy W. Gilmer (1872-1939) was the first Vice President of Alpha Xi Delta. After 1893 she transferred schools, where she studied to be a physician.
  • Lewie Strong Taylor (1867-1950) designed the quill symbol, which is on display at national headquarters.
  • Almira Lowry Cheney (1875-1946) was a teacher who went on to pioneer religious education by becoming a minister of the Universalist Church. She was also Chaplain of the 12th, 13th, and 14th National Conventions for Alpha Xi Delta.
  • Frances Elizabeth Cheney (1869-1901), in her time as an Alpha Xi, served as chaplain, secretary, and president. She is given credit for many of the fraternity's early songs.
  • Eliza Drake Curtis Everton (1867-1934) was Alpha Xi Delta's second president. She married a Sigma Nu.
  • Julia Maude Foster (1875-1948)[5] was a member of the committee who drafted Alpha Xi Delta's first constitution.

The ideals envisioned by Alpha Xi Delta's founders have remained constant throughout the years, inspiring each member to pursue individual excellence. Now a national sorority with more than 175,000 initiated members, it is an organization with 130 active college chapters and alumnae associations throughout the United States.

Since Alpha Xi Delta's founding over 124 years ago, it continues to emphasize the ideals the founders instilled in the sorority: sisterhood, leadership, knowledge and service to communities.[6]

Alpha Xi Delta is the only National Panhellenic Conference sorority that uses "Xi" in its official name.

Their brother fraternity is Sigma Nu.


The open creed of Alpha Xi Delta is called "The Symphony of Alpha Xi Delta", and shows the ideals toward which all Alpha Xis strive. It was written in 1924 by Helen Willis Lynn, Alice Matthews, and Almira Cheney, one of the original founders.

"These things do we earnestly desire:

A clear vision of life, that with gracious and kindly hearts we may share both joy and sorrow, and bring into living reality the sisterhood of women.

An appreciation of real merit and worth, steadfastness of soul, that without bitterness or defeat we may encounter misfortune and with humility meet success.

These things, O Lord, help us to instill within our hearts,

that we may grow in courage, and graciousness, and peace."


The colors of Alpha Xi Delta are double blue (light and navy) and gold.[2] The fraternity flower is the pink Killarney Rose,[2] as chosen by the founders to complement the white rose of Sigma Nu fraternity whose brothers helped to found Alpha Xi Delta at Lombard College.[7] The mascot is a teddy bear, and the official mascot is named BetXi Bear. Each initiated member wears the golden quill (the official symbol), which is depicted in the Alpha Xi Delta crest and represents the Alpha Xi Delta open motto "The Pen is Mightier than the Sword." The pearl and the diamond are the official jewels.

The mission statement of the fraternity is to

[...] enrich the life of every Alpha Xi Delta. We will:

  • Nurture unity and cooperation.
  • Foster intellectual, professional, and personal growth.
  • Exemplify the highest ethical conduct.
  • Instill community responsibility.
  • Perpetuate fraternal growth.[8]


Alpha Xi Delta's national philanthropy is called Autism Speaks. The new philanthropy was announced on April 2, 2009.[9] The sorority has since raised more than $5,000,000 for its philanthropic partner.[10][11]

Alpha Xi Delta chapters and alumnae associations observe World Autism Awareness Day on April 2 and Autism Awareness Month throughout the month of April. Sisters raise awareness in various ways, including passing out blue ribbons, placing advertisements in campus and local newspapers, distributing information in the community and appearing on local television programs to educate people about autism.

Alpha Xi Delta participates in Light It Up Blue, an initiative started by Autism Speaks in 2009 to help "Shine a Light on Autism by Illuminating Prestigious Buildings and Monuments Throughout the World". Alpha Xi Delta members participate by lighting their chapter houses, campus monuments and sports facilities blue during the month of April.[12]

Students at Purdue University line up to join Alpha Xi Delta during rush week.

Prior to partnering with Autism Speaks, Alpha Xi Delta was the only sorority that did not have an official organization as a philanthropy. The "Choose Children" policy gave each chapter direction to choose which organization they wanted to help.

The AmaXIng Challenge

The AmaXIng Challenge is Alpha Xi Delta's signature fundraising event designed to raise critical funds for Autism Speaks. Each college chapter hosts at least one of the following AmaXIng Challenge[13] events per year:

  • Step It Up Walk/Run
  • Xi Man Competition
  • Xi Marks the Spot
  • Football FrenXI
  • Puzzlepalooza
  • Karaoke for a Cause


In 2010, the Miami University chapter of Alpha Xi Delta was suspended until 2014 for alcohol violations stemming from their raucous and destructive formal at Cincinnati's National Underground Railroad Freedom Center.[14][15]

In 2011, the Alpha Xi Delta national organization revoked the Binghamton University chapter's charter for "continu[ing]to violate Alpha Xi Delta’s policies on risk management and observance of Fraternity rituals despite efforts to lead the chapter to a culture consistent with Alpha Xi Delta’s policies and value."[16]

In 2017, the Cornell University chapter of Alpha Xi Delta was placed on probationary status for three years, "as a result of incidents determined to include both hazing and alcohol policy violations."[17]

In 2017, the University of Central Florida chapter of Alpha Xi Delta was suspended on the grounds of "allegations of alcohol-related misconduct, which includes providing alcohol to someone underage; hazing; and possessing and/or providing false and misleading information and/or falsification of university records."[18]

Controversy over Autism Speaks affiliation

In 2017, editorials appeared in the Temple University[19] and the College of New Jersey[20] student newspapers criticizing Alpha Xi Delta for its philanthropic connections to Autism Speaks on the grounds that the organization misunderstands, misrepresents, and promotes harmful stereotypes of individuals with autism.


Notable alumnae




  • Carol Aebersold (Gamma Chi) - co-author of The Elf on the Shelf[29]
  • Dr. Karen Casey Elliot - writer, Alpha Xi Delta Woman of Distinction
  • Ann Hyman (Iota Delta) - author of Diary of a Sorority House Mom[30]
  • Amy Sandvold (Delta Chi) - educational writer; co-author of The Passion-Driven Classroom: A Framework for Teaching and Learning (2010) and The Fundamentals of Literacy Coaching (2008)
  • Karen Tumulty (Beta Alpha) - national political correspondent for Time magazine and The Washington Post

Government and military

See also


  1. ^ Alpha Xi Delta. 5–6. G. Banta Company. 1907. p. 143. OCLC 445768029. Retrieved 2010-05-17. 
  2. ^ a b c Baird, William Raimond; Brown, James Taylor (1920). Baird's Manual of American College Fraternities (9th ed.). G. Banta Company. pp. 430–432. OCLC 17350924. Retrieved 2011-04-10. 
  3. ^ The Constitution itself is not available to the public. However, an official workbook of the organization's academic standards specifically mentions "graduate students who were initiated as graduate students," clearly making reference to the Constitutional possibility of such members. Link: http://www.alphaxidelta.org/clientuploads/Academic/2012%20Academic%20Achievement%20Chair%20Breakout%20Workbook.pdf.
  4. ^ "THE WOMEN WHO STARTED IT ALL". wordpress. Retrieved 28 October 2016. 
  5. ^ "Why the founders of Alpha Xi Delta are squad goals". odyssey. Retrieved 28 October 2016. 
  6. ^ "Alpha Xi Delta: History/Insignia". Alpha Xi Delta. Archived from the original on 2012-04-01. Retrieved 2012-07-24. 
  7. ^ "Alpha Xi Delta Manuscript Collection". Knox College Library. Retrieved 2011-04-12. 
  8. ^ "Alpha Xi Delta : Vision and Mission". Alpha Xi Delta. Archived from the original on 2011-09-27. Retrieved 2011-04-10. 
  9. ^ "Alpha Xi Delta Raises More than $120,000 in Support of Autism Speaks". Autism Speaks. April 2, 2009. Retrieved 2011-04-10. 
  10. ^ Blog post: ΑΞΔ raises more than $2M for Autism Speaks, accessed 27 May 2014
  11. ^ "Alpha Xi Delta : Philanthropy/Service (2012 report)". Alpha Xi Delta. July 24, 2012. Archived from the original on April 14, 2012. Retrieved 2012-07-24. 
  12. ^ "Alpha Xi Delta : Autism Awareness". Alpha Xi Delta. July 24, 2012. Retrieved 2012-07-24. 
  13. ^ "Alpha Xi Delta : AmaXIng Challenge". Alpha Xi Delta. July 24, 2012. Retrieved 2012-07-24. 
  14. ^ "Unrecognized Organizations - Miami University". miamioh.edu. Retrieved 2017-11-21. 
  15. ^ "More Drunken Sorority Madness". The Smoking Gun. 2010-07-11. Retrieved 2017-11-21. 
  16. ^ "Alpha Xi Delta sorority loses charter". Pipe Dream. 2011-11-03. Retrieved 2017-11-21. 
  17. ^ "Alpha Xi Delta put on probationary recognition Cornell Chronicle". news.cornell.edu. Retrieved 2017-11-21. 
  18. ^ Dahm, Daniel (2017-11-21). "UCF sorority suspended amid hazing, alcohol-related allegations". WKMG. Retrieved 2017-11-21. 
  19. ^ "Autism Speaks should change focus - The Temple News". The Temple News. Retrieved 2017-11-21. 
  20. ^ "Alpha Xi Delta should reconsider philanthropy". The Signal. 2017-04-17. Retrieved 2017-11-21. 
  21. ^ "Spring 2004 Quill – Sister Profiles" (PDF). Alpha Xi Delta. 2004. Retrieved 2007-03-19. [dead link]
  22. ^ "Fall 2000 Quill – From West Virginia to the West Wing". Alpha Xi Delta. 2000. Archived from the original on 2007-09-28. Retrieved 2007-03-19. 
  23. ^ "'Pitch Perfect 2' star Chrissie Fit: From Hialeah to Hollywood". miamiherald. Retrieved 2018-01-04. 
  24. ^ "Summer 2006 Quill – Distinguished Designer" (PDF). Alpha Xi Delta. 2006. Retrieved 2011-04-10. 
  25. ^ "The Quill of Alpha Xi Delta; Summer 2013". Alpha Xi Delta. September 1, 2013. Retrieved 2014-01-05. 
  26. ^ "Featured Friday! - Alex and Ani". AlphaXiDelta.org. March 8, 2013. Retrieved 2014-01-05. 
  27. ^ "Sorority Hair: Memories Of Alpha Xi Delta". HairBoutique.com. October 25, 2006. Retrieved 2007-03-19. 
  28. ^ a b "Fall 2004 Quill – She's a Leader, a Trailblazer, an Inspiration!" (PDF). Alpha Xi Delta. 2004. Retrieved 2007-03-19. [dead link]
  29. ^ http://alumnus.tennessee.edu/2011/working-for-santa/
  30. ^ http://themindofann.com/about-me/
  31. ^ "Astronaut Bio: N. Jan Davis". NASA. January 2006. Archived from the original on 10 February 2007. Retrieved 2007-03-19. 

External links