Kansas Alpha image

Kansas Alpha

University of Kansas

Founding date: 4/1/1873

Notable fact: Original I.C. chapter (Kappa)

Philanthropic Events:
Pie a Pi Phi and
Hoops for Haley

Installation of Kansas Alpha

The chapter was installed on April 1, 1873 as Kappa of I.C. Sorosis. The chapter was established through the influence of Illinois Beta Sara Richardson, who spent the summer of 1872 at home in Lawrence, Kansas. Three of her sisters — Flora Richardson (Coleman), May Richarson and Alma Richardson (Wallace), who later became charter members — were attending the University. It was at the first party given by the chapter, to honor Sara, that the Cookie Shine took on its name and place in Pi Beta Phi.

Living at Kansas Alpha

Kansas Alpha was the first chapter to be installed at the University of Kansas. The Arrow magazine was also founded at Kansas Alpha and the chapter published the first edition. There is a grand history to everything that makes Kansas Alpha so special, including the Cookie Shine. The Cookie Shine was a tradition started at Kansas Alpha.

The chapter house is special because the amount of women who receive the chance to live in. Currently 87 women live in the facility. There are 30 bedrooms ranging in sizes from two to eight beds. What makes the Kansas Alpha Chapter house so great is the wonderful alumnae who have donated and supported the house throughout the years. In the fall of 2017, a beautiful garden was added to the side of the house, due to the generosity of alumnae. The garden will be great on nice fall and spring days to go outside and study or entertain. This is just one example of their support. Each room in the house is named after an alumna who served in some way to help Kansas Alpha. Walking down each flight of stairs you will see plaques with lists of notable alumnae who have donated to or received awards within Pi Phi.

Panhellenic Groups on Campus

Alpha Chi Omega, Alpha Delta Pi, Alpha Gamma Delta, Chi Omega, Delta Delta Delta, Delta Gamma, Gamma Phi Beta, Kappa Alpha Theta, Kappa Delta, Kappa Kappa Gamma, Pi Beta Phi and Sigma Kappa.

Philanthropic Service

The Kansas Alpha Chapter has two philanthropy events, one for each semester. In the fall semester, the event is “Pie a Pi Phi.” Pie a Pi Phi is held on campus so students can walk up anytime during the day and throw a “pie” in a Pi Phi’s face for $2. All of the money raised goes to Read > Lead > Achieve®. Recently, the chapter added a new philanthropy event “Hoops for Haley,” in honor of sister Haley Drown who passed away in the summer of 2015. For this event, each fraternity on campus can create a basketball team to play in a basketball tournament. This is a huge event for Kansas Alpha, because all of the proceeds go to the Ali Kemp Foundation as decided by Haley Drown’s family.

Notable Alumnae

  • Dr. Leona Baumgartner, Scientist. Served as commissioner of the Public Health Department of New York, and as deputy in the Agency for International Development with the State Department. 

Carolyn Helman Lichtenberg Crest Award Winners from Kansas Alpha

  • Joanna Miranda Glaze (2014)
  • Stacey Warren (2014)
  • Sally Roney Hoglund (2002)
  • Lois Haskell Straight Johnson (1992)

Grand Council Members from Kansas Alpha

Grand Presidents

  • Helen B. Sutliff
  • Marianne Reid Wild

Grand Council Members

  • Virginia Hutson Getto
  • Adrienne Hiscox Mitchell
  • Jean Oliver Humphrey
  • Josephine March Marvin
  • Lucinda Smith Buchan
  • Marian Keck Simmons
  • Mary Miller Barnes
  • Rose McColloch Dressler
  • Clara Poehler
  • Edythe Mulveyhill Brack
  • Ida Greeley Smith Griffith