Zeta Phi Beta Sorority, Incorporated was founded on the campus of Howard University on January 16, 1920 by five outstanding women. Arizona Cleaver, Myrtle Tyler, Viola Tyler, Fannie Pettie, and Pearl A. Neal dared to depart from the traditional coalitions for black women and sought to establish a new organization predicated on the precepts of Scholarship, Service, Sisterly Love and Finer Womanhood.
Zeta Phi Beta Sorority was founded on the simple belief that sorority elitism and socializing should not overshadow the real mission for progressive organizations – to address societal mores, ills, prejudices, poverty, and health concerns of the day. Founded January 16, 1920, Zeta began as an idea conceived by five coeds at Howard University in Washington D.C.: Arizona Cleaver, Myrtle Tyler, Viola Tyler, Fannie Pettie and Pearl Neal. These five women, also known as our Five Pearls, dared to depart from the traditional coalitions for black women and sought to establish a new organization predicated on the precepts of Scholarship, Service, Sisterly Love and Finer Womanhood. It was the ideal of the Founders that the Sorority would reach college women in all parts of the country who were sorority minded and desired to follow the founding principles of the organization. Founder Viola Tyler was oft quoted to say “[In the ideal collegiate situation] there is a Zeta in a girl regardless of race, creed, or color, who has high standards and principles, a good scholarly average and an active interest in all things that she undertakes to accomplish.”
The Iota Eta Chapter of Zeta Phi Beta Sorority, Inc. was chartered on the campus of the University of Alabama on May 4, 1974 by five dedicated undergraduates. These dynamic young women endeavored to promote the ideals set forth by their founders and to ensure that the light of Zeta forever burns. For more information, visit the Zeta website.
National Pan-Hellenic Council
P.O. Box 861381
Tuscaloosa AL 35486