Chi Omega’s Newest Colony

Photo Credit: Coastal Carolina University

In January 2017, Chi Omega’s National Extension Team received information that Coastal Carolina University in Conway, SC was looking to add another sorority to their Panhellenic Council. Chi Omega has been interested in extension efforts at Coastal Carolina for the past decade, so Chi Omega’s Director of Extension, Payton Gartman, visited campus and met with Coastal representatives on January 18th. Upon learning more about Coastal’s outstanding Greek community, impressive support from the administration and faculty, and the dynamic student type that attends the university during this visit, Chi Omega was thrilled to move forward with submitting an official extension application on January 27th.

Chi Omega Presentation Team throwing the Chanticleer sign

Out of 9 national organizations that submitted an extension application to Coastal, Chi Omega was honored to be one of the 3 groups asked to make a campus presentation. A team of national representatives, including Shelley Potter (National President), Laura Miller (National Vice-President), Gena Runnion (National Secretary), Jaime Phipps (National Volunteer), Payton Gartman (Director of Extension), Allie Olson (Marketing Manager), Megan Palik (Regional Director), Christina George (Regional Director), Brooke Adams (Chapter Development Specialist), and Temperance Russell (Collegiate Representative), visited campus in March to meet with local alumnae, connect with Panhellenic community members, and present to over 170 campus representatives about how Chi Omega would be a purposeful partner with Coastal.

One week after the campus presentation visit on March 27th, the National Extension Team was ecstatic to receive a call from Coastal Carolina’s Panhellenic Council that Chi Omega was ultimately the group selected to colonize! We would personally like to thank some of the campus representatives who were involved in the extension process and dedicated so much time and energy into this thoughtful decision: Dr. Debbie Conner (Vice-President of Student Life and Campus Engagement), Whitney Comer (Executive Director of Student Life), Brittany Bowles (Director of Fraternity and Sorority Life), Tearah Burden (2017 Panhellenic President), the other Extension Committee members, and the Panhellenic Council.

Chi Omega is thrilled to accept an invitation from Coastal to establish a new chapter this Fall 2017! The beautiful campus and student body reflect Chi Omega’s values and we are very excited to partner with this university to help hundreds of women cultivate a lifetime of purpose through our Sisterhood. We are excited to join the ranks of 6 other sororities currently on campus, including Alpha Delta Pi, Alpha Xi Delta, Gamma Phi Beta, Phi Sigma Sigma, Sigma Kappa, and Sigma Sigma Sigma. Additionally, the new chapter at Coastal Carolina will be the 6th chapter in the state of South Carolina, the 31st chapter in the Southeast Atlantic Region, and the 181st collegiate chapter in the country!

Prior to the colonization in September, the National Extension Team is working to conduct a pre-marketing visit on campus, select and train Advisors and House Corporation Board members, prepare for the colony support team, and continue building upon our purposeful partnership with Coastal’s Panhellenic Council. During the colonization process this fall, Chi Omega will be recruiting over 100 women to be a part of the charter class, which will include freshmen, sophomores, juniors, and seniors. If you know of any young women who currently attend Coastal Carolina and are unaffiliated with another sorority OR any young women who will be enrolled at Coastal this fall, please encourage them to look into the opportunity, follow us on social media, and email with any questions! Additionally, we will be accepting recommendations for young women throughout the fall recruitment process, and those will be used by our extension team during the colonization period. Any recommendations can be sent directly to Chi Omega’s Director of Extension, Payton Gartman, at by August 31st.

Meredith Trank Resident National Consultant

The Resident National Consultant that will be living with the new chapter and leading them through their New Member period this fall is Meredith Trank, an initiate of the Rho Epsilon chapter at Texas Christian University. Meredith has experience with extension, as she served on the recolonization and reinstallation teams for the Nu Kappa chapter at Georgia Southern University in Fall 2016, and will bring the perfect balance of Sisterly leadership, thoughtful organization, and FUN to the establishment efforts.

Once the New Member period is complete in November, a team of national representatives will fly-in to conduct Initiation and the Installation ceremony. From then on, the new chapter will officially be recognized as the Gamma Mu chapter of Chi Omega and will receive their charter at Convention 2018 in Phoenix, AZ!

We would love for YOU to keep up with our establishment efforts at Coastal by following Chi Omega at Coastal Carolina University on Facebook and @ccu_chiomega on Twitter and Instagram! These social mediums will be managed by Chi Omega’s Marketing Department through the fall until the chapter officers are selected and trained. Thank you for support and we cannot wait to welcome more Sisters into our beloved Fraternity!


Letitia Fulkerson

Incoming Chi Omega Foundation President Letitia Niemeier Fulkerson, Zeta Alpha/The Ohio State University

Former Governing Council President Letitia Fulkerson has been appointed by current S.H. Shelley Potter to serve as President of the Chi Omega Foundation, effective in 2017. Outgoing Foundation President Jane Rogers concluded her term in December 2016 with the successful conclusion of the Sisterhood Never Stops Campaign, the largest campaign in women’s fraternal history at more than $26 million.

The devotion of volunteers has been a source of constant strength for Chi Omega. Jane has led the way in these efforts, serving Chi Omega as Centennial Chair from 1992-95, as a Governing Council member from 1994-2000, and as a Foundation Trustee since 2000. Jane graciously agreed to serve as Foundation President from November 2014 through the end of the Campaign, concluding December 2016. We are grateful for her leadership, fundraising skills, generous spirit and all she has shared. Jane will serve another year as a Trustee — and we hope she will be engaged with our Foundation for years to come, as her friendships are far-reaching and efforts for Chi Omega are extraordinary. Proud graduates of the University of Arkansas, Jane and her husband Jay reside in Little Rock, Arkansas.

Outgoing Foundation President Jane Wickard Rogers, Psi/University of Arkansas

Outgoing Chi Omega Foundation President Jane Wickard Rogers, Psi/University of Arkansas

Letitia’s service to Chi Omega Fraternity has been constant since her collegiate experience. She has served Chi Omega in many different capacities, including multiple Fraternity staff roles and service on Chi Omega volunteer teams and committees. Letitia joined the Chi Omega Governing Council in 2004 as Treasurer and was the first ex-officio Foundation Trustee when that role was created in 2006 as the A Loyalty to Sisterhood Campaign for endowment was concluding. She became Fraternity President in 2008, serving for six years.

A past president of The Ohio State University’s Greek Leaders Alumni Society, Letitia has been honored with the Outstanding OSU Alumni Society Leader Award. She received the Outstanding Chi Omega Alumna State of Ohio Award in 2001 and was the recipient of the Chi Omega President’s Award at Convention 2016.

Letitia brings a wealth of experience and skills that will help guide the Foundation for its next endeavors and an exciting future for Chi Omega. With the investment of loyal friends and donors, Letitia and Shelley are excited about the opportunities for Chi Omega.

Professionally, Letitia established an award-winning State Farm Insurance Agency in 1990, which she continues to operate. She and her husband, Mike, live in Cincinnati, Ohio.


Distinguished Alumnae Honored by Chi Omega

Chi Omega recognized exceptional alumnae with two of our highest honors in 2016 through the Roselyn T. Dabbs Philanthropist Award, presented to philanthropist and community leader Linda Gregg Fields (Alpha Zeta/Texas State University) and the Malinda Jolley Mortin Woman of Achievement Award, presented to actress Sela Ward (Nu Beta/University of Alabama).

Linda Gregg Fields, 2016 Roselyn T. Dabbs Philanthropist Award Recipient

Roselyn T. Dabbs Philanthropist Award recipient Linda Gregg Fields is an initiate of Alpha Zeta Chapter at Texas State University, where she earned an education degree. This award was named to honor former Chi Omega Foundation President Roselyn Threadgill Dabbs. It is given to a Chi Omega who has demonstrated outstanding fraternal and charitable responsibility and whose generosity encourages others to take philanthropic leadership roles within the Greek community and in her own community. Linda and her husband, Jerry, are philanthropic visionaries, having donated millions to causes around the globe, including Chi Omega. Her commitment to improving lives reaches many organizations worldwide. The family’s gift of $1 million to the Chi Omega Foundation’s Sisterhood Never Stops Campaign represents one of the largest gifts in Chi Omega’s history, and will be utilized as critical funding to support the emerging needs of the Fraternity in perpetuity.

Sela Ward, 2016 Malinda Jolley Mortin Woman of Achievement

Malinda Jolley Mortin Woman of Achievement Sela Ward is an initiate of the Nu Beta Chapter at the University of Alabama. This national award is the Fraternity’s highest honor, recognizing distinguished accomplishment in service to Chi Omega, an individual’s community, and the nation. The Woman of Achievement Award is named in honor of Georgia resident Malinda Jolley Mortin, a dedicated Chi Omega alumna. Sela has received many awards for her performances, including Emmy Awards, a Golden Globe Award, and a Cable Ace Award. Her roles include those in Independence Day: Resurgence, Gone Girl, The Fugitive, Sisters, Once and Again, CSI: NY, House, and many more. Sela is author of the New York Times bestseller Homesick, founder of Hope Village for Children in her native state of Mississippi, and honorary chair of Chi Omega’s premier giving group, The 1895 Society.

Both awards were presented by the Chi Omega Foundation Trustees during Chi Omega’s 61st Biennial Convention in June 2016, with more than 1,200 collegiate and alumnae delegates in attendance. We are honored to be represented by these incredible Sisters and to recognize their impact on Chi Omega and beyond.

Pictured above (L-R): 2016 Roselyn T. Dabbs Philanthropist Award Recipient Linda Gregg Fields (Alpha Zeta Chapter/Texas State), 2016 Malinda Jolley Mortin Woman of Achievement Sela Ward (Nu Beta Chapter/University of Alabama), Chi Omega Foundation President Jane Rogers (Psi Chapter/University of Arkansas).

Chi Omegas in Miss America 2017

Chi Omega was represented on the Miss America 2017 stage this Sunday by Miss Mississippi, Laura Lee Lewis (Phi Delta Chapter/Mississippi State University) and Miss Texas, Caroline Carothers (Theta Kappa Chapter/Baylor University). Both finished in the Top 7 and Laura Lee was Fourth Runner-Up! We are so proud of their accomplishments.

miss-mississippi-laura-lee-lewis-headshotMiss Mississippi, Laura Lee Lewis is an initiate of the Phi Delta Chapter at Mississippi State University, where is pursuing a degree in Elementary Education. Her platform, Mentoring Matters, is focused on establishing a community-based approach to youth mentorship, bringing awareness to mentoring opportunities and the powerful impact they can have on young men and women. Laura Lee was able to perform her vocal talent on the Miss America stage.

miss-texas-caroline-carothers-headshotMiss Texas, Caroline Carothers is an initiate of the Theta Kappa Chapter at Baylor University, where she is also a Feature Twirler. A competitive baton twirler since the age of 6, Caroline teaches twirling to young women and performed her talent at Miss America. An aspiring math teacher, Caroline’s platform, With Math I Can, helps students reach their potential and change negative attitudes about math.

Chi Omega is honored to be represented by Laura Lee, Caroline, and all of the other Sisters who were local titleholders during 2016. We can’t wait to see what’s next for these incredible women. Congratulations to our Panhellenic Sister and former Miss Arkansas, Savvy Shields, for being crowned Miss America 2017!