The dynamic and driving force behind the timeless chartering of the Iota Gamma Omega Chapter, affectionately known as IGO, was North Atlantic Regional Director, Esther Pollard. Regional Director Pollard revealed to the pioneering ladies her personal dream of expanding Alpha Kappa Alpha by organizing chapters in each county circling the Capital Beltway of Metropolitan Washington, D.C. Through her strong and compassionate leadership and constant encouragement, “The Founding Five,” Ertie Barnes, Barbara Billups Seaforth, Theatrice Davis, Susan Trent and Sarah Wise Wooten, met with Regional Director Pollard to discuss the possibility of establishing a chapter in Prince George’s County, Maryland, on October 24, 1969. Thus the stage was set for using the talents and strengths of these women to benefit humankind in Prince George’s County, Maryland.
In 1970 at the 44th Boule in Kansas City, MI, the request for chartering the chapter was presented and approved. Sarah Wise Wooten and Ertie Barnes attended and heard the Boule vote to accept Prince George’s County Interest Group as a chapter. The chartering ceremony took place on November 14, 1970 at the Colony 7 Motel in Laurel, Maryland and Iota Gamma Omega became the first chapter of Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority, Inc. in Prince George’s County, MD.
A “vision fair had been captured” as twenty-four Alpha Kappa Alpha women participated in the chartering ceremony that was presided over by Anne Mitchum Davis, North Atlantic Regional Director.
Ertie Barnes, Erma Barron, Annette Stone Blake, Hazel H. Carter, Joyce B. Clark, Theatrice B. Davis, Charlotte N. Denison, Ella Gamble Edwards, Catherine Garner Gilchrist, Charline Yvonne Lewis Jacob, Venda Jennings, Elenda London Jones, Cenetta Jamison Lee, Alice Davidson Luckey, Carol Jamison Parrish, Barbara Billups Seaforth, Doris Campbell Sensabaugh, Dessie Smith, Mary Ray Thompson, Trevious Watts, Susan Woolfork Trent, Sarah Wise Wooten, Rose Russell Wynn and Myrtle Fentress.
As one of several chapters in the North Atlantic Region, since its chartering in 1970 the chapter has provided and sponsored several service-oriented programs that care for children and adults. IGO has held true to our commitment of service to all mankind in Prince George’s County. From social action, health and wellness and community advocacy, the chapter has been a front runner and bringing forth many of the community initiatives we see today in the local community. Through the years the chapter has been a strong voice in voter registration and participating in coalitions and group forums as the county transformed into an affluent African-American community. The chapter was largely involved in forming what is now known as AKA Day in Annapolis. The chapter has also created programs that provide educational enrichment programs designed to enhance the development of youth in Prince George’s County.
Today, standing strong with over 655 members, IGO membership is made up of college-educated, innovative and creative professionals. With members who serve in public offices, as county and state officials, as corporate executives and religious leaders, our membership is made up of a diverse group of women who span across various generations and backgrounds. The chapter oversees two undergraduate chapters – the Eta Chapter of Bowie State University, and the Theta Nu chapter of University of MD College Park. For over 50 years IGO has made significant impacts in our community and we are deeply committed to leaving a legacy by continually providing services to the residents of Prince Georges County, MD.
Former Chapter Presidents
1970-1975: Sarah Wise Wooten*
1976-1979: Ertie F. Barnes*
1980-1983: Mary Ray Thompson*
1984-1987: Erma W. Barron
1988-1989: Louise L. Brown
1990-1993: Oretha Bridgewaters-Simms
1994-1997: Gloria McCollum
1998-2001: Cheryl Petty Garnette
2002-2005: Carolyn N. Pinckney
2006-2009: Kathy Keys Waymmann
2010-2013: Ingrid S. Harrison
2014-2017: Saran T. Baker
2018-2019: Deidre N. Jackson