In an effort to highlight the people who are leading graduate chapters across the nation, we at Watch The Yard reached out to the brothers of Kappa Alpha Psi Fraternity Inc. in North Houston and did an interview with Shumphert L. Holbert, II the Polemarch of the Spring-The Woodlands-Huntsville (TX) Alumni Chapter.
The position of Polemarch/president of a Black fraternity chapter is a highly respected role and there is a special pride that one takes. Holbert, who is a Product Certification Supervisor / QHSSE Coordinator, is a newly elected Polemarch as of July 2019.
We interviewed Holbert, who is a Fall 2015 initiate and talked to him about his position, goals, future and what it means to hold this type of leadership position in the digital age.
Read the full interview below.
What does it mean to be a chapter president to you?
It means the world to me. To be chosen & looked upon to lead men of Achievement, to continue the legacy of past chapter Polemarchs and to be entrusted with the responsibility in continuing the advancement of this chapter is an honor, privilege, and a most worthy sacrifice.
What specific initiatives is your chapter heading up this year and how do you think they will improve the surrounding community?
Our signature Krawfish Boil is a major scholarship fundraiser for us. It’s held every spring and includes a live band, DJ, activities & games for kids, and food trucks to provide other food options. In addition, our focus will be on the creation of our 501(c)(3) foundation which will increase the number of scholarships we award yearly.
Our Guide Right Mentoring Program will again this year partner with a local elementary school to assist in their Knowledge Character Application Program (K-CAP). The focus of the program is to equip students with leadership and confidence via the school district’s “Great 8” skills that promotes optimistic thinking, decision making, personal responsibility, self-awareness, social awareness, goal directed behavior, self-management, and relationship skills.
Kappa League, our leadership development program for youth, will again host and assist with their signature event, Male Summit. The summit strives every year to encourage and enrich the lives of young men in our community by providing workshops such as public speaking, chivalry & proper manners, life long decision making, and proper usage of technology & social media.
What made you want to pledge Kappa Alpha Psi?
My father, Life Member & 1965 Florida A&M Alpha Xi Chapter initiate, gave me my first glimpse of what brotherhood, loyalty, community service, acceptance of responsibility, and interest in the welfare of others was all about. My interest was sparked at an early age through my father’s involvement in the Moss Point (MS) Alumni Chapter where he was a charter member. As a youth, I volunteered with the local chapter at their yearly community activities. This gave me a greater insight of the fraternity and how its about maturity, dedication, and a life long commitment to achievement. Through this influence at a young age, a love developed in me that continued to blossom. My father called this personal love of fraternity “that Good Old Kappa Spirit.”
What is it about your specific chapter that makes it so unique?
Our chapter is the youngest, by chapter origination, amongst all of the Houston, TX area Kappa chapters (6). We are in the defining age of what our chapter’s legacy will be and look like.
We now live in a digital world, what do you think alumni chapters across all orgs need to do to represent themselves online in 2019?
We need to all showcase value worthy content to reflect the impact we have & love we spread in our respective communities and at the same time displaying appropriate social content.
What does leadership mean to you?
Leadership to me means to lead by example. My style of leadership is being a servant leader. Followers take on the personality and likeness of their leader if deemed worthy.
Why do you think Watch The Yard is important to Black greekdom?
It’s important to have an outlet that promotes our greek culture, greek unity, community service, and social awareness for all to see.
What does brotherhood/sisterhood mean to you?
How is your chapter providing for the undergraduate chapters you support?
Financial support, mentoring, and assisting in the transition from college to the professional world.
We at Watch The Yard would like to commend Shumphert L. Holbert, II for his work as the Polemarch of the Tri-City Nupes which have a legacy that spans back to 2009.