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Leadership Highlight

Leadership Highlight: Monica Pete the Basileus of Sigma Gamma Rho’s Alpha Sigma Alumnae Chapter in San Antonio

In an effort to highlight the people who are leading graduate chapters across the nation, we at Watch The Yard reached out to the sorority sisters of Sigma Gamma Rho Sorority Inc.’s Alpha Phi Sigma Alumnae Chapter in San Antonio, Texas and did an interview with Monica Pete the Basileus of the chapter. 

The position of Basileus/president of a Black sorority chapter is a highly respected role and there is a special pride that one takes. Monica Pete, who works in Government Guarantee Portfolio Management, has been in the position of Basileus for year. 

We interviewed Monica Pete, who is a Spring 2001 Prairie View A&M University initiate of Sigma Gamma Rho and talked to her about her position, goals, future and what it means to hold this type of leadership position in the digital age. 

Read the full interview below. 

What motivated you to take on the role of alumni chapter president?

I am very passionate about leading by example and motivating others to give their best to our chapter endeavors. I love to help people and share my knowledge, wisdom, and build relationships in the community and partnerships to elevate our chapter to the next level. 

What specific initiatives is your chapter heading up this year and how do you think they will improve the local community or the broader Black community?

• Our chapter is raising funds for the St. Jude 2023 run/walk to help fight for a cure for sickle cell which that highly affects the black community.

• We support Project Cradle Care, one of our Signature National Program Initiatives by partnering with local Black Doulas, March of dimes and other community organizations to help expectant moms/mothers with baby clothes and supplies.

• In addition, we sponsor a youth symposium in the Spring where we educate the youth on financial literacy, investing, healthy eating and fitness.

• Moreover, we collect donations and schools supplies to support our national initiative “Operation Big Book Bag”. Local schools in need are the beneficiaries of this community service and outreach program. 

What made you want to pledge Sigma Gamma Rho?

When I was attending Prairie View A&M University, the ladies of Sigma Gamma Rho Sorority, Inc. were very nice and welcoming to me. They would always invite me to come out and attend their programs and community service events on campus. I loved the fact that the Sigma Gamma Rho was founded by seven school teachers and that the chapter had one of the highest GPAs on campus. I wanted to be a part of an organization of very highly educated women with a passion for serving the community and this was the perfect fit for me. 

What is it about your specific chapter that makes it so unique?

Our chapter membership is cross-generational. We are full of love, sisterhood, and wisdom. We are one of the oldest alumnae chapters that have served South Texas since 1945. Our chapter is in the heart of Military City USA. We have several Sorors who have served in the miliary from different branches of service. We also have members that are small business owners, educators, healthcare professionals, bankers, and realtors who have the passion in the field of their career and the passion to serve and support our chapter. 

How is your chapter providing for the undergraduate chapters you support?

Alpha Phi Sigma Alumnae Chapter currently has two active undergraduate chapters at two college campuses and regional undergraduates from schools that either do not allow Greek life or a chapter present on campus. We provide support primarily in the form of guidance by serving as their advisory/parent chapter. We are mentors to our undergraduates and demonstrate support by attending their programs on campus and including them in our graduate chapter activities. They also attend our monthly chapter meetings to gain experience in effectively running meetings and to provide a report on their chapter activities on their respective campuses. We also encourage undergraduates to continue their Sigma journey lifetime commitment by transferring to a graduate chapter after graduation from college. 

How do you approach fostering a sense of unity and camaraderie among alumni members, and what strategies have you found effective?

Leading by example, having a positive mindset, and open communication between members. We have quarterly sisterly gatherings at restaurants, hosts sip and paint, and socialize/fellowship at Chicken-n-Pickle to play games and pickleball. These gatherings help us bond and build relationships and friendships. 

What advice would you give to aspiring leaders within your sorority who may aspire to take on roles of leadership within alumni chapters?

• The first thing I would say to them is to be fearless and step up into leadership! The road is not easy to travel on, and it comes with many challenges and decisions you must make for the greater good of your chapter. • Utilize your network and resources to help you build and develop relationships with leaders in your chapter and other chapters, as well as Divine Nine organizations. • Build relationships, friendships, and partnerships with other organizations. They can help give you wise advice, counsel, and encouragement, as well as share their experiences in leadership that can help you when you face those challenging times or obstacles in leadership. 

How has mentorship helped you get to where you are today? Are there any specific people in your org who have made a significant impact on your life as mentors?

Mentorship has helped me tremendously throughout my Sigma journey. I have several mentors in my local chapter and other Divine Nine organizations that have had a positive impact on providing me guidance and advice during my tenure as the Basileus of my local chapter too. 

Why do you think Watch The Yard is important to Black greekdom?

Watch the Yard is important to Black Greekdom because it is a virtual platform that demonstrates black excellence on college campuses and in Greek life. It showcases the achievements, talents, and leadership of black people. It sheds light on the positive work we are doing in our respective communities. Watch the Yard is a great resource to help gain knowledge to make an informative decision on what organization in the Divine Nine will be the best fit for you. 

Looking back at it, why do you love being a member of your org?

Watch the Yard is important to Black Greekdom because it is a virtual platform that demonstrates black excellence on college campuses and in Greek life. It showcases the achievements, talents, and leadership of black people. It sheds light on the positive work we are doing in our respective communities. Watch the Yard is a great resource to help gain knowledge to make an informative decision on what organization in the Divine Nine will be the best fit for you. 

​​Lastly, what does sisterhood mean to you?

Sisterhood means fostering Godly, healthy, and meaningful relationships and friendships for life! My group of prayer warriors for life! Having love and respect for one another and being there through good and challenging times. 

We at Watch The Yard would like to commend Monica Pete for her work as the Basileus of the Alpha Phi Sigma Alumnae Chapter which has a legacy that spans back to 1945. 

Share this on Facebook and help us highlight Monica Pete’s chapter.

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