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 Zeta Phi Beta Sorority Inc.’s Omega Eta Zeta Chapter in Southeastern Massachusetts and did an interview with Tia Daly 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. Tia Daly, who works as a Telecommunications Executive, is a newly elected Basileus.
We interviewed Daly, who is a 2008/Boston, Massachusetts initiate of Zeta Phi Beta 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?
After serving in multiple leadership roles within the chapter throughout the years, the timing was right for me to level up into the role of President of Omega Eta Zeta chapter. My chapter has continued to evolve and grow in how we are delivering exemplary service to our communities, and I believe that I continue to support and execute the vision of the chapter in my own special way.
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?
This year our chapter continues to be focused on our partnerships with local organizations who endeavor to educate, uplift, and support our communities. Our partnerships have formed because of issues that have touched our membership in a personal way and therefor has sparked a passion amongst the chapter for these initiatives. Specifically, we will be focused on Domestic Violence Awareness, Autism Acceptance, and educational justice and equity. Our goal is to bring attention to these initiatives by not making the topics taboo in the black community and by having open, earnest dialog surrounding these topics.
What made you want to pledge Zeta Phi Beta?
My desire to become a member of Zeta Phi Beta Sorority, Inc. was greatly sparked by the relationships of the members. I was intrigued by the immense commitment to the service work they were doing in the local communities. Zetas were/are not afraid to roll up their sleeves and get their hands dirty. I saw the principles of Scholarship, Service, Sisterhood, and Finer Womanhood in practice in many of the women who I was in contact with, and I saw an opportunity to grow in my personal and professional life.
What is it about your specific chapter that makes it so unique?
Omega Eta Zeta chapter is unique in that we are truly focused on being outstanding and exceptional women. We do that in a way that allows our chapter members to be their authentic self and we push each other to set higher goals and strive for better. Omega Eta Zeta is focused on our chapter members’ entire being. Mental health in our membership is just as important as the mental health we advocate for in our communities. We support each other in all facets of the life of our members.
How do you approach fostering a sense of unity and camaraderie among alumni members, and what strategies have you found effective?
Zeta Phi Beta Sorority, Inc. is focused on “One Zeta”. To be successful, we focus on the greater good and delivering extraordinary service to our communities and our membership. Communication has been an essential strategy to achieving this goal but most of all we simply endeavor to be sisterly.
What advice would you give to aspiring leaders within your sorority who may aspire to take on roles of leadership within alumni chapters?
I often provide similar advice that was given to me as a new member. Seek out those who have been in the organization for a while. Hear the stories, gain the wisdom, learn the process of conducting the business of Zeta. Then I would say, once you have learned, learn more, and that is done by taking on roles and being an active participant in the organization at all levels. Finally, lead in your own way and put your brand of leadership into the role.
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 been a crucial element in where I am today. There are a few of my Sorors who have spoken life into me over the years. Their wisdom, encouragement, support, and sometimes brutal honesty has been invaluable.
Why do you think Watch The Yard is important to Black greekdom?
Watch the Yard is important to Black greekdom because representation is important. Watch the Yard has presented black greek life in a way that sees past what the stereotypical view of black greekdom has been. It has demonstrated the heart of each organization from our traditions to our social justice platforms and initiatives.
Looking back at it, why do you love being a member of your org?
I have loved watching us grow. I have seen and developed long-lasting friendships. I have seen people evolve and do things that they never thought they could do, but Zeta brought it out of them. I love seeing new initiatives being created and new ways of serving and reaching people come about. Mostly, I love that I see all that growth in myself also.
Lastly, what does sisterhood mean to you?
Sisterhood is not merely a connection of similar experience and common interest, but a unique connection that encompasses a bond between women that involves trust, communication, understanding of differences, open-mindedness, grace, and kindness.
We at Watch The Yard would like to commend Tia Daly for her work as the Basileus of the Omega Eta Zeta Chapter which has a legacy that spans back to 2012.
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