At a time in American history when little was expected of women other than serving as wives and mothers, ten women at Lombard College in Galesburg, Illinois set their eyes on a lofty goal. This was a diverse group of women, among them an accomplished musician, a patriot, a pioneer in religious education, and a staunch advocate of women’s suffrage, but they were united by a dream of a national organization devoted to the personal growth of women. Through much hard work and dedication in the face of opposition, the shared vision of these ten intrepid women was realized on April 17, 1893 with the founding of Alpha Xi Delta (AXiD).
Since its founding over 120 years ago, Alpha Xi Delta has grown into a national fraternity for women with 112 active chapters, over 8,000 undergraduate members, and more than 150,000 lifetime initiates. The skill, tenacity, and hard work of the founders has been passed down among countless generations of women, inspiring them to realize their potential, and so it is no surprise that many have gone on to lead lives of excellence, such as Betsey Johnson (fashion designer), Jane Henson (co-founder of The Muppets with her husband, Jim Henson), Karen Tumulty (National Political Correspondent for Time magazine), and Verna Kay Gibson (first female CEO of a Fortune 500 company, The Limited stores). With Sisters like these, no wonder so many women want to wear the AXiD Light Blue, Dark Blue, and Gold.
Giving back to the community is important for every member of AXiD, and so supporting their official philanthropic partner, Autism Speaks, is a priority. As the largest autism advocacy and research organization in the world, Autism Speaks is dedicated to funding research into the causes and prevention of autism, finding treatments and a cure for autism, increasing awareness of autism spectrum disorders, and advocating for the needs of individuals with autism and their families. This is a wide-reaching condition, with 1 in 88 children being diagnosed with autism and an average yearly cost to families raising an autistic child of $60,000. Since adopting Autism Speaks as a philanthropic partner, Alpha Xi Delta has raised more than $1 million through participating in various “Walk Now for Autism Speaks” events across the country and holding “AmaXIng Challenges” at their respective college campuses.
Alpha Xi Delta is a progressive organization dedicated to the personal growth of women. Throughout its long and proud history, AXiD continues to enrich the lives of women throughout the world by emphasizing the ideals of their Founders: Sisterhood, leadership, knowledge and service to the community. Through membership in Alpha Xi Delta, their bold and talented Sisters are inspired to realize their potential, make genuine, life-long friends, stay involved on their campuses and in their communities, and be dedicated to inspiring the lives of others. Alpha Xi Delta provides opportunities for fun, friendship and leadership during a member’s college years and beyond.