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 Beta Nu Zeta Chapter in Greensboro, NC and did an interview with LaToya Lucas the president of the chapter.
The position of president of a Black sorority chapter is a highly respected role and there is a special pride that one takes. LaToya Lucas, who works as a CEO & Nurse Practitioner for Lucas Exceptional Healthcare & Consultation, has been in the position of president since 2021.
We interviewed Lucas, who is a Spring 1993 initiate of North Carolina A&T’s Zeta Alpha Chapter 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 was motivated to take on the role of alumni chapter president because I wanted to make a difference and make an impact in the community that our chapter serves.
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?
The programmatic focus of Zeta Phi Beta Sorority, Incorporated for the 2023-2023 sorority year is the Extraordinary Power of S.H.E. – Zetas worldwide will be intentional about Social Justice, Health Justice and Economic Justice for women. The Beta Nu Zeta Chapter specifically will be focusing on health disparities, health equity, and social Justice. An example of a project that we are preparing for is our annual community health fair.
What made you want to pledge Zeta Phi Beta?
I had a desire to pledge Zeta Phi Beta Sorority, Incorporated because of the strong focus on service and finer womanhood. Zetas on the campus of NCA&T were hard workers and they were friendly. The Zetas did not just give empty promises, they were actually making a difference in the community. Watching those ladies that came before me, sparked a love for Zeta in my heart.
What is it about your specific chapter that makes it so unique?
The Beta Nu Zeta Chapter is a diverse chapter. We are comprised of women from various cultural, racial and ethnic backgrounds. We have women that are movers and shakers in our community; from judges, lawyers, business owners, college professors, educators, nurses, social workers and STEM. Our chapter is full of resources and connections. We can truly impact our community.
How is your chapter providing for the undergraduate chapters you support?
The Beta Nu Zeta Chapter sponsors three undergraduate chapters. The Zeta Alpha Chapter at NCA&T, The Chi Gamma Chapter at Bennett College and the Omega Nu Chapter at UNCG. We have a dedicated team of chapter members that work with our undergraduate members. It is important that we foster relationships with our undergraduate members. Having an open line of communication is very important. We also have a line item in our budget to be able financial assist our undergraduate chapters with chapter insurance, conferences, workshops etc.
How do you approach fostering a sense of unity and camaraderie among alumni members, and what strategies have you found effective?
Sisterhood is very important principle of Zeta Phi Beta. Our chapter has a sisterhood committee that is responsible for planning activities. Additionally we have an amenities chairwoman who ensures that we don’t miss special occasions, illnesses etc. I also think that it is important to set up intentional dedicated time for sisterhood. We can not become so busy in our day to day life that we forget about the sisterhood.
What advice would you give to aspiring leaders within your sorority who may aspire to take on roles of leadership within alumni chapters?
Learn as much as you can about the governing documents of your organization. Go to conferences. Meet sorority members outside of your chapter. Be humble!
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 was very important to me. When I was very new in Zeta, I was the chapter president of my undergraduate chapter. I wrote a letter to our International President at that time (Dr. Jylla Tearte) inviting her to come and spend a weekend with us at NCA&T. She actually came!!! That was in 1995. She embraced me, educated me about Zeta and actually paid for me to attend the National NPHC Conference. I have never forgotten the impact that she made on my Zeta journey! We have remained in contact. I can call her whenever I desire. 27 years later, in 2020 my daughter pledged Zeta and Past International President Tearte actually called my daughter, and welcomed her to Zeta. That moment was PRICELESS!
Why do you think Watch The Yard is important to Black greekdom?
Watch The Yard is important because it shows the positive side of our organizations. Watch The Yard helps to fight the often wrong and negative stereotypes that some people have about Black greekdom.
Looking back at it, why do you love being a member of your org?
I love the sisterhood and connections that I have made over the years! Some of my most important moments in life included people that I met because of Zeta!!!!!
Lastly, what does sisterhood mean to you?
Sisterhood means to share, to care, to love, to correct, and to embellish. Sisterhood is priceless. Sisterhood is a part of the journey, the good and the bad.
We at Watch The Yard would like to commend LaToya Lucas for her work as the president of the Beta Nu Zeta Chapter which has a legacy that spans back to 1945.