Founded January 16, 1920, Zeta began as an idea conceived by five coeds at Howard University in Washington D.C.: Arizona Cleaver, Myrtle Tyler, Viola Tyler, Fannie Pettie and Pearl Neal. These five women, also known as our Five Pearls, dared to depart from the traditional coalitions for black women and sought to establish a new organization predicated on the precepts of Scholarship, Service, Sisterly Love and Finer Womanhood. It was the ideal of the Founders that the Sorority would reach college women in all parts of the country who were sorority minded and desired to follow the founding principles of the organization.
Zeta Phi Beta Sorority, Inc. has a rich heritage and tradition over its 85-year history. Zeta Phi Beta’s members have provided the world examples of our dedication to our service endeavors, of our commitment to scholarship and of our active practice and cultivation of sisterly love, all while illustrating the epitome of Finer Womanhood.Zeta members pride ourselves on our Sorority’s diversity, for it is not educational or career goals, physical characteristics, social background or other such traits that define Zeta women.
It is the belief and desire, forever emblazoned upon the hearts and minds of the Sorority’s members, that Zeta Phi Beta’s legacy of service, its dedication to humankind, and its many, many distinctions unite to form an organization worthy of our participation, and a sisterhood of which we can be proud.