|Mary Cardwell Dawson|
In 1941, Mary Cardwell Dawson founded on November 12 the NATIONAL NEGRO OPERA COMPANY. in 1941. The NNOC grew to include chapters New York, Chicago,Washington, DC, and other cities around the country. Dawson's opera company, her music school and the Cardwell Dawson Choir, opened new doors and launched careers for African-Americans who had little or no access to classical odr opera music training. First Lady Elanor Roosevelt and Marian Anderson were honorary board chairs.
|National Negro Operal Company|
SIGMA GAMMA RHO, INC. was founded on November 12 by seven school teachers: Mary Lou Allison Little, Dorothy Hanley Whiteside, Vivian White Marbury, Nannie Mae Gahn Johnson, Hattie Mae Dulin Redford, Bessie M. Downey Martin, and Cubena McClure. The sorority was the first African-American sorority founded at a predominantly white college, Butler University in Indianapolis, IN. The group became an incorporated national collegiate sorority on December 30, 1929, when a charter was granted to Alpha chapter at Butler.
Its first three years were devoted to organizing. Now, Sigma Gamma Rho continues to grow through Sisterhood, Scholarship and Service. The sorority has supported the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP), National Council of Negro Women, National Pan-Hellenic Council, Leadership Conference on Civil Rights, National Urban League, March of Dimes Birth Defects Foundation, National Mental Health Association, United Negro College Fund, Martin Luther King Center for Non-Violent Social Change, Black Women's Agenda, and American Association of University Women.
Sigma Gamma Rho Sorority, Inc., now has over 400 chapters in the United States, Bermuda, the Virgin Islands, Bahamas, and Germany.