1909 – 1919

First meeting of what was to become Alpha Epsilon Phi in Helen Phillips’ dorm room at Barnard College

Crest designed by an architectural student at Columbia University

First national philanthropy adopted – American Relief Committee to aid Jewish war sufferers

The Quarterly of Alpha Epsilon Phi appears for the first time

Membership stands at 179 in eight chapters – 42 members are married with 15 offspring; members are scattered over 12 states and 30 cities

Lillian Hirsch becomes first member to be admitted to the New York Bar, and Frances Levenstein Roth is the first woman to be admitted to the Connecticut Bar

First applications submitted to NPC for admission

Chapters established at Hunter College, Teacher’s College-Columbia University, Adelphi University, Tulane University, New York University, SUNY Albany and University of Pennsylvania



Ida Shaw Martin (ΔΔΔ founder) hired to help formulate first official constitution

Pledge pin adopted and used for the first time

Pledge and initiation rituals formalized

Ritual banners adopted

First national convention held

New national philanthropy adopted to fund a scholarship for women to attend Hebrew Union College in Cincinnati for coursework in Jewish education

Chapters established at Syracuse University, Cornell University, University of Denver, University of Illinois, University of Pittsburgh, University of Southern California, Northwestern University, University of Michigan, Ohio State University, University of Wisconsin, University of California-Berkeley, University of Akron, University of California-Los Angeles, Vanderbilt University, Washington University, University of Texas, University of Toronto and University of Missouri


1930 – 1939

Convention body votes to change magazine name from the Quarterly to Columns

Hannah G. Solomon, founder of National Council of Jewish Women, is initiated as a National Honorary Member

In response to solicitation from various sources within the sorority, the executive board votes to express the endorsement of the movement by various Jewish organizations against Hitler’s persecution of German Jews

25th Anniversary Convention held at the Broadmoor in Colorado Springs; “A Quarter Century of Progress” is the theme

Two new rituals introduced: the Shield Ceremony to honor new chapters and establish the credentials of the official delegates and the House Dedication Ceremony

Philanthropy – gift to Henry Harris Library at Hebrew University in Israel to purchase scientific journals

Mu Chapter becomes first chapter to host a German refugee student, a recipient of an AEPhi scholarship under the sorority’s Special Student Project

Honorary Membership conferred upon Henrietta Szold, founder of Hadassah, and Rebekah Bettelheim Kohut for her work in Palestine

Membership stands at 5,000 with 26 active chapters and 29 alumnae groups

Chartered chapters: George Washington University, University of Washington, Duke University, Penn State University, University of Miami (Florida), Louisiana State University and University of Minnesota


1940 – 1949

Sorority receives tax-exempt status from the IRS

Ambulance presented to the U.S. Army at ceremonies held at the Hotel New Yorker on April 13th. Cost of the ambulance was $1,492.80. Alpha Epsilon Phi is the first collegiate sorority to make an outright gift of this kind to the government and received a citation for patriotism from the U.S. Treasury Department

Upon her death Hannah G. Solomon asked that her badge be returned to the National Office.  It was voted “each incoming National Dean of AEPhi shall be presented at the time of her installation with the whole pearl badge that was worn by our deceased National Honorary Member, Hannah G. Solomon; this badge shall be worn during the Dean’s incumbency in office as a symbol of service expected of her to the organization and to others.” (This practice continues today)

First National Pledge Manual printed

AEPhi admitted to NPC as an associate member – Frances Wolf Bergman is our first delegate

Chartered chapters: Miami University (Ohio), University of Arizona, University of Maryland, Carnegie Mellon University, University of Connecticut, University of Vermont, University of South Carolina, University of Alabama, University of Tennessee, University of Florida and Purdue University


1950 – 1959

National Council adopts the idea of employing a Traveling Educational Consultant

AEPhi admitted to full membership in NPC

Letter mailed to all chapters from National Ritualist outlining duties and stressing use of prayers before meals, kindling Sabbath lights and cooperation with Hillel in celebration of holidays

Term “Inspiration Week” adopted

Convention body votes to establish a foundation

Convention body votes to change officer names to President, Vice President and Secretary (from Dean, Sub Dean and Scribe)

The Dorothy Gribetz Shapiro Outstanding Alumna Award is created

Alumnae workshop is a new feature at convention

Panhellenic Luncheon added to convention agenda for first time

First third generation AEPhi initiated

Fiftieth Anniversary Convention held in Sun Valley, Idaho – theme is “50th Rally In Sun Valley.”  Founders Rose Salmowitz Marvin and Rose Gerstein Smolin are present and are initiated for the first time

Chartered chapters: Ohio University, Boston University, University of Colorado, Drake University, Michigan State University, Brooklyn College, University of Oklahoma, Queens College, Indiana University, Arizona State University, Emory University and American University


1960 – 1969

Frances Wolf Bergman becomes the first AEPhi to chair an NPC committee

National Finance Committee established, charged with the responsibility of ensuring that the financial affairs of the sorority are conducted in a business-like manner and within the framework of the national budget and to investigate and make recommendations to National Council on the investment of surplus funds

Standards Manual is introduced

Blanche Zweig Greenberger establishes an award bearing her name to recognize the most outstanding undergraduate member

Foundation gives fellowship at Brandeis University in social service

Beginning of a downturn in Greek membership nationally – yet AEPhi pledged 1,000 women and membership rose to 22,000

New rushing reference system put into effect with over 200 alumnae working to help chapters with references necessary before a rushee may be pledged

Postal regulations begin requiring the use of zip codes on all mail

Foundation introduces Mature Returning Students grant program; first MRS $250 grant awarded to a University of Pittsburgh student

Project Arrow selected as national social service project to assist American Indians

Chartered chapters: New York University-Heights, University of Rhode Island, University of Texas-El Paso, C.W. Post College, San Diego State University, Kent State University, City College Of New York, California State University-Long Beach, California State University- San Jose, California State University-Northridge, University of California-Santa Barbara, University of Iowa, Bradley University, University of South Florida, Southern Methodist University, Eastern Michigan University, Old Dominion University


1970 – 1979

National Council introduces a new summer workshop for all chapter presidents, held at the National Office in Pittsburgh

Membership grew to 29,000

Chaim Sheba Medical Center adopted as national philanthropy

Giraffe adopted as national mascot

70th Anniversary Convention held in Atlanta

Chartered chapters: University of Kansas and Florida State University


1980 – 1989

First Summer Leadership Seminar held to train national workers

National Council pins adopted

Rose Gerstein Smolin Award presented for the first time to recognize extraordinary lifetime service to a national worker

National creates Achievement & Excellence Award to recognize outstanding chapter of the year

Phi Connection is born – a nationwide AEPhi network to help sorority members contact their sisters for answers on everything from where to send a rush recommendation to finding a plumber in a new hometown

Alumnae Expressing Phi-delity introduced as a way for alumnae to donate to the sorority – forerunner to Foundation’s annual campaign

Young Alumna Award established to recognize outstanding women who are within 20 years of their initiation into AEPhi

Susan Rudd Cohen Award for Jewish Communal Service introduced

Convention held at the DFW Marriott Hotel in Dallas marks Sorority’s 75th anniversary with theme: “AEPhi Strikes 75”

Foundation announces the establishment of the Judith Resnik Memorial Scholarship to honor America’s second woman in space who perished in the 1986 Challenger disaster

National stresses new alcohol awareness programming for all chapters; 26 sorority national presidents sign a resolution regarding alcohol policies

Beth Kersten Saul is installed as Chairman of National Panhellenic Council – first AEPhi and first Jewish woman to hold this post

Portrait donated to Carnegie Mellon University by Sorority and Foundation in memory of Judith Resnik

Chartered chapters: University of California-Davis, Southern Illinois University, Jacksonville University, Temple University, University of Hartford, Rowan University, SUNY Buffalo, SUNY Binghamton, SUNY Oswego, Fairleigh Dickinson University, York University, SUNY Oneonta, Cleveland State University, Wayne State University, SUNY Plattsburgh, Hofstra University, SUNY New Paltz, University of Delaware and University of Bridgeport


1990 – 1999

Convention body adopts two resolutions – one relating to breast cancer awareness and the other protection of the environment

Sorority joins FIPG – a risk management consortium dealing with alcohol, hazing, sexual abuse, and chapter health and safety; AEPhi is one of only five women’s groups to join the 29 men’s groups that are already members

Council renames the Achievement and Excellence Award in memory of Past National President Shirley Mintz Greenfield

Columns celebrates 75th anniversary

Columns cover features Kappa alumna and past president Ruth Bader Ginsburg, the second woman named to the U.S. Supreme Court

Philip H. and Susan Rudd Cohen Award for Chapter Jewish Communal Service is created through a gift from the Cohen family to recognize a chapter who has excelled in Jewish community service

Sorority adopts AIDS Awareness as national community service project

Leslie Brown Shiffman Outstanding Advisor Award is established

AEPhi and AEPi join together in a one-day conclave to discuss important issues facing fraternity/sorority life

AEPhi becomes a Hillel senior partner

Chartered chapters: Northeastern University, Emerson College, University of Massachusetts, Buffalo State College, Yale University and Massachusetts Institute of Technology


2000 – 2009

Elizabeth Glaser Pediatric AIDS Foundation adopted as a national philanthropy

New visual identity and tag line (Above All Else) adopted; the manner in which the columns break out of the green boxes depicts our creativity and commitment to forward thinking

Constitution and Bylaws amended to reflect a new volunteer structure

Centennial Committee formed to begin making plans for the sorority’s Centennial in 2009

New chapter officer structure unveiled

Sharsheret adopted as additional national philanthropy at National Convention held in Minneapolis, Minnesota

Core Values Statement introduced at Centennial Convention

AEPhi Centennial Convention Celebration held at the Doral Golf Resort & Spa in Miami, Florida with a record number of attendees on hand

AEPhi celebrates its 100th Anniversary at the site of its founding at Barnard College in New York City; over 200 women are on hand for the Founders’ Day Ceremony in Brooks Hall where the seven founders first met

Ellen Baker, granddaughter of Helen Phillips Lipman who called the first meeting of what became AEPhi, was initiated into AEPhi on October 24, 2009 – AEPhi’s Centennial

Chartered chapters: University of Central Florida, University of California-San Diego, Virginia Commonwealth University, Stanford University, and University of California-Irvine.

A&M chartering.jpg

2010 – Present

First Presidents Academy held thanks to the generous support of the Alpha Epsilon Phi Foundation

Collegiate Advisory Committee created to provide National Council with the collegiate viewpoint on key issues

Second AVENUE, AEPhi’s total membership development program, is revised

Leslie and Lynna Taylor Klaidman Outstanding Chapter President Award created by Leslie Klaidman

Bonnie Rubenstein Wunsch celebrates 25 years as executive director and endows the Dana Parkans Katz Award for Interfraternal Service

Delta Chapter at Adelphi University is the first active chapter to turn 100 and celebrates in April 2016 with National Council in attendance

Partnership with Lean-In introduced and rolled out to all chapters and colonies

Two joint programming efforts with Sigma Alpha Mu, Sigma Delta Tau and Zeta Beta Tau win recognition from the North American Interfraternity Conference; the ADL’s Words to Action Program and the Summit Against Hate

Bonnie Rubenstein Wunsch recognized with the NIC’s Silver Medal; only the 6th woman to receive this designation and the 2nd AEPhi

AEPhi introduces Transgender Membership Policy in June 2017

Becomes international again with the colonization at Concordia University in Montreal

Chartered chapters: California Polytechnic State University, San Luis Obispo; Towson University; Texas A&M University