Friday, January 11, 2008


Oh Geez! LOL.

This is a Pre-Happy Anniversary (Jan. 15) wish to my Sister/Girlfriends of Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority, Inc. If you don't know, you'll be glad to hear that you are getting a Barbie. I have Aunts, Cousins and friends who are AKAs so I love you all as well. I, myself, am a DELTA. :-)

This is a repost from the Sun Times... enjoy!

January 11, 2008
In the midst of a makeover and prepping for the ultimate birthday, the nation's oldest predominantly- black Greek-lettered sorority has turned the head of none other than Barbie.Mattel Inc. will make a collectable Barbie based on Chicago-headquartered Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority, Inc. Mattel Inc. will make a collectible Barbie based on Chicago-headquarter ed Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority Inc. Mattel sought licensing for the doll -- the first in the company's flagship brand based on any sorority and any predominately black organization -- upon learning that Alpha Kappa Alpha is marking its 100th anniversary this year, said Elizabeth Grampp, director of Barbie collector marketing. "When you pair that milestone with an organization representing an amazing cross section of women who are empowered leaders in any field, it's a real opportunity to introduce the hobby of collecting to a new group of collectors," Grampp said. "It's such a landmark event." The doll will be dressed in an evening gown. Prominent in the ensemble will be pink and green, official colors of the sorority, which kicks off its centennial celebration in
Washington, D.C., Saturday.

Alpha Kappa Alpha was founded Jan. 15, 1908 by students at Howard University. Over the century, the group has inducted more than 200,000 women, including corporate managers, politicians, university presidents, Hull House founder Jane Adams, civil rights activists Rosa Parks and Coretta Scott King, author Maya Angelou and humanitarian Eleanor Roosevelt. The president of the group is a mainstay on Ebony magazine's annual list of most influential blacks in America.

Still, on college campuses members are called "pretty girls," and have accounted for four of the past seven black Miss Americas. The doll will cost about $50, and be available through, the Barbie Collector catalog and other outlets and partnership with the sorority. Design for the doll, which the sorority selected from three submissions, will be unveiled at the organization' s 100 anniversary celebration next week in Washington, D.C.

The Mattel partnership -- one of several corporate deals -- comes as the organization is in the midst a makeover that puts emphasis of its programs on micro and macro economics, a venture led by president Barbara A. McKinzie, finance director at Chicago's Neighborhood Housing Services. "Economics is the central focus of everything we do," said McKinzie, whose tenure began in 2006. "My vision was to make economics as much of a core competency as service has been to Alpha Kappa Alpha for the 100 years." Last year the group's biennial leadership conference was moved to New Orleans from from a planned cruise to infuse about $5 million into that economy. College chapters are charged with providing computer training to community members. And the approximately 1,000 chapters around the globe are conducting investment and financial literacy workshops for youth, seniors and chapter members. "There's no member whose life this hasn't touched. In terms of mental health, the black family and black males as the weakest link in our economic structure. "When you started to have people view the challenges in their lives through an economic prism then they begin to get it."

After the 500-member Chicago chapter partnered with the city on a small business expo, conducted a financial literacy program for Chicago Public School students, hosted estate planning sessions with seniors and printed tips in monthly internal newsletter, member Willie L. Gray, 70, said she was motivated to finalize the estate planning what she's for years put off. "After we started having these meetings on economics and we met with groups and did estate planning, my head started hurting, I was worries about estate planning so," said Gray, who chaired her chapter's economic initiative. "I feel so much better this year."

The story can also be read here at Business Week. So, perhaps you can buy a doll for your Future AKA, or just hold on to it for yourself.

Until next time...

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