1966 : The 52nd Convention – The Grand Presidents’ Badge

Gamma Phi Beta’s 52nd Convention was held in the Arlington Hotel in Hot Springs, Arkansas, June 19-24, 1966. Eighty-two Greek-letter chapters and 78 alumnae chapters were represented with a total attendance of more than 400.

Among other business, the Philanthropy Board, established in 1952 to coordinate the Sorority’s philanthropic efforts, was dissolved and its functions transferred to the Foundation. The Bylaws of the Foundation were also amended by the Trustees to provide for standing committees within the framework of the Foundation to carry on the work of the former Philanthropy Board. Dues were increased for the first time since 1958 to meet the needs of an expanding sorority.

At the Carnation Banquet, retiring Grand President Orra Spencer Reid (Michigan, 1926) was presented with the first white crescent badge set with diamonds. The Helen Dodge Ferguson badge, bequeathed to the Sorority and worn by the Grand Presidents since 1937, had become very fragile. It was now officially retired and placed on display in the Central Office. Unfortunately, the badge was lost in a robbery during the 1980s.

Pictured above: Grand President Betty Luker Haverfield’s (Missouri-Columbia, 1940) badge. This badge is currently on display at the International Headquarters museum.