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Fraternity Blog

Posted On: Monday, December 26, 2016 08:10 AM, by Kristi Tucker
The 50-year certificate of Eulalia Locke Hamilton Hartley, daughter of Bettie Locke Hamilton, 1957.

December - the season of giving! Each year, Theta is pleased to honor our 50- and 75-year members with the gift of anniversary pins. We also recognize our 25-year members with a letter or email. This year, we will recognize 3,700 25-year members, 1,650 50-year members, and about 250 75-year members!


The Fraternity officially starting recognizing 50-year members in 1954 with a Golden Link certificate. These certificates were hand-made on shiny gold foil paper and sent to anniversary members. We only have a few of these in the archive ... and one is Bettie Locke Hamilton's daughter's certificate! Sometime later, Theta began sending black and gold pansy stick pins to 50-year members, and then the pins we send today.


In 1963, the decision was made to add 75-year members to the recognition list, and Grand Council selected a pansy pin with a gold coat-of-arms in the center.


Many members look forward to receiving these gifts, while others are surprised to see one in their mailbox!


From the archive, a letter from 1987 states: "Dear Theta Sisters, I was amazed, surprised, delighted, and horrified to receive my 50-year Theta pansy pin. Delighted you remembered me, amazed it was 50 years! Horrified the years have passed so swiftly by and surprised I feel and am the same Theta who was so happily pledged at Cal in '37. I shall wear it with pride and great gratitude for the fun, friendships, and high standards Theta has always meant." Polly Peters Hutchins Omega/UC Berkeley 1938.


Congratulations to all our members celebrating a milestone anniversary in 2017! We hope these pins and letters invoke many wonderful Theta memories and inspire you to create many more.

Kristi Tucker is an assistant director of alumnae engagement at Kappa Alpha Theta Fraternity headquarters.


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