Carolyn Catron Woodard

Theta Is in Good Hands with Our Young Alumnae

When I first came on Theta Foundation’s board in July 2014, one of my first undertakings was to work with Bailey Gordon, a Theta Foundation gift officer. I told her that I would sponsor a gathering of the local Soaring Kites and include members of Tulsa Alumnae Chapter when she came to Tulsa to visit. This event was meant to instill enthusiasm in Soaring Kites and help the local alumnae chapter become better acquainted with our young alumnae.

That September, we had four young women join us: one from Gamma Tau/Tulsa (a University of Tulsa law school student) and three from Beta Zeta/Oklahoma State (another Tulsa law school student and two of her sisters working in Tulsa). The attendees totaled 10 that night when you include the more seasoned alums. Conversation was lively and delightful. As they began to leave, I challenged them: “Can you double your numbers if I throw another gathering in January?” They answered affirmatively, and I mentally set a late January date for the next gathering.

The following January, I again hosted a Soaring Kites event, and the number of attendees that evening increased. For both parties, I prepared all the food, and conversation circled around recipes. I was asked if I would I be willing to share those secrets! Those first four young Thetas waited until after most of the others had left. As we were saying our goodbyes, Alexa Stumpff, the Beta Zeta law school student, asked about “that meringue thing you told us about in September.” I said, “Oh, you mean the Pavlova!” I told her that I was going to make one the next week for a Founders Day event that I was hosting for the Gamma Tau 50-year Thetas. I was going to make a Pavlova and a citrus cheesecake. Another said, “I just bought a springform pan.” I looked at the four of them and said, “Alright, girls! If you want to come at 7p.m. Thursday next week, I will show you how to make both.” I told them to wear old clothes, and that I had aprons for all of them.

They came, and we had a great time. I gave them copies of my recipes. As they were leaving, Alexa said, “The next time we could make appetizers.” I laughed, and we decided to meet in about a month. This time, I made each of them a notebook filled with the recipes we were preparing that night. Each girl had a separate assignment. I had prepared in advance goodies to eat while they were working. We laughed and giggled all evening. I took pictures, and they gave me a Facebook lesson as we placed the photos on my Facebook page.

In addition to her schoolwork, Alexa took on the Tulsa Alumnae Chapter position of young alumnae liaison. I am so proud of Alexa’s enthusiasm and readiness to become involved with older alumnae. She never misses a chapter board meeting. She has been very instrumental in our success in securing Beta Zeta’s participation in the Give to Lead, Give to Learn “Don’t Break the Chain” letter-writing endeavor.

It has been a real pleasure for me to work with all of these wonderful young Thetas. They are taking our Fraternity to new heights of excellence!