History of Omega
On Friday evening, November 17, 1911, three Howard University undergraduate students, with the assistance of their faculty adviser, gave birth to the Omega Psi Phi Fraternity. This event occurred in the office of biology Professor Ernest E. Just, the faculty adviser, in the Science Hall (now known as Thirkield Hall). The three liberal arts students were Edgar A. Love, Oscar J. Cooper and Frank Coleman. From the initials of the Greek phrase meaning "friendship is essential to the soul," the name Omega Psi Phi was derived. The phrase was selected as the motto. Manhood, scholarship, perseverance and uplift were adopted as cardinal principles. A decision was made regarding the design for the pin and emblem, and thus ended the first meeting of the Omega Psi Phi Fraternity
The next meeting was conducted on November 23, 1911. Edgar Love became the first Grand Basileus (National President). Cooper and Coleman were selected Grandkeeper of the Records (National Secretary) and Grandkeeper of Seals (National Treasurer), respectively. Eleven Howard University undergraduate men were selected as charter members.


Phi Iota History

Photograph taken at South Mountain 1946 - Brothers (from left-to-right) William O. Warren, William Johnson, William C. McClellan, Dr. Lowell C. Wormley, Dr. Denzel Purdue, John Henry, Essie White, Dr. David Solomon, and Walter Venerable Sr.


 The Phi Iota Chapter of Omega Psi Phi Fraternity, Incorporated, made its debut on October 1, 1946. Under the leadership of Dr. Lowell Wormley, Ernest Bartlett, and the late George Meares, six interested men traveled to Los Angeles, California and organized the Phi Iota Chapter. The six young pledgees were: William Warren, John Henry, Denzil Perdue, Dr. David Solomon, Lloyd Dickey and the Honorable H.B. Daniels.

In the spring of 1947, these men, along with the District Representative James P. Perry, initiated three men into the fraternity, Walter Venerable, Sr., William Johnson (Deceased), W. C. McLellan (Deceased), and Phi Iota was off and running. The three men were initiated in Father Emmetts Mission, which is now a Catholic Church, and afterwards a formal banquet was held in honor of the new brothers.

In the spring of 1948, Phi Iota Chapter hosted the 4th Annual 12th District Meeting here in Phoenix, Arizona at the home of William H. Patterson Lodge #477. There were five (5) chapters present, two (2) delegates per chapter and a total of 49 brothers in attendance. Rushia Fellows (Deceased) was elected Vice-District Representative (Tucson), Walter C. Bailey (Deceased), District Director of Publicity (Phoenix), and Dr. Walter I. Murray (Deceased), District KRS (Phoenix). 

Brother Dr. Lowell Wormley (Deceased) served as the first Basileus and helped to bring in many good Omega Men. Phi Iota Chapter hosted the 1974 Grand Conclave in Phoenix at the Del Webb Townhouse in December of that year. Brothers from over the country visited Phoenix for the first time.