It is with great pride that we announce the Pulitzer Prize Board awarded our very own Bro. Jericho Brown with the 2020 Pulitzer Prize in Poetry for his most recent publication, The Tradition, on May 4th, 2020. The Pulitzer is the most prestigious award given in the United States for writing, and it has a 103-year history of up to twenty-two categories, including but not limited to, poetry, drama, fiction, international reporting, and investigative reporting. Bro. Brown is one of only eight African Americans to achieve this honor in the poetry category.
Bro. Jericho Brown--formerly known as Nelson Demery before making use of his pseudonym-- was initiated in the Fall of 1995 at the Beta Phi chapter of the Alpha Phi Alpha Fraternity Inc, seated at Dillard University. There, he earned his undergraduate degree in English. He then went on to receive an MFA in Creative Writing from the University of New Orleans while working as a speechwriter for the Mayor of New Orleans Bro. Marc Morial. He left Louisiana for the University of Houston where he got a Ph.D. in English and Creative Writing. Bro. Brown’s work has been featured in Buzzfeed, The New Republic, The New York Times, The New Yorker, The Paris Review, TIME magazine, and several volumes of The Best American Poetry. He is currently a professor and the Director of the Creative Writing Program at Emory University in Atlanta, GA. He is also an active member of the Nu Mu Lambda chapter, which serves the Decatur and Dekalb areas in metro Atlanta.
According to a statement given by Bro. Brown, “I’m happy to bring this prize back home, and by that I mean back to black folks, back to the South, back to Louisiana, and back to my alma mater, Dillard University. Dillard is where I first took creative writing workshops as classes toward my major, and it’s where I first began to envision a life for myself as a writer.” The Shreveport, Louisiana native added, “These are not easy times for any of us, but I’d like to believe that this prize in this particular instance can show that there is still a possibility for us no matter how rough the terrain may seem.”
Again, we would like to congratulate Bro. Brown on this monumental achievement, and we are incredibly proud to call him a brother of this fraternity. No other words can be said but, “There Goes An Alpha Man.”
During the uncertainty of the COVID-19 crisis, as large portions of society have shut down to mitigate the spread of Coronavirus, The Nu Mu Lambda Chapter of Alpha Phi Alpha Fraternity, Inc. (Dekalb County, Ga.) has not wavered in its mission to provide service and advocacy for the Dekalb County community. As the pandemic has compromised the health of millions across the world and crippled the global economy, the African-American community has been amongst hit the hardest. The disparity of the virus’ impact, is painfully illustrated in statistics for the state of Georgia. According the Centers for Disease Control, a staggering 83% of COVID hospitalizations in Georgia have been African-American patients.
Although much of the US is sheltering in place to slow the disease’s spread, hospital frontline staff have worked tirelessly, and at great risk to themselves, to care for the most vulnerable patients. So, when the Chairman of the Community Involvement Committee, Brother Kenneth Ray, expressed his committee’s desire to support the medical community in Dekalb county, the brothers of Alpha Phi Alpha began to mobilize immediately by reaching out to its own medical professionals. According to Brother Thomas Johnson, “[Brother Ray] reached out and I recommended Emory Hillandale Hospital because it’s located in Dekalb County and they serve a very large African American patient population, as well as the staff.” The Dekalb Alphas partnered with the hospital to provide boxed lunches to more than 100 staff members across two shifts. Lunches went to staff working in the Intensive Care Unit, The Emergency Unit and in the hospital’s dedicated COVID-19 Unit. While maintaining the protocols of social distancing, Brother Trent Taylor (chapter president), Brother Traron Moore, Brother Antwan Key as well as Brothers Ray and Johnson delivered the lunches to Emory Hillandale. Hospital staff members were surprised with the lunches and they were well-received during a time that medical professionals are experiencing an unusual amount of stress.
As Dekalb County continues to grapple with the disastrous effects of the COVID-19 crisis, Nu Mu Lambda is proactively forging new avenues of support for our community. Even in the midst of a global pandemic, the light is held high, and the work of Alpha continues.
The 2020 Presidential Election is looming large, and the consequences of this election cycle could not be overstated. In an effort to ensure that every voice in Dekalb County is heard and every vote is counted, the Nu Mu Lambda Chapter of Alpha Phi Alpha Fraternity, Incorporated has gone all in on the 2020 election.
The Dekalb Alphas voter mobilization arm, A Voteless People is a Hopeless People, hopes to impact this election cycle not only through registration, but through voter education, outreach and turnout. Brother Judesther Saint Marc, the committee’s chair, knows what he’s up against. “I’ve had several friends talk about politics not being their thing, or even worse believing their votes don’t actually count,” St. Marc admits. “[So] our first event focused on education of rights, but more importantly how local officed impact the lives of everyday people.”
In addition to voter education, A Voteless People is a Hopeless People has been working to connect local elected officials with their constituencies. The first event planned that allowed local Dekalb residents to interact with their elected official took place on January 18th at Redan High School. Local officials discussed the issues, answered questions and even took part in a video interview series.
With a goal of 1000 voter registrations, multiple candidate forums and increased turnout in the county, The Dekalb Alphas plan to increase their voter-centered efforts. “We are working with the county commissioners, the school board, reaching [out] to elected officials on the local level, working with get-out-the-vote organizations, working with the churches and promoting voter registration initiatives,” says Brother Saint Marc.
On April 25th and 26th, the Dekalb Alphas will kickoff our Healthy Citizens Initiative. The purpose is to educate voters on the power of their vote to improve the overall health of citizens in the Dekalb community. On July 5th and 6th, the fraternity will invite community members to its day party at Club Crawl. In addition to great music and a great atmosphere, attendees will leave with a grasp on the issues to help inform their votes. For additional details and events, stay connected to the Dekalb Alphas by adding us on Facebook and Instagram by searching keywords Dekalb Alphas.
Event details: 7 PM, June 15, 2019 at Atlanta Marriott Century Center , 2000 Century Boulevard NE , Atlanta, GA.
This Gala is the culminating event that highlights the participating young men’s academic, social and scholarship achievements.In many ways, the Beautillion program is a rite of passage; bringing additional importance to the participant’s transition from high school to higher education. The Beautillion Program provides the participating young men with exceptional value-added opportunities through rite of passage activities, cultural awareness, leadership development and community service learning.
Please join the Nu Mu Lambda Chapter of Alpha Phi Alpha Fraternity Incorporated and the Charles H. Wesley Education Foundation Board for this auspicious occasion.
CORPORATE SPONSORSHIP Contact Greg Gray at 770 403-2755 for more information.The Charles H. Wesley Education Foundation is a 501 (c) (3) non-profit corporation. According to IRS regulations, only contributions over the fair market value of the dinner ($40) are tax deductible. Deductions will vary based on the benefits selected.