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Regional conference rolled AKAs ‘Down the River with Excellence’

Brianna Smith-Herman (Courtesy photo)

The ladies of Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority, Incorporated welcomed its sorority members and guests to paint Memphis pink and green. The sorority celebrated its 90th South Eastern Regional Conference, titled “The Grand Finale, Rolling Down the River with Excellence” March 1-6.

While the COVID-19 pandemic has restricted how the public and organizations have gathered over the past two years, the AKAs were excited to reconnect safely face to face with all the Perpetual Pearls of the South Eastern Region at Downtown’s Renasant Convention Center.

Because of the pandemic, the last AKA South Eastern regional conference was held in 2019 in Knoxville. 

This year’s conference drew about 6,000 sorority members. It was one of the largest events held at the Renasant Convention Center since its $220 million renovation.

South Eastern Regional Director Mitzi Dease
Paige (center) frames this moment with sorors (l-r) Ellen Edge, Barbara Beaver, Venita Doggett and Allegra Fadeyi. (Courtesy photo)

Local AKA members hosted Pre-Conference Day activities, March 1-2.

“We wanted to give our sorors the opportunity to kick the week off early and see Memphis as never before,” said Toni Wallace Franklin, the 90th South Eastern Regional Conference chairperson.

The ladies commenced with the International Target Day filled with service initiatives to focus on the sorority’s five targets and concluded the pre-conference activities by toasting and giving recognition to the South Eastern leaders with a Strawberry Chocolate Champagne Reception and Leadership Dinner. 

“This celebration was a wonderful way to honor our region and the outstanding leadership for the last four years,” Franklin said.

The first day of the conference began March 3 and consisted of the EAF/Sisterhood Luncheon, a SER Day party and personal development workshops.

The public was invited to participate in the excitement as the ladies of AKA honored community leaders and concluded the night with an evening of fun as the Hernando de Soto Bridge lit up, to paint the city pink and green. 

The week was filled with activities to nourish the soul with mindfulness, positive thinking and intentional self-care. The sorority also celebrated their legacies during the Legacy Breakfast, which honored their Diamond, Pearl, Golden and Silver Sorors.

The 90th South Eastern Regional Conference in Memphis created myriad images such as this one with South Eastern Regional Director Mitzi Dease Paige (right) and Nycole Alston. (Courtesy photo)

“I am truly grateful for our South Eastern Conference Team, consisting of Soror Toni Franklin, Soror Margaret Rogers, Soror Pamela Segrest, Soror Lynda Simmons, Soror Adria Hollis, Soror Tanya Kelly Kirk and Soror Janice Gill-Gray,” said Mitzi Dease Paige, South Eastern regional director.

AKAs pack pajama power into regional conference

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