History of Sigma Phi Rho Fraternity, Incorporated

In 1978, Sigma Phi Rho Fraternity Inc. was started by thirteen young men from Wagner College. These young men were committed to the development of a lasting brotherhood amongst it membership and serve their school and community. In 1979, Sigma Phi Rho Fraternity Inc. received its first official charter from Wagner College.

In our effort to maintain relevancy in the lives of our members and the communities we serve, Sigma Phi Rho Fraternity Inc. has expanded upon its original purpose adopting a new set of core values and modern mission statement.

Today, Sigma Phi Rho Fraternity Inc. mission is to maintain our existence by providing positive fraternal experience, supporting the development and growth in its members, and contributing to community through service. Our mission encompasses the purposes, rituals and values as envisioned by the founding fathers of this fraternity.

Since its founding, Sigma Phi Rho Fraternity Inc. has valued multiculturalism, service, loyalty, ethical behavior, and academic achievement. Sigma Phi Rho Fraternity Inc. members recognize their potential to truly become agents of change in their community be it their campus, nation, or abroad. In order to ensure our members are world-ready, we seek to develop collegiate men through leadership, civic engagement and professional development.

Additionally, an emphasis is placed on mastering the rituals and understanding the core values of Scholarship, Leadership, Brotherhood, Service, and Empowerment in order to ensure our existence. With values in hand, men of Sigma Phi Rho Fraternity Inc. march forever forward, ready to change their world and lend a hand to a fellow man in need. 

Core Values of Sigma Phi Rho Fraternity, Inc.

1.    Scholarship

Sigma Phi Rho Fraternity Incorporated is dedicated to the value of SCHOLARSHIP. This fraternity’s primary goal is that each undergraduate brother attains a college degree.

2.   Leadership

Sigma Phi Rho Fraternity Incorporated is dedicated to the value of LEADERSHIP. Our Fraternity develops responsible leaders that will shape the direction of this fraternity and their community.

3.   Brotherhood

Sigma Phi Rho Fraternity Incorporated is dedicated to the value of BROTHERHOOD. Our fraternity is unified by the strong bonds of fraternal fellowship, which we extend to our campuses and communities.

4.   Service

Sigma Phi Rho Fraternity Incorporated is dedicated to the value of SERVICE. This fraternity is committed to sharing its time and talent with the communities we serve.

5.   Empowerment

Sigma Phi Rho Fraternity Incorporated is dedicated to the value of EMPOWERMENT. The Fraternity empowers those affected by critical social challenges (AIDS, Poverty, etc.) in the world. As the principal agents of change in the communities we service, this Fraternity will invest its time and resources to address these and other social challenges.

Sigma Phi Rho Throughout the Years

  • 1978:   Constitution/By-laws for Sigma Phi Rho were created in the summer of 1978, where these documents were sent to the dean at Wagner College for approval. Most of the fraternity foundation/structure  were developed in the Towers hall "B Towers"  at Wagner College. 
  • 1979:   On  Thursday, April 26th, 1979 Sigma Phi Rho Alpha Chapter receives its official charter from Wagner College 
  • 1980:  On October 25th, 1980, Sigma Phi Rho officially expands to the State University of New York at Brockport, thus establishing the Beta Chapter.
  • 1980:  On Thursday, December 4th , 1980 The Alpha Chapter brothers of Sigma Phi Rho introduces eleven young women into the organization known as The Rho Rhoses. The Women's Auxiliary group for Sigma Phi Rho Fraternity Inc
  • 1981:  On February 1st, 1981, Sigma Phi Rho establishes the National Governing Council. The Governing body which would oversee existing and future chapters of Sigma Phi Rho Fraternity Inc, as well as all business operations within the organization.
  • 1981:  Sigma Phi Rho introduces 4 more chapters throughout the year - University of North Carolina at Greensboro, Metro Chapter, Montclair State College ( Now Montclair State University) and State University of New York at New Paltz ( Gamma, Epsilon, Zeta and Eta Chapters respectively) 
  • 1982:  On January 1st, 1982, Sigma Phi Rho introduces the 1st Annual New York Invitational Stepping Championship, simply known as "Jan 1st Step Show". at the City University of New York at  City College. An Iconic Step Show in the East Coast that would last up until the early 90's. 
  • 1982:  On March 4th, 1982 Honorable Grandfather Courtney A Bennett, John T. Sims, and Gregory F.J. Brown sign the certificate of Incorporation for Sigma Phi Rho Fraternity Inc.
  • 1983:  On September 1st, Sigma Phi Rho Fraternity Inc. establish a Chapter at the University at Rochester which becomes the Theta Chapter
  • and on November 12th establishes the first chapter on Long Island, New York, SUNY Old Westbury and its name the Delta Chapter. 
  • 1984:  Sigma Phi Rho host's and steps at the East Coast Stepping Championship at Madison Square Garden. 
  • 1985:  On July 25th Sigma Phi Rho Fraternity Inc. expands to two campuses, second college on Staten Island. CUNY College of Staten Island becomes the Iota Chapter and the second campuses on Long Island, New York. New York Institute of Technology becomes the Kappa Chapter.
  • 1988: Sigma Phi Rho Fraternity Inc. launches the Omicron Chapter at Ramapo College in Mahwah, New Jersey. 
  • 1989: On April 24th Sigma Phi Rho Fraternity Inc. establishes the XI Chapter at the State University of New York at Albany in Albany, New York
  • 1989: On December 16th Sigma Phi Rho Fraternity Inc. launches the PI Chapter at the State University of New York at Delhi in Delhi, New York  
  • 1990:  Sigma Phi Rho Introduces its First Chapter in the West Coast  the Lambda Chapter at University of California, Santa Barbara
  • 1995: Sigma Phi Rho Fraternity Inc. expands to a third college in New Jersey. The Sigma Chapter at Caldwell University in Caldwell, New Jersey. 
  • 2012: The National Governing Council establishes the RHO Foundation, a 501(c)(3) charitable organization.
  • 2014:  On April 26th, 2014, During the  Fraternity's 34th Operation Celebration in New York City, Grandfather Courtney A Bennett Bestowed upon Brother Darren Lightburn,( Alpha Chapter, Winter 78' ) as Honorary Grandfather of Sigma Phi Rho Fraternity, Inc. 


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Email: Info@sigmaphirho.org

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