Since its inception, Sigma Gamma Rho has promoted unity among women and for years many alumnae chapters worked with individuals who were not members of Greek-lettered organizations. These women were organized into auxiliaries that had various names until 1954 when the sorority officially approved the organized affiliate group and accepted the name of “Philo”(meaning Friend) as their official name.
In 1980 the Philos were organized on a national level and have grown to represent hundreds of women organized on a regional level as well. The Philos have supported Sigma Gamma Rho’s aim to enhance the quality of life within every community financially and through service.
1943: The Philo Affiliates, friends of Sigma Gamma Rho Sorority, Inc. was organized in the Galveston-Houston area. Philos began as the Galveston Comrades.
1951: The name of Sigma Comrades was changed to Sigma Philos, under the auspices of Soror Maudest Steward, Basileus of Gamma Sigma Chapter, Houston, TX thus creating Galveston’s Alpha Theta Sigma Philos and Houston’s Gamma Sigma Philos.
1972: June 9th in Galveston, Texas, under the leadership of Soror Virgie Reynolds, SW Regional Syntaktes and Soror Vida Taylor, SW Regional Advisor, six Philo affiliates became united regionally. Philo Emma King, San Antonio, Texas, was elected as the first Regional President.
1976: National Sigma Gamma Rho Sorority. Inc., grand body approved the creation and naming on Philos as National Affiliates.
1980: Philos were in attendance of the 38th Boule in Oklahoma City, Oklahoma for the first time as a National affiliate. Philo Sallie R. Williams, Houston, Texas, was elected as the first National President. The group was organized because the Sorority realized that there were women of the highest caliber living and working in their communities who did not have a four-year college degree. The Philo affiliate was a way of uniting these women and having them take part in such activities that would strengthen Sigma Gamma Rho Sorority, Inc. and improve civic and community conditions as well as work to help develop and support educational and cultural services among the sorority’s youth affiliates.
To become a member of the Philo Affiliate one must be a woman of good character, possess poise, self-control, interest, outstanding social qualities, and expertise in some particular field. She must have a high school education or its equivalent. She must be interested in promoting programs of the Sorority. She must also acquire an affirmative vote for membership by the Philo Affiliate Membership Committee.