Phi Beta Sigma Fraternity, Inc. was founded at Howard University in Washington, D.C., January 9, 1914, by three young African-American male students. Our founders, Honorable A. Langston Taylor, Honorable Leonard F. Morse, and Honorable Charles I. Brown, strove to organize a Greek letter fraternity that would truly exemplify the ideals of Brotherhood, Scholarship, and Service.
Moreover, our founders were driven to create an organization that viewed itself as “a part of” the general community rather than “apart from” the general community. They believed that each potential member should be judged by his own merits rather than his family background or affluence, and further, this should happen without regard to nationality, skin tone or texture of hair. Their fraternity was to exist as a brotherhood which would be devoted to the inclusive rather than the exclusive “we”.
From our beginnings, our Founders envisioned Phi Beta Sigma as a mechanism to deliver services to the general community, rather than an elite minority. Our visionary Founders held a deep conviction that the benefits of the skills acquired by college educated African-American men should be enjoyed by all, including those who had not yet been afforded similar opportunities. This philosophy is mirrored in the Fraternity’s motto, “Culture for Service and Service for Humanity”.
Today, over 100 years later, Phi Beta Sigma has blossomed into an international organization of leaders with members who have and continue to excel in every field of human endeavor.