In an effort to highlight the people who are leading graduate chapters across the nation, we at Watch The Yard reached out to the brothers of Omega Psi Phi Fraternity Inc.’s Iota Omega Chapter in Tuskegee – Macon County and did an interview with Rogers Hunt III the Basileus of the chapter.
The position of Basileus/president of a Black fraternity chapter is a highly respected role and there is a special pride that one takes. Rogers Hunt III, who works as a Director of Capital Projects at Tuskegee University, has been in the position of Basileus for three Years.
We interviewed Hunt, who is a 1994 / Xi Omicron Chapter initiate of his fraternity and talked to him about his position, goals, future and what it means to hold this type of leadership position in the digital age.
Read the full interview below.
What motivated you to take on the role of alumni chapter president?
One word, “Duty” It’s my duty to lead by example to uplift my Brothers and community.
What specific initiatives is your chapter heading up this year and how do you think they will improve the local community or the broader Black community?
Iota Omega Chapter is celebrating 100 years of “Omega in Tuskegee, Alabama Partnering for a Productive Community through Friendship and Service.”My goal is that the Men of Omega remain a ubiquitous source of service and uplift to the Macon County community and at all Fraternity levels via our Internationally Mandated Programs. Iota Omega Chapter’s efforts to keep Tuskegee “Beautiful” through the monthly “Mile Clean Up” project; “Safe” via initiatives promoting COVID-19 testing and vaccination; “Healthy” with our food collection and distribution for families in need of sustainable nutrition sources, prostate & diabetes education; and “Relevant” via VREM by assisting elderly residents to the polls and ensuring that the right to vote for people of color is never attenuated.
What made you want to pledge Omega Psi Phi?
Some of the most important men in my life were Omegas, including my Father, Godfather, Cousin, football coach, and freshmen summer school dorm director/mentor. Their interactions among each other and their LBs who all called and treated me like their nephew made Omega Psi Phi Fraternity, Inc. an obvious choice for me.
What is it about your specific chapter that makes it so unique?
1. Iota Omega Chapter is the oldest, longest continuous serving chapter in Alabama(Est. 1/21/1923).
2. Iota Omega Chapter hosted the 14th Grand Conclave in 1925.
3. The 1923 Escutcheon was designed by F.C. Alston, Iota Omega 1923 Initiate
How is your chapter providing for the undergraduate chapters you support?
Iota Omega Chapter provides mentorship to the Lambda Epsilon Chapter and provides financial support for attendance at the International Undergraduate Summit and homecoming activities. Both chapters partner in Achievement Week activities. The Graduate Chapter appoints an Undergraduate Advisor to provide guidance and oversight.
How do you approach fostering a sense of unity and camaraderie among alumni members, and what strategies have you found effective?
Unity and Camaraderie are the essential ingredients of Friendship. Our founders were Friends first; therefore, our most effect strategy is to seek Men of like character who are capable of being Friends.
What advice would you give to aspiring leaders within your fraternity/sorority who may aspire to take on roles of leadership within alumni chapters?
Be consistently dependable. Show up and lead by example even if you are the only one. Remember that when others see you, they are seeing the Fraternity/Sorority. Finally, leadership is more that just the title, its a full time responsibility and excuses are not acceptable.
How has mentorship helped you get to where you are today? Are there any specific people in your org who have made a significant impact on your life as mentors?
I would not have seeked a chapter leadership position without the mentorship of the 19th 7th District Representative and Iota Omega Chapter Brother, Joseph T. Williams. He is a consistent source of wisdom, support, and constructive criticism. When the phone rings, after the Omega Prayer call at 6:00 am, I know its Brother Williams on the line with a piece of valuable information or advise that is going to be beneficial to the Basileus. Brother Williams is truly an Omega treasure.
Why do you think Watch The Yard is important to Black greekdom?
Watch The Yard is “The Source” of Black greekdom. I enjoy hearing and seeing the young Bruhz brag about making the Watch The Yard postings. Even the Grad Bruhz at our neighboring Nu Iota Iota Chapter in Auburn, AL boasted about and their Spring 2023 line being highlighted by Watch The Yard.
Looking back at it, why do you love being a member of your org?
There is No other Fraternity where Friendship is Essential to the Soul. I’m a Que, my Father (7-78-Xi Omicron / Omega Chapter 2013) was a Que and my two sons (3-19-Iota Omega and 2-23-Alpha are Ques. There is none Greater!
Lastly, what does brotherhood mean to you?
Brotherhood means wanting to spend time with your Brother, uplifting your Brother, supporting your Brother and his family when needed, being patient with your Brother, and loving your Brother even when you disagree.
We at Watch The Yard would like to commend Rogers Hunt III for his work as the Basileus of the Iota Omega Chapter which has a legacy that spans back to 1923.
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