ESSEX COUNTY, NJ — More than 600 people attended the induction ceremony reception of Irvington Mayor Tony Vauss as a member of Phi Beta Sigma Fraternity on Sept. 1. Vauss and his line brother Chris Porter became members of the spring 2022 line of Phi Beta Sigma’s Chi Sigma chapter.
Chapter President George Darby and eastern regional vice director Nigel Coelho coordinated the membership induction celebration, which was joined by the Rev. Al Sharpton, who is also a member of Phi Beta Sigma. This welcoming event was attended by hundreds of community guests, members of Phi Beta Sigma and sister organization Zeta Phi Beta.
In attendance were the following members of the National Pan-Hellenic Council: Hillside Mayor Dahlia Vertreese, a member of Zeta Phi Beta; Newark Mayor Ras J. Baraka, a member of Alpha Phi Alpha; Orange Mayor Dwayne D. Warren, a member of Kappa Alpha Psi; and East Orange Mayor Ted R. Green, a member of Omega Psi Phi. U.S. Rep. Donald M. Payne Jr. and N.J. Assemblywoman Britnee Timberlake, joined by other state and local dignitaries, also came to congratulate the new initiates.
The Chi Sigma alumni chapter of Phi Beta Sigma is the oldest Phi Beta Sigma chapter in the state of New Jersey; it was founded in 1923 in the city of Newark. Beginning in January 2023, the chapter will commence its celebration of its 100th anniversary by highlighting the chapter’s work in northern New Jersey in the areas of social action, education, male mentoring and business.
Vauss thanked all the members of Alpha Phi Alpha, Alpha Kappa Alpha, Kappa Alpha Psi, Omega Psi Phi, Delta Sigma Theta, Phi Beta Sigma, Zeta Phi Beta, Sigma Gamma Rho and Iota Phi Theta, collectively known as the National Pan-Hellenic Council. The council’s purpose is to promote unity, expose members to the “service for life” philosophy, and foster leadership development and scholarship. Furthermore, NPHC provides a forum for participation and interaction among the members of affiliate organizations and the organizations themselves.
“Fraternities and sororities symbolize all that we wish to accomplish in our lives and represent the struggles we all face as we grow,” Vauss said.
Photos Courtesy of Farrah A. Irving