Kappa Kappa Gamma was founded in 1870 by six young women, Mary Moore Stewart, Anna Elizabeth Willits, Susan Burley Walker, Hanna Jeanette Boyd, Mary Louise Bennett and Marta Louisa Stevenson at Monmouth College, Monmouth, Illinois. Since then, Kappa membership has grown to a total of more than 200,000 women with 131 collegiate chapters between the United States and Canada. Kappa Kappa Gamma is one of the oldest women’s fraternities and continues to promote a broad college experience for young women across North America.
The Golden Key
The golden key was selected by the Founders as the badge of Kappa Kappa Gamma. The badge is worn strictly as an emblem of membership and only by initiated members. The colors of the Fraternity are light blue of the sky and dark blue of the sea. The sapphire is recognized as a symbol of truth, sincerity and constancy.
The fleur-de-lis was chosen as the Fraternity flower because of its general dignity, stateliness and grace, and because it combines the two blues of the Fraternity in one flower.
- First of women's fraternities to turn from Grand Chapter form of organization to Grand Council organization (1881)
- First of women's fraternities to publish a magazine (1882)
- First to extend invitations to a Panhellenic Convention (1891)
- First women's fraternity to establish a Central Office (1922)
- First to adopt the Graduate Counselor system (established as Co-Organizer Program, 1928. Presently the Chapter Consultant Position)
- First to set up Service Women's Centers (1942)
- First women's fraternity to establish a permanent Fraternity Headquarters (1952)
- First to join with another sorority in a co-housing venture - with Kappa Alpha Theta at the University of Pittsburgh (1965)
Notably, over the past 100 years, Kappa has had a tradition of outstanding women who have continued on to achieve the highest of careers in many different fields such as the Arts, Athletics, Business and Journalism, Entertainment, Government, Philanthropy, Science and Education. These are just a few of the thousands of outstanding Kappa women.
- Ashley Judd (actress)
- Kate Spade (Designer)
- Sophia Bush (One Tree Hill, USC)
- Jann Carl (Entertainment Tonight news anchor)
- Nancy O'Dell (anchor of Access Hollywood)
- Jane Pauley (Dateline NBC Host)
- Laurie Hickson-Smith (designer on TLC's Trading Spaces)
- Jean Bartel (former Miss America)
- Kate Jackson (one of the original Charlie's Angels)
- Lucy Webb Hayes (wife of president Rutherford B. Hayes)
- Lou Henry Hoover (wife of President Hoover)
- Julia Ward Howe (author of Battle Hymn of the Republic)
- Ruth Leach Pollack (first woman vice president of IBM)
- Adele Hall (of Hallmark cards & chairman of the Points of Light Foundation)