By Sheri Crockett
Delta Sigma Theta Sorority Inc. was founded in 1913 at Howard University, located in Washington, D.C., by 22 young women. Our motto is a sisterhood called to serve — yes, I said our motto. I am a member of this prestigious sorority, along with Minnesota Lynx player Candice Wiggins.
I had a chance to speak to Candice about being a Delta. When I asked her why she had chosen to become a member of Delta Sigma Theta Sorority Inc., her response came with a huge smile. She said she was at Stanford University, located in Stanford, California, where there was a heavy Black Greek presence, plus she wanted to find a way to connect to Black women who did not play basketball. After doing research and reading the book In Search of Sisterhood: Delta Sigma Theta and the Challenge of the Black Sorority Movement, becoming a Delta was her clear choice.
Becoming a Delta is a process where you have to do some thinking about yourself, your current goals, and your future goals, and then write them down. Candice said that this process made her think about who she was outside of basketball and who she wanted to become.
The Delta’s mission statement is to provide assistance and support through established programs in local communities and throughout the world. The organization has a Five Point Programmatic Thrust, which is economic development, educational development, international awareness and involvement, physical and mental health, and political awareness and involvement.
Candice feels she is involved in those areas. She plays in the WNBA, and when the WNBA season is over, she plays overseas. She has been to 20 different countries, and by playing professional basketball she has been able to network with many different people.
When her basketball career is over, Candice would like to pursue her master’s degree. With all that she has been through and accomplished in her life, she feels she can be a leader, be it political or otherwise.
She says she knows that God has something bigger planned for her, and she knows that Delta is a part of it. In 2008 she founded the Candice Wiggins Foundation, an organization aimed at reaching out to youth about the AIDS/HIV epidemic. She is also very prominent in other AIDS/HIV awareness organizations, including Until There’s a Cure and the Minnesota AIDS Project. This is a subject very close to Candice, as her father, the late Alan Wiggins, passed away from AIDS when she was four years old. (Her father played seven seasons with the San Diego Padres and Baltimore Orioles of MLB).
She speaks of her family (biological as well as her over 200,000 sisters of Delta) with great pride. When asked if she has any involvement with the chapter here in Minnesota, she says that with her Lynx schedule it is hard to be physically involved, but she always feels the love from her local sorority sisters here.
When she sees the Delta Sigma Theta Greek letters in the crowd, she tries to make an effort to make eye contact with them at a game. Seeing that makes her feel like she has family watching her, whether she knows them or not.
So of course, not to leave out our fraternity brothers from Omega Psi Phi Fraternity, she does a silent shout-out to them after a home win with the “Apache” song playing in the background. (I am sure the late Kwame McDonald is smiling at that; he was a member of that fraternity and loved sports.) Candice says she does that because she loves our “bruhs,” and with the win fresh and the music playing and her energy, it just makes her hype!
Being a member of a sorority is a great honor, and becoming a member is a decision that should be chosen carefully. I am proud to be a member of Delta Sigma Theta Sorority Inc. and to call Candice Wiggins my sister.
Sheri Crockett welcomes reader responses to firstname.lastname@example.org.