Members of Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority, Inc. recently came together to commemorate a momentous occasion—the official opening of their exclusive credit union known as “For Members Only” (FMO). The sorority held a grand inauguration ceremony at their corporate headquarters in Chicago, just before the highly anticipated 2023 Leadership Seminar.
Taking to Instagram, the organization proudly announced that FMO is not only the first-ever Black-owned, women-led, sorority-based digital banking institution in the United States but also a groundbreaking milestone in history. The post shared that some of the sorority’s sisters wasted no time and signed up for FMO’s services right there at the event.
With over a century of history, Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority, Inc. initiated plans for the credit union several years ago, driven by a commitment to empower women of color and foster economic and financial stability. Danette Anthony Reed, the international president and CEO of AKA Sorority, explained their motivation, saying, “Not everyone recognizes the financial impact we can make, so we need to take action to demonstrate our ability to manage our finances.”
During its inaugural year, FMO will offer its members a wide range of services, including primary savings accounts, loans, and other essential banking services. FMO board member Deardra Hayes-Whigham expressed the importance of investing in what they collectively own, highlighting their dedication to empowering members financially.
One member of the AKA sorority, Monica Teal, expressed her excitement, stating, “It’s truly incredible to know that we now have the opportunity to make a meaningful impact on our finances.” This sentiment was shared by many as they eagerly anticipated utilizing the services of FMO.
Membership to FMO is exclusively available to members of the AKA sorority and their immediate families. In addition, employees of the credit union and the organization itself will also have access to the credit union’s comprehensive services. Terri Bradford Eason, the executive director of FMO federal credit union, emphasized that every member will be an owner, ensuring their collective participation in the credit union’s endeavors. FMO is fully chartered, regulated, and insured by the National Credit Union Administration, guaranteeing the highest standards of financial security.
The dedicated women of Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority, Inc. continue to make significant strides in establishing new initiatives for their organization. In a previous announcement by BLACK ENTERPRISE, the Gamma Omega chapter of Alpha Kappa Alpha Society and the sorority’s nonprofit entity, Ivy Alliance Foundation, unveiled their collaboration to transform the former St. Louis residence of the sorority’s founder, Ethel Hedgemon Lyle, into a museum. In December 2022, a land dedication ceremony marked the commencement of the development of a 12,000-square-foot community center.
The Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority, Inc. members’ commitment to creating opportunities and advancing their community is evident through the establishment of the FMO credit union and their ongoing initiatives. Their dedication to financial empowerment and preserving their rich history sets a shining example for future generations to come.