Diversity is now a common topic, but did you know that AOII’s founders were focused on this critical issue far ahead of their time? The reason? Their desire to create a genuine sisterhood that they knew they couldn’t find in any existing sorority.

AOII’s forward-thinking founders.

What hampered their efforts of joining other sororities? The beauty of their differences: Stella was Jewish. Helen was Episcopalian. Elizabeth was Protestant. And Jessie was Quaker.

Knowing that existing women’s fraternities wouldn’t accept Stella into their sisterhood solely on the basis of her being Jewish, the friends decided to buck societal expectations and create their own, democratic group that would not discriminate.

Today, sisterhood extends even further. AOII’s “Diversity Policy” specifies that our fraternity does not discriminate based on race, ethnicity, national origin, sexual orientation, disability, religion, or other characteristics protected by state or federal law.

AOII’s commitment to sisterhood has thrived throughout its history based on the belief of its founders in 1897 to love one another and stand up for their differences. 

It’s truly a sisterhood to cherish!

You can read more about AOII’s wide-ranging policies on the international website.