Sunday, June 29, 2014

Speakers of the Week

We’ve heard some great speakers this week! If you weren’t able to join us we’ll be sharing videos from two of the sessions soon!

Erin Reach Condren, Alpha Sigma-UCLA 

Condren is founder and designer of personalized paper products at As a busy mother of twins, Condren began making note cards, gift labels and hostess gifts for friends. At the encouragement of her friends, she decided to sell her creations. After years of designing, printing and shipping products from her home, was born in 2007 at a state-of-the-art facility outside of Los Angeles. She has been featured on the Ellen Show, Rachael Ray, the TODAY show. and in the ANCHORA.  

Condren spoke at Anchor Academy, the inaugural pre-Convention training session offered to delegates on Thursday, June 26.

"Friendships last forever when sisters come together"

"Stay connected to DG, The networking in this room is amazing."

Alison Levine, Alpha Pi-Arizona 

Levine was the team captain of the first American women’s Everest expedition and author of On the Edge: The Art of High-Impact Leadership. She has climbed the highest peak on each continent and skied to both the North and South Poles-a feat known as the Adventure Grand Slam, which fewer than 40 people in the world have achieved. She founded the Climb High Foundation and works as an adjunct instructor at the United States Military Academy at West Point. Levine was recently featured on CBS This Morning. 
Levine spoke to the Convention body on Saturday, June 28. 

"Do not let fear stop you from doing the things you want to do!"

"The key to surviving storms is to take action at the time, it's not always about sticking to the plan"

Jessica Pettitt, Epsilon Chi-South Carolina 

Pettitt brings her 10+ years in student affairs, 5+ years of national consulting work and 2+ years as a stand-up comedian experience to stage as part of her mission to inspire change, dismantle oppression and recognize our privilege. Nominated for two years by Campus Activities Magazine for Best Diversity Artist, Jessica’s programs are direct, customized and highly interactive. Her workshops, seminars, and keynotes take participants on a journey weaving together politics, theory, current events, and story telling with large doses of humor. 
Pettitt was the social justice speaker on Saturday, June 28. 

"I've had a lot of awkward experiences and that doesn't make me less than one of your sisters."

"Whoever that person is that we are leaving out, they are winning."

Laurie Rubin 

Rubin is an opera singer who is blind. She recently published her first memoir Do you Dream in Color? She has appeared in major operas and as a soloist at Carnegie Hall and the White House. She founded Ohana Arts, which is devoted to music education in Hawaii. She is touring and working on a new pop album called “The Girl I Am.” 
Rubin was the Foundation Lectureship speaker and addressed the audience on Friday, June 27. 

Laurie spoke about self confidence and said she aims to be treated like everyone else.

Thursday, June 26, 2014

Top 10 Favorite Things at the Biltmore

It’s day two and we can already tell we don’t want to leave this beautiful resort! How lucky to have our Convention at this breathtaking venue. Here’s a list of our top 10 favorite things about the Arizona Biltmore!

1. The pool. Well let’s be more specific. All 8 of them. One even has a 92-foot water slide! It’s been pretty hot here but going out to the pool earlier in the day is great! Delta Gammas can look forward to relaxing there on Sunday after Convention. 
2. The food. We have had some amazing meals so far. We can’t wait for the fancy Foundation Banquet Dinner and Award Ceremony Dinner. The desserts always look too beautiful to eat!
3. The architecture. The buildings all are Frank Lloyd Wright-influenced, the architect who built the Biltmore, Albert Chase McArthur, was his student. "Biltmore Block" covers the buildings and features a geometric pattern that is said to represent a freshly cut palm tree.
4. The Sprites. Statues of females known as “Sprites” of Midway Gardens (Chicago) were resurrected from their demise during prohibition and given to the Arizona Biltmore Resort as gifts. They are all around the grounds and make for a fun design for our Convention charm. 
5. The history. The hotel has been giving tours to our sisters and it is overflowing with history and famous guests. Actually, Marilyn Monroe had her favorite swimming pool at the resort – the Catalina Pool – where she could often be seen lounging by the water. 
6. The ceiling. Only the Taj Mahal has a larger golden ceiling. The ceiling is comprised of 38,000 square feet of individual 4-inch squares that were all hand applied by artisans on scaffolding.
7. A presidential retreat. Every U.S. president from Herbert Hoover through George W. Bush has stayed at the Arizona Biltmore. There’s a history hallway picturing every one of them.
8. The grounds and fountain. The grounds are so well-kept and are beautiful. Brightly colored flowers and perfectly kept grass welcomed Delta Gammas this week.
9. The view. The Arizona mountains surround the Biltmore and the view is awesome!
10. The fact that 1,000 other Delta Gammas are here! We are everywhere throughout this resort and it is so fun to run into old friends and make new ones!

Tuesday, June 24, 2014

Highlights & Helpful Hints from a Convention Hostess

As Delta Gamma’s 2014 Convention Hostess, my goal has been to build the best Convention Committee and volunteer team possible to work with Executive Office staff members to make this biennial event the best it can be for all DGs and guests traveling to Phoenix in just a few days.  Talk about an easy goal to accomplish when you are part of an outstanding and dedicated alumnae chapter! The Phoenix Alumnae Chapter is a mighty and diverse group of sisters with strong leadership in place.  These officers are always busy planning something for everyone, which always involves fun and sisterhood. Convention is no different! 

Convention planning “takes a tribe.” Indeed, this tribe of sisters stepped up from day one as we began to recruit key Committee Coordinators and volunteers. We scheduled Convention meetings in addition to regular chapter events to involve and engage our members. Raising Convention awareness resulted in excitement and a higher level of commitment for many sisters. We’re also proud to have great support from collegians, alumnae, collegiate chapters and alumnae groups throughout Region 6 (AZ, NM, OK & TX).

Each Delta Gamma Convention has its own unique theme and flavor, but every Convention celebrates the very best of Delta Gamma; that is what we hope you will experience here in Phoenix!  We encourage you to take advantage of a few things during your stay: 
At the airport, look for DG sisters wearing bright turquoise T-shirts and big DG smiles when approaching the Baggage Claim areas. 
After checking in and registering at the Delta Gamma Registration desk, please stop by our Phoenix Hospitality Table to meet many Phoenix / Region 6 volunteers.  We are eager to welcome you and answer any questions you may have about Phoenix, the Biltmore Resort, the Convention program, your name tag, and so much more! Our volunteers will do their best to ensure you have the information you need for a fun and successful weekend! 
Look for our Phoenix / Region 6 Welcome Brochure in your Tote Bags, which includes messages from our Phoenix alumnae chapter president and Region 6 Director, fun facts about Arizona and the Biltmore Resort, highlights of Convention events, and special recognition to many within Region 6 for the love and support we have experienced during the planning process.
Take time to complete that special photo album page for your alumnae group / collegiate chapter in the Memory Time Capsule for 2018 at the Phoenix Hospitality Table.  While you are there, you can also pick up a more-comprehensive list of fun facts about Arizona to share with your sisters.
Take the time to learn about the interesting history of the Arizona Biltmore Resort ~ it’s everywhere! 
Pack your cameras and iPhones for the many DG-sponsored photo opportunities throughout the Resort. 
Be prepared for outside heat and chilly inside air conditioning! 

Hope is Rising along with our excitement here in Phoenix!  
In the Bonds,
Mary Anne Ruman Lachenmaier, Alpha PI-Arizona
Delta Gamma Foundation Board of Trustees, Secretary
Convention 2014 Hostess