Renaissance Women Virtual Tour – Day Four


My daughter loves this time of year. The approach of fall has always been a time for her to enjoy the scents that linger in the air. Stimulating aromas float through her open windows, encasing a crispness which doesn’t allow impurities to invade her mind, and she is able to cleanse her spirit and renew her soul. The possibilities that this season brings is something she has always looked forward to. As fall approaches, and her sense of renewal emerges, new opportunities are unveiled. The atmosphere is charged with promise and she yearns for change. Each one of us face seasons of change. Is this your season?

We can choose to fight change, fear change, deny change, or embrace change, but change is going to happen. Such I’m sure was the tenor in the air during the fall of 1912. I sometimes imagine the conversations of twenty two young ladies as they grew restless. They saw a need for change, and they answered the call, looking forward to the promise of new possibilities, of a new season. They sought to move towards social activism and public service, rather than continuing a narrow journey. They realized they were called to a higher purpose. They were Renaissance Women, and to the call for change they responded. Our Founders had a wide array of accomplishments and intellectual interests and chose to use their talents to “rebirth” the philosophy of social organizations. They were dominating forces in political, civil and social welfare, as well as arts and education, all while forming a foundation of service to all. The collective vision of our Founders and the collective strength of our members propel us to be the dynamic power that can move a nation to change. We have been invited to respond.

I believe that there is no such thing as a coincidence. People are placed in situations and places to be helped or to help others. Or sometimes it’s a draw of the spirits, twenty-two spirits who created an entity that is a compilation of all of their strengths and talents, each strength and talent complimenting the other. It was our Founders, like Madree Penn White, being fluent in Latin and Greek, who sought for meaning, and gave to us a gift. It is in the very name of our sorority – Delta Sigma Theta. Our Founders were committed to make a difference, committed to serve, committed to lead and committed to change. Renaissance women embrace their charge to set and execute a purposeful agenda, an agenda that has changed the nation. Yes, our Founders were renaissance women. They courageously carried the mantle of leadership and the torch of wisdom. This is an unmistakable truth, evidenced by their first act of Public Service – they embarked on a mission to give birth to a change. Suffering criticism, racism, opposition and reluctance, they stood strong to advocate suffrage for Blacks. They did not shrink back from that which they were called, they embraced their God given charge – to change their world. It was their season for change. You and I both know that women, African American women, who come together as a collective force focused on change cannot be stopped, we are unstoppable. Our very colors give meaning to how we carry out our mission, with the purity of being a woman and the boldness, enthusiasm, courage and strength to be who we have been invited to be . . . women in the forefront of change. Have you responded to the call?

Is this your season for change? Are you a renaissance woman who embraces her journey as a challenge? Have you received the call? Can you feel the season of possibility approaching? As the foliage loses its freshness and begins to tumble, I hear the rustling of leaves echoing in the wind, and I know a change is coming. The heat of the summer has given way to the cool of the night and the possibilities that the season brings is something I am now looking forward to. Do you see what I see? Do you hear what I hear? In the awe of autumn I see a change that offers us hope, it offers us purpose. Change can be daunting, but nothing grows without it. Change is here, change is now. You’ve been invited to be a part of that change. How will you respond?

Soror Darrylyn Swift

About the Author

D. SwiftD. (Darrylyn) Zenobia Swift attended college at Central Missouri State University where she was initiated into Delta Sigma Theta Sorority, Inc. in 1980. Although she received degrees in Fashion Merchandising as well as Business Administration and continued to pursue her law degree, her first passion was storytelling and writing.

In April, 2001, Zenobia released her first novel, “I Know What Love Ain’t”, an undeniable reality of love and relationships centered around one young lady in search of true love. Zenobia boldly questions our concepts of LOVE – is it worth it?

Zenobia also compiled a book of poetry and prose, released July 2003, “Pearl Drops From Heaven”. This compilation is the poetic expression of her pains, her joys and triumphs, and her evolution into a woman full of divine potential, full of courage and strength, full of knowledge and wisdom.

Zenobia completed her second novel, “My Sista, My Friend”, an emotional story about the struggles of friendship and the triumph of a woman’s spirit, which was released May, 2004. Zenobia is currently working on a series of inspirational books, “Once Healed” for Single Sistas, Divorced Sistas, and for Single Mothers. Each compiles inspirational stories to help women uplift their spirits and soothe their souls. When asked what motivates her to write, Zenobia said, “Writing always takes me on a spiritual journey where I am able to release what’s on my heart. My life has been an interesting journey, a journey with purpose, a journey full of hope and a journey filled with love. My life is my motivation.”

About the book
I Know What Love Ain'tThis is an inviting, penetrating, and heart-warming story about Denise Pryce as she searches for a fulfilling and meaningful relationship. Longing to find the true love that will complete her very being, she discovers what love AIN’T.

But now Denise Pryce knows what love is . . . . .DO YOU?

This soul-searching novel is a compelling reality of love and relationships centered around one young lady in search of the true meaning of love. Enduring loves lost and found Denise eventually begins a self-revealing journey. Through the joys and pains of love, Denise Pryce, begins to understand the needs and desires that motivate all individuals in a loving relationship. She begins to focus on the real truths about love. Although she began looking to understand what love truly is, she has learned what it AIN’T.



Ethel Cuff BlackEthel Cuff Black – As Richmond County, New York’s first Black teacher, Ethel Black discovered her second nature in the educational profession. She taught Social Studies for most of her career and served as a Professor at Delaware State College. She was also a Charter Member of the Queens (NY) Alumnae Chapter.