National Sigma Beta Club President Meets with U.S. Secretary of Interior, Mr. Ryan Zinke

For 104 years, Phi Beta Sigma Fraternity, Inc. has been an influential organization in the African American community whose members have distinguished themselves in the areas of civil rights, the sciences, the arts, culture, and mentorship of young men/boys. Phi Beta Sigma is a social and cultural organization comprised of over 150,000 college-educated men. In addition to its founding principles of Brotherhood, Scholarship, and Service, Phi Beta Sigma established Sigma Beta Clubs (its youth affiliate arm) in early 1950 through its Alumni chapter levels focused on issues that impact African American youth and communities. Through its national youth mentoring program for males ages 8-18, and its Theme, “A Brotherhood of Conscious Men Embracing, Educating and Empowering Young Men Through Mentoring”, Sigma provides opportunities for the development of young men as they prepare for college and the workforce.

In 2016, Phi Beta Sigma, under the leadership of Hon. Jonathan Mason, 34th International President, entered into a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) with U. S. Fish and Wildlife centered around mentoring goals and objectives as it relates to our Sigma Beta Clubs, to include opportunities to Sigma to work in partnership with the Service on campaigns to raise awareness about the benefits and opportunities associated with wildlife conservation and natural resource management and to provide information on wildlife conservation, outdoor recreation, and natural resource management issues and related career opportunities to the African American communities; assisting in the development of Sigma as a leader in wildlife conservation; assisting in the development of the character and education of African American youth from diverse backgrounds who will be the workforce of the future; and committing to pursuing an enriching and mutually beneficial relationship with U. S. Fish & Wildlife that will enable Sigma Beta Club Members and Advisors to increase their knowledge, awareness and appreciation of wildlife conservation and natural resource management within the African American community.

The NSBC Foundation President & the 31st International President of Phi Beta Sigma Fraternity, Mr. Arthur R. Thomas, Esq., met with U.S. Secretary of Interior, Mr. Ryan Zinke, at the U. S. Fish & Wildlife Bayou Sauvage National Wildlife Refuge in Baton Rouge, Louisiana on Wednesday, October 31, 2018. President Thomas discussed the MOU with Secretary Zinke, to include the successes achieved in the implementation of the MOU through its Sigma Beta Clubs and his commitment, as Foundation President and the commitment of Hon. Michael Cristal, 35th International President of Phi Beta Sigma, to ensure the implementation of the goals and objectives contained in the MOU, and to seek the continued support of Secretary Zinke.

As Foundation President Thomas toured Bayou Sauvage to include an Airboat ride with Secretary Zinke and other staff members, he discussed the upcoming activities of Sigma Beta Clubs during the months of May and June to take place by our Sigma Beta Clubs at various U.S. Wildlife Refuges throughout the United States in those cities our Sigma Beta Clubs are located in further implementation of the MOU. Secretary Zink appeared very eager and very receptive to the continuation and support of the MOU between U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service and Phi Beta Sigma Fraternity and indicated he looks forward to furthering review and dialogue with the respective leadership of the Fraternity and Foundation.