National Epicureans Incorporated - Eat, Drink, and Be Merry!

Philadelphia Chapter

History of Philadelphia Chapter

In the fall of 1983, Barbara J. White traveled to Spain with the Richmond Chapter of the National Epicureans, Inc. Barbara enjoyed the friendships she developed with the Eppies and Eppos on this trip. She returned to Philadelphia determined to organize a group of women who shared interests through family, professional, social, local and national organizations into a social club that would eventually become a chapter of the National Epicureans, Incorporated.

The first meeting was held on October 1983, at the home of Peggy A. Epps. Each perspective member who was interested in Barbara's ideas decide to call the group, "The Philadelphia Jewels". The following officers were elected at this meeting: Barbara J. White, President; Peggy Epps, Vice President; Jacquelyn Jackson, Recording Secretary; Barbara A. Hodges, Corresponding Secretary; Patricia Sawyer, Financial Secretary; Dorothy Summers-Rush, Treasurer; Lois Powell-Mondesire, Historian; Sylvia W. Bell, Journalist; Nancy C Lee, Parliamentarian and Carolyn J. Douglas, Sergeant-at-arms.

For a year and half, the Philadelphia Jewels strengthened friendships among the members by planning and sharing activities. Becoming Epicureans was the goal! Barbara J. White wrote letters of interest to Dr. Sarah Grant, Vice President. The Philadelphia Jewels were advised of the steps to take to become Epicureans. In January 1995, Dorothy Summers Rush wrote a letter to Blanche Beckham of the Baltimore Epicureans requesting the sponsorship of the Baltimore Chapter for the Philadelphia Jewels. A positive response encouraged President White to forward a letter and our resumes to Mrs. Miriam Brown, President of the Baltimore Epicureans requesting formal consent to sponsor, The Philadelphia Jewels. They agreed to become the Chapter sponsor.

The Philadelphia Jewels invited the Baltimore Chapter to meet at the home of Constance B. Baker on a Sunday afternoon in June 1985. The group shared a lovely brunch and made new friends. On December 7, 1985. Dr. Carolyn L. Mosby and Dr. Sarah Grant met the Philadelphia Jewels at the home of Peggy A. Epps for a holiday party. Again, new friendships were established!

On May 3, 1986, the 22nd Chapter of the National Epicureans, Incorporated was installed at the Embassy Suites Hotel in Philadelphia. Barbara J. White, President and seventeen members were inducted by the National President, Dr. Carolyn L. Mosby of Richmond, VA. Epicureans from as far as South as Atlanta, Georgia, and from as far West as Columbus and Dayton, Ohio attended this installation.

The Philadelphia Epicureans presented Dr. Carolyn L. Mosby with a replica of the Liberty Bell and a Citation from Mayor of Philadelphia. W. Wilson Goode, Sr. Eppies and Eppos attended this spectacular dinner dance and had a fantastic time for the remainder of the evening. On Sunday, May 4, 1986, a farewell breakfast was served. During the weekend, the Eppies lived up to their motto, "Eat, Drink and Be Merry!!!"

Since May 1986 the Philadelphia Chapter has inducted new members and continues to fellowship at their meetings on the last Friday of the month.

Accolades continue for the fabulous Conclave hosted by the Philadelphia Chapter at the Downtown Marriott in Philadelphia in June, 1995. The Chapter is extremely proud that three of its members have been elected to national offices of the national Epicureans, Incorporated; Peggy A. Epps, National Vice President (1994-1996), National President (1996-1998); Patricia Sawyer, national Vice President (1998-2000), National President (2000-2002) and Carolyn D. Gardner, National Vice President (2010-2014), National President 2015-2017).

The Chapter continues to support the National Project, Sickle Cell Disease through thousands of dollars in contribution to research and supportive services and through the establishment in March 2011 of a children's library at the Sickle Cell Anemia Center at Children's Hospital of Philadelphia.

Our very own Eppie sister PA Supreme Court Justice Juanita Kidd Stout was honored by the City of Philadelphia. The Criminal Justice Center was named in her honor in 2011. Judge Stout was the first African American woman elected to serve as a judge in the United States. She was also, the first African American woman to serve on any state Supreme Court in the nation.

Chapter members are appreciative of its many friends and supporters who have enjoyed sharing the motto, "Eat, Drink and Be Merry" at its many fundraising, social events and Founders' Day Celebrations. Our members now look forward to hosting the 23 chapters at our 2017 Conclave.

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