Our Roots – “Nuestras Raices”

During the fall of 1989, the foundation of Sigma Lambda Gamma National Sorority, Inc. was commenced by collegiate women who recognized the need to form an organization that provided empowerment to women of all cultural backgrounds. Her humble beginnings were built at the University of Iowa, Iowa City, Iowa where their vision was to create a network of academic and social support for Latina women. Under the guidance of Esther Materon Arum and Mary Peterson, the vision came to fruition on April 9th, 1990, as the University of Iowa Panhellenic Council officially recognized the organization as a sorority.

Through the continued commitment and leadership of the founding mothers, the operation of Sigma Lambda Gamma has thrived on many college campuses and provides an avenue for educational excellence to women of many nationalities. Our members recognize the need for togetherness and support among women of varying cultures at the university level and they remain dedicated to the overall success of women in a global environment.

Sigma Lambda Gamma is a sisterhood of women who have chosen this affiliation as a manner to achieve personal development and awareness to the responsibility of community involvement for the betterment of our local, regional, national, and global communities through the efforts of a network of close to 10,000 sorority members. Furthermore, we continue to be a pioneer in the Fraternal world through development of innovative programming initiatives.

Today, Sigma Lambda Gamma is the largest, historically Latina-based national sorority with a multicultural membership in chapters and alumnae associations throughout the United States – from Arizona to Idaho; Florida to Minnesota; New York to Texas; and many more states between the coasts of California and Maryland. A criterion for membership into Sigma Lambda Gamma is open to women of exceptional morals & ethics with a demonstrated commitment to academic excellence, and who are pursuing or have completed courses leading to a degree in an accredited college or university.

Mission & Vision

Mission: Through excellence in the organization’s five founding principles, Sigma Lambda Gamma provides opportunities for lifelong empowerment to its members, thereby positively influencing the global community.

Vision: Empowered women leading the world.

Quick Facts

  • Founding Date: April 9, 1990
  • Founding Location: University of Iowa, Iowa City, Iowa
  • Sorority Principles: Morals & Ethics, Social Interaction, Academics, Community Service, Cultural Awareness
  • Sorority Motto: “Culture is Pride, Pride is Success”
  • Founding Mothers: Gloria Cuevas, Julieta Maria Miller-Calderon, Maria Ester Pineda, Danell Marie Riojas-Carbajal, Guadalupe Cruz Temiquel
  • Alpha Chapter—First Line: Patricia Arroyo, Noemi Elizabeth Diaz-Arevalo, Angel Maria Martinez, Seema Kumari Singh, Gabriela Villafuerte-Mendoza
  • Sorority Colors: Shocking Pink and Majestic Purple
  • Sorority Flower: Pink Rose
  • Sorority Stone: Purple Amethyst
  • Sorority Mascot: Purple Panther
  • Sorority Newsletter: La Mensajera
  • Sorority Crest: 6 Books (5 closed, 1 open), 5 Stars, Shaking Hands, Women with Balance, Pyramid


Sigma Lambda Gamma supports a variety of charitable organizations as a part of our community service commitment. As a national organization, we are proud to dedicate our philanthropic efforts to our national causes — Breast Cancer Awareness and the TRIO programs. Sorority entities conduct and participate in extraordinary programming events that are designed to bring about public awareness and education on these topics. In addition to our national service programs, our organization knows no limits in the quality and innovativeness of seminars and workshops which are facilitated by our membership.

Women, children, and societal issues serve as a focal point for the programming efforts of our collegiate and alumnae groups. On the regional and local levels, collegiate and alumnae entities identify important issues within their respective communities to create a positive change for the next generation. It is our goal to collaborate with many campus organizations and philanthropic groups to share the belief in community service and instill a compassion for the hardships faced within our global family.


TRiO PROGRAMS (www.ed.gov)

The Federal TRIO Programs (TRIO) are Federal outreach and student services programs designed to identify and provide services for individuals from disadvantaged backgrounds. TRIO includes eight programs targeted to serve and assist low-income individuals, first-generation college students, and individuals with disabilities to progress through the academic pipeline from middle school to post baccalaureate programs. TRIO also includes a training program for directors and staff of TRIO projects.

The recipients of the grants, depending on the specific program, are institutions of higher education, public and private agencies and organizations including community-based organizations with experience in serving disadvantaged youth and secondary schools. Combinations of such institutions, agencies, and organizations may also apply for grants. These entities plan, develop, and carry out the services for students. While these entities serve individual students, they may not apply for grants under these programs. Additionally, to be served by one of these programs, a student must be eligible to receive services and be accepted into a funded project that serves the institution or school that student is attending or the area in which the student lives.

BREAST CANCER AWARENESS (www.breastcancer.org)

Sigma Lambda Gamma and its member groups actively support the important societal issue of Breast Cancer Awareness. Our support of this cause comes in various avenues: from fundraising campaigns; educational workshops to create awareness; active participation in run/walk events; volunteer participation with organizations; or a combination of these forms. The two primary programs our organization supports in respect to breast cancer awareness include, but are not limited to: Susan G. Komen Breast Cancer Foundation and Y-ME National Breast Cancer Organization.

In 2017, an estimated 253,710 new cases of invasive breast cancer are expected to be diagnosed in women in the U.S., along with 63,410 new cases of non-invasive (in situ) breast cancer. About 1 in 8 U.S. women (about 12%) will develop invasive breast cancer over the course of her lifetime. In women under 45, breast cancer is more common in African-American women than white women. Overall, African-American women are more likely to die of breast cancer. For Asian, Hispanic, and Native-American women, the risk of developing and dying from breast cancer is lower. To read more, please visit breastcancer.org.