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  • Writer's pictureTHAheadline (Thai Lee)

The Women of Alpha Kappa Alpha Educates Community on Budgeting and Saving

Updated: Mar 14, 2019

The women of Alpha Kappa Alpha, Theta Mu Omega awarding Joni Duplessis-Collins (L to R) Fatima Fofana, Joni Collins, Kymblyn Brown and Shelly Kinder) Photo by: Thai Lee

The women of Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority Incorporated are known for serving their community and empowering women. The Theta Mu Omega Chapter did just that on Saturday, April 30, 2016 as they held a conference in South Los Angeles that covered topics such as, budgeting, wealth management, preparing for retirement and homeownership.

The Family Strengthening committee of the Theta Mu Omega Chapter of Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority, Inc. partnered with The Pink Tea Rose Foundation and presented a Women's Financial Empowerment Symposium at Los Angeles Southwest College (LASC). The theme of the day’s event, " Launching New Dimensions of Financial Synergy” was free of charge to all attendees. Over 100 women registered for the event including but not limited to students from LASC.

The morning opened with complimentary breakfast and gift bags filled with valuable information regarding women’s financial health. Kymblyn Brown, Vice President of the Theta Mu Omega Chapter gave a warm welcome to the attendees and turned the mic over to the panel moderator, Odest Riley.

The panel discussion entitled, “Financial Issues Unique to Women: Tools and Tips to Empower Your Finances and Life” was presented by some of the finest financial leaders, who shared their knowledge in all matters of financial wealth. The panel included, Karim Webb: Chairman of the Los Angeles Southwest College Foundation and veteran of the restaurant industry; Pia Washington: (Keller Williams); Tayiika Davis: CPA of CalCPA, NSBN LLP, and President of L.A. Chapter of CalCPA; Vivian Afriyie: Financial Advisor (Morgan Stanley), and Jeffrey Francis: Senior Business Development Officer, Valley Economic Development Center. The events keynote speaker, Elaine Gaspard discussed, “Financial Empowerment through the Family Lifecycle.”

After the panel discussion, there were seven workshops that were broken into four sessions.

The workshops consisted of Your Financial Makeover: The Basics of Money Management; Researching beyond the Basics: Wealth Management and Investment Strategies; Greek Life 101; Ready, Set, Save: Youth and Financial Planning; Set to Save: Retirement Planning; Co-pays, Caregivers and Code Status: ‘How’s Your Financial Wealth?’, and Building Blocks to Homeownership.

The event was organized by Fatima Fofana and Shelly Kinder, both members of Theta Mu Omega.

Co-organizer of the Women’s Empowerment Symposium, Shelly Kinder said, “This is something that our organization, Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority Incorporated sets out in one of its initiatives. Also, we knew that the topic, financial workshop is valuable to our community. When I say our community, I mean African-Americans and particularly women. We have fulfilled our goal of throwing something like this for the community, and it is amazing how it came together.

Kinder shared that the feedback from the attendees were positive and that the symposium may become an annual event.

“The response from the community was amazing and based on the turnout; I would love to see it become an annual event. A couple of the participants have come up to us and said, ‘we hope to see something like this again,’ so hopefully we will talk about it and it will be even better next year,” she said.

Attendee, Carla Banks said the event was “well put together” and “informative”.

“I really enjoyed today’s event. I enjoyed the homebuyer’s workshop and the financial literacy workshop. It was well put together, a lot of people came out, and it was very informative. I liked how it was for young adults and for the children, I enjoyed everything they had to offer," said Banks.

The Theta Mu Omega Chapter received a grant from sponsor, West Angeles Community Development Corporation. There was also a Suited-up-for-Success clothes drive and an onsite voter registration by the AKA Connections committee.

Other organizations and vendors that contributed to the event included Alpha Phi Alpha Fraternity Inc., Valley Economic Development Corporation, WLM Financial, Before the Transition, Morgan Stanley, Keller Williams and L.A. Chapter of CalCPA. The Office of the Honorable Autumn Burke gave State Certificates of Recognition to Karim Webb, chairman Southwest College and Joni Collins, Director of Foster Care Education Program.

The women of Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority Incorporated – Theta Mu Omega Chapter – has made a great impact on their community and has taught theimportant message that budgeting and saving is far beyond any materialistic value. It takes a determined individual to invest time and energy into their finances, once achieved, it is something that can empower your life.

To learn more about the Theta Mu Omega Chapter of Alpha Kappa Alpha and their upcoming events, be sure to check out their website at or on social media @tmo_aka. For more information on Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority and its programs, visit

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