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Our History:

Omicron Beta Lambda

It was during the mid 1980’s, the Alpha Men of Clearwater found themselves’ traveling to St. Petersburg to fellowship and serve with the Theta Eta Lambda Chapter of Alpha Phi Alpha Fraternity, Incorporated. For during this time the only way for them to enjoy the benefits of Alpha on a local level was to be with the brotherhood in St. Pete. Brother Doctor Joseph Carwise saw the need for Clearwater to develop its own chapter, in which he used his leadership and vision to form the Omicron Beta Lambda Chapter. After petitioning to the national office of Alpha Phi Alpha Fraternity, Incorporated, articles of incorporation were filed and the chapter was incorporated on February 11th, 1985. The realization of the chapter coming to life was confirmed by the chartering dinner which was held at Parness Restaurant on June 15, 1985 at 7pm sharp.

Brother Doctor Joseph Carwise's vision had become a reality along with twelve other brothers of the fraternity that today are known as the Charter Members of Omicron Beta Lambda. The Charter Members of Omicron Beta Lambda were Joseph L. Carwise, John R. Battle, Ronald McElrath, Tasker Beal, Jr., Darry Bouie, James Pierce, Irwin C. Calhoun, David A. Russell, James L. Waters, Melvin H. Woodard, Paul A. Hatchett, II and Lavaugh E. Mcnary.  Doctor Joseph Carwise was the first in the Pinellas County Area from the Omicron Beta Lambda Chapter to have his name instilled on a building. In August of 1993 Joseph L. Carwise Middle School was opened in which it still serves as a learning institution for students in the surrounding Clearwater Area today. As well as having a building named after him, Doctor Joseph L. Carwise was also the first African American City Commissioner. Another first of all, within the charter members, who had a special honor, is Brother James L. Waters. Waters was a  not only a charter member for the Omicron Beta Lambda Chapter but also was a charter member for the Iota Delta Chapter of Florida State University making him a double charter member in Alpha Phi Alpha Fraternity, Incorporated.  After the inaugural line in 1985, Omicron Beta Lambda continually grew.


In more recent years, the Omicron beta Lambda Chapter of Alpha Phi has fostered academic scholarship activities the Alpha Institute, St Pete College Collaborative Initiative, and Project Alpha. The Chapter awards three scholarships which are Joseph Carwise Scholarship, Salathiel Gator Scholarship and the Robert Scott Scholarship to students in the area who participate in the programs and excel academically. Along with scholarship contribution, the chapter contributes to the Martin Luther King Memorial financially.  In reflection of the fraternity aims the chapter shows love for all mankind by participating in programs such as March for Babies, American Cancer Society and the local Martin Luther King Jr. Parade. As far as engagement in leadership activities the Omicron Beta Lambda chapter participates in the Southern Leadership Academy and place major emphasis on leadership in their young men’s development program the Alpha Institute. The Omicron Beta Lambda Chapter also conducts annually the law forum where a collection of African American Judges, Lawyers, Officers speak to the youth about being on the right side of the legal system.


The Omicron Beta Lambda Chapter of Alpha Phi Alpha has been a beacon of hope for the Clearwater community and continues to serve, representing the Fraternity’s aims. 

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