Groove Phi Groove

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Groove Phi Groove Social Fellowship, Inc.
Founded October 12, 1962; 52 years ago (1962-10-12)
Morgan State University
Type Social
Emphasis Service
Scope International
United States
Motto Through loyalty and integrity, we shall achieve greatness.


Publication The Sword & Spear[1]
Chapters 137[2]
Members 40,000+[3] lifetime
Headquarters 2453 Maryland Avenue
Baltimore, Maryland, USA

Groove Phi Groove (GΦG) is a social fellowship founded at Morgan State College (now known as Morgan State University) as an alternative to mainstream Black fraternities. It also has a sister organization called Swing Phi Swing.


Groove Phi Groove was founded on October 12, 1962 by a group of young black men who wanted an alternative to what could be described as the traditionalism of subjectively ascribed pseudo-fraternal organizations.[4] Groove Phi Groove is a non-Greek organization whose purpose includes promoting academic awareness, an alternative to Greek and Grecian based fraternalism as well as traditions incorporating an Afro-Centric perspective. Further, working towards assisting in alleviating both social and economic problems in disadvantaged communities.

Groove Phi Groove members hold individuality, self-expression, and creativity in its members to be paramount, as well as a focus on issues related to the empowerment of African American communities. Its members work in a wide variety of career areas, including accounting, education, engineering, human resource services, local and state government, medicine, law, protective services, information technology, religion, real estate, food service, skilled crafts, music, professional sports, the armed services, and business.


These founders of Groove Phi Groove Social Fellowship are referred to as the "14 Pearls". These are:

  • Glenn Brown
  • Raymond Clark
  • John Conquest
  • Walter Goodwin
  • Barry Hampton
  • James Hill
  • Charles Johnson
  • Nathaniel Monroe
  • David Nesbit
  • Nathaniel Parham
  • Harry Payne
  • Barry Simms
  • Robert Simpson
  • Woodrow Williams



During the 1960s, the word “groove” was popular among young blacks. Webster's Dictionary defines the verb “groove” as “to perform deftly or smoothly.” As a noun, “groove” is defined as a “fixed routine in the affairs of life.” Hence, to go against the “groove” means to work against the current establishment, and “grooving” is associated with “socializing or fellowshipping.” These combined definitions form the definition of Groove Phi Groove.[5]


The "Phi" in Groove Phi Groove holds an alternative meaning from the Greek word "Phi." In “Secrets of the Great Pyramids” by Pete Thompkins, the Khemit people of ancient Egypt created “phi” as a symbol of the creative function of the male reproductive system and, more loosely, as “reproduction in endless series,” which is a symbolic representation of “the fire of life.” The Fellowship has incorporated this symbol of fertility into its name to stand for continual growth and development. The “phi” symbol should not be confused with the Greek numeral representing 500[6] or the ancient Greek representation of [pʰ].[6]


The Fellowship currently has thousands of members and dozens of graduate and undergraduate chapters across the United States. Our members work in a wide variety of career areas, including accounting, education, engineering, human resource services, local and state government, medicine, law, protective services, information technology, religion, real estate, food service, skilled crafts, music, professional sports, the armed services, and business.

Governing structure[edit]

As a body, the governing structure of the Fellowship consists of:[7]

  • The Conclave
  • The National Constitution & Bylaws Manual
  • The National Executive Board of Directors
  • The National Directorate Staff
  • Regional offices
  • Local chapters


National headquarters[edit]

The National Headquarters Office of Groove Phi Groove Social Fellowship, Inc. is located at 2453 Maryland Avenue in Baltimore, Maryland. The building was purchased December 26th, 2012 and dedicated July 1st, 2013.

National presidents[edit]

Since Lenwood Harris became the First National President in 1970, 9 men have served as the National President of Groove Phi Groove, including one man serving for a record three terms. They have led in times of explosive growth and dwindling recruitment, financial hardship and years of plenty, harmony and peace to years of turmoil and discontent, and served tenures as short as 12 months and as long as 12 years.

  • Lenwood Harris
  • Roy L Sutherland
  • Eugene Clay
  • Ronald L Thomas
  • John East
  • Barry Hampton
  • Ronald P White
  • Christopher Joyner
  • Victor Henderson

Notable members[edit]


Public service[edit]



Current chapters[edit]

National programs[edit]

The men of Groove Phi Groove Social Fellowship, Inc. actively support and participate in various programs and projects which aim to serve the communities in which they live. Some of these programs and projects focus on black Americans; however, the Fellowship does not discriminate based on race, color, sex, national origin, or physical impairment. Nor do they provide a financial benefit to individual members of the Fellowship, as Groove Phi Groove is a 501(c)(7) not-for-profit entity, and the Groove Fund is a 501(c)(3) not-for-profit charitable entity.[5] The Fellowship's National Programs & Projects Manual includes information about the following:

  • The Groove Fund, Incorporated Scholarship Awards Program[19]
  • The Groove Fund, Incorporated Tutorial Program
  • The Groove Phi Groove Mentorship Program
  • Project Outreach
  • Project Missing Children
  • Project UNCF
  • Project NAACP/Urban League
  • The Boy Scouts of America

Groove Leadership Academy[edit]

The Groove Leadership Academy was developed to provide support to African American male youth in their adolescent years. This support comes in the form of a youth-mentoring program that delivers leadership workshops, community Service projects, and life skills training. We prepare adolescent male youth to become responsible and productive citizens of good character with principles that they can teach to their children. This kind of support is transitioned from generation to generation. This kind of support builds a sustainable family unit.[20]


The men of Groove Phi Groove Social Fellowship, Inc. place particular emphasis on educational philanthropy. With the intent of making higher education accessible to underrepresented members of society, the Fellowship donates to the general scholarship funds of universities and offers students need and merit-based academic scholarships.

The Groove Fund, Inc. was established as a charitable organization by the men of Groove Phi Groove Social Fellowship, Inc. with the expressed goal of, "Perpetuating higher education and economic empowerment through giving."[21]

Major contributions[edit]

Documentary films[edit]

Groove Phi Groove Faces, Voices, History[24]

External links[edit]


[25] [26] [27] [28] [29]

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  6. ^ a b Φ
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  8. ^ She's Gotta Have It
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  14. ^ Monroe, Earl 2013 Earl The Pearl: My Story New York, NY Rodale page 137 chapter 9 isbn 1609615611
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  24. ^ "Groove Phi Groove : faces, voices, history". Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University. 2004. Retrieved 11 December 2013. 
  25. ^ Perkins, Walter (2011). Groove Phi Groove Social Fellowship, Inc.-The First 50 Years in Black and White. Silver Spring, MD. 
  26. ^ Monroe, Earl; Troupe, Quincy (2013). Earl The Pearl: My Story. 
  27. ^ Morehouse College. "Morehouse College Greek life". Morehouse College Greek life. Morehouse College. Retrieved 19 June 2013. 
  28. ^ Downs, Ra Kenya (October 4, 2005). "Groove Phi Groove Makes Resurgence". The Hilltop. Retrieved 19 June 2013. 
  29. ^ Taylor, Alexis. "Groove Phi Groove Social Fellowship Celebrates 50 Years". AFRO News. AFRO News. Retrieved 19 June 2013.