At the 1982 Atlanta Supreme Convention, outgoing Grand President Sonja Stefanadis recommended that a committee be formed to establish a Daughters of Penelope Foundation.
The committee’s mandate included listing it’s benefits, objectives and areas of responsibility. As well, they were responsible for establishing a set of by-laws which included the composition of duties, officers, meetings, funds and property for an all-volunteer foundation. This recommendation was adopted by the convention delegates and the appointed committee moved forward with this task.
At the 1983 Chicago Supreme Convention the by-laws of the Daughters of Penelope Foundation were presented to the delegation and adopted. This adoption gave the Foundation the status to operate as a separate entity of the Daughters of Penelope, governed by their own By-laws and Board of Directors.
On November 17, 1983 the incorporation papers of the Foundation were submitted and approved by the District of Columbia, under its non-profit corporation laws . The Foundation was organized exclusively for charitable, civic, educational and scientific purposes including for such purposes as the making of distributions to organizations that qualify as exempt organizations under Section 501(c)3 of the Internal Revenue Code.
Thus, on December 31, 1983 a fully functioning Daughters of Penelope Foundation came to fruition. By July 1984 the Foundation was recognized an exempt 501(c)3 Public Foundation and its final determination status granted in 1986.
The Daughters of Penelope Foundation, Inc. is a 501(c)3 Charitable Foundation. The Foundation issues receipts for all donations and, as such, all donations made are tax deductible. To this end, the Foundation accepts any type of donation including monetary, stocks, bonds, etc.
Original Board of Directors (1983-1984)
Sonja Stefanadis, President
Elaine Kevgas, Vice President
Irene Lirakis, Secretary
Lillian Demitry, Treasurer
Thalia Banis, Director
Julia Constantine, Director
Helen Canas, Director
Joanne Georgeson, Director
Karen Stamatiades, Director
Anna Topougis, Director
Deborah Zourdas, Director
History of the Daughters of Penelope
On November 16th, 1929 Alexandra Apostolides Sonenfeld formed the women’s affiliate organization of the AHEPA Family in San Francisco, California and called it the Daughters of Penelope. The first 25 charter members were wives of Ahepa members.
Mrs. Apostolides envisioned a new beginning for the first generation Greek-American women. She drafted the basic principles of the organization and undertook writing the Constitution and Bylaws of the Daughters of Penelope as we know it today.
With its headquarters located in Washington, D.C., the Daughters of Penelope have become a leader in philanthropic, educational and cultural activities with over 350 chapters in the United States, Canada, Greece and Cyprus with sister chapters in Australia.
Objectives of the Daughters of Penelope
The objectives of the Daughters of Penelope are to promote Hellenism, Education, Philanthropy, Civic Responsibility, and Family & Individual Excellence. The Daughters of Penelope encourages and promotes loyalty to the country in which they live; cultivates the ideals and traditions of Hellenism; promotes opportunities of education; and promotes the spirit of cooperation and works closely and in harmony with the whole AHEPA Family – Order of AHEPA, Daughters of Penelope, Maids of Athena and Sons of Pericles. The Daughters of Penelope is non-partisan and non-denominational.