Alpha Phi Omega was founded in 1925 at Lafayette College in Easton, Pennsylvania by Frank Reed Horton. Horton had served in the United States Navy during World War I. After the war, he became a student at Lafayette College. One fateful evening, he met Herbert G. Horton who had also served in the Navy. The two became fast friends. Through their relationship, Frank Horton became a Scoutmaster. He believed that the Scout Oath and Scout Law were a standard of manhood that would withstand the test of time and a code of ideals created and accepted by some of the greatest leaders the world had ever known.
During his senior year, Frank Horton talked with some men on campus with a Scouting background, including his brothers of the Sigma Alpha Epsilon fraternity. They agreed to join an organization based on the ideals of Scouting. Frank Horton created the name Alpha Phi Omega, the motto and the Greek words and their meaning, and wrote the Ritual. Mr. Horton did not of course found the organization alone. Everett W. Probst designed the pin and drew the Coat-of-Arms. Thane S. Cooley suggested the handclasp. Ellsworth S. Dobson and Gordon M. Looney helped write the Constitution and Bylaws. In total, fourteen men signed as charter members.
Since 1925, Alpha Phi Omega has grown tremendously. There are even chapters in the Philippines, Canada, and one chapter in Australia.
At the US National Convention in 1976, delegates approved the decision to allow women to join as full members. This campaign had been ongoing for many years. Some chapters had already begun allowing women to join.
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