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Ask Lenora: Lead by Example


Dear Lenora,

I was so excited to run for an officer position in my chapter. I thought I would be a great fit for vice president-operations, secretary or vice president-community service because I am an organized and passionate person. Other women in my chapter said they agreed with me and supported me when I applied. I was sure I would be slated for an officer position. I was so confident about it. And then, the slate was announced.

Lenora, I wasn’t elected for any position. I am devastated.

I want so badly to be a leader in my chapter and to have officer experience that I can add to my resume. Plus, I genuinely feel like I could fulfill the requirements of an officer position and improve my chapter. I don’t understand why I wasn’t chosen.

What should I do?


Letdown Leader

Dear Letdown Leader,

I am so sorry to hear that you are disappointed. Running for an officer position is commendable, whether you are elected or not. I don’t want to belittle how much it surely stung when you were not chosen for a council position. It did, I am sure. But allow me to give you a little perspective…

Why did you want to lead your chapter in the first place? Think about it. Was it because you want the prestige of being an officer? Was it because you wanted your fellow chapter members to respect you? Was it because you thought it would make you look, as the kids today say, ‘cool’? No. Of course not. You wanted to hold an officer position because you want to help your Kappa Delta chapter be the best it can be. Well, guess what? You still can.

Sometimes, the leaders in our chapters who make the most difference are not necessarily the ones who hold an officer title. The sisters who show up to every chapter meeting with a smile on their faces, who go out of their way to make the new-member class feel welcome, who volunteer long hours of their time to set up and tear down Shamrock, who participate in every campus event demonstrate leadership qualities as much as the officers. You see, simply by being an involved member with a positive attitude, you lead by example, and others will take note.

I understand wanting to hold a formal leadership position, however. If you’re still interested in taking on more responsibility within Kappa Delta, consider an appointed officer role. Or, get involved with the Panhellenic council or another organization on your campus. They often have leadership roles to fill.

It’s members like you who constantly look for ways to improve our chapters. I thank you, and I encourage you to run for another officer position next year.