Gamma Rho Lambda (ΓΡΛ) is a social, college-based sorority for lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, non-binary, and allied students. Gamma Rho Lambda National Sorority is dedicated to providing a social support system for young college students. Gamma Rho Lambda has been referred to as the first national multicultural lesbian sorority; however they are inclusive of cis-gendered women, trans women, trans men, and gender variant people of all sexualities and racial identities. As of 2016, GRL consists of 15 active chapters and 5 colonies across 10 states with an active membership (including Alumni & Collegians) of over 400.
Gamma Rho Lambda, Alpha Chapter, was founded in the Fall of 2003 by 12 original members at Arizona State University in Tempe, Arizona. The sorority was initially created because the founding president and members wanted an organization similar to the GBTQ-focused fraternity on campus, Sigma Phi Beta.
In 2005, Gamma Rho Lambda began the daunting task of expanding nationally, as Alpha chapter had been approached by several interested women on other campuses in the United States. Over the course of the next year, Gamma Rho Lambda worked to expand to these campuses, functioning in a national and local capacity at the same time.
In 2006, with enough alumni members to support a national council, Gamma Rho Lambda National Sorority became independent of Alpha Chapter. Since then, Gamma Rho Lambda National Sorority has been working not only on expansion, but also adjusting to the needs of our chapters and members and bettering the community overall through these efforts.
Alpha Chapter expanded to San Diego State University and Georgia Southern University.
University of Missouri became a colony of Gamma Rho Lambda.
San Diego State University gained chapter status as Beta Chapter. Kansas State University became a colony of Gamma Rho Lambda.
California State University, Northridge, University of California, Los Angeles, Purdue University and SUNY Albany became colonies of Gamma Rho Lambda. University of Missouri colony disbanded from Gamma Rho Lambda to focus more on political involvement. Kansas State University gained chapter status as Delta Chapter and Purdue University gained chapter status as Eta chapter.
Gamma Rho Lambda rapidly expanded during this time. Northern Arizona University , SUNY Albany, University of Houston , UC Berkeley, UC Riverside, Ball State, Tulane University, Iowa State, American University, and University of Iowa became colonies of Gamma Rho Lambda and later chapters (Theta, Iota, Kappa, Lambda, Mu, Nu, Xi, Omicron, Pi, Rho, respectively) Additionally UL Lafayette and UT Austin were inducted as colonies.
UL Lafayette and UT Austin were initiated as Sigma and Tau Chapter, respectively. Longwood University, University of Arizona, and Missouri S&T were inducted as colonies in Spring 2016. Also, Bowling Green State University and Ohio State University were inducted in the Fall of 2016 as Colonies.
Today, Gamma Rho Lambda active membership (including Alumni & Collegians) consists of over 400 members.
Gamma Rho Lambda National Sorority is currently working to establish a Foundation.
The sorority's day-to-day business activities are overseen by the national Governing Council which acts as the board of directors. It was established in 2006, when there were enough alumni members to support a national council. Since then, Gamma Rho Lambda National Sorority has been working not only on expansion, but also adjusting to the needs of our chapters and members and bettering the community overall through these efforts. Council consists of thirteen elected alumnae who are elected every two years; This includes one President, Ten Vice President's and two Alumni and Large Delagates. Additionally each VP has a committee to assist them in projects. Each Chapter and Colony has a mentor who assists them in any issues and provides guidance as they develop.
The Lambda symbol was adopted by the New York City's Gay Activists' Alliance in the 1970s during the Stonewall Riots. Since then, the Lambda has spread as a symbol for the gay liberation movement. Because of its history, the Lambda was chosen to be a letter in the sorority’s Greek name. The Gamma and Rho symbols were chosen because with the Lambda symbol, they spell GRL ("girl").
Visible symbols in the coat of arms include the Lioness, the Bear, the Unicorn, the Crown of Thorns, the Metal Crown, the Isle of Lesbos symbol with Shaking Hands, the Upside Down Black Triangle, the Eye of Horus, the Hand, the Sword, the Ivy Leaf Vine, the Elephant Tusk, and the Cinquefoil.
The official colors are purple and black.
The official symbol/mascot is the wolf.
The official flower is the sunflower.
The official Motto is truth in tolerance, knowledge through diversity, bonds of unity, strength in trust
Gamma Rho Lambda has no official jewel or gemstone.
Gamma Rho Lambda National Sorority is currently working to establish a Foundation. The Foundation will provide support to Gamma Rho Lambda members as well as support for a philanthropy to be decided on in the future.