History of La Unidad Latina, Lambda Upsilon Lambda Fraternity, Inc.:
In the Summer of 1981, a group of students studying at Cornell University discussed the need for a Latino fraternity on campus. There was little choice for Latinos who wanted to join a fraternity; they either joined a traditionally white fraternity or a traditionally black one. This conversation led to informal meetings to building a Latino fraternity on campus that fall.
From Founding Father Hernando Londoño:
"I was working as a Peer Counselor for the minority Summer Program at the time. Everyone agreed that there was a need for brotherhood and unity as well as a need for more cultural expression and exchange of ideas between Latinos at Cornell, but very few were willing to commit to more than words. We all wanted this new fraternity to not be a typical fraternity – less Animal House and more one of true Latino Unity and Culture and academic excellence. We wanted this new fraternity to shine for its Latino pride and represent all that is good in our people and culture."
After a few meetings, "La Unidad Latina" club was registered at Cornell on September 15, 1981. After registering as a club, the group of 30 interested men formed the fraternity of 13 that spring.
The Founding Fathers of La Unidad Latina are:
1. Hermano William Barba – Senior Pre-Medicine
2. Hermano Dennis DeJesus – Sophomore Pre-Medicine
3. Hermano Hernando Londoño – Sophomore Engineering
4. Hermano Jesse Luis – Sophomore Engineering
5. Hermano Samuel Ramos – Senior Engineering
6. Hermano Tomas Rincon – Sophomore Engineering
7. Hermano Edwin Rivera – Junior Engineering
8. Hermano Mario Rivera – Junior Engineering
9. Hermano Victor Rodriguez – Senior Economics
10. Hermano Victor Silva – Sophomore Pre-Medicine
11. Hermano Jose Torres – Junior Pre-Medicine
12. Hermano Henry Villareal – Faculty Advisor
13. Hermano Jim Ziebell – Cornell Administrator
*Honorary Founder: Hermano Angel Montañez
On February 19, 1982, La Unidad Latina held its initiation ceremony in the home of Hermano and Faculty Advisor Henry Villareal. This established these 13 Hermanos as Los Fundadores of the fraternity. The fraternity went on to function as a "focal point for Latino culture" on Cornell's campus, helping to seal divides within the Latino community and providing students with a place to get back to their roots.
Today, La Unidad Latina, Lambda Upsilon Lambda Fraternity is over 35 years old, with chapters all over the United States. The fraternity continues to welcome new Hermanos every year and works to promote the values of Academics, Culture, Brotherhood, and Service. In this vein, we conduct our philanthropy via the P.A.T.H.E. (Providing Access to Higher Education) Initiative. We believe that encouraging schools and universities to provide the Latinos the resources necessary to succeed in education will uplift our community.