History of our Order: Anything worthwhile must have a background. In this instance, the background is the Benevolent and Protective Order of Elks, organized in New York City by 15 young men, musicians, actors, and leaders in concert halls, on February 16, 1868, when the first Charter was issued.
Fifty-three years later, a group of women of Omaha, Nebraska, wives of Elks, discussed forming a lodge along similar works as the Elks. Although independent, this organization would be in harmony with the Benevolent and Protective Order of Elks and organized along similar lines.
The Benevolent Patriotic Order of Does took for their character, the likeable, loveable, citizen lawyer, statesman and President, Abraham Lincoln. The anniversary of the Order was to be celebrated each year on his birthday, February 12. The Grand Lodge was chartered on February 12, 1921 by the State of Nebraska with authority to charter subordinate lodges, called Droves, anywhere in the United States.
These women were fortunate to receive the advice and counsel of prominent Elks who rendered valuable assistance in securing the incorporation of the Order; in writing and demonstrating the Ritual; engraving the insignia; suggesting the name "DOES"; providing legal advice; writing the Constitution and presenting it to the Grand Lodge. With the assistance of the Elks, the basis for a permanent organization dedicated to the principles of Patriotism, Charity, Loyalty, and Love was founded. The Benevolent, Patriotic Order of DOES fills a need for a national organization whose members meet the requirements and share mutual interest with the Benevolent and Protective Order of Elks.
Why the Does Are An Asset to Any Elks Lodge: A Drove of Does has something worthwhile to offer and will prove mutually advantageous because it promotes social activities, furthers benevolent work in the community, and stands ready, when asked, to assist the Elks in their charitable and social projects.
Meetings: Regular meetings of the Drove are held twice monthly, except during the months of June, July, August, and December when a meeting may be held once during the month. The Drove may also vote to dispense with its summer meetings. Meeting dates and times and annual dues are decided by vote of the Drove. Most Elks Lodges generously offer the use of their facilities for the regular meetings of the Droves.
Officers: The Officers serve for a one year term as follows: (Elected by the Drove) President, First Counselor, Senior Counselor, Junior Counselor, Secretary, Treasurer,Chaplain, Conductor, Inner Guard, Outer Guard, Musician, and three Trustees. (Appointed by the President) Assistant Musician, Assistant Conductor, four Color Bearers, and four Attendants.
District or State Meetings: District or State meetings are held yearly on designated dates scheduled by the Supreme President, hosted by individual Droves within the District or State. Officers for the District or State are elected at these meeting and a school of instruction in the performance of the ritual work is conducted under the supervision of the Supreme President.
Annual Grand Lodge Conventions: The Grand Lodge Convention is held yearly during the month of June, in various locations. All Does (and not just Grand Lodge Members) are invited to attend, and are encouraged to participate in the Grand Lodge Sessions and other scheduled activities.
Grand Lodge Membership: The Grand Lodge is comprised of the following who have attended at least one Grand Lodge Session and received the password: The Past Supreme Presidents;Drove Presidents; Five-Year Officers (Secretaries, Treasurers, Conductors, Chaplains and Musicians); and Supreme Deputies who have successfully organized Droves.
Membership Requirements: Membership into our Order is by invitation of a Doe, who is the Proposer. This Proposer and two Members of the Drove, as well as by an Elk Sponsor in "Good Standing", (other than the Applicant), must sign this appliccation. An Applicant must believe in God, be an American citizen, and have attained the age of 21 and be of good character. Additionally, our Order is non-sectarian and non-partisan.
Organization of Droves: All droves are organized in accordance with the Constitution of the Grand Lodge and supervised by the Director of Membership. A Supreme Deputy, appointed by the Director of Membership in consultation with the Supreme President , makes a presentation of the History of our Order to an interested group; discusses the advantages of joining a National Organization; organizes the Drove; installs the officers; discusses the importance of adherence to the Constitution of Grand Lodge; and assists in the performance of the Ritual.
The benevolent work of this Order is virtually beyond compare. The annual Benevolence Report given at the Grand Lodge Convention grows steadily each year and totals hundreds of thousands of dollars spent on charity as well as many thousands of hours spent in unselfish service.
For this reason alone, the Benevolent, Patriotic Order of Does justifies its existence and warrants your support and that of the community of which it is a part.
Each year, the Grand Lodge Public Relations Committee selects a charitable project in which all Droves can participate. With the collective strength of all Droves, the organization can raise significant funds and in doing so, make a difference.
For the past 10 years, the committee has elected to support Dogs for the Deaf. This organization does not receive any government funding and relies on private donations to provide dogs to the hearing impaired. Dogs are rescued from shelters and trained to alert hearing impaired people to sounds that they cannot hear such as, smoke alarms, telephones, tea kettles, children crying, alarm clocks, or someone calling their name etc. These dogs are trained and placed free to the recipient. For more information: http://www.dogsforthedeaf.org
The Benevolent, Patriotic Order of Does also collects Campbell's labels and General Mills Box Tops for Education, in support of St. Judes Ranch for Children located at P.O. Box 60100 Boulder City, NV 89006 Phone 702-294-7154 This project is again an Organization-wide project in which each Drove collects and submits the labels and box tops collected by their community. These labels and box tops provide such items as typewriters, computers, encyclopedias and hopefully a much needed van. Go to http://www.labelsforeducation.com/eligibleproductsEN.aspx for more information. St. Judes is asking that you send ONLY the UPC codes instead of the complete label. For more information: http://www.stjudesranch.org
The Grand Lodge established a Student Loan Fund in 1957. The fund is a revolving fund and as principal and interest are repaid, the money is returned to the original fund and is available to worthy individuals who want a higher education.
The applicant must be a Doe, daughter, granddaughter, daughter-in-law, niece, son or grandson, son-in-law or nephew of a Doe.
The maximum loan to a four-year student is $8,000 with $2,000 advance each year to the maximum of $8000. The amount loaned for a two-year Tech school or Junior College is $4,000 with a $2,000 advance each year to the maximum of $4,000. Interest is 4% and is due by June 30th of each year. Repayment of the Principal begins 6 months after the student graduates, or ceases to be enrolled in an accrediated institution of higher education. Payments are a minimum of $50.00 per month for the first two years. Third and fourth year payments are to be a minimum of $75.00 per month and the fifth to eighth year payments are to be a minimum of $100.00 per month. After eight years a balloon payment is required to pay off the existing loan.
Many students have taken advantage of this low interest loan and have gone on to various interesting careers. As the students repay their loans, the fund continues to grow.