P.E.O. was founded in Mount Pleasant, Iowa in 1869. Originally a small campus society, it soon grew to include women off campus. Mary Florence Cowell, former treasurer of Missouri State Chapter, brought P.E.O. to Texas with the organization of Chapter A in Whitesboro on September 4, 1902. The Texas State Chapter was organized in Whitesboro in 1928 with Mary Florence Cowell elected as the first state president. She is known as the “Mother of P.E.O. in Texas.” A state Historical Marker honoring her can be seen at her home in Whitesboro. The P.E.O. Sisterhood is passionate about promoting educational opportunities for women. There are six international educational projects and two Texas specific educational projects.