Centaur's Yell Fall 2016 - Pride In Action

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Fall 2016




editor’s note

The theme of this issue is Pride in Action. The magazine is filled with stories submitted by brothers these past several months exemplifying those words. We wish to dedicate this issue to the victims, survivors, families, and queer community of Orlando, FL. May the tragedy be a somber reminder of how far we’ve come and how far we still need to go, together. Forever In The Bond.

Inside this Issue 4] A Safe Space 6] Blazing Trails & Crossing Waters 8] Taking Pride Across Generations 8] Out of the Work Closet 10] An Association to be Proud Of 12] It’s Time to Celebrate 14] Delphi Scholars 15] Ambassador Program 18] Local Alumni Take Pride

FROM OUR TRUSTEE Greetings Brothers, As we celebrate our 30th Anniversary, I ask that we all pause for reflection. I remember when we celebrated our 25th Anniversary in Philadelphia. It was a significant fraternity milestone since our reorganization a few years prior. Our Annual Convention in Austin kicked off a year of introspection. No one ever doubts our fraternity’s ability to celebrate our accomplishments, so I am eager to join you as we realize that the greatest days of Delta Lambda Phi lie ahead of us. So what lies ahead of our fraternity and how will you be involved? How will our next 30 years be shaped and remembered? I believe that each of us has a role to play in determining our place in an ever evolving and complex world. In the 30 years since our founding, we have grown from an idea, to a fraternity that spans coast to coast and into Canada. For a group that started by a humble philosophy to make our presence known, we now are nearly a 500 active member organization with 3,500+ alumni. We are poised to redefine our role as leaders in the fraternal experience in every colleges and university where our presence is felt. What will the next 30 years look like? In Austin I offered a new vision, a vision that would ask us to lead, be admired, embrace change,

and be driven by a belief that every member can make their presence make a difference. I hope that in 30 years we can say we bested obstacles, we elevated issues of social justice, we challenged societal norms and our members made their campuses and our world a better place. What is your hope? As we celebrate this milestone, let us balance it with a re-commitment to our fraternity. Together, we need to aspire to pledge ourselves to fulfill our mission, exemplify our principles, and give life to our values. To commit to being the Lambda men that we pledged to be, whether we pledged 30 years ago or crossed within the past year. Let us commit to preparing the fraternity for our next milestone of which we cannot even imagine today, but one that we know is


within our reach. I am honored to lead the fraternity during this historical milestone and I hope to see you contribute in your own way to ensure our success. Everything we do ties back to this objective. We are building the fraternity of tomorrow for every person whose life will be changed because of the efforts we commit ourselves to today. Join in this effort. Make your presence known. Be that difference. Fraternally, Phil Hernandez Trustee

FROM OUR EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world; indeed, it’s the only thing that ever has. – Margaret Mead On a cloudy night in the spring of 1987 in a small overgrown section of a closed city park near George Washington University, 24 pledges completed their final rite of passage and joined the Ranks of Delta Lambda Phi as the Alpha Class of the Alpha Chapter. Undoubtedly, this same ritual will play out many times this fall across North America, and each time it does, it will change the dynamic of our Brotherhood by adding new perspectives, and, for those of us that have seen this ritual many times before, reaffirm our system of values and beliefs within this organization. Some new members that will experience these for the first time will begin the process of internalizing these values, and beginning to live by them. Others, it may not even begin to scratch the surface. Our ValuesExcellence, Integrity, Diversity, justice, Service, Friendship, and Commitment- instruct us on how to interact, to live our lives, and to show our pride. I live in Cleveland Ohio, where a mere fourteen days before it was supposed to happen, our Pride festival and parade were suddenly cancelled under questionable circumstances. This garnered national news, and exploded for a day or two within social media. After the initial shock and blow within our community existed a vacuum, and questions. What would happen now? How do we move forward? What the hell happened? Quietly, a small community led committee was formed- with backing from local councilpersons, and the Cleveland

Mayor- which managed to pull together a city pride in our public square and a parade with full Police support (security was an issue that was mentioned in the cancellation) in just nine days. While not all the questions got answered, action happened. A healing began, and life returned to “normal”. The committee had surprisingly succeeded, and a community regained its composure and started to move forward. One of these committee members is a pledge Brother of mine. I like to think that the values or our purposes that he internalized in his short time as an active member helped guide and inform him on this task, but I cannot be certain. I can be certain that he demonstrated Excellence, Integrity, Diversity, and Commitment through his actions. While we don’t always think to ourselves “I’m doing THIS value”, we can demonstrate our pride and Excellence through our actions. So, this fall, go out and do something within your communities- volunteer, donate, get involved, speak out- and show the world what a “small group of thoughtful, committed citizens” can do.

Cory Molner Executive Director and CEO

Delta Lambda Phi® Alumni Association DLPAA EXECUTIVE BOARD & ALUMNI AFFAIRS COMMITTEE President, Chair Bryan Guffey Vice Chair Nolan Petersen Clerk Miles Brainard At-Large Members Lenny Haas Troy Hoffman Griffin Parsons Francis Senécal Alex Young Executive Director & CEO Cory Molner ALUMNI SERVICES STAFF Chief Alumni Services Officer Julian Casillas Director of Alumni Outreach Jordan Cardoza Alumni Outreach Coordinator Randy Jose DLPAA Stewardship Coordinator Alejandro Torroella Director of Alumni Engagement Zach Ozbun Alumni Engagement Coordinator Armando Sanchez LAA Coordinators Fabian Colon Sean Lloyd Alumni Consultant Lou Camera

Production of the Centaur’s Yell is led by the DLPAA in collaboration with the Fraternity Leadership Team. Questions can be directed to Julian Casillas julian.casillas@dlp.org



AS I LEFT ORLANDO on June 7h of this year, my car bloated with furniture and memories after a short 6-month stay in my hometown, I looked over at my best friend of 13yrs and said, “¡aye, mira, Momo! If only we had a couple more nights together we could have gone!” we passed a non descript white building on our way to the interstate. She shook her head “next time papi”. We laughed and proceeded to blast some reggaeton as we started our journey towards New York. I woke early on Sunday. I had to work and was eager for a hearty breakfast. Like most of us I checked my Facebook as soon as the haze of morning lifted over me. I could not have been more ill prepared for what I saw. My feed was completely taken over by shock and grief, and I, 1000 miles away was trying to piece it all together. My heart sank. It was Saturday night. It was Latino

Night. It was Pulse. I read through the terrifying details from those that were there, and even more horrifying the posts for those that were still being accounted for. I quickly started making calls; my voice quivering each time the line was picked up and I heard the voice of a loved one. Many of my friends in New York didn’t know I just returned to the city so as I made some nerve wracking calls, I received many in return. I watched helplessly as the death toll continued to rise. My head spun for days and I was left in a lull that was deep and unforgiving. Why Pulse? Why my friends? Why our home? What could I have done? With no way of getting home to mourn, I ventured to the Mecca of our community, Stonewall in the West Village and silently wept with friends by my side. The media and political pundits hungrily converged on the topic. All of a sudden everyone had an


opinion about our little Orlando club. Over the next couple of days they picked apart Pulse, to be used as a political tool. Florida politicians, many with abysmal records on LGBT rights, all of a sudden felt the need to “stand with us”. This disingenuous display by our lawmakers had me livid. The empty words of unity fell from the same mouths that vehemently opposed our right to marry or adopt or provide us equal protection under the law. They politicized a place that was never political. A place that was central to our community and cherished especially by Latinos in the LGBT JOSEPH & FRIENDS AT PULSE

community of Orlando. Being Latino and gay don’t always go hand in hand. Heavily influenced by religion and machismo culture, being gay could mean staying in the closet indefinitely, or live in fear of being ostracized by your own family. I know these men and women; I know their struggle. Pulse was a safe haven. It provided us the opportunity to be Latino and gay without separating the two. Orlando came out with full civic pride after the tragedy. Hours after the attack the lines for blood donations in the central Florida area were long and

determined. The One Orlando Fund, set up to assist the families of the victims has already eclipsed 23 million dollars. I would like to thank all my brothers from Delta Lambda Phi who reached out to me during this tragedy and donated to the One Orlando Fund. As we move forward let us always remember the 49 lives that were lost that day. Remember their names, their vibrant colors and their stories. And in their memory help foster safe spaces in your hometown so no LGBT person feels like they don’t have a safe place of their own.

IN REMEMBERANCE Stanley Almodovar III Amanda Alvear Oscar A Aracena-Montero Rodolfo Ayala-Ayala Antonio Davon Brown Darryl Roman Burt II, Angel L. Candelario-Padro, Juan Chevez-Martinez Luis Daniel Conde Cory James Connell Tevin Eugene Crosby Deonka Deidra Drayton Simon Adrian Carrillo Fernandez Leroy Valentin Fernandez Mercedez Marisol Flores Peter O. Gonzalez-Cruz

Juan Ramon Guerrero Paul Terrell Henry Frank Hernandez Miguel Angel Honorato Javier Jorge-Reyes Jason Benjamin Josaphat Eddie Jamoldroy Justice Anthony Luis Laureanodisla Christopher Andrew Leinonen Alejandro Barrios Martinez Brenda Lee Marquez McCool Gilberto Ramon Silva Menendez Kimberly Morris Akyra Monet Murray Luis Omar Ocasio-Capo Geraldo A. Ortiz-Jimenez

Eric Ivan Ortiz-Rivera Joel Rayon Paniagua Jean Carlos Mendez Perez Enrique L. Rios, Jr. Jean C. Nives Rodriguez Xavier Emmanuel Serrano Rosado Christopher Joseph Sanfeliz Yilmary Rodriguez Solivan Edward Sotomayor Jr. Shane Evan Tomlinson Martin Benitez Torres Jonathan Antonio Camuy Vega Juan P. Rivera Velazquez Luis S. Vielma Franky Jimmy Dejesus Velazquez Luis Daniel Wilson-Leon Jerald Arthur Wright

Credit: WFTV


THE BROTHERS OF ALPHA DELTA helped me realize the importance of self-love, community, and most importantly pride. The past two summers I have spent time giving back to the queer community through Camp Brave Trails. Brave Trails is a non-profit organization that provides LGBT+ youth (ages 12-20) a leadership based camp. The goal of the camp is to provide an environment for young individuals to grow and be empowered to create change. We achieve this by creating a safe space for these young individuals. We organize everything from gender neutral cabins to workshops about self-care to evening programs filled with laughter and love. It’s beautiful to have a safe space for the queer community to come together and grow without fear




BRAVE TRAILS GROUP PHOTO of discrimination, especially in a time that we have to fear our own safety in places we have claimed safe. Brave Trails takes camp, which for many of us growing was a scary or unwelcoming place and turns it into one of the best experiences most of these campers have had. Campers leave with a sense of community, a stronger identity of who they are, questions answered that they never had the opportunity to ask before, and most importantly the feeling of infinite love. This past summer I was asked to be a lead counselor for the Unicorn Justice League, which is the



group of older campers who are in specialized leadership training. My role was to be a mentor and help navigate them through self-growth and development by creating and achieving goals small to large at camp. My experience with my local chapter and Delta Force helped prepare me to take us such task. I used bonding activities such as “Cross the Line” to encourage and lite the flame for deeper conversations. Within two weeks I saw how impactful it was on the campers and by the end of camp one of my campers told me I was the greatest gay role model they had ever had. Comments like that will stay with me and keep me empowered to continue my passion for giving back. It was a truly remarkable experience; one I wouldn’t change for the world. For more information check out:



BRENDAN PICTURED RIGHT At 120 lbs when I first started rowing, I started as a coxswain-the guy who steers the boat. I felt small and weak and coming to terms with my sexuality at the same time as I felt constrained by my physical limitations I went to a very dark place for a couple of years. When I finally let it go and got my life back on track at a new school I resolved to turn back to the sport I had fallen in love with after a hiatus and was determined to return as an athlete and never feel weak again.


and even my teammates routinely espouse wonderment that they continue to put their bodies through the twice daily on the water or erg workouts. Even I wonder sometimes why I keep waking up at 5am for this. Our simple answer is rhetorical, we love the sport. My own expanded response, that I love proving preconceptions about me wrong through my performance, is not necessarily unique as a lightweight rower (a male rower under 160lbs who is of smaller stature). Yet not only do I have to contend against stereotypes of my smaller size but also around my sexuality as a gay male.

Here I was fortunate to have some other short rowers as role models who showed me and others not to underestimate people based on size. I gained 30 lbs of muscle, my legs thickened, my shoulders broadenedarms, pecs and abs developed and my aerobic and anaerobic capabilities greatly improved as I got better on the erg (indoor rowing machine) and on the water. Even before I joined the team in the fall of 2016 I practice once or twice daily and worked and trained at


PRIDE IN ACTION | BRENDAN EDGE | ALUMNUS | BETA OMEGA the local rowing club that summer. I surprised myself with my determination, or stubbornness, and the results of my hard work; gradually getting better and faster. It is those instances when I proved someone wrong which I remember most clearly. Realizing I had abs and quads thick with muscle was a big one. The shock of a friend for beating another athlete in a race, the admiration of the club president for being good enough to make the team and make the A boat after all. I am still haunted by a fear that somehow or other I am inferior, despite what I have done and know I can do. Some still underestimate what I am capable of. They just make me push myself harder. I don’t have any ambitions in the sport beyond holding a seat in the varsity boat and maybe racing flyweight at the

next Canadian Henley. I love rowing, the beauty and grace required at the same time as immense physical and mental strength. Being athletic helps me balance my life and makes me healthier and happier than I ever was before. All rowers are filled with pride about their achievements and I am particularly proud of what I have found I can achieve as a lightweight and gay male. Rowing is a hard sport but those of us who come from categories of the underestimated (be it short, not originally athletic, or gay) have to work harder; fighting against those stereotypes. But when you do challenge and then shatter those stereotypesthere is no greater feeling in the world. We can achieve amazing things. You just have to keep stroking a little bit harder each time.





To Come Out or Not to Come Out Brother John Sporing |Alpha

A LOT OF PROGRESS has been made in recent years for the LGBTQ communities. However, as we all know, the progress is not universal and there are still places where being out can be held against you.





season I had the pleasure of attending Twin Cities Pride with a few of my fellow Beta Lambdas. As always, it was an excellent weekend of exploring and quality time. This year’s pride was a bit different however, this year I got to see firsthand some of the benefits of relationships between newer members of the fraternity and alumni. Specifically these were things like supporting selfexploration, emotional reassurance, and leadership development. In my time I have seen a number of young men in my community (both brothers and not) navigate emerging adulthood without a significant number of mainstream positive queer role models. Probably not surprising to most as I have found this to be symptomatic of the way the gay

Unfortunately, the workplace is one of those places. So how do you decide if you should come out in your workplace? The first thing to think about is your personal safety and well­being. Do you work in a place where you feel physically safe? If not, then you should probably begin a search for workplace where you do feel safe. Do you work for a company that values diversity and has stated protections for LBGTQ people? If it is a larger company, look at HRC’s Corporate Equality Index (www.HRC.org) to see how your company ranked . But remember, just because a company does well on the Index does not mean your direct supervisor and co­workers will be as supportive. If you work in a smaller company, you can still look at their HR policies to see what the official standing is for LBGTQ rights. You can also look at the industry where you work­­generally the high­tech, arts, government, education, not­for­profit, and retail industries tend to be much more supportive.

E ACROSS GENERATIONS and mainstream culture disregards individuals as they get older and the fact that our community lost close to an entire generation of queer men from the AIDS epidemic.

Here is where Delta Lambda Phi plays a very important role. One of the most impactful parts of the fraternal experience across fraternities of all kinds is the ability for men who have successfully gone through the undergraduate experience to create a positive impact on those who are just starting their journey. I am a prime example of this sort of relationship. The bond I formed with Brother Phil Hernandez during my pledgeship and beyond has been one of the single most positive forces of my entire life. Phil has helped me understand so much more about life, myself, and the kind of person I want to be than

Brother Alex Young | Beta Lambda

nearly anyone I can recall. I can say wholeheartedly, if it wasn’t for our friendship, I would not be the man I am and would not be as proud of who I am. I want to end my rant with a call to action. It is my personal philosophy that it is the role of the alumni to enhance the active experience. That being said, to all alumni reading this, consider taking the initiative next year by reaching out to chapters and colonies that are relatively close to your pride destination. Reach out and organize spending some time with their members who are also attending. You could watch the parade with them, go to dinner, show them the city, or whatever works.

Manufacturing, religious organizations, extraction, and farming industries are less so. Are there others out in your office? If so, what kind of reception do they get? If there are no others out at the office, or you are new and may not yet know many people, how diverse is the office overall? Do you see a good mix of men, women, African Americans, Caucasians, Asian Americans, Latin American, and various ages? If so, then the workplace is probably more willing to accept you as an equal. If you do feel safe in coming out, the question still remains if you should. I believe that one of the major reasons LGBTQ people have made more progress in recent years, is due to our increased visibility. It is easy to dislike, even hate, something or someone that you have never had any interaction. By more of us coming out, we increase our visibility and therefore increase the understanding from the rest of the world. There is no need to make an announcement if you do come out.

The goal here should not be to program the whole weekend for them, but rather supplement their experience as they take pride in who they are, because that may be the first time in their lives they have been given the permission to do so. Remember, one of the greatest gifts you as an alumnus can give to an active member is the understanding that they belong to something bigger than their individual chapter: something that can become a lifetime of positive experiences for them and others.

You can start by putting a picture of you and your significant other on your desk. On Monday morning when everyone is discussing what happened over the weekend, you can mention how the two of you spent a quiet evening home watching TV and doing laundry (ah yes, the glorious life we lead). When your significant other sends you flowers for you birthday, put them on your desk with the card displayed. Coming out or not will always be a personal choice that each of us needs to make. Talk about your decision with friends, family, supporters, and reach out to your Brothers for their stories. You are never alone in life. John Sporing is an alumn of the Alpha Chapter, Eta class. He is the owner of JohnSporing.com, a consultancy that specializes in Leadership Development, Mentoring, and Networking.



AN ASSOCIATION TO BE PROUD OF Brother Julian Casillas | Beta Tau It’s hard to believe that only a year ago I was sitting alongside the new DLPAA Board unifying our vision aligned with what we felt our alumni deserved. Zach had DLPAA LEADERSHIP TEAM just been hired as the new Director of Alumni Engagement, and since then, our team has more than doubled and set a new standard for the impact of Alumni Services. In the past year alone, we increased the DLPAA membership by 30%, doubled the attendance at our annual alumni weekend, launched DLP’s first preprofessional mentor program, and developed a comprehensive DLW RECIPIENTS @ CONVENTION recognition and coaching tool for our Local Alumni Associations.

The year was capped with a DLPAA Leadership Team that was united at Convention. The praise and smiles from all of our brothers reminded us of why we work so MENTORS ICE CREAM SOCIAL hard to make some great things happen. I couldn’t be happier with the new found direction. I leave this quick note with this, a line from our pledge manual… You’re only alone if you choose to be. As long as you’re committed to the values of our fraternity, know that we are committed to WHITE & GOLD WEEKEND LAS VEGAS providing an unrivaled alumni experience. The invitation open. Join us.





Fraternity Office Staff Awards Rising Star Awards | Zach Ozbun, Director of Alumni Engagement & Adam Conrad, Eastern Regional Director Standards of Excellence Awards Fundraising—Xi Chapter | Academic Achievement—GSU Colony | Philanthropy—Alpha Delta Chapter | Community Service— Xi Chapter | Most Improved Chapter—Delta Chapter Trustee Awards Award of Distinguished Service—Cory Molner | Founder’s Award— Eric Van Sant

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Lambda Men Are Gathering Through the darkness comes the call. A circle of shadows stands ready for the chosen few approaching the uncertain destination. Strange and inspired words will be recited as solemn faces receive instruction and a shared identity. Candles or flashlights are the sole source of light. The attire is formal for those presiding and less formal for the guests who did not receive much notice of the event. The invitations were purposefully vague, but respectful. The outsiders have been summoned to join the tribe. At least that’s the way I always remembered the sight of pledges completing their final rite of passage. Fraternity initiation is like graduation day - except it is at night and a bit spooky for the newcomer. It is a dignified ceremony that recognizes a completion of assignments and a newly achieved status. That distinguishing experience does not differ for a fraternity that celebrates diversity. I stand in a small overgrown section of a closed city park waiting for the first pledge class of Delta Lambda Phi Fraternity. The time is close to midnight. The night is darker than usual. The stars have been eclipsed by storm clouds; the moon is absent, and the only evidence of the outside world is a two lane overpass that spans in the distance. Everything is wet - the long grass, the mature gnarly trees, and me. A day-long rain has soaked the ground. The air is heavy and humid, causing an intense sweat under the heavy black robe I wear. Water falls from the tree limbs even though the rain has ended. I plop down on the wet ground and complete my soaking, and I think of the day - that perfect day spring day - that brought me to this place, and of Anthony, the transfer student from Northeastern Pennsylvania (Tony as he preferred to be called) who has inspired the events of this night.

Excerpt from Strong the Circle We: The tale of Delta Lambda Phi’s founding as told by its founder, Vernon L. Stickland III. Now available at the DLP Store.


Founder’s Day Celebration! “Gather Locally, Celebrate Globally” Saturday, October 15. 2016 - CURRENT HOST CITIESATLANTA, GA













Brother Marshall Smith | Delphi President As I write this, the Olympics are underway in Rio. With over ten thousand participants and only a fraction of them in contention for a medal, many are there just to represent their country, their sport, and to be a participant in something much bigger than themselves. While the medals are used to celebrate excellence in a specific sport, the entire event stands for the pride of each competitor and the opportunity they have to showcase their skills, talent, and experience. The event has become a pride parade of sorts -- one for country and sport. There are participants standing up against intolerance, hatred, and many other negative things just to be there and participate, adding their voice to the chorus of the entire worldwide community both attending and watching these events. So it is with our own events. There may be struggles or challenges to participate, but by being there and being visible, we make a statement to everyone that sees us. Sometimes these are as small as an individual, and sometimes we have large numbers together for a grand event, but every time we are there making a statement to those that are observing. Even when there might be some disagreements, we stand proud with our fellow brothers and with the GLBT community at large to show our solidarity, strength, and fortitude. Delphi continues to support programs which enrich and strengthen our brothers, developing skills for leadership and supporting academic achievement. During the convention in Austin, we delivered awards


in both an essay contest as well as for overall academic achievement. Each of these winners has received a cash award to help with their costs of school. Our winners are: Essay Contest Nathan Bakken | Aaron Gilbert | Jordan Stefanski Academic Achievement Ben Weiss Our next goals for Delphi are to increase our outreach and programs even further. Starting in 2017, we are planning a new conference event for recent graduates and young professionals to help develop skills in the workplace and learn strengths which can guide their growth and career path. This will complement our existing programs of supporting academic excellence, developing leadership skills, and supporting the educational aspects of the fraternity at large. These programs require a lot of time and money to produce, so I want to issue a special thanks to all of the volunteers that make up the Delphi Foundation board of directors as well as the individuals who ensure each of these programs run smoothly. I'd like to put out a special thanks to all of our donors, since we would not be able to do any of this without your support. If you haven't been supporting Delphi already, consider making a donation today. Even better, make your donation a recurring subscription to help us ensure we'll be able to continue the delivery of these great programs for years to come. You can donate directly on our website: http://dlp.org/ delphi/donate/

Take Pride in Your Brotherhood: Using Your Experience as an Ambassador Brother Jeff Devereaux | Ambassador Coordinator, Expansion Team To develop. To lead. To present. These are the beginning words of the three purposes of our Brotherhood, things we all learned in our new member education process, whether it was less than a year ago or more than twenty. Words that we learned to bring to fruition not only in our participation as Active members, but that live on in our everyday lives as Alumni of Delta Lambda Phi. We have a lot to proud of as Brothers of Delta Lambda Phi. We have watched our fraternity grow from a single chapter in Washington D.C. to over thirty chapters and spanning two countries in the course of 30 years. We have some of the most progressive and diverse policies in modern Greek Life, being arguably the first social fraternity to admit transmen into our Brotherhood. And that is just our collective narrative. Individually, our stories and experiences are much stronger speak volumes to our character as Brothers. This is our most powerful asset in expanding our Brotherhood. With this amazing story as well as the amazing narratives of each and every Brother, we have the potential to expand our Brotherhood immensely. With this framework in mind, we in the Office of Expansion have decided to focus on using our story, our pride in our Brotherhood, as the basis for the Ambassador Program of Delta Lambda Phi. In the Ambassador Program, there are no official Ambassadors. We view every Brother with a narrative and interest in expanding our Brotherhood to new institutions as Ambassadors of Delta Lambda Phi. Our role, and more specifically, my role as Ambassador Coordinator, is to provide those Brothers with the tools they will need to succeed in such endeavors. By providing trainings on various recruitment tactics such as tabling, information sessions, or working with LAA’s who are interested in starting a chapter in their local area, our role is to support and help where and however we can. We all have powerful experiences with our Brotherhood and through our Ambassador Program, we can use these experiences and pride in our fraternity to create more of these experiences for others. If you are interested in helping with our efforts, feel free to reach out to our Ambassador Coordinator, Jeff Devereaux, at jeff.devereaux@dlp.org to get started today!

ALUMNI WANTED Consider serving our fraternity! Current vacancies listed below. Fraternity Office Director of Fulfillment (DLP Store) Western Regional Coordinator Eastern Regional Coordinator New Member Education Coordinator Server Engineer Support & Training Coordinator Judicial Affairs Coordinator Recruitment & Onboarding Coordinator

Investigations Coordinator ________________________________ Email michael.davis@dlp.org for more information.

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Members of the Iota Alumni Association


Sacramento, CA

LOCAL ALUMNI TAKE PRIDE Q&A with Zach Ozbun & Randy Jose Zach: How did the Iota LAA celebrate Pride this year? Randy: We volunteered at the Sacramento Pride Festival and the Iota Chapter’s booth fundraiser. The Sacramento Pride Festival is a big fundraising event for local Sacramento LGBTQIA organizations and this event is 100% driven and supported by volunteers from the Sacramento community. This is the third year the Iota Chapter has volunteered at Pride in an effort to serve the community and raise money for chapter operations. The Chapter has always reached out to the LAA and alumni to help with this event and we have shown up in full force ready to support the active chapter. This event also brings the Alumni, LAA members, and actives closer together and helps foster a sense of community and family. This year's Pride had more significance for many after the tragic events that impacted the LGBTQIA community. How did this year's Pride celebration differ from year's past? This year’s tragic event in Orlando impacted many of the alumni and LAA members and many mourned what happened there. One of our alumni organized an event in which actives, alumni, and LAA members attended and reflected on the tragedy and discussed their feelings of the event. This gathering brought about a sense of family

and strength during this tough period and offered support to our fellow brothers who were impacted by this tragedy. It also provided a cathartic release of all the feelings from the tragedy. The Sacramento region was highlighted worldwide during this time because of Pastor Roger Jimenez of the Verity Baptist Church, who preached a hate-filled sermon the morning after the tragedy. The speech was recorded and released to the media, causing global uproar throughout the LGBT community. Locally, it impacted our alumni and LAA members by galvanizing us. Some alumni joined local community leaders and activists in a protest at the Pastor’s church. This unified our community and brought us and our allies together to show how we will not tolerate this sort of hatred in our community and in our region. In all, the tragedy made us stronger and closer than ever before. This year’s Pride took on more meaning and many alumni and LAA members showed off their pride as best they could. Pride is often a time not only for celebration, but reflection. What are some personal reflections of the Iota LAA have during Pride? Many have reflected on how strong our community is and also how strong our chapter is by supporting each other through the hard times. We have realized how much of a family the Sacramento community


is and the Chapter is as well. Br. Kris Borders noted that he is grateful for the ability to be unabashedly himself and is appreciative of all of the efforts and sacrifices made by those who have fought on the forefront of the LGBTQIA rights movement. He has fond memories of attending and volunteering at prior Sacramento and San Francisco Pride Festivals with fellow Iota Chapter alumni, including marching in the San Francisco Pride Parade! Br. Randy Jose is so grateful to have seen all the progress that has been made in the past few years and has been really happy to see all the change and strength people have developed through the years of struggle for equality. DLP is celebrating its 30th year. A lot of discussion is taking place about DLP in the next 30 years. What are some of your visions for Pride in the future? Our work in our communities is not over and we hope to see that the disenfranchised groups in our community be celebrated and get the rights and protections afforded to them that they should have. We hope to celebrate and have the less visible members of our LGBTQIA community become more visible. We hope that the Pride in the future will not be about fighting for our rights but rather a celebration of finally obtaining equity and equality for all us.


Br. Aaron Bocknek

Br. Timothy Ian Neal

Alpha Chapter, Alpha Class

Alpha Chapter, Alpha Epsilon Class

Aaron entered into rest on September 11, 2016 in Alexandria, VA after a long battle with cancer. Aaron was 55 years old.

He entered into rest on August 31, 2016 in Portland, OR. Tim was 39 years old.

Br. Bocknek graduated from James Madison University and worked in commercial aviation throughout his life, serving as a mentor to many. He was was passionate about his boat, named Enterprise, and his beloved Boston Terrier, Maccabee. Aaron is survived by his partner through his illness, Brad Knopp.

Tim was hearing-impaired, but used his unique abilities to help others. He served as a British Sign Language Translator when he was younger and championed an attitude of openness, acceptance, and love with his life partner and best friend, Lyndsie Brianna Lacock Neal.

The memory and legacy of Br. Aaron Bockneck and Br. Timothy Ian Neal will live on forever in our Alpha Omega Chapter. We invite you to leave testimonials and memories of our brothers in the Alpha Omega space on Confluence.

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