Page 1

University of Wisconsin - Madison Pi Lambda Phi - Omega Chapter 8 North Broom Street Fall 2011

“Not Four Years, But a Lifetime”

From the Rex’s Desk Greetings Brethren, The Omega Chapter of Pi Lambda Phi continues to show explosive momentum this semester. This momentum has carried throughout the organization and can be seen through the results. We just initiated an inspiring pledge class of 11 members. This brings the active brother count to 34, a number I couldn’t imagine a few short semesters ago. With our increased size, the current chapter house is suffering from growing pains. This will be resolved next year when we move to 621 N. Frances Street. More details on this property inside. With the growth this chapter is experiencing, we have been preparing to ensure the longevity of this fraternity. We searched the constitution for any possible refinements which could benefit us in the future. Through this analysis, we made one significant change that will allow for smoother semesterly transitions. The Rex, Archon, and K.O.E will now be yearly positions elected at the end of the fall semester. This change uses the spring semester as a convenient transition period which will carry over to create a strong fall semester. Through the constitution analysis we realized that we were missing a judicial board to keep us accountable for our actions. Therefore, we have elected Brother James Zhang to chair the board with Brothers Aaron Piehler and John Altenhofen filling the other two positions. As we reestablish this board, these members will be responsible for setting the precedent of consequences for different infractions. All of our hard work has caught the eyes of internationals. During Convention 2011 in Philadelphia, the Omega chapter was awarded with the Chapter Improvement Award in addition to numerous certificates of merit. In addition to updating you with chapter operations, I wanted to take time thanking everybody who stopped by for Homecoming, it has now become my current favorite Pi Lam memory. Seeing brothers that spanned decades sharing their treasured memories truly encapsulated the ideals of “Not Four Years but a Lifetime” and the eternal bonds of brotherhood. As an active brother, I look forward to Homecoming every year and hope to continue coming once I become an alumnus myself. As always, feel free to reach out to me through email at or through phone at (414)-467-7084 Fraternally, Rex Kyle Krahn Gamma Beta (Fall 2009)

Pi Lambda Phi - A New Perspective

Sultan Al-Aleeli - Gamma Zeta

To be, or not to be, that is the question: I certainly chose to be a part of Pi Lambda Phi because I couldn’t lose anything in joining. Coming to United States from my home in the United Arab Emirates, I had no idea what a fraternity was, nor did I have the intention of joining one. However, after being introduced to the Omega Chapter and hanging around for a couple of weeks, I have realized that there is a strong bond between the brothers, and I have learned the value of a fraternity. Now, as a part of Pi Lambda Phi, I understand the meaning of brotherhood and it feels great, because this brotherhood holds the same thoughts, beliefs, and provides a sense of belonging, but most importantly it’s a body that indulges us with happiness no matter how life treats you. Life is certainly a journey and being in Pi Lambda Phi is like being a crew member of a ship well known to take that journey in the best way anyone can. Not only is it the best ship to take but it has a crew that is more of a family, a family that would be there for you. Personally I’m honored being a part of this family, especially when I’m thousands of miles away from home.

Reestablishment of the Judicial Board John Altenhofen - Gamma Delta

In this past semester we have implemented many new components to the fraternity and it has been a semester of great progress. One of the most exciting changes is the reestablishment of our judicial board. The members of this rebooted J-board are Brothers Aaron Piehler, James Zhang, and myself. As a member of the inaugural J-board, I am excited

to go through the process of getting the board up and running. It is the perfect timing to reinstate a J-board because we have not had any major problems within the brotherhood, and nor do we expect any in the immediate future.This should allow us to get established and create a constitution for future J-boards without any bias. The J-board will also become more beneficial as we continue to grow as a chapter as it allows for due process if any problems arise in the future. It will be exciting to see the Judicial Board reinstituted as a meaningful institution that assures brotherhood credibility

That all Men are Created Free and Equal

As a newly initiated brother of the Omega Chapter, I have experienced so much in such a short period of time. Yet, I know there is more to come, and a lot of the brothers felt the same way when they joined. I have learned valuable life lessons such as how to effectively manage time during hectic moments, how to solve problems even when there are differing points of view, how to respect other people’s background and actually understand that it barely has any affect on how you interact with them. I even realized that if a chapter can be considered as a society then a society where prejudice doesn’t exist can be established. However, these such lessons are just the beginning but I will treasure them for life.

Alumni Interview: Rex Neil Knutson

Opportunites and Privleges of Freedom

Nick Stefani - Gamma Delta

Hometown: Oakdale, MN Major: Economics Pledge Class: Beta Omicron Year Graduated: ‘05 Neil Knutson became a brother in March of 2002 and went on to become the Rex of the chapter. He found it hard to choose a single memory or moment that he was most proud of, but he really enjoyed his time as Rex. It was a very rewarding experience and he felt honored and proud to lead the chapter. One memory Brother Neil said he will never forget is the pledge party following a very successful Fall rush in 2004. Everyone was feeling great, there were positive feelings everywhere, and most importantly to Neil, he met his future wife, Justina Knutson. The couple married in 2010, with several Pi Lams serving as groomsmen during the ceremony. Neil picked up an internship with American Express Top: Brothers Tom Kinney, Steve Busch, Neil while being Rex of the Omega Chapter. He soon became licensed to trade securities for clients. Brother Neil stat- Knutson, and Andrew Kanarek with Justina Knutson ed that he was very proud of this accomplishment beBottom: Neil and his wife Justina withWisconsin cause it put him ahead of the 8-ball when looking for legend Barry Alvarez jobs after graduation. Outside of Pi Lamda Phi, he also worked and was involved in the Economic Student Association. Today, Neil works in wealth planning and investing. He obtained his CFP designation and is now working towards his MBA at the University of Minnesota, which he will complete in January. Brother Neil has assured us he is still a Badger fan and there is no need to worry. He has also been lucky enough to study abroad in China with Justina and is also going to study abroad in Costa Rica with her right before he graduates. As we finished our interview, I asked Neil what advice he could give to the newly initiated brothers and the current brotherhood. He wanted to make sure that the new guys try and live in the house for at least one year.The memories and enjoyment he had while living in is something that Neil will never forget. Brother Neil also mentioned that the newly initated brothers should remember what they learned and truly think about FRACK and what it means. His final statement to the brotherhood called for everybody to keep their academics and finances situated. This will help allow you to take advantage of everything the brotherhood has to offer. He concluded by saying he is very proud of where the chapter is headed and hopes to see us spread the creed of Pi Lam, further embracing our diversity.

Community Service Update

tinues to grow and progress in the future. Not-tinghaUpdam house here w

James Zhang - Gamma Delta

As part of our community service, we do weekly visits to Bayview, a nonprofit organization for underprivileged immigrant families. Our brothers help pre-school to middle-school aged children with their homework and recreational activities, and have formed deep bonds with many kids. We also do frequent visits to the Salvation Army, where we help prepare and serve food to the homeless. Such events, although sometimes physically draining, are not looked upon as chore. Instead, they are great opportunities for brothers to have fun and get to know each other better through service. Some other events that we have taken part in includes a carnival for Thoreau Elementary School and a dance marathon for the UW Children’s Hospital. Since reinstating our committee in Spring 2011, we have accumulated more than 200 hours of service.We require that each brother put in at least six hours each semester, and many of us, especially the ones committed to weekly events, easily contribute up to 20 hours a semester. Also, we now require new members to organize and execute their own community service event, a project that we believe teaches them the essence and spirit behind service. Our duty to the community, of course, cannot be adequately judged by the number of hours put in. It is the heart and soul behind giving back to our city that motivates our brotherhood, and that, I believe, is what sets Pi Lambda Phi apart as a leader amongst the University of Wisconsin’s Greek Life.

Elimination of Prejudice Day Campbell McLaren - Gamma Gamma

This year, we have pledged one thousand dollars to the Elimination of Prejudice and have been working hard to reach that goal. We have done events that involve profit sharing with local restaurants, as well as our semesterly basketball tournament known as “Ballin’ Against Prejudice” with more upcoming events planned. However, now that the fundraising aspect of the EOP is nearing completion, we are implementing phase two: raising awareness in the community. So on February 8th, 2012 (mark your calendars) we will be hosting our first ever Elimination of Prejudice Day in the brand new Union South. The event will consist of many student organizations getting together and discussing issues that are not discussed nearly enough. We are ready to start eliminating prejudice and we hope to make a difference in our community.

Freedom Implies the Elimination of Prejudice

Being the chair of the new Community Service Committee is a dream come true for me.This is because service is a huge part of what Pi Lam is about and it encompasses so much that we learn during the new member education process. It is truly a privilege to be given the chance to plan and organize events where our brothers have the opportunity to serve the community.

Wisconsin - Omega Finds a New Home

A Better Understanding ‘twixt Men

Jon Renk - Gamma Delta

In the Fall of 2012, the WI-Omega chapter of Pi Lambda Phi will have a new house, 621 North Frances Street, to settle into. This is just a few houses down from the old house at 629 North Frances and has wonderful access to both the lake and union. We will be having seventeen brothers living in the house next year. Our old house on Broom served us well but alas we have outgrown it. This fall, WI-Omega began to look for a new home, one that would better serve our growing brotherhood. After touring this house on North Frances, we immediately knew it would benefit the fraternity as a whole to grab this gem of a home. Some of the features of the new house include: three levels all with living rooms and personal kitchens, a basement, and two wide open balconies in front of the house with views of the lake, and easy access to State Street, Memorial Union, Campus and several univerity libraries. With the new house for next year, we will have many opportunities to flourish internally and in the Greek system as a whole. With the new house being so close to Langdon, Pi Lambda Phi will be entrenched in the UW Greek System and also we will be in a prime location for recruitment. I know many of us are so excited for next year, including myself, we can’t wait to move in.

621 North Frances Street, Wisconsin-Omega’s new home starting in Fall of 2012

Wisconsin Dells Expedition Bryce Loken - Gamma Beta

Brotherhood list: Beta - Omega: Aaron Piehler, Senior

Gamma - Alpha: Ben Idzikowski, Senior

On Friday, November 11th, 16 brothers made the short trip to the Wisconsin Dells for a stay at the Wilderness Resort. We reserved two spacious condos totaling about 5,000 square feet of luxurious space. The weekend consisted of some partying, hanging out, playing games and lots of water park fun. This visit to the Dells is by far the fondest memory I’ve had thus far with my brethren. Being able to get away from the stress of school and enjoy a fun weekend with your brothers is unparalleled in its worth. I encourage you to ask a brother who attended about their favorite experience from the weekend. While the stories may vary, the overarching theme will remain consistent, a meaningful weekend that each brother will fondly remember.

Gamma - Beta: David Hartman, Junior Kyle Krahn, Junior Eric Little, Senior Bryce Loken, Junior Gregg May, Junior

Gamma - Gamma: Ryan Behnke, Senior Campbell McLaren, Junior David Zaborsky, Junior

Gamma - Delta:

Wisconsin - Omega’s cabin at the Wilderness Resort in the Wisconsin Dells.

Woodbines Sports Update

John Altenhofen, Sophomore

Campbell McLaren - Gamma Gamma

Alex Cook, Sophomore

30 seconds left in the fourth quarter, it’s 9 p.m. at night and the rain is falling steadily. The ball is at the 50-yard line. The Woodbines break their huddle, no one quite knowing where the sweat ends and the rain begins. The grass, which has now turned to mud, sloshes under players’ shoes as the brothers make their way to the line of scrimmage. The “Pi Lam Seven” as they have since been known, run a standard formation. Two O-line men, two wide outs, one half back, and one quarterback. Brother Bryce yells at the line, “Blue 52, watch the blitz, set...hut...hut...hike, he snaps the ball, he looks left, Brother Matt is double covered, he looks right, Brother Campbell is being guarded well too, Bryce decides to send up a prayer. He takes one step forward and launches the ball, into the rain, into the wind, into history...and the ball majestically soars 10 yards, 15 yards, 20 yards and lands on the ground about 20 feet out of bounds. And Pi Lambda Phi has lost by a final score of 42-6. Flag football is not one of Pi Lam’s biggest strengths; however, we have improved. The last time we played football we failed to score a point of over the course of the entire season. This season we not only scored multiple times, we even won one game. Our soccer team also won one game (although the other team did not show up).

Dan Handel, Sophomore Brett McGannon, Sophomore Jon Renk, Sophomore Nick Stefani, Sophomore Jesse Swiecichowski, Junior Matt Tettambel, Junior James Zhang, Sophomore

The Brotherhood Page Brotherhood list: Gamma - Epsilon: All photos list brothers names from left to right: (Top Left): Brothers Alex Cook, Aaron Piehler, and Campbell McLaren at a Wisconsin Football Game. (Top Right): Brothers Kyle Krahn, Nick Stepheni, and IHQ brother Phil Spence (Florida-Delta), at Convention 2011 this summer. Wisconsin Omega won “Most Improved Chapter”. (Direct Left): Pledge Class Gamma - Zeta before their pledge party. (Lower Left): Brothers Chris Wein, David Hartman, Sultan Al-Aleeli, and Ben Idzikowski during Homecoming Weekend. (Bottom Left): Brotherhood photo taken after spring 2011 elections. Features entire brotherhood minus Pledge Class Gamma - Zeta. (Bottom Right): Brothers Aaron Piehler, Ed Kinney, and Gregg May on Homecoming Weekend, this year’s Homecoming was the most successful Wisconsin-Omega has experienced in years.

Kyle Benz, Sophomore Jake Bjornson, Sophomore R.J. Koch, Sophomore Chris Wein, Senior

Gamma - Zeta: Sultan Al-Aleeli, Sophomore Daniel Albain, Freshman Darrel Allen, Junior Stephen Betz, Freshman Alex Gemeinhardt, Junior Cameron Kofler. Freshman Kurt Kou, Junior Cris Maher, Freshman Zach Proeber, Junior Jon Schadeberg, Sophomore Malachi Willey, Freshman

Pi Lambda Phi - Omega Chapter 8 N. Broom St. Madison, Wi 53703 The Omega Society On behalf of the entire undergraduate brotherhood, we would like to thank the alumni brothers for sponsoring this newsletter. The brothers of WI-Omega look forward to hearing from alumni and if you have any questions or comments or just want to talk please contact: Rex Nick Stephani at or at (630)-732-9272 Archon Matt Tettambel at or at (913)-526-4050 K.O.E. Jon Renk at or at (608)-220-0121 If you are interested in supporting the Omega Society, please fill out and return the attached form. By supporting the Omega Society, you are supporting much more than just chapter operations, you are supporting the continued success of Pi Lambda Phi’s Wisconsin-Omega chapter. Lastly, we will gladly honor your wishes if you ask us to use your donations in any particular way. Name:


Address: ____________________________________________________________________________ ____________________________________________________________________________ Email:


I wish to donate: Annual Dues [$50]: ____ Rex’s Club [$51-$100]: ____ Founder’s Club [$101- 250]: ____ Nottingham Club [$251+]: ____ Specific Instructions or wishes: __________________________________________________________ ____________________________________________________________________________________ ____________________________________________________________________________________

The Omegan, Fall 2011  

The fall 2011 issue of the Omegan. This is the newsletter for the Pi Lambda Phi WI - Omega Chapter.