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May 2012 . Issue 04

Cross & Crescent

FROM THE EDITOR Focusing on the bright spots. Too many times in life, we focus on the negative and forget to celebrate the many great positives about our chapters’ accomplishes during the 2011-2012 academic year. The chapters listed below are examples of for all of our chapters to emulate. If your chapter is currently struggling with its operations and meeting our basic standards, contact one of these chapters in your Conclave and ask them for advice about how to model their best practices. If you need any contact information, let your ElC know and he can help make the introduction. Congratulations to the following chapters for letting the light of Lambda Chi Alpha shine bright on their campus. (You can read about their accomplishments in this month’s Chapter News).

Tad Lichtenauer Director of Communications/IT (317) 803-7322

• • • • • • • • • • •

Akron (Gamma-Alpha) Baldwin-Wallace (Kappa-Phi Colony) Butler (Alpha-Alpha) Georgetown (Kappa-Omega) Louisiana-Lafayette (Iota-Omega) New Orleans (Lambda-Alpha) North Carolina-Charlotte (Beta-Upsilon) Tarleton State (Phi-Rho) Tennessee-Chattanooga (Zeta-Phi) Wilmington (Pi-Delta) Wittenberg (Nu-Zeta)

If your chapter was named the Fraternity of the Year or had the highest GPA on your campus, and it’s not listed here, that’s because you didn’t tell us. However, we can always include your news in our June issue. Simply send me an email at tlichtenauer@lambdachi. org with the details. In ZAX and friendship,

Tad Lichtenauer Managing Editor Cross & Crescent Magazine

Cross & Crescent



Features 16

Departments 1


Chapter News Chapter news, alumni news, and reports of death. Fraternity News

A TRUE Impact

30 TRUE Brother Alumnus Provides Comfort

for Grief-Stricken Children

32 History New History Book Excerpt (Part 2)

BRIDGE BUILDERS Veekas Shrivastava (Arizona State 2014) and David Schapira (George Washington 2001) share their story about values, friendship, and lifetime brotherhood. By Tad Lichtenauer (Denison)


CARING FOR THE MASSES In his new position as chief dental officer for the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services, Dr. Lynn Mouden’s (Kansas) mission is to provide dental care for millions of Americans. By Andrew Talevich (Washington State)


SOLID STROKES As captain of his swim team and president of his chapter Myles Biggs (Lycoming) has been a leader both in the water and on campus. By Andrew Talevich (Washington State)


REMEMBERING A SERVANT LEADER Robert Claycombe will be remembered as a dedicated alumni volunteer who served the Fraternity for more than 50 years. By Andrew Talevich (Washington State)


CREDITS Publisher: Managing Editor: Assistant Editor: Layout & Design: Cover Photo: Photographer: Research: Historian: Editors:

Bill Farkas Tad Lichtenauer Andrew Talevich Thomas Roberts Lindy Drew Walt Moser Jon Williamson Mike Raymond Jono Hren Bob McLaughlin

Content for consideration should be submitted by the 25th of the month (except Aug/Jan) Lambda Chi Alpha Fraternity 8741 Founders Rd Indianapolis, IN 46268-1338 (317) 872-8000


Chapter News Chapter news, alumni news, and reports of death

Akron (Gamma-Alpha)

Arizona State (Zeta-Psi)

At the Greek Awards ceremony, the chapter won the Scholastic Achievement Award, Campus/Greek Involvement Award, Recruitment Excellence Award, and Interfrateral Award. For the second year in a row, the chapter won the Dean’s Cup for chapter excellence as the top fraternity on campus.

The chapter held a brotherhood event at the Los Angeles Angels’ Cactus League spring training game in Tempe, Arizona. The chapter held a Big Brother Ceremony in which all of the associate members were paired with an older brother to serve as a mentor.

On April 14, 2012, the chapter held a Initiation Ritual Exemplification for five brothers.

Auburn-Montgomery (Phi-Kappa)

After winning best choreography and best male solo, the chapter earned third place overall at the 79th Greek Life Songfest. On April 21, 2012, the chapter held its 40th annual Bath Tub Pull charity event, which raised money for The Akron Humane Society, and the Akron Rotary Camp for children with special needs.

Alabama-Birmingham (Sigma-Chi)

The chapter held its annual Teeter-Totter Marathon, benefiting the Muscular Dystrophy Association. The event consisted of 72 hours of teeter-tottering and the event raised more than $1,000. The local news covered the event and Josh Oates was interviewed by NBC-affiliate, WSFA-TV, during the 11 p.m. broadcast.

At Greek Awards ceremony, the chapter won Most Outstanding Philanthropy Award and the Greek Spirit Award. Chapter President Tripp Ference was named Most Outstanding Chapter President and Greek Man of the Year.

Brothers participated in a low-ropes course on campus as part of a brotherhood event. During Greek Week, chapter brothers participated in several events and Josh Oates was selected as the winner of the Greek God competition.

Abdullah Al-Gannass, Rob Wians, Justin Owens, and Tripp Ference were inducted into Gamma Sigma Alpha honor society.

Chapter brothers participated in Zeta Tau Alpha’s Kicking Out Cancer kickball tournament winning first place.

The chapter completed its spring philanthropy, Rockathon, benefiting the National MS Society.


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Chapter news, alumni news, and reports of death

Baldwin-Wallace (Kappa-Phi Colony)

that bar association. In December of 1947 he joined the Office of the Chief Counsel, IRS Interpretative Division, becoming assistant head of that division in 1950. In September of 1951 he came to Oklahoma City to join the firm of Embry, Johnson, Crowe, Tolbert and Boxley, now known as Crowe & Dunlevy. He practiced law with that firm until he retired in 1978.

In April 2012 at the Student Life and Leadership Awards Ceremony, the chapter won the following awards: Spring 2011 -- Highest GPA Award with a 3.371; Fall 2011 - Highest GPA Award with a 3.405; Outstanding Scholastic Achievement Award; and the Community Creed Award. Joseph R. Cavan (1950) died March 7, 2012. He served his country while in the U.S. Army during World War II.

Bradley (Kappa-Upsilon) On April 13, 2012, the chapter held its formal at Grand Bear Lodge.

Bucknell (Delta)

On April 21, 2012, the chapter held an Initiation Ritual Exemplification for four new members.

After spring recess, chapter brothers moved into their new chapter house. The house is handicap-accessible and has a centralair environmental system. The undergraduate brothers would like to encourage alumni brothers to make plans to visit the new chapter house that was designed by the architectural firm EYP.

As a brotherhood event the chapter held its inaugural Brolympics on April 28, 2012, playing softball, kickball, and other competitions. Dale E. Maxson (1952} died January 26, 2012. While working at Barber-Colman and Fluor, he was one of the leading HVAC engineers in his time, designing HVAC systems for buildings in four continents. He was a man of many talents including building a modern house in Phoenix and engineering high fidelity amplifiers and stereos. He was also one of the first engineers to actively use computers to aid in design and analysis.

Butler (Alpha-Alpha)

Cal State-Northridge (Beta-Rho)

At the Greek Excellence Awards, the chapter won the Outstanding Educational Programming Award, Outstanding New Member Education & Programming Award, Outstanding Philanthropy and Service Award, and the Innovation Award for an innovative new academic program. The chapter’s faculty advisor, Richard Halstead, won the Faculty Advisor of the Year Award and Alpha-Alpha was the only Greek organization at Butler to earn the prestigious Five-Star Chapter Award.

On March 1, 2012, the chapter held an open house and alumni reception. The event attracted approximately 50 alumni brothers, undergraduate brothers, and guests.

Bruce H. Johnson (1933) died December 13, 2011. He practiced law in Indianapolis, specializing in federal tax law. He was the first secretary of the section of Taxation of the Indiana State Bar Association and a Chairman of the Young Lawyers Section of

In April 2012, Yesai Fstkchyan was inducted into the Order of Omega honorary society.

On March 18, 2012, Jessie Arciniega completed the L.A. Marathon with an unofficial time of 4 hours, 28 minutes, and 59 seconds. The chapter added three associate members for the spring semester.

Matthew S. Frerer (1986) died February 17, 2012. After college he


Cross & Crescent May 2012


Chapter news, alumni news, and reports of death

Clemson (Delta-Omicron)

worked for several years as a financial planner and spent time with Cole Emerson & Associates specializing in business continuity and risk management. In 1997 he accepted an offer to continue specializing in business continuity and emergency preparedness at Amgen in Thousand Oaks, California. Many of his fraternity brothers and colleagues recall that he excelled at playing guitar and intramural sports. He formed the first band for his chapter and they performed on campus.

Partnering with Zeta Tau Alpha sorority, the chapter held its inaugural Greeks on the Beach philanthropy event, which included volleyball, boche ball, and badminton competitions. The event raised nearly $2,000 for cancer awareness.

Coe (Zeta-Alpha)

Duke Anderson (1991) died January 26, 2012. An accomplished editor, linguist, choir lead vocalist, and devoted parishioner, Anderson secured a position as a manager of the Christmas department at a Robinson’s department store at age 16. He was eventually promoted to become a manager of the store’s crystal and china department. This led to a managerial position for six years at Geary’s in Beverly Hills. His singing vocation bridged his affiliation with the Northridge Chorale and later with the church choirs at St. Francis de Sales and St. Cyril’s. Performances took him through Europe, South America, and a number of tours in Japan.

In varsity tennis, Jon Roger won the deciding match against the University of Wisconsin-Whitewater, one of the top Division 3 tennis programs in the country. With a final score of 5-4, the Coe Tennis team defeated UW-Whitewater, with Roger pulling out the final win.

California-Santa Barbara (Zeta-Eta)

The chapter participated in the Spring 500, a community service event to help elderly people around the Cedar Rapid’s area with yard maintenance tasks such as raking leaves, cleaning windows, pulling weeds, and getting rid of yard waste.

Richard Yep, executive director of the American Counseling Association, was named to the American Society of Association Executives’ (ASAE) 2012 Class of Fellows. The Fellows program recognizes individual accomplishments and contributions to ASAE and the association community, and is a call to service for the profession. “The Fellows program asks leaders to continue to seek service as authors, mentors, leaders, and speakers,” said Stacy Tetschner, CEO, National Speakers Association, and chair of ASAE’s Fellows Selection Committee. “The ASAE Fellows program is an honorary recognition bestowed upon less than one percent of ASAE’s membership representing the best of the association community. The 2012 Class of Fellows is made up of committed association leaders, and it is my pleasure to welcome them to the Fellows community.”

Chapter brothers participated in a charity even to support Waypoint of Cedar Rapids, a shelter for women, children, and families in need of help. The event raised nearly $250.


Cross & Crescent May 2012


Chapter news, alumni news, and reports of death

Evansville (Iota-Mu)

Eastern Illinois (Phi-Alpha)

The chapter hosted 93 brothers for the Bluegrass Conclave. The chapter raised more than $2,000 during its annual TeeterTotter-a-thon, benefiting the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society. The chapter hosted an alumni banquet/golf outing to celebrate the chapter’s 35th anniversary.

Florida Gulf Coast (Colony 292) On February 30, 2012, chapter brothers performed community service by walking the sides of Route 130 and picking up trash. On April 21, 2012, the chapter hosted a golf outing at Meadowview Golf Course in Mattoon, Illinois. The golf outing and dinner were held in conjunction with the chapter’s 35th anniversary. Benefiting the university’s Greek Week the chapter held a fundraising event, Dining for Dollars, at Foster’s Grill.

Elmhurst (Pi-Zeta) Mark Weeden was elected SGA president, replacing Jacob Meding. In addition, Chris Puenner was elected SGA vice president of administration, and Vince Arcari was elected vice president of finance.

The chapter held an Initiation Ritual Exemplification for seven brothers. On April 10-12, 2012, the chapter hosted an inaugural Florida Gulf Coast Watermelon Bust competition, which was won by Chi Omega sorority. The three-day event included watermelon carving, watermelon Twister, a decorating contest, and a canned food drive.

On April 27, 2012, the chapter held an Initiation Ritual Exemplification for eight brothers: Kenneth Thompson, Vincent Arcari, Zachary Lentino, Kevin Garcia, Michael Kopkowski, Eric Ahrens, Jacob Acevado, and Marcus Lee. Chapter brothers supported and attended the American Cancer Society’s Relay For Life event. They also collected donations on behalf of the North American Food Drive to stock local community food pantries.


Cross & Crescent May 2012


Chapter news, alumni news, and reports of death

Florida Tech (Beta-Nu)

Georgetown (Kappa-Omega) For the 13th time in 16 years, the chapter was awarded the President’s Cup as the best fraternity on campus. The chapter received outstanding remarks in four out of five categories, which included Academics, Community Service, Philanthrophy, and Educational Programs. Chapter President Ross Buskey was named Greek Man of the Year and Todd Bixler was named Greek Athlete of the Year. Bixler is a member of both track and cross-country teams. In only his first year in office, Chapter Advisor Alan Redditt received Outstanding Advisor Award.

Gettysburg (Theta-Pi)

Partnered with Gamma Phi Beta sorority, the chapter brothers participated in the Florida Tech Relay for Life, benefiting the American Cancer Society.

Under the leadership of Shane Swink and Reid Smith, the chapter raised more than $20,000 during the American Cancer Society’s Relay for Life event.

The chapter held an Initiation Ritual Exemplification for three brothers.

Indiana State (Iota-Epsilon Colony)

During the Greek Awards, the chapter won the Alumni Relations Award, Philanthropy Award, and Sportsmanship Award. In addition, individual brothers won various awards for Living the Ritual, IFC President, Greek God, and Outstanding Senior.

Georgia Tech (Beta-Kappa)

On April 14, 2012, chapter brothers visited the Iota-Alpha chapter at Ball State University to initiate Rafael Barboza. On April 24-26, 2012, chapter brothers worked for alumni brother Troy Helt’s catering business to raise money for the chapter.

On March 10, 2012, more than 40 alumni brothers attended the chapter’s St. Baldrick’s Celebration, benefiting childhood cancer research. Thirty-eight brothers shaved their heads in support of the cause and the chapter raised more than $18,000 for the St. Baldrick’s Foundation, the most raised by any team in Atlanta.

Noah Leininger was elected president of the music fraternity Kappa Kappa Psi. Marcus Steiner was selected as the photography editor for the Indiana Statesman newspaper.


Cross & Crescent May 2012


Chapter news, alumni news, and reports of death

Iowa (Iota-Chi)

Louisiana-Lafayette (Iota-Omega)

Dustin Smart, a U.S. Air Guard weapons specialist, won the Iowa City T-shirt design contest while serving in Afghanistan. In the midst of his six-month tour in Afghanistan, he had to deal with poor internet connections and the overall distance between him and Iowa City to submit his design.

Kansas (Zeta-Iota) Partnered with Alpha Delta Pi sorority, the chapter held its annual Watermelon Fest benefiting the Heartland Community Health Center, which provides services for underprivileged families in Lawrence, Kansas. The event raised nearly $1,000. Undergraduate brothers would like to thank alumni brother Greg Simms (1990) for speaking to the chapter about his reflections upon when he lived in the house. He also gave us valuable advice about ways to be more effective with our fundraising since he serves as the regional CEO for the American Red Cross in Topeka, Kansas.

At the 2012 Greek Awards Ceremony the chapter received a five-star rating, achieved by only two of the eight IFC fraternities. Chris Catalanotto received Alumni of the Year Award, selected from the more than 20 Greek organizations on our campus. Dominick Rancatore was inducted into the Theta Class of the Greek Hall of Fame. Dustin Chastant received multiple awards from the local Habitat for Humanity organization while serving as the Project Leader. The chapter also was recognized for having the highest IFC GPA from the Fall of 2011 semester and for having placed first in Greek Week in Greek Olympics and T-shirt sales. At the 2012 Ragin Recognition, Iota-Omega was awarded the Most Outstanding Membership Development award, from the more than 300 student organizations on campus. Will Gardiner was named the Most Outstanding Sophomore.

The chapter would like alumni brothers to save the date for the third Annual Homecoming Alumni Dinner & Distinguished Alumni Awards on October 26, 2012. Exact time and location are to be determined. In addition, the third Annual Homecoming Tailgate will be held on October 27, 2012. The game and tailgate time are to be determined.

Kansas State (Gamma-Xi) Memphis (Zeta-Theta)

The chapter conducted a telefund to raise money for the chapter’s endowment fund.

The brothers raised more than $200 in addition to collecting canned goods by volunteering in their community.

Many alumni brothers attended a pig roast hosted by the undergraduate brothers.

The chapter held its second annual blood drive with Life Blood, collecting 39 units. The chapter won the Chapter of the Year Award by the University’s All Greek Programming Board. Carlisle Jasper was awarded Greek Man of the Year. Chris Xa was elected President of the Asian American Association.


Cross & Crescent May 2012


Chapter news, alumni news, and reports of death

Miami-FL (Epsilon-Omega)

Montevallo (Sigma-Epsilon)

The chapter hosted the Florida Gulf Coast Conclave.

Paired with Phi Mu sorority, the chapter held a cleanup at a local park. Chapter President Josh Womack won the the title of Mr. Montevallo during the homecoming celebration.

Miami-OH (Zeta-Upsilon)

The chapter added six associate members during the spring semester. The chapter earned a scholastic trophy for achieving top honors for academic excellence in both the Spring 2012 and Fall 2011 periods. Josh Womack was accepted to participate in an archaeological dig in Helike, Greece, this summer. Jordan Palmer was accepted to NYU Polytech for a master’s program. Chapter brothers won Alpha Kappa Lambda sorority’s inaugural Hunger Games philanthropy event, winning a monetary donation for the North American Food Drive. John Gasson was elected SGA treasurer. Michael Tallon was accepted into a theatrical study-abroad program in Russia for fall 2012. For Greek Week, the chapter won six chapter and individual awards: Best Community Service Award, Best Program Award, and Best Campus Involvement Award, Best New Member Award( John Gasson), Best Senior Award (Jordan Palmer), and Greek Man of the Year Award (Mike Nicholson).

The chapter worked with the local fire department to spread mulch and paint their bay doors. Thomas J. Evans (1958) died February 2, 2012. He worked for Varel Manufacturing.

Frank Deming was named a McNair Scholar, which means he will be able to do undergrad research in his field of study. Only eight were chosen. Deming was also named a Montevallo Master, which is one of the official hosts of the University.

Millsaps (Theta-Eta) The chapter held an event to celebrate its Founders Day on March 31, 2012. Garrett Wilkerson and Andrew Marion were initiated into Order of Omega honor society. Marion was elected president.


Cross & Crescent May 2012


Chapter news, alumni news, and reports of death

New Mexico (Zeta-Mu)

North Carolina-Charlotte (BetaUpsilon)

Each chapter brother completed 20 hours of community service during the spring semester. The work included picking up trash, helping at-risk children, and performing other projects in the area. Chapter President Brandon Beck was one of 45 students nominated for student Employee of the Year.

New Mexico State (Zeta-Gamma) Gabriel Mario Ulibarri received a scholarship in the English Teaching Assistantship (ETA) program, part of the State Department’s Fulbright Program, to teach English and share American culture in Madrid for the 2012-2013 academic year. He will work with students in a secondary school system.

New Orleans (Lambda-Alpha) The chapter won the following 2012 Greek Awards: Fraternity of the Year; Greek Week; Excellence in Service; Most Community Service Hours; Excellence in Alumni Relations; Greek Man of the Year: Michael Kowalchyk; Outstanding Senior: Shivam Patel and David Starkel; and Advisor of the Year Finalist: Mike Boozer. In addition the chapter was named a finalist for: Excellence in Diversity Programming; Excellence in Philanthropy; Philanthropy Project of the Year: 49ers for Life; Excellence in New Member Education; Excellence in Non-Greek Programming; Excellence in Chapter Programming.

The chapter won highest overall GPA of all of the fraternities on campus, and top participation in Greek Week activities. In addition, Chris Musco (2010) was awarded Outstanding President and Andrew Boudreaux (2008) was awarded Outstanding Greek Scholar. At the University’s annual Student Leadership Ceremony, Chris Podany (2011), and Corbin Becnel (2010) were awarded for Outstanding Leadership in the chapter. John Mineo, IV (2008) was awarded the Edgar E. Burkes Memorial Award for Outstanding Leadership. He is a political science major, has served as SGA president since 2010, and is the current student-member to the Louisiana Board of Regents. The Burkes Memorial award for Outstanding Leadership is the highest student leadership honor a student can achieve.

North Dakota (Epsilon-Zeta) Richard Schneider (1972) died April 18, 2012. A newspaper executive whose career spanned 40 years in North Dakota, Montana, and Arizona, his first job in newspaper was as the editor of the Cavalier County Republican in Langdon, North Dakota. His second job, from 1972 to 1975, was as a sales representative


Cross & Crescent May 2012


Chapter news, alumni news, and reports of death

Oklahoma State (Alpha-Eta)

and special sections editor for the Bismarck Tribune in Bismarck, North Dakota. It was while he was in Bismarck that he met his future wife, Sue, who was serving as a house parent at Charles Hall Youth Services, a home for disadvantaged Indian children.

North Texas (Iota-Zeta) Jim Proeller (1984) has joined the Weather Channel as managing editor of video. He spent the last 23 years at CNN, most recently as senior director, editorial operations. At the Weather Channel he’ll oversee production from the field, ensuring that the best video makes it to all platforms.

On April 3, 2012, the chapter co-hosted an event to promote awareness of, and raise money to combat, domestic abuse. The chapter held an Initiation Ritual Exemplification for 12 brothers.

Northern Colorado (Sigma-Omega) At the Greek Awards, Robby Cummings was awarded the New Member of the Year Award for all of Greek life. He also serves on the IFC and as the chapter’s vice president-external.

Pittsburg State (Lambda-Chi) On April 28, 2012, the chapter held its Founders Day celebration. The chapter held an Initiation Ritual Exemplification for nine brothers, bringing the chapter total to 719 initiated brothers. At the dinner, two new items were unveiled by Larry Randolph: a new Omega Plaque to commemorate deceased brothers, and a three-dimensional coat of arms that he had made. Two auctions were held to benefit Muscular Dystrophy which afflicts alumni brother Gerald Neidens. One was a Brother Auction whereby members were sold to the highest bidder, and the second included items of Lambda Chi merchandise. A total of $760 was collected and will be donated in Neidens’ name.

Oklahoma (Gamma-Rho) Dr. Pat Pitchford (1964) died April 15, 2012. He was a valued dentist in Okmulgee, Oklahoma, from 1970 until 1984, and then practiced in Clarksville, Tennessee, for 14 years.

Oklahoma City (Theta-Delta) The chapter raised more than $1,000 for the Alzheimer’s Association and another $1,000 for cancer research.

Rensselaer (Epsilon-Eta) On April 17, 2012, the chapter celebrated its 75th anniversary by distributing cake to people in the Rensselaer community. On April 27, 2012, the chapter participated in RPI Relay For Life, benefiting the American Cancer Society. The chapter raised $4,700, earning third place in the team competition.


Cross & Crescent May 2012


Chapter news, alumni news, and reports of death

Richmond (Alpha-Chi)

South (Iota-Nu) Board of Councilor Brad Peabody was elected president of the Sewanee Alumni Greek Council of fraternities and sororities.

South Carolina On March 16-18, 2012, David Allen, Matt Gentile, and Ross Geiger attended the 2012 Colonial Conclave at the University of North Carolina-Greensboro. William H. Bragdon (1954) died March 17, 2012.

The chapter became the big brother chapter to Colony 292 at Virginia Commonwealth University and helped the colony conduct the Initiation Ritual Exemplification.

Simpson (Theta-Lambda)

South Carolina-Aiken (Pi-Alpha) The chapter participated in Strikeout Arthritis, a charity event hosted by Alpha Omicron Pi sorority.

South Dakota (Alpha-Gamma) Chapter President Tyler Tordsen was elected to the Student Advisory Committee for the Great Plains Conclave. The chapter held an Easter Egg Hunt for a local daycare center. The chapter organized food drives, raising more than 2,000 pounds for the Vermillion Food Pantry. Austin Nelson received a scholarship award for his summer internship at the state prison last summer. Tyler Tordsen received the Outstanding Sophomore of the Year Award.

The chapter hosted the 2012 Great Plains Conclave at the YMCA Camp in Boone, Iowa. More than 50 brothers attended the event, and the chapter would like to thank Master Steward Kent Donaldson, Fraternal Steward Brannon Wright, Fraternity Board Member Rodger Lalli, and Professional Staff members Chris Cole, Alex Werger, and ELC Joe Citro for their help and participation.

Mark Mickelson (1988) is running for the State House of Representatives, to represent Sioux Falls, South Dakota. He is the son of alumni brother and late governor George S. Mickelson (1925). Matthew Ballard received the Outstanding Alumni of the Year Award.


Cross & Crescent May 2012


Chapter news, alumni news, and reports of death

Southeast Missouri (Delta-Phi)

Southern Methodist (Gamma-Sigma)

The chapter held its annual Founders Day Banquet and inducted Jay Goff, Mark Lee, and Jason LeGrand to the Alumni Hall of Fame. At the All-Greek Award Ceremony, several brothers took home awards: All-Greek Freshman of the Year, Greg Felock; All-Greek Sophomore of the Year, Benny Dorris; All-Greek Junior of the Year, Corey Culbreth; and Individual Community Service Award, Nick Maddock. In addition, the chapter received the President’s Award for Fraternal Excellence. At the University’s Student Life & Leadership Awards Banquet, Austin Evans won the Provost’s Award for the College of Math & Sciences while Steve Backer won the President’s Spirit of Southeast Award. The chapter was honored as the All-University Student Organization of the Year. The chapter held an Initiation Ritual Exemplification for nine men, one of which was an honorary initiation. This was for Trevor Wood, father of Scott Wood who lost his battle with cancer earlier this semester.

Southern Indiana (Phi-Xi) Former SGA President Jordan Whitledge was awarded one of the university’s four Global Engagement Internships.

Jacob Watts was elected IFC vice president of finance. Kevin McClendon was elected the Hispanic American student senator. Chapter brothers helped cook, participate, raise donations, and set up the SMU Relay for Life, benefiting the American Cancer Society.

St. Josephs’s (Phi-Lambda)

As part of its community service work, the chapter has formed a relationship with Philabundence, the largest food distributor in the Philadelphia area. Chapter brothers have volunteered on two occasions to help stock and sort food in the Philabundence warehouse.


Cross & Crescent May 2012


Chapter news, alumni news, and reports of death

Stetson (Zeta-Tau)

The chapter raised more than $8,000 for the Chattanooga Food Bank.

Lewis B. Tussing was inducted into the Florida Track and Field Hall of Fame as a coach and official.

Tarleton State (Phi-Rho) The chapter won the Award for Fraternal Excellence at the university’s annual Leadership and Service Awards. The award is presented each year to the one nationally affiliated Greek fraternity or sorority that symbolizes the excellence of the Greek system. The chapter was recognized for having the highest GPA on campus among fraternities, for its work with the North American Food Drive, for the development and implementation of a Bastrop Relief Effort for victims of last year’s Texas wildfires, and for the Fraternity’s non-hazing stance.

The chapter held a BBQ For a Cure at the chapter house with proceeds going to the Cystic Fibrosis Foundation.

Towson (Phi-Omega) The chapter held a three-day blood drive to help the community.

Tulsa (Epsilon-Upsilon) The chapter hosted its annual Luau Philanthropy Week to raise money for the Special Olympics. The week included a Monday dinner, a banner contest, a community service trip to the Tulsa food bank, and a volleyball tournament featuring matches between the local police/fire departments and between the chapter/campus police. The event raised approximately $2,200.

During the ceremony, chapter President Anthony Linder was recognized for co-coordinating the Tarleton Round-up event. Round-up is an annual, campus-wide community service project. Because of Linder’s leadership, this year’s round-up fielded nearly 600 volunteers who spread out across the community to perform everyday household tasks for elderly and disabled citizens, such as raking leaves, doing painting, yard work, and cleaning.

Tennessee-Chattanooga (Zeta-Phi)

At the IFC awards banquet, the chapter won the Circle of Excellence Award for Responsibility, an honor bestowed on the Greek chapter that has demonstrated exceptional risk management policies. In addition, Jake Turner (2014) was presented with the Greek Man of the Year Award.

Union (Lambda-Zeta) The chapter has partnered with, an online discounter that works with local nonprofits in Jackson, Tennessee. This partnership has allowed the chapter to bring in new donations from hundreds of fellow students and community members to help in their fundraising efforts for the American Cancer Society’s Relay for Life.

Valparaiso (Iota-Sigma) At the Greek Week awards, the chapter earned the Academic Excellence Achievement Award, 2011-2012 Intramural Champions recognition, and Fraternity of the Year for the second consecutive year.

On April 21, 2012, the chapter held an Initiation Ritual Exemplification for nine brothers: Sean McClellan (2014), Ryan Hough (2014), Brian Burke (2015), Alex Ryan (2015), Joel Luedtke (2015), Leandro Jaime (2015), Matt Gerhardt (2015),


Cross & Crescent May 2012


Chapter news, alumni news, and reports of death Nelson Wagner (2015), and Phil Yarbrough (2015).

Wake Forest (Theta-Tau)

On April 27, 2012, the chapter held a Rock for Rations concert and fundraiser, which included five bands. Donations were collected for the North American Food Drive.

Chapter brothers volunteered numerous community service hours to staff a local homeless shelter, Samaritan Inn. For the fifth consecutive semester the chapter earned the Academic Excellence Award, given to the fraternity with the highest cumulative GPA.

Virginia Commonwealth (Colony 294)

The chapter also held a volleyball tournament in early April, cosponsored by Delta Zeta sorority. The event raised $2,300 for the Brian Piccolo Cancer Research Fund. The chapter held an Initiation Ritual Exemplification for 17 brothers. Chapter brothers also participated in the Red Cross Blood drive on campus. Three chapter brothers helped plan a 5k run for a local Community Care Center. On March 24, 2012, more than 40 chapter brothers participated in the university’s largest philanthropy event, Wake ‘N Shake. At these events, participants dance for 12 hours to raise money for cancer research.

Washington (Alpha-Psi)

On March 24, 2012, the chapter held its first Initiation Ritual Exemplification under the leadership of the Alpha-Chi chapter from the University of Richmond. After the Ritual, the brothers from both chapters enjoyed a dinner hosted by the General Fraternity. Also present were ELCs Nolan Ryan and Brian Watts, Alpha Chi Chapter Advisor Larry Matthews, Colony 294 Chapter Advisor Dave Huffine, and Alumni Advisor Rick McKeel. The chapter held an Initiation Ritual Exemplification for 10 brothers, putting the chapter at more than 2060 initiated brothers. The chapter earned a 3.17 GPA, above the all-men’s average.


Cross & Crescent May 2012


Chapter news, alumni news, and reports of death

West Texas A&M (Iota-Xi)

Wilmington (Pi-Delta)

William E. Russell (1967) died April 8, 2012. He was a veteran of the U.S. Navy, having served in Vietnam aboard the USS Duluth. He started working at the age of 14 in downtown Amarillo, Texas, at Gunn Brothers. He later became a department manager at Sears and Montgomery Ward and worked at Hastings Distribution Center. He also had been assistant manager at Sonic in Amarillo, and in Jacksonville, Florida.

Western Carolina (Beta-Zeta) The chapter was approved by the General Fraternity to begin full implementation of the TRUE Brother Initiative’s Inner Circle program.

At the Greek Awards, the chapter won Fraternity of the Year, in addition to highest GPA, and most community service. Michael Allbright won the Advisor of the Year Award while Matt Bates won the Senior of the Year Award.

Chapter brothers are helping renovate a building in Sylva, North Carolina, which will become the operating center of the Community Table program. Community Table is a nonprofit organization that has been nourishing the community by serving nutritious meals to their neighbors since 1999.

Western Kentucky (Lambda-Lambda)

The chapter’s annual clothing drive collected approximately 100 bags and 30 boxes, equating to about $3,000 worth of donations.

Wisconsin-Whitewater (Lambda-Iota Colony)

The chapter held an Initiation Ritual Exemplification for 11 brothers on April 26, 2012. This Ritual included an honorary initiate and the announcement that the chapter’s advisor, Johnny Douglas, will be stepping down after more than six years of service.

Western Michigan (Lambda-Tau) Chapter brothers participated in Spring to the Streets, a Greek Week philanthropy event used to help clean the neighborhood. Partnering with Alpha Sigma sorority, the chapter completed its four-day teeter-totter event, raising money for the North American Food Drive and the American Cancer Society.

Western Ontario (Delta-Eta) On March 31, 2010, the chapter conducted an Initiation Ritual Exemplification for three brothers. Richard Kariuki was elected IFC Treasurer. McKenzie Edwards was elected IFC Scholarship Chair.


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Chapter news, alumni news, and reports of death

Wittenberg (Nu-Zeta)

raised nearly $2.000 for charity. Chapter brother Mitch Hunt set the chapter record for teeter-tottering at 37 straight hours.

The chapter held an Initiation Ritual Exemplification for 13 brothers.

At the 2012 Greek Life Award, the chapter won: the President of the Year Award (Andrew Beliveau 2012), House Corporation Excellence Award, Outstanding Alumni Programming Award, Risk Manager of the Year Award (Nicholas Fast 2012), Living the Ritual Award (Dustin Vinci 2012), and an honorable mention for the Academic Support Award. For his award, Beliveau was cited for “his personal courage and leadership resulting in an improved chapter at WPI.” During his tenure, the chapter grew from 60 men to more than 90, transitioned from being under an Alumni Control Board to regular operations, and improved in almost all areas of chapter operations based on the campus evaluation and those of the General Fraternity.

Five chapter brothers were inducted into the Order of Omega honor society and two brothers were inducted into Mortar Board honor society. Funded in part by alumni brother donations, five chapter brothers attended the Great Lakes Conclave. The chapter collected 720 pounds of clothing for the Salvation Army. The chapter was nominated for the following Greek Life awards: the Richard R. Scott Staff/Faculty Support Award for Housing Corporation Treasurer Dr. Kenneth Bladh, the Chapter of Excellence Award, the Most Improved Chapter Award, the Dietrich Academic Excellence Award, the Outstanding Community Service and Philanthropy Award. In addition, two brothers were nominated for Greek Man of the Year Award: former IFC president and Social Chairman Justen T. Cox and former chapter Secretary and President Michael R. DeCourcy.

Cody Wood won the Dancing with the Greeks contest, while the chapter was named the overall champion of the Greeks Got Talent Contest.

Worcester (Pi) The chapter hosted the Northeast Conclave with approximately 80 brothers in attendance from the seven area chapters. Partnered with Alpha Gamma Delta sorority, the chapter held its five-day teeter-tottera-thon and participated in American Cancer Society’s Relay for Life. These events


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Bridge Builders Veekas Shrivastava (Arizona State 2014) and David Schapira (George Washington 2001) share their story about values, friendship, and lifetime brotherhood. By Tad Lichtenauer (Denison)


n March 2012, Cross & Crescent editorial staff spoke

with undergraduate brother Veekas Shrivastava (Arizona State 2014) about writing a story on David Schapira (George

Shrivastava, who will be a junior next fall at Arizona State, currently works on Schapira’s congressional campaign as deputy campaign finance director and “body man,” the political term for traveling personal assistant.

Washington 2001), a brother running for Congress in Arizona’s 9th District. After talking with Shrivastava, we were struck by the two brothers’ unusual story of brotherhood and friendship. Schapira currently serves as the Democratic Leader in the Arizona State Senate. He’s been a state senator for two years, having previously served four years in the State House.

How They Met The two brothers first met when Shrivastava was still in high school and Schapira was his state representative. There was a bond and override project wherein the local Arizona school district was trying to get approval from the taxpayers for additional funding.


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“I attended a meeting of the group that was working on that campaign and Veekas was the student leader,” Schapira said. “I saw a bright young guy in a room full of adults, basically telling them what to do.” Shrivastava remembers this event as the first time he became really committed to a political campaign. “It was important to me because I was a senior at the time, but if those overrides didn’t pass, our schools would have lost $8 million,” Shrivastava said. “My sister was just coming into high school and it was killing me that the good school district that I went to could go down in such a hard way so fast.” Schapira helped Shrivastava understand what he could do to ensure the funding passed, and in the end it did - a historic victory for the school district.

How Schapira Became a Lambda Chi Schapira went to the University of Northern Arizona for his freshmen year. During the following summer he had a few friends from high school who were Lambda Chis at Arizona State. So after his freshmen year, rather than go back and live at home, he rented a room at the Zeta-Psi chapter house. “Ironically, kind of like Veekas, there were two disconnected things that brought me to Lambda Chi,” Schapira said. “The second thing was, I had always planned to transfer to George Washington University. I was accepted there out of high school but I couldn’t afford to go right away, which is why I stayed in state for a year and went to school for free. I went out to GW that summer for the orientation. When you do the orientation you stay with a group of folks who are actually living on campus. I was placed with a guy named Dave Schild (George Washington 2001) who had three roommates who were also brothers.”

When he started at GW, and went to one of the recruitment events, he met guys from Beta Theta Pi, which was his dad’s and his brother’s fraternity. “My dad really encouraged me to rush Beta, and since my uncle was a Sigma Chi I rushed all three fraternities. I joined Lambda Chi not only because I knew those four guys, but because there were clear differences between the fraternities. Lambda Chis at GW were very similar to those at the Lambda Chi chapter that Veekas joined at ASU in that the brothers were really the leaders on and off campus. They were active in student government and in politics, and that was very attractive to me.”

How Shrivastava Became a Lambda Chi After graduating from high school, Shrivastava enrolled at Arizona State University. At the same time, the General Fraternity and the university had also begun the recolonization of the Zeta-Psi chapter. This recolonization was sparked by Hank Murphy (Denver 2012), a brother who was initiated at Alpha-Pi at the University of Denver and had transferred to Arizona State. “I started off freshmen year at Arizona State and had never thought about Greek life,” Shrivastava said. “My parents are immigrants and they barely knew a lot of the things most people growing up here know. I didn’t know Greek life was for real gentlemen, for good people.” Shrivastava investigated the different fraternities on the ASU campus and he couldn’t find a fraternity that lived up to their stated values. Then he met the Zeta-Psi interest group. “These 20 or 30 guys were trying to start something new,” Shrivastava said. “I had a one-hour conversation with Jacob Fishman (Arizona State 2012), to whom I look up to so much. Later on he was the first person initiated in our class. I talked


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Brothers Helping Brothers Schapira quickly began to pursue his interest in politics at GW, which included interning at the U.S. Senate. He then got a job at the Senate and spent most of his time while in Washington working there. with him and realized this was something I had to do. So I jumped on board.” Shortly thereafter Shrivastava discovered that Schapira also was a Lambda Chi. Schapira attended an interest group meeting and told them about his Lambda Chi experience and about the Fraternity’s rich history. “I came to a couple of those early meetings because I thought if this thing is going to work, these guys need to see that brotherhood is not just about college, it’s not just about a few people being friends for a few years,” Schapira said. “Quite a few of us thought ‘we’ve got to go talk to this group of guys and help them to understand that they’re not alone.’” Schapira also recalls speaking to the group and seeing Shrivastava’s face in the crowd. “I knew that he, and another young man named Michael Wong (Arizona State 2012), were two faces that I instantly recognized in that group, so I went to talk to both of them after that meeting and told them I was very excited about them getting involved,” Schapira said. “I remember Veekas saying, ‘I didn’t know you were a brother. That’s crazy.’” After joining Lambda Chi, Shrivastava served as the colony’s scholarship chairman before becoming the alumni chairman. “I’m very proud of the academics program we set up that first semester,” Shrivastava said. “Ever since we began, there hasn’t been a single semester in which Lambda Chi did not have the highest GPA of all the fraternities on campus.”

One of the most important lessons Schapira learned at GW was the importance of being a mentor to younger Lambda Chis. “When I was at GW, I was trying to get a job on Capitol Hill and was turning in resumes everywhere I went,” Schapira said. “I had built two relationships. One was with John Breaux (Louisiana-Lafayette 1964), who was the U.S. senator from Louisiana at the time and another was with Max Cleland (Stetson 1964), U.S. senator from Georgia. I built relationships with the two of them and they were very helpful in helping me get a job with Tom Daschle, who was the minority leader of the U.S. Senate at the time. While working for Daschle, Schapira would go to Cleland’s office for lunch and eat with his staff. They treated him like family, and he especially enjoyed times when Cleland was in town and would join in the conversation. “In fact, when I launched this campaign, I called Sen. Cleland to let him know, and we had a conversation as you would have with any young Democrat running for Congress,” Schapira said. “Then he started the next part of the conversation with the word ‘brother.’ He said, ‘brother let me tell you that there will be times in this campaign when things will get hard. There will be times when you get home at 3 o’clock in the morning. Your staff hates you. Your wife isn’t happy with you. Your kids may not recognize you. And you’re very frustrated, and things are tough. At that time when you don’t think there’s anyone else to call, call me. I don’t care what time it is, day or night, weekday or weekend, holiday or not, call me. I’ll hopefully pick up and I’ll be happy to talk it through with you.’”


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time I was working 35 hours a week for Sen. Daschle, and I was the house manager and the Gamma of our chapter. I’m just one of those people who has to be busy.” Post-college life has been no different for him. In his professional life, he has his responsibilities with the State Senate and also serves on a school board. He does consulting work with a national non-profit organization that helps encourage other former teachers to run for public office. He also teaches at Arizona State. “By the way, we didn’t mention that connection,” Schapira said. “After Veekas was initiated, I was teaching two different classes at ASU, and Veekas decided to take both of my classes the same semester. So, in addition to being a colleague in a campaign when he was in high school, a de facto big brother in the Fraternity as an initiate, I’ve been his instructor and his boss.” The next few months are going to be quite busy, but both brothers are clearly focused and are confident about winning the August primary and November general election. Given the time the two spend working together, they certainly benefit from being brothers.

This is an example of the eternal bond of brotherhood, and Schapira was determined to pass it on like Cleland did for him. “One of the great things about being able to hire Veekas is the ability to pass those kinds of opportunities on to the next generation of Lambda Chis,” he said.

“I think it helps that we’re both brothers,” Shrivastava said. “I know I can trust him to be looking out for me when I need it, and he knows he can trust me to be loyal to him at all times. I think David is on a mission to serve this community and especially the young people in our community. I’m inspired by his passion for education and passion for youth. That’s the reason I originally became a fan of his, back in high school. The opportunity to serve his campaign, to serve a brother, is very fulfilling for me.”

Shared Values It’s difficult to balance your professional life, personal life, and run a political campaign. “I’m one of those people who just has to be busy,” Schapira said. “I can’t have idle hands. Even when I was a brother at GW, my last Fall semester I took 18 credit hours. At the same


Cross & Crescent May 2012


Caring for the Masses In his new position as chief dental officer for the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services, Dr. Lynn Mouden’s mission is to provide dental care for millions of Americans.

By Andrew Talevich (Washington State)

His new role is chief dental officer for the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services, the largest agency in the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. Mouden’s responsibilities include implementation of policy that ensures recipients of Medicaid, a federal-state partnership, receive proper healthcare. “We provide direction and policy, and then the states implement the programs through joint funding,” Mouden said.

Service and Commitment Mouden’s career in dentistry began at the University of Kansas where he joined the Zeta-Iota chapter of Lambda Chi Alpha. During his undergraduate years he served as secretary and president of his zeta.


At KU, Mouden remembers his Friday afternoons being spent examining specimens under a microscope while he was completing his degree in physiology and cell biology. A network of brothers, including Mouden’s big brother, were in science-related majors and helped Mouden with his studies. Several of these brothers went on to have dental, medical, and veterinary careers. r. Lynn Mouden (Kansas 1971) has worked as a

dentist in both private practice and the public sector and now serves in a high profile position that sets policy for oral healthcare across the country. “When I was in private practice I had a few thousand patients,” Mouden said. “Now in this role we have about 30 million children that are served by Medicaid dental.”

Together, the brothers learned the value of commitment while balancing their responsibilities toward academics and the Fraternity. As far as the impact Lambda Chi Alpha had on Mouden’s career: “I can’t imagine anyone but my parents who shaped it more. Let’s face it, when you get to college nobody else cares what you do, and if you don’t you’re sunk. It was my Lambda Chi experience that frankly led me to some pretty nice things in life,” he said.


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Mouden’s experience at KU has stayed with him throughout his career. He has always considered himself a big Jayhawks fan and his heart remains in Lawrence, Kansas. “Unfortunately I’m pretty far from campus - about 1,500 miles. I have two grown daughters who still live in the Kansas City area, so I can still get back to Allen FieldHouse to watch a little KU basketball from time to time,” Mouden said. After graduating from KU, Mouden enlisted in the army during the Vietnam War. He then went to dental school at the University of Missouri-Kansas City and started practicing dentistry in the small town of Weston, Missouri. After 16 years, Mouden retired from his practice in 1991 and then went on to work for the Missouri Department of Health for another eight years. This was his first experience in the public sector. In 1999 Mouden accepted the position of Director of the Arkansas Office of Oral Health. Through this position he worked with Governor Mike Bebee to implement policies that would improve the oral health of Arkansas citizens. “I went to Arkansas to start a brand new program. There was no state oral health program when they brought me in. That was the beauty; getting to design a program from scratch,” he said. In recognition of his public service, Mouden received an Association of State and Territorial Dental Directors’ Outstanding Service Award and the U.S. Public Health Service Chief Dental Officer’s Exemplary Service Award. With 21 years of public experience under his belt, Mouden was appointed to his new position with the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services.

fire hose’ type of an experience and I love every minute of it,” he said. Mouden and his colleagues at the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services are addressing an array of challenges that relate to oral health and the practice of dentistry across the nation.

One of those challenges is the recent spike in numbers of cases of child tooth decay. “Unfortunately we see that a vast majority of childhood dental disease is suffered by a minority of the population - those that are geographically isolated, those that are of a racial or ethnic minority, or of course those living in poverty that have little access to care,” Mouden said. Another challenge is the decrease in the number of dentists who practice in today’s market. As more dentists prepare for retirement, fewer individuals are filling the vacant positions. “We’re approaching a time when we’re actually going to have fewer dentists to treat a larger population,” said Mouden. To combat child tooth decay and additional oral health problems, state-level measures exist, such as community water fluoridation programs and the use of dental sealants in the dentistry practice. At the federal level, Mouden develops policy that increases children’s access to oral healthcare. These are considered preventive measures, said Mouden. “It’s our job to help the states develop the policies that will help people access care, help get children the workforce they need, and eventually prevent tooth decay,” he said “Prevention is always cheaper than treatment.”

“It’s been pretty exciting. It’s been your basic ‘drinking out of a


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Mouden and his team have also worked with the Affordable Care Act, signed into law in 2010, as well as the pieces of legislation that relate to dental Medicaid.

“This new grandchild is just wonderful. He’s such a handsome young man. His parents are both KU graduates, needless to say,” he said.

Mouden’s underlying goal is to improve access to care while maintaining the quality of care that patients receive. Perhaps the biggest misconception is that oral problems only involve teeth. Instead, oral problems affect overall health, and strong oral health can alleviate certain ailments such as diabetes and cardiovascular disease, Mouden said.

When Mouden is not connecting with his family, he is continuing to enjoy his commitment to his new position and the positive change that can come from his work.

“Oral health is part of general health and when people have good oral health they have a much better handle on staying healthy in general,” he said.

“It’s a chance to make a real difference. I loved my practice, I loved my patients in my practice, but I have a chance to make a difference for an awful lot of people where I sit now,” he said. “There’s just nothing that makes you feel any better.”

Keeping the Commitment The value of commitment that Mouden learned during his years as a Lambda Chi Alpha officer has also translated toward his years as a parent. “You finish the things you start,” he said, “and there’s nothing more important than finishing the job of parenting. My oldest is about to turn 36, but you never quit being a parent.” Mouden’s family includes a son and four daughters. He also has four grandchildren. “You see some of the parenting skills you hoped you mastered when you had little ones - you actually see the next generations do some of the same things,” Mouden said. Mouden’s commitment to his family continues to grow and take shape. Last month, Mouden’s fourth grandchild was born. Mouden had just returned from visiting family back in Kansas City to see his grandchild for the first time.


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SOLID STROKES Header As captain of his swim team and president of his chapter Myles Biggs (Lycoming) has been a leader both in the water and on campus. By Andrew Talevich (Washington State 2011)


and the strides his zeta has taken over the last few years. hen Myles Biggs dives into the pool he thinks

about the mechanics of his stroke: ‘left stroke- right strokeleft stroke- breathe. Right stroke- left stroke- right strokebreathe.’ As the time passes during his swim his mind begins to drift and he thinks about all the responsibilities and accomplishments he has acquired as an undergraduate at Lycoming College and as a brother of the Iota-Beta chapter. He thinks about the two years he spent as captain of the varsity swim team at Lycoming, and his season that wrapped up last February. He thinks about his childhood friend, Rob DelFranco who was diagnosed with cancer last year, and the steps Biggs has taken to raise money for DelFranco’s cause. Finally, he thinks about the role he plays as chapter president

“When I swim I have my head underwater and only myself to talk to,” Biggs said. “This is when I get my thoughts together.”

Above and Beyond Biggs has epitomized the model for a well-rounded student athlete during his four years as a swimmer at Lycoming. In addition to his current tenure as chapter president, the senior has also served as risk manager, house manager, and fraternity educator at his zeta. Last semester Biggs was the vice president of special events on the Interfraternity Council and oversaw Lycoming’s Greek Week and IFC philanthropies. As a side job, Biggs was the assistant manager of the campus radio station for two years.


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Biggs is also involved with the following honor societies: Lambda Pi Eta, Alpha Kappa Delta, Gamma Sigma Alpha, Order of Omega, and the Lycoming College Institute for Management Studies Scholars Program. He was able to balance all these responsibilities while maintaining a 3.6 GPA- an accomplishment that earned him a spot on the Middle Atlantic Conference winter academic honor role and in the top 10 GPAs of the Conference. “Balancing the school, fraternity, and swim team has taught me time management and prioritizing skills and also how to operate effectively in a fast-paced environment,” he said. Earlier this month Biggs was deemed the IFC Man of the Year and given the IFC Spirit Award. “He was the most-contributing member of IFC in terms of ideas, follow through, and leadership. It was no surprise that he recently won the IFC Spirit Award as well as IFC Man of the Year,” said Candida Rivera, Assistant Director of Student Programs and Leadership Development at Lycoming College.

Leader in the Water Throughout the course of this year, when Biggs was not leading his chapter on campus, he was leading his swim team in the pool. The Lycoming swim team consists of 36 student athletes - 16 women and 20 men - five of whom are Biggs’ brothers in the Iota-Beta chapter: Jehiel Boner, Luke Dohrman, Zack Brower, Jake Pelinsky, Derek Lupia, and C.J. Arhontakis. The season started with captain practices in August. For the previous two seasons, Biggs has headed these training sessions. “I had to write work-outs, email the team, get people there, and lead each practice,” he said. Biggs admits that he wouldn’t have been able to balance his responsibilities between swim team and chapter without a supportive coach.

Although Biggs is pleased with his personal achievements, he is even prouder about his chapter receiving the Chapter of the Year award.

“With my role as chapter president I may miss certain things here and there, but I could always come in and swim on my own if I had conflict,” he said.

“Looking back at the fraternity, from my freshman year to where it is now, I am proud to have been a part of the active chapter and to have been a High Alpha. Winning the award was just the icing on the cake and made me feel as though all of our hard work was worth it,” he said.

During his four years on the swim team, Biggs swam the 1650 yard freestyle, the 1,000 yard free style, the 500 yard free style, and the 400 yard individual medley. Practices and meets have served as a therapeutic method wherein Biggs could escape for some time away from his other responsibilities.

The hard work of Myles and a handful of other brothers have transformed the chapter into the largest on campus with the highest GPA.

“It’s a great outlet for relieving stress. It’s nice to carve out a few hours of the day to unwind, swim, have fun with friends and brothers, and then to come back, hit the books, and take


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care of fraternity stuff,” he said.

spectators donated money to watch the races.

Biggs acknowledges that juggling multiple responsibilities has been stressful at different points of his college career. When those kinds of situations arise, Biggs’ best solution has been to remember why he engaged in those activities to begin with.

Biggs worked to secure the location, insurance, donations, vendors, and volunteers for the event. He also wrote press releases to local newspapers to gain attention for the fundraiser.

“You have to take a step back, look at the situation, and realize it’s not as bad as you think,” he said. “For every one stressful situation, there are a dozen huge, life changing, positive situations that the organization has provided for you.”

“It was cool because it was all the stuff that I’ve done with the fraternity, skills that I’ve gotten from Lambda Chi, that I was able to apply to a real-world situation outside of the school and fraternity,” he said.

Helping a Friend

“Lapping Leukemia” raised approximately $5,000. All donations went to the Four Diamonds Fund which supports the Hershey Medical Center. Biggs was thrilled with the end result.

Biggs’ connections through years of swimming came into use after his friend was diagnosed with acute lymphoblastic leukemia last year. The friend, Rob DelFranco, swam with Biggs on the same team throughout their childhood. They also worked together as lifeguards and competed against each other on rival high school swim teams. DelFranco enrolled at Penn State University last year but had to drop out after he started chemotherapy. Biggs and another childhood friend, Jess Csakai, led a committee to plan and initiate a one day event called “Lapping Leukemia: Racing for Rob” which included swim races, a raffle, food, wrist bands, and t-shirts in support of DelFranco. “Lapping Leukemia” was held last February and drew close to 90 swimmers and 200 spectators. Individual swimmers and swim teams could pay to compete against each other while

“I was amazed with how many high school teams came out, how many different USA club swimming teams, people who haven’t been in the pool for six or seven years, all of them came out to swim for fun and to raise money for a good cause so it was amazing and great to be a part of,” Biggs said. Because of the overall success of “Lapping Leukemia,” and Biggs’ plan to keep supporting DelFranco in the three years of his sporadic chemotherapy treatments ahead, Biggs and Csakai have made the decision to incorporate the event into a non-profit fundraiser. He hopes he can use volunteers from his chapter to assist with the event next year. “It’s our duty to give back. We’ve had all these opportunities so now we have to create them for other people and pass along what’s been given to us. It’s a pay-it-forward type of system,” Biggs said.

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Remembering A Servant Leader “Bob” Claycombe will be remembered as a dedicated alumni volunteer who served the Fraternity for more than 50 years. By Andrew Talevich (Washington State)


obert “Bob” Claycombe, who served as a dedicated

volunteer for the Fraternity for more than 50 years, died this past week. Bob served as General Council for the Fraternity and as a member of the Grand High Zeta. Bob first experienced Lambda Chi Alpha as a boy when his father, Lloyd Claycombe, who served as Grand High Alpha from 1934 to 1937, would take Bob and his family to General Assemblies. Bob attended Butler from 1940 to 1941 and again from 1946 to 1947, after serving in World War II. While a student at Butler, Bob was initiated into the AlphaAlpha chapter of Lambda Chi Alpha. Shortly after leaving Butler, Bob earned his law degree from the Indianapolis branch of Indiana University Law School. Bob practiced law in Indianapolis for 55 years. His knowledge of the legal system and of Lambda Chi Alpha’s constitution were beneficial to the Fraternity. Former Executive Vice President George Spasyk said he would often confer with Bob on legal matters involving the Fraternity. George remembers how Bob would stop by Lambda Chi Alpha headquarters on his way home from work, once or twice a week, to visit with General Fraternity staff members. From 1972 to 1980 Bob served on the Grand High Zeta as Grand High Phi. After a brief break, the Fraternity asked him to come back to the Grand High Zeta where he served as Grand High Pi from 1982 to 1984. Bob was also the parliamentarian at numerous General Assemblies. Bob welcomed Lambda Chi Alpha brothers to his house on the Crooked Stick Golf Course in Carmel, Indiana, a golf course that he helped found. For several summers, Bob and his wife Sue would invite the entire Fraternity staff for an evening cook-out at their house. Bob also hosted several Lambda Chi Alpha Educational Foundation events for alumni at his home.

Perhaps Bob’s greatest contribution to Lambda Chi Alpha was his guidance throughout the 1980s and early 1990s on the Lambda Chi Alpha Risk Management and Insurance Task Force. At the time, Lambda Chi Alpha took large steps to implement a comprehensive insurance program for all chapters, undergraduates, housing corporation officers, alumni volunteers, and staff. This process was a groundbreaking one in the fraternal world. Bob played a significant role in negotiating the insurance policy which is still used today. On numerous occasions Bob offered legal advice for the Fraternity to Bob Curran, director of business affairs for Lambda Chi Alpha from 1981 to 1988, regarding matters that ranged from frivolous to quite serious. Curran remembers that Bob was always available, day or night, to help the Fraternity he loved.


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“Bob was very helpful for whatever the situation was. He was just a very dedicated but also a very unassuming Lambda Chi. He never took a penny but he was there whenever you needed him and that’s what I’ll always remember about him,” said Curran. In one instance, a former ELC had received an oil change from a car dealership. The dealership had messed up the oil change, and the car stalled. While the car was being towed back to the dealership, it fell off of the tow chain and damaged the tow truck. The dealership said they would not provide the ELC with a rental car to replace his damaged car. The Fraternity staff called Bob and he immediately contacted the dealership, threatened legal action, and quickly got the issue resolved.

There are countless examples of Bob’s readiness to assist the Fraternity at a moment’s notice. Throughout his years of service to the Fraternity, Bob exemplified a true servant leader. Bob’s devotion to Lambda Chi Alpha, his flair for the law, and the friendships he forged with brothers of Lambda Chi Alpha will always hold a place within our Fraternity. “He was just a warm-hearted individual with a great sense of humor and he will be dearly missed,” George said.


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A TRUE Impact A recent study conducted by two of the nation’s leading researchers on college men have found significant value in the TRUE Brother Initiative. By Andrew Talevich (Washington State)

Recent research findings dealing with Lambda Chi Alpha’s TRUE Brother Initiative have verified that young men who participate in the program show improvements in moral judgment and decision making. Two leading researchers on the study of collegiate men and masculinity, Dr. Frank Harris (San Diego State University) and Dr. Shaun Harper (University of Pennsylvania) interviewed hundreds of college men - both in fraternal organizations and independents - as part of their “Good Guys Study.” The underlying goal of the study was to determine what causes certain college men to lead colleagues from a stance of values, have an interest in social justice, and make decisions based on mature, moral judgment. Fifty Lambda Chi Alpha undergraduates were included among the men who were studied. These men were interviewed individually and in small groups. Questions included how men developed and applied values in their everyday lives. They were also asked about the stances they took against prejudice and oppression as it relates to race, gender, and sexual orientation. The responses of each man were later evaluated by Harper and Harris and rated on a standardized scale. Finally, a statistical analysis was applied to the responses. The results of the study were favorable for the population of Lambda Chi Alpha members who were interviewed. According to the study, in comparison to the participants in other Greek organizations and independents, Lambda Chi Alpha members scored significantly higher on measures of moral development.


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Lambda Chi Alpha participants also scored higher than the entire study population on self-awareness measures and the ability to articulate values.

The “Good Guys Study” was reported by Harper and Harris at the National Association of Student Personnel Administrators’ conference and the American College Personnel Association conference. The results will be published shortly. The TRUE Brother Initiative is a comprehensive development program for undergraduate brothers to actively exemplify Lambda Chi Alpha’s seven core values in their day-to-day lives. The TRUE Brother Initiative supports the Fraternity’s mission to be a co-curricular partner and leader in the Greek community.

Developed and piloted in 2006 and made available to all 200 chapters and colonies in 2007, the TRUE Brother Initiative has enhanced the lives of young men within the Fraternity for five years. The Harris and Harper study legitimizes the efforts of the General Fraternity in initiating the TRUE Brother Initiative.

Dr. Elgan Baker (DePauw 1971) worked to implement the TRUE Brother Initiative and has measured the results among Lambda Chi Alpha chapters since the inception of this program. “The results of the “Good Guys Study” are an independent validation of the impact of our TRUE Brother Initiative in supporting the character development of our undergraduate brothers in terms of their self-awareness, in terms of their ability to apply


Cross & Crescent May 2012


Alumnus Provides Comfort for Grief-Stricken Children Brandon English (High Point) serves as a program manager for the New Jersey office of Comfort Zone- the nation’s largest bereavement camp for children. By Brandon English (High Point)

Editor’s Note: This article was published originally in the High Point University’s Iota-Phi chapter newsletter. Brandon English’s story about his work with Comfort Zone is a testament to how our Core Values and Ritual teachings can be lived and applied throughout our lifetime. I got started with Comfort Zone as a volunteer in April of 2009. I attended four camp sessions as a volunteer before the offer was made to me to take the helm of the New Jersey office. Comfort Zone Camp is the nation’s largest bereavement camp for children who have experienced the death of a parent, sibling, or primary caregiver. Our research shows that losing a parent or sibling is one of the most traumatic things a child can experience. In the United States alone, one in seven children will lose a parent or sibling by the age of 20, which means that 2.5 million children in this country have experienced this trauma. Since our start in 1999, we’ve helped more than 7,000 children. Our mission is to lend a voice to grieving children and to provide a place and a community in which to heal, to grow, and to lead more fulfilling lives. We run weekend camps Friday-Sunday, free of charge, for kids ages 7-17, or 18 if they are still in high school. Most kids are merely told to “get over it,” or “move on,” and other things of that nature which we know can’t be done. Grieving is part of an ongoing journey through life.


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At our camp the kids get to realize they are not alone, that there are other kids like them. The scarlet letter “D for death” is removed. They get to attend camp from Friday to Sunday, to meet new friends, share their stories, realize they aren’t alone, and most important, to be a kid again. They are paired one-to-one with an adult mentor called a “big buddy” and then participate in Healing Circles led by mental health professionals. In addition, they also do the typical “camp stuff” such as s’mores, songs, and so on. We serve kids from all walks of life, backgrounds, and types of loss. Although we started in Richmond, Virginia, we came to New Jersey and New York because of 9/11 and began by serving only those families for the first five years. Now Comfort Zone has offices in California, Massachusetts, New Jersey, and Virginia. Comfort Zone also runs camps for victims of specific events such as homicide or suicide. Next year we will be working with the National Fallen Firefighters. We have served children in 45 states as well as Canada and England. We also have a social media site centered around bereavement called, which also, like our camp program, is free. As for me, I started in April 2009 and have been program manager of the New Jersey office since November of that year. I manage five Comfort Zone camps in New Jersey as well as assisting at other camps as needed. I oversee the entire program in New Jersey to make sure that all camp weekends go smoothly and that the kids get what they need. Because our camps are free of charge I do a lot of fundraising. I manage a large volunteer pool. Our New Jersey office consists of me and one other staff member so we must rely a

lot on our volunteers for help. I make sure that we have the right volunteers to provide our campers with the best possible experience. Everything we do revolves around our campers. I conduct volunteer training, school in-services, and speaking engagements. I also coordinate with community organizations such as schools and the Division of Youth and Family Services (DYFS) as we advocate for the issues of childhood bereavement. I’ve helped in California, Boston, Virginia, and, most recently, managed our first ever weekend camp in North Carolina. While at camp I handle logistics, safety and even lead ‘repeatafter-me’ songs and direct silly skits. I love what I do. The child we see arrive on Friday, and the child we put in a car with its parent or guardian on Sunday, are quite different. They are lighter, smiling, and feel good about themselves. The long nights, weekends, and hard work always pay off when you see the kids bond and then realize they aren’t alone. I love knowing that what I do for a living is making a difference and helping to change this extremely under-served and overlooked population of kids. Working for Comfort Zone isn’t really just a job for me, it’s not 9 to 5, go home, get up, and come to work. It’s really a calling, to want to help and to be there for these kids when others have abandoned or shunned them. At five camps a year, and with 60-65 kids at each camp, I only wish we could serve more, which of course is our ultimate goal. I am truly grateful to be part of Comfort Zone and to facilitate and spread the word on care for childhood grief.


Cross & Crescent May November 20122011


New History Book Excerpt (Part 2) Fraternity Board member authors first complete update in 20 years. By Mike Raymond (Miami-OH)

Introduction In 1992, our Fraternity published Chuck Peyser’s The History of Lambda Chi Alpha Fraternity. In my opinion, Chuck did a fine job of capturing the essential points of our early history. The book has been out of print for many years. Twenty years later it is now time for a new edition of our Fraternity history book. The new book, Our Story: A History of The Lambda Chi Alpha Fraternity, will be officially announced at the 54th General Assembly this summer.

the six Union Triad groups expanded to Miami University. Psi Upsilon made an abortive attempt to enter Miami University’s campus with the installation of Beta Alpha chapter in 1992. This chapter was declared inactive in 1996. In 2005 Theta Delta Chi authorized the installation of Rho Delta chapter at Miami University.

The following is part two of an excerpt from the new history book. It represents a blend of material from Chuck’s book and new material supplied by me. I would like to thank everyone who was involved in the creation of this book.

The Miami Triad Although the concept of the modern fraternity began at Union College, and six groups were founded there prior to 1850; expansion came primarily from the Miami Triad. By 2010 these three fraternities had the following chapters and colonies: Beta Theta Pi— 102 chapters and 19 colonies, Phi Delta Theta— 157 chapters and seven colonies, and Sigma Chi— 241 chapters and ten colonies. In contrast, the larger of the first Union Triad was Delta Phi with 14 chapters, followed by Sigma Phi with 12 chapters, and Kappa Alpha Society with eight chapters and one colony. The second Union Triad composed of Theta Delta Chi- 31 chapters, Psi Upsilon- 25 chapters and one colony, and Chi Psi- 29 chapters and one colony. Currently, the Alpha Delta Phi chapter roll stands at 52 chapters and two colonies. Whereas all three of the Miami Triad eventually chartered a chapter at Union College [Beta Theta Pi its 65th in 1881, Phi Delta Theta its 67th in 1883, and Sigma Chi its 103rd in 1923], only two of


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Southern Fraternities In 1848 some students transferred from LaGrange College in Tennessee to the University of Mississippi and founded the fraternity known to outsiders as “Rainbow” or “W.W.W.” but to members as the Mystic Sons of Iris. The ritual was based upon the number seven, but most of the early records were lost during the Civil War. Sigma Alpha Epsilon was founded on March 9th in 1856 at the University of Alabama. The third antebellum fraternity was Delta Tau Delta founded in 1859 at Bethany College in what was then Virginia, now West Virginia. Prior to 1860 both the fraternities founded in the East and those founded to the West of the Allegheny Mountains had established chapters in the South. The Civil War vastly reduced the college population in the North and devastated the southern colleges, including the fraternities. Probably the only fraternal group in the South during the war was the Constantine Chapter of Sigma Chi in the Confederate Army of Tennessee. A few men were initiated, but the chapter was never officially chartered.

Antebellum Development The antebellum period saw tremendous growth in both the number of college fraternities and in the number of their chapters. “By 1880, according to Nicholas L. Syrett, “the ratio of chapters of men’s national fraternities… to male college students was 1:107, compared to 1:253 in 1850.” Along with this growth in simple numbers there evolved the notion of a national brotherhood. Chapters began to corresponded

with each other through letters and annual reports that highlighted their local accomplishments and also reassured their distant brothers that they were worthy of their national organization. As the number of fraternity alumni increased so did their continued involvement in the affairs of their fraternity. Alumni associations were formed, central offices were organized with alumni serving as officers and administrators, magazines and newsletters were created, and many alumni participated in national conventions along with their undergraduate brothers. This period also saw tremendous growth in the number of chapter houses owned by house corporations established by local alumni associations. By the end of the nineteenth century it was possible for fraternity alumni to enjoy college fraternal friendships and relationships their entire adult lives.

The Late Nineteenth Century Upon reconstruction many southern faculties denied fraternities permission to enter the colleges. The eastern fraternities hesitated to re-establish in the South so the field was left to the western group and to new groups. Many Southern young men went abroad to college rather than risk humiliation at a school in the North. This led to the establishment of one of only two known chapters of a college fraternity outside North America. The Southern Order of Chi Phi had a chapter, entirely composed of American students, at the University of Edinburgh from 1867 to 1870.


The Lexington Triad Several fraternities were established in the new South. The first was Alpha Tau Omega at Virginia Military Institute and the second was Kappa Alpha Order at Washington College (now Washington & Lee) – both located in Lexington, Virginia - in 1865. Alpha Tau Omega was founded by “three young confederate soldiers, who had been cadets at Virginia Military Institute during the war. Their prime objective was to restore the Union, to unite fraternally the young men of the South with those of the North and to foster a Christian brotherhood dedicated to the task of achieving and cherishing permanent peace.” Alpha Tau Omega expanded into the North in the late 1870s and early 1880s. Other groups such as Kappa Alpha Order (1865) and Sigma Nu (1869) sought to keep alive the spirit of chivalry, self-sacrifice, and Southern culture; understandably, these often included military titles for chapter officers. This final fraternity triad is unique in two respects. It is the only one named after a town and it is the only triad founded in the South after the Civil War. In 1886 Delta Tau Delta absorbed the then existing two chapters of W.W.W. It renamed its magazine the Rainbow and added the Rites of Iris as a pre-initiation ceremony for its members. The other “Southern” fraternities have been very successful.

The Dominion of Canada In 1879 Zeta Psi established the first chapter in Canada at the University of Toronto; it also was the first with a

Cross & Crescent May 2012

HISTORY chapter at McGill University in Montreal in 1883. The international flavor of fraternities was wellestablished by 1909 with nine active chapters at Toronto and seven at McGill. In 1913, Phi Kappa Pi, Canada’s only national fraternity was created by the union of two locals: Alpha Beta Gamma at McGill University and Sigma Pi at the University of Toronto. Phi Kappa Pi fraternity currently has four active chapters.

Development of New Groups Fraternities have been founded at varying rates over the years. After a slow start in 1825 the period of 1832 to 1845 saw a relatively low rate of one new fraternity every two years. The rate increased to somewhat more than one new group each year from 1845 to 1904, with a 20 year pause from 1874 to 1894, during which virtually no new groups appeared. Zeta Psi fraternity built the first residential chapter house at the University of California, Berkeley in 1879. By 1912, Baird’s Manual reported that ninety percent of all fraternity chapters occupied houses with almost half owning those chapter houses. This high level of

chapter house occupancy and ownership had a significant influence on the evolution of the college fraternity. A chapter house meant the group had wealth, it helped to create separation from others on campus, and it provided a space free of close oversight by college authorities. It took vast sums of money to buy, maintain, and staff a chapter house. Only students backed by considerable wealth could afford to live in chapter houses. This fact reinforced the tendency of fraternities to recruit from among the social elite on their campuses. In the period of 1904 to 1925, 20 fraternities, including Lambda Chi Alpha, were established, an average of one every year. The number of active chapters established also showed an increase as the year 1909 approached, but without the pause in the 1880s. The 1912 edition of Baird’s Manual also reported 39 general social fraternities with just over 1,200 active and just fewer than 400 inactive chapters. Somewhat more than 250,000 men had been initiated. In addition, Baird’s Manual reported almost 14,000 initiates of 163 local fraternities—approximately 40 percent of the locals were established in houses.

Some of the growth in the number of new fraternities was in response to the elitism of many older fraternities. As the student population of most campuses became more heterogeneous, the old line fraternities excluded men on the basis of social class. This social class barrier was in addition to the existing racial and religious barriers that prevented all but the wealthy, socially elite students to attain membership in the older fraternities. For most nineteenth century fraternity men family background, “good breeding,” fine clothes, and the ability to pay for entertainment, trips, and vacations were the prerequisites for membership in their fraternity. Membership discrimination based on religion and race lead to the creation of such fraternities as Phi Kappa Sigma (1889), Pi Lambda Phi (1895), Zeta Beta Tau (1898), Alpha Phi Alpha (1906), Sigma Alpha Mu (1909), and Rho Psi (1916). Lambda Chi Alpha, while discriminating on the basis of religion and race, was founded in part to provide a fraternal experience for men of modest means. Much of the early leadership of the fraternity was composed of men from middle class families. Their families reflected the growing


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business and professional class of the early twentieth century. Coming from a middle class family, being a first generation college student, working in college, aspiring for a career in business and commerce, or having a modest budget for entertainment were not barriers to membership in Lambda Chi Alpha. On the national level, attempts at interfraternal cooperation “died aborning” in the 1880s with a small group able to assemble at the Chicago World’s Fair in 1893. The Interfraternity Conference, now the NorthAmerican Interfraternity Conference (NIC), finally had its founding meeting in New York on November 17, 1909. A new era of formal and informal cooperation among the fraternities had begun.

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