Phi Gamma Delta - University of Texas

Spring 2015 Newsletter

Texas Fiji of Phi Gamma Delta at the University of Texas

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The Longhorn Fijiā€“The University of Texas at Austin Established 1883 TEXAS FIJI H Spring 2015 I n 2013, Tau Deuteron formed its first Race for the Cure team. And just one year later, they were named the top fundraising team for Austin's 2014 Race for the Cure. The Chapter raised $37,300 total, which is $26,335 more than they raised in 2013. The fundraising initiative was led by Matt Luna PC '11 and Zach Dorflinger PC '11. The 2014 team made fundraising a major focus of their efforts, setting their goals high. Texas Fiji hosted a benefit concert that raised more than $20,000. The 2013 Race for the Cure team was formed in honor of Matt Luna's mother, who was diagnosed with breast cancer earlier that year. This year she was able to walk with over 115 Texas Fiji team members as a one-year breast cancer survivor. The Susan G. Komen Foundation has become a meaningful cause to Texas Fiji. They were proud to present the foundation with a check for $37,300. Their efforts were honored during the alumni dinner and were featured in a story on April 24 for KVUE (ABC affiliate). Tau Deuteron is making plans to form a 2015 Race for the Cure team and continue their fundraising efforts. The Chapter raised $37,300 for Austin's 2014 Race for the Cure. Texas Fiji Named Top Fundraising Team for Race for the Cure Austin CHANGES ABOUND AT TEXAS FIJI I t is an exciting time to be a Texas Fiji. The new facilities are the talk of the University, the Chapter remains strong, and is the top fraternity on campus. Unfortunately, the current environment for being in a fraternity is not so encouraging. The media and many groups have been critical of fraternities in general. Our Chapter has been met with some negative press and has been attacked by known and unknown organizations/ individuals with the intent of discrediting our good name. That said, I am proud to state we are in good standing with the University. The current cabinet and several BCA members have developed an excellent working relationship with the Interfraternity Council, the Office of the Dean of Students, and International Headquarters. Much collaboration is taking place between these organizations, the current and next year's cabinets, and significant and substantial change is being implemented. Effective April 1 the Chapter hired Betsy Clements and Jason Kuhlman. They both will be taking over for the retiring Sue Raymond (July 31). Betsy is well known to our Fraternity family and throughout the Austin community. She will be the new finance manager and is working closely with Sue to get up to speed with the finances, budget, and what it takes to run the Fraternity. We look forward to leveraging her experience and talents. Jason has accepted the newly created role of chapter coordinator, created to take some of Sue's tasks but also to build relationships with the young men and help instill personal responsibility and peer accountability. Jason is a student development professional with fraternity leadership experience and is thoroughly trained to encourage and help develop our young men in leadership, character, and values. He is passionate about helping college men develop the life skills necessary to be leaders in college and beyond. We are also working with Josh White, our excellent chef for the last 10 years, to take on additional responsibilities of House Dad. The plan is for Josh to live in the house to assist the young men 24/7 and be the front line security for the house. He will be working in conjunction with the chapter coordinator. A new job description matrix has been put in place with a calendar allowing the cabinet and staff to clearly understand roles and who does what and when. Special thanks to Mark Winter PC '79 for his help and assistance in this process. Please stop by the house and meet our new team. The BCA continues to work with the Chapter leadership and the new chapter coordinator and Purple Legionnaire to implement the new pledge education program, encourage improved understanding of the Fiji rituals, increased academic focus, philanthropy, and to establish a strong "vertical" bond within the Chapter. Thanks to David Duke PC '84 and Parker Brody PC '08, Purple Legionnaire, for their hard work with the Chapter on improving the rituals and the initiation service. Four new members were initiated in the spring ceremony. Well done and a round of clicks to the current cabinet. I look forward to seeing you at the house or at one of the alumni recruitment fundraiser events this summer. Special thanks to William Griffin PC '83 for taking on the role of alumni recruitment chairman. GTBO, Tom W. Shirley PC '78, BCA President Perge!

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