Archive for the ‘Advisers’ Category

Boards Transition

Tuesday, February 21st, 2012

The trustees meeting of Sunday 19 February 2012 was a quiet watershed in the history of TKE Beta-Pi.

Several years ago, the trustees began the process of separating the facilities management and collegiate supervision aspects of operations. The chapter was incorporated separately from the board and the one employee, the cook, was assigned to the chapter corporation.  This two-boards organization is not uncommon in fraternities that own property and both corporations are 501(c)(7)s under TKE HQ. Both are on good standing with the state and with the IRS.

On Sunday, the corporations took giant steps toward completing that separation.

Separate Portfolios

The property corporation, “TKE of Georgia, Inc.” has existed for decades as the only corporation of record for TKE at Georgia Tech. This corporation is governed by the trustees–the BOT that everyone knows. Going forward, the trustees will concern themselves with all things about facilities, including the ongoing construction. This will greatly shorten and focus BOT meetings.

The chapter corporation, “Tau Kappa Epsilon Beta-Pi Chapter, Inc.” is governed by the advisers–referred to as the BOA. The advisers will concern themselves with everything about membership from recruiting through alumni relations. Alumni communications and event planning are now the responsibility of the chapter corporation and it will assume control of the bank account that receives alumni annual fund donations. It will also assume responsibility for oversight of all collegiate chapter operations including finances and member development. The resident adviser will report to the BOA. Member development will be the prime area of focus in the coming year for the BOA as this area of operations has not seen the same level of improvements as facilities and management and kitchen operations have recently.

TKE HQ has been notified to transfer its charter from the property corporation to the chapter corporation, completing that separation from HQ’s point of view.

Both boards will contribute to the management of the upcoming capital campaign.


The boards will cooperate formally as lessor and lessee. There will be a joint meeting each spring but there will be no overlapping membership.

At the meeting on Sunday, three BOT members resigned from that board in anticipation of moving to the BOA.  Michael Smith, Richard Sapp and Karl Paul will join David Adcock as members of the governing board of the chapter corporation. David is currently talking with other alumni about rounding out the membership of that board.

John Reagan, Gary Minor, Scott Smelter and Darrell Sumner will remain with the property corporation–the BOT. John will serve as chairman and Gary as vice-chairman through the end of 2012.

Expect more news regarding membership and officers of both boards soon.

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Take Down Ends. Build Up Begins.

Tuesday, February 21st, 2012

TKE Beta-Pi 2012 02 19

Construction continues apace at TKE Beta-Pi. The two upper floors of the old dormitory have been removed. The remaining first floor will be reconfigured as 2- and 3-man rooms and 3 additional floors containing 2-man rooms and study areas will rise soon.

Expect to see a large crane on site in the next few weeks, a younger sibling of the “African Queen” that did the work in 1994 perhaps, to place floor slabs as the new dormitory takes shape. By the end of April, the shape and size of the new building will be apparent. It will be stunning. The drawings do not fully convey how large the new building will be relative to its neighbors.

The undergraduate chapter is holding together well so far. The meal plan continues uninterruped and regular work parties keep the place in a semblance of good order although, as anyone who lived on site during the building of the social quarters in the 90s will tell you, one never really gets ahead of the dirt and dust at a construction site. They collegiate are using the remaining building as a social space despite the difficulties. This was made possible in part by the build out a temporary men’s head on the first floor.

By T-day in the spring, there will be a lot for alumni to see at the House!


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The Irish are Coming! 15 Years ago at TKE Beta-Pi

Thursday, June 16th, 2011

Then-Chapter Adviser Michael Smith with his Irish Flag Signed by all the Team Members who lived in the TKE House

Michael, me boy, how’d you like to come to the closing ceremonies with us?

Fifteen years ago, right about this time of the year, a group of seven initiates and one girlfriend worked night and day for 2 weeks to finish preparing the TKE House for the 1996 Centennial Olympic Games in Atlanta.  This was our modern-day “magnificent seven” and their work capped off one of the most heroic periods in our chapter’s history.

Atlanta’s application for the games including using the Georgia Tech campus for the Olympic village.  The problem was, even with the construction of new west campus dormitories at Tech and the Georgia State (sic) University dorms in Techwood, there would not be enough bedspace for all the athletes.  So the ACOG (Atlanta Committee for the Olympic Games) approached the Greek community with an offer of $1,400/bed for the use of Greek housing during the games.  Since campus would be closed anyway, it was our only prospect for any rent revenue during the games.  The catch was that the houses had to meet certain criteria and the bedrooms had to be cleared of all built in lofts so that an Olympic standard suite of furniture (bed, wardrobe, and short chest-of-drawers) could be moved in.

Sensing an opportunity to have someone else pay for some long-needed renovations to the dormitory, TKE quickly agreed to lease our house to the ACOG.  In early 1995, we were the first Greek organization at Georgia Tech to sign an agreement.  What followed was a solid year of demolition and reconstruction in which every piece of sheetrock in the house was replaced, every bathroom rebuilt, every loft torn out, new carpet laid in every room, every outlet was repaired, and every room was wired for telephone, cable TV and Internet.  All this was done corner by corner while the members lived in the House. No generation of TKEs before or since, dealt with such disruptions to their everyday lives or accomplished so much in so little time.

It turned out that the Irish, who field a large team, had had their eyes on the TKE house ever since construction had begun on the new social quarters in 1993.   They sought a solution to the problems with transportation and communication they had experience in Barcelona in 1992, where the team dormitory, office and medical spaces had been located in various places in the city.  In the TKE House, they saw an opportunity to bring all these things together under one roof.

While the games were going on, then-Chapter Adviser Michael Smith (#783) used his village pass to visit the Teke House almost every day and met most of the athletes who lived there.  He brought an Irish flag with him and asked each athlete to sign it.   On the day of the closing ceremony, he showed up to get the last few signatures when the Chef de Mission (on the right in the photograph) asked him whether he’d like to go to the closing ceremonies with the Irish Team.  ”Of course I jumped on that and got on the bus with the team,” Smith later wrote, “but I was disappointed that I had picked that day, of all days, to not bring my camera with me into the village.  It didn’t matter, though, since they gave disposable cameras to everyone as we entered the stadium.  What was funny later was that, when athletes from different countries took to running around on the field with their national flags, the Irish realized that none of them had brought one of their own.   I, the lone American, was the only person sitting with the team who had an Irish flag.  So they borrowed mine and ran around with that one for awhile.  I kept a pretty close eye on it since I really wanted it back after that.”

Smith plans to put the flag on permanent display in the Chapter House once a suitable way of securing it is created.

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Chapter Represented Well in New Orleans

Tuesday, August 11th, 2009
TKE Beta-Pi Undergraduates Celebrate at The House of Blues in New Orleans during Conclave 2009

TKE Beta-Pi Undergraduates Celebrate at The House of Blues in New Orleans during Conclave 2009

The Chapter was well-represented in New Orleans during Conclave 2009.   Trustees Michael A. Smith and John Reagan attended as did alumnus and former TKE Educational Foundation member Russ Heil and chapter adviser David Adcock.

John’s wife Clare came to keep John from getting out of line but also made sure he got out in town to sample some of the finer cuisine.

Smith was the voting delegate for our chartered alumni association.

Brendan Patterson, Nathan Raines, Matthew Biggers, and Jeremy Ku represented the undergraduate organization.

During the first session of the Grand Chapter, Steve Forbes was inducted as the 250,000th initiate of the Fraternity.   Frater Forbes also spoke at the Life Loyal Teke reception.

Beta-Pis at the End of Conclave 2009 in New Orleans (L-R) Dave Adcock, Matt Biggers, John Reagan, Michael Smith, Brendan Patterson, Nathan Raines, Jeremy Ku

Beta-Pis at the End of Conclave 2009 in New Orleans (L-R) Dave Adcock, Matt Biggers, John Reagan, Michael Smith, Brendan Patterson, Nathan Raines, Jeremy Ku

Smith, who is also the GPA (Grand Province Advisor) for North Carolina, helped with the educational programming, meeting with delegates from his province to do goal setting for the coming year.

Adcock, Smith and the undergraduates participated in the Conclave Service Project Saturday morning at City Park, clearing brush along Bayou St. John and spreading mulch along paths in Couturie Forest.  The effort was covered in an article in The Times-Picayune.

Legislation that would have made it easier for chartered alumni associations to conduct honorary initiations and that would have increased the voting power of alumni associations at Conclave was defeated in the Grand Chapter.  However, these issues will be revisited in coming Conclaves.

One undergraduate was arrested for “petting a policeman’s horse” but we suspect there is more to the story than that and it wasn’t one of our undergraduates anyway.  Everyone made it safely back home, the alumni to our jobs and the undergrads to a fall workweek already in progress.

Next Conclave … San Antonio in 2011!

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The Beta-Pi Chapter of Tau Kappa Epsilon International Fraternity has operated for over 60 consecutive years at the Georgia Institute of Technology. Enjoy news of what the alumni are up to and what's in store for the collegiate members. Let us know what you're doing. Learn about our organization and find out how you can help in our good work.
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