Wick Moorman, Norfolk-Southern CEO, speaks at TKE Beta-Pi

Frater Wick Moorman and the Summer 2012 Chapter

Frater Wick Moorman and the Summer 2012 Chapter

Frater Charles “Wick” Moorman (BCE 1975) is living out his lifelong passion for railroads as the current CEO of Norfolk Southern Railroad and he shared some of his experience and advice with the undergraduates Monday night 3/5/2012 at TKE at Georgia Tech.Almost the entire summer chapter, along with trustees and advisers John Reagan, David Adcock and Michael Smith showed up at the House to hear him speak.

Wick amused everyone with a few stories of his younger days in the TKE House and as a co-op with the railroad before framing up some of the keys to his success. Among many pieces of good advise, a few stuck out:

  • Make good grades. Although this might be considered a bromide, it was meaningful to hear it from the CEO of a company that recruits–a man who also has an MBA from Harvard.
  • Get really good at something–good enough to be noticed. Whatever job your at, even if it’s not the one you want to keep, do it well enough to be noticed. Later, an opportunity may arise that has little in common with what you are doing now but people will remember that, whatever you were doing, you did it well. That’s how you move up.
  • Recognize that, as an undergrad at Georgia Tech, you are part of the .001% in the world before you even graduate–and that a large part of that is luck. Much of success is luck–being in the right place at the right time. When you are successful, don’t make the mistake of thinking it was all due simply to your work. Give away some of your gains because it wasn’t all your effort that got you there.

Wick fielded questions from the audience on several topics including the prospects for passenger rail (as opposed to freight rail) and on the future of the railroad industry in general.  He was especially eloquent at describing the financial and environmental advantages of  shipping by rail. After, he remained to speak individually with several undergraduates.

“Wick’s talk was both informative and entertaining,” prytanis Michael Costner said. “Its great to see such a successful alumnus come back and share his experiences with all of the undergrads.”

Frater Moorman’s talk was the latest in TKE Beta-Pi’s ongoing series of alumni dinner talks designed to help the undergrads understand the qualities and paths that lead to success in life and to give the alumni a way to share their experience with an interested and appreciate audience.  This was the last talk scheduled for the current academic year.  More talks will be scheduled soon for the 2012-2013 year.