174th Convention Recap

174th Convention

174th Convention Recap

The Theta Delta Chi Fraternity met for its 174th annual convention on July 28th until July 31st to conduct the business of the Charges and alumni. Last year's 173rd Convention was originally set to take place at the Beta Charge in Ithaca, New York in celebration of their 150 years of continual existence; however, because of safety concerns and restrictions caused by the ongoing pandemic the 173rd Convention was held virtually using video conferencing technology. It was the Fraternity's intent to gather in Ithaca, New York for the 174th Convention this year, however as the Covid-19 continues to be a large safety concern, the Fraternity underwent another virtual Convention for the 174th Convention. E-Conventioneers registered remotely and were then able to attend various meetings, two General Business Sessions, four Minerva Sessions, and a closing Awards Ceremony. Social interaction was also possible through social nights consisting of breakout sessions, general informal discussions and online gaming.

The 174th Convention activities started with a pre-convention Alumni Minerva Session on Tuesday, July 27th with an official start on Wednesday, July 28th with a virtual Opening Reception. Fortunately, most of the Brothers were familiar with conferencing technology from Zoom as it has become society's go-to software to conduct business, schooling and personal meetings since the start of the pandemic in 2020. The festivities were conducted without any major technical difficulty and had the advantage of allowing Brothers from great distances to attend without the accompanying travel expense. With two successful back-to-back years of Conventions, the future use of conferencing technology at annual conventions will be examined as a possible way to broaden brotherhood participation.

That being said we are planning to have the 175th Convention in-person next year at the Alpha Charge in Schenectady, New York!

Minerva Sessions

Archie Messersmith-Bunting

The 174th Convention consisted of four amazing Minerva Sessions over the course of the week. The first Minerva Session: It's Okay Not to Be Okay was presented by Archie Messersmith-Bunting. Archie is a member of Sigma Phi Epsilon and is a consultant and speaker with For College For Life. Archie shared the experiences that brought him to become addicted to drugs and what got him on the path to recovery. During his journey, he learned about himself and more importantly, the role mental health played in his drug use. Through a process of getting in touch with his feelings, reaching out to others for help and seeking professional assistance, Archie is now able to lead a very productive life free from drug use and is currently raising a small son with his husband.

    Among the lessons he shared were:
  • As men we learn to not discuss our feelings – when someone asks, how are you doing? We need to mean it when we ask the question and then and take the time to not only share our feelings but to listen to others.
  • There is a difference between feeling anxious, sad or a little down; and anxiety or depression. Depression and anxiety are truly medical conditions while feeling anxious, sad or down tend be temporary. We need to identify the differences and use the correct language.
  • When in trouble, seek help. It makes us no less of a man to just try to shake it off - depression can be fatal if unaddressed.

We are a brotherhood founded on mutual esteem and dependance, honorable and confiding friendships are hallmarks of being a Theta Delt. Seek help from a Brother when needed and as a Brother keep the confidence, listen to your Brother and help them find the support and help that they is asking for. For more information about Archie or to follow up about his session please visit:
Archie Messersmith-Bunting

Christina Parle

The second Minerva Session: Why Equity, Inclusion and Diversity Matters to Fraternity was presented by Christina Parle. Christina is a member of Sigma Kappa Sorority and works for Zeta Beta Tau Fraternity as the Director of Chapter Services and Conduct. She is also a co-founder of Social Responsibility Speaks and consults with businesses, non-profits, and throughout the Greek community.

    Among the major lessons gained from her presentation were:
  • We need to treat people as they would like to be treated, not as we would choose to treat them.
  • The term Equity is about assuring access and removing barriers.
  • We cannot achieve equity without first understanding why inequity exists.
  • We must lean into learning about social identities, power and privilege, bias, and inclusive language.

For more information about Christina or to follow up about her session please visit: Christina Parle

Nolan Slifko

The third Minerva Session: Protecting Your Image- Social Media, Legal Risks and Staying Safe was presented by our very own Theta Delt Brother, Nolan Slifko, Upsilon Triton '12. Nolan is an attorney with experience working as both General Counsel and Prosecuting Attorney in Georgia.

    Among the key take-aways from the presentation were:
  • Your social media says a great deal about how to want to be perceived. It needs to be monitored and access to posting things on your site need to be restricted to just a few trusted members. Our brand is about academics, leadership and a responsible social life, it is important that your social media reflects this.
  • When thinking about legal risks and liability, it is essential that the Charge has a risk management plan. Everyone needs to know what the plan is and how to abide by it to ensure the safety of Brothers and guests. Again, how to approach risk says a great deal about how the Charge sees itself and wants others to see it.
  • When issues do arise, the Charge must take a proactive stance. Too often people gamble with life because they fear they will get in trouble for taking someone to the hospital- safety trumps fear. Call 911 if a brother or a guest is in danger because of behavior at a social event. Don't just give them water, and put them on their side to "sleep it off." Calling 911 right away is a safe way to protect you and the life of your Brother or guest.
  • Remember, whatever is posted online can and will be used when an issue arises. Protect your Image by monitoring your social media, minimizing risk and being a socially responsible host.

For more information about Nolan or to follow up about his session please contact: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Kevin Flike

The fourth and final Minerva Session: Wounded By War, But Never Broken was presented by the Flike Brothers. Kevin Flike, Alpha '06, and Nolan Flike, Alpha '14, are biological and Theta Delta Chi Brothers! Kevin was a Green Beret and served in the Philippines, Thailand and Afghanistan where he was seriously wounded. Following his grueling journey of recovery, Kevin has since worked for Goldman Sachs, Threat Stack (a cyber-security firm) and is now the Senior Director of Strategic Projects and Communication for Adapt Health. He also gives back to the Special Forces Community by serving on the Board of Directors for the Green Beret Foundation.

Nolan Flike

Upon graduating from Union College, where he received a B.A. in History, Nolan began his career in sales working for a logistics company, then transitioning to software sales. Nolan's brother Kevin, a decorated Green Beret and motivational speaker, introduced him to a role Mission Six Zero team, knowing it would be a perfect fit with his number one core value: family. Mission Six Zero provides leadership development and training based on the principles from CEO Jason Van Camp's book Deliberate Discomfort.

Their presentation centered around Kevin's intense and moving journey surrounding his wounding and near-death experience, his long-term recovery battle and his further challenges with graduate school at both MIT and Harvard.

    The Flike brothers, along with 10 alumni facilitators, conducted breakout sessions on the following topics:
  • Don't' Self Select: Participants discussed times in their lives when they were either told they were not right for something or that the task might be too hard for them yet they persevered to attain their goals.
  • We Do, We Fail, We Learn: Quite simply put, we learn more from our failures than we do our successes. Take the time to reflect on what happened and grow from it, make it an opportunity to learn.
  • One Step At A Time: In order to manage your long-term goals, you need to also set short-term goal that will keep you motivated.

For more information about the Flike Brothers or to follow up about their session please contact This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Alumni Minerva Sessions

At this year's Convention we also introduced two new Minerva Sessions specifically for alumni members!

Dr. Rick Wood

Rick Wood, Gamma Triton '73 conducted a session with alumni called: Getting Your Alumni On Track. This session took participants through a variety of functions in our members' only portal, MyTDX.org. This session focused on the uses and functions of this portal, first for personal use and secondly for use by Alumni Associations and House Corporations. A manual for alumni use is being prepared and will be available in the "Files" section of the portal in the Alumni Recourses folder by the end of September, 2021.

    Among the functions demonstrated were:
  • Updating and managing your profile
  • Searching for brothers
  • Communicating via email
  • Use of the Newsletter Creation tool
  • Developing your family tree
  • Specialized functions for your Alumni Officers
  • Exporting data

For more information on mytdx.org please contact: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

The other Alumni Minerva session took place in a panel format, where Taylor Early, Rho Triton '92; Dr. Mark Webster, Alpha '88; and Executive Director Brian Bertges, Sigma Triton '00 participated in a panel discussion about the ins and outs of being an Alumni Advisor for a Charge. The session was called: How to Change a Light Bulb: How an Alumni Advisor Can Influence Culture.

    Among the take-aways from the session were:
  • As an advisor, you are not their father, you are an advisor
  • This is not your Charge, the undergraduates might need some guidance based on your experience, but in the end, they need to be making decisions
  • In all cases, with the host institution, the Charge and the CFO, your need to build positive relationships
  • Don't wait for the host institution to reach out to you, you need to reach out to them
  • As an alumni advisor, you serve as a role model and your behavior is always on display and needs to be regulated and appropriate
  • Communication needs to be open, honest and confiding

The 146th Grand Lodge

At the 174th Convention there were five positions up for election: the President of the Grand Lodge, Graduate Secretary, one Executive Member position, and both Undergraduate Member at Large Positions.

      We would like to welcome the 146th Grand Lodge!
    • President of the Grand Lodge: Jim Leuck, Upsilon Deuteron '09, 67th PGL
    • Graduate Treasurer: James Ambrose, Tau Triton '18
    • Graduate Secretary: Johannes Alvarez-Rivero, Psi Tetraton '22
    • Executive Member: Stephan Johnson, Gamma Triton '92
    • Executive Member: Adam Marks, Nu Deuteron '99
    • Undergraduate members at Large: Sebastian Rawls-Driver, Psi Tetraton '22 & Bradley Roesenblatt, Rho Proteron '22
        We would also like to thank the 145th Grand Lodge for their hard work and contributions this past year.
      • President of the Grand Lodge: Jim Leuck, Upsilon Deuteron '09, 67th PGL
      • Graduate Treasurer: James Ambrose, Tau Triton '18
      • Graduate Secretary: Stephan Johnson, Gamma Triton '92
      • Executive Member: Ian Karls, Sigma Deuteron '17
      • Executive Member: Adam Marks, Nu Deuteron '99
      • Undergraduate members at Large: Alec Avitia, Beta Deuteron '21 & Johannes Alvarez-Rivero, Psi Tetraton '22

      Awards Presentation

        This year we were able to recognize many amazing groups and individuals for their contributions to Theta Delta Chi.
      • Charles P. Schmid Loyalty Cup (Highest Number of Donors) - Gamma Deuteron (University of Michigan)
      • Charles P. Schmid Loyalty Cup (Highest Percentage of Donors) -Rho Triton (Virginia Commonwealth University)
      • Bruce R. Trefz Service and Philanthropy Cup- Sigma Deuteron (University of Wisconsin)
      • Guy C. Pierce Improvement Cup- Gamma Triton (Michigan State University)
      • Ritual Improvement Cup- Beta Deuteron (Iowa State University)
      • President's Cup - Iota Triton (UMass Dartmouth)
      • Undergraduate of the Year – Cade Johnson, Psi Tetraton '22 & Johannes Alvarez-Rivero Psi Tetraton '22
      • Charge President of the Year - Austin Moe, Psi Tetraton '21
      • Alumnus of the Year – Ryan Hoffman, Xi '20
      • Distinguished Alumni Achievement Award - Steve Rounds, Beta '51
      • Theta Delt of the Year - Kay McNulty Davila, Psi Deuteron '01
      • Victory Cup – Psi Tetraton (University of Arizona)

      To watch the full Awards and Scholarships Presentation click here.

      Scholarships

      This year the Educational Foundation was able to award 8 scholarships to some very well-deserving recipients.

        Davenport Foundation Scholarship ($4000):
      • Owen Foley, Alpha '22
      • Cade Johnson, Psi Tetraton '22
      • Josh Shrestha, Alpha '22
      • Kobe Wright, Psi Deuteron '22
        General '1847' Award ($1847):
      • Carlos Gregory, Alpha '22
      • Timothy Kaufmann, Beta Deuteron '21
      • Manuel Edward Valdez, Mu Triton '21
        William L. Porter Scholarship ($1250):
      • Aditya Sai, Xi Deuteron '22

      Education Foundation scholarships are made possible by generous donations made to the Theta Delta Chi Educational Foundation. To learn more visit vgdues.org.

      Stay Connected

        We loved connecting with so many of our Brothers during the 174th Convention, and it does not have to stop there, connect further using these platforms
      • Instagram
      • Facebook
      • LinkedIn

      Ambition in Motion:

      Ambition in Motion

      The Central Fraternity Office partnered with Ambition in Motion (AIM), a mentorship program aimed at the professional development of collegiate scholars. In a time where COVID-19 continues to keep us separated physically, AIM provides a great way to connect and network with others virtually. AIM connects undergraduate Theta Delta Chi Brothers with alumni Theta Delta Chi mentors from across the nation.

      The free mentorship program is a 12-week program where undergraduate members will have the opportunity to receive mentorship from an alumnus. Mentors and mentees will be matched based on career interest, educational background, location and work orientation. The program provides a multitude of different learning styles including online workshops, mentor-mentee meetings and group meetings. It is our hope that through this mentorship program, both alumni and undergraduates will be able to help improve each other intellectually, morally and socially.

      For more information or to sign up for the program please click here.

      See you next year!

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