On January 21, 2017 I had the honor of attending an award ceremony where Brother Stan Cherrie, Brigadier General and alumnus '64, received the Theta Chi Distinguished Achievement Award. This ceremony was part of Theta Chi University, a regional leadership conference that was sponsored by nationals and hosted at Rutgers by our own Beta Delta Chapter. The National Executive Director of Theta Chi, Michael Mayer was on hand to personally present the award.
I was astonished to learn during Brother Mayer's opening remarks that the Distinguished Achievement Award had only been bestowed upon 69 brothers nationwide out of over 180,000 members throughout the history of the Theta Chi. As impressive as that was, Brother Cherrie's personable style and amazing career achievements showed why he was so deserving to be named as the 70th recipient. Fortunately, I was able to capture some of this on video. The opening few minutes of this video features Brother Mayer and the award presentation, followed by "about 10 minutes" of Brother Cherrie's talk on leadership.
When we initially put the word out on Facebook about the upcoming award presentation, several of Stan's Theta Chi contemporaries posted their congratulations, but many were unable to attend in person including Stan's wife Mary Ellen. I wanted to share my video with them, I hope you enjoy it.
I'd like to add that before his speech, Brother Cherrie had already spent some quality time with undergrads at their morning conference breakout sessions, and stuck around to participate in afternoon sessions. Toward the end of his talk, Brother Cherrie offered to mentor any brothers who reach out to him for help in working through whatever leadership challenges they're facing.
Failure to Communicate!
I've heard lots of feedback from fellow OX alumni over the years that we need better communication to increase the turnout for our alumni events. This always conjures up that awesome quote from Cool Hand Luke, "What we've got hear is failure to communicate!"
This is exactly why I starting working with our Alumni Board to see if we can update our methods and improve the situation. So far, I've been posting on our RU OX Alumni Facebook page and started this Blog, I'm also working to update our website content and sending out some occasional emails.
Unfortunately our "email list" had gotten pretty far out-of-date, alarmingly we were at the point where the number of rejects was greater than the deliveries. I've rebuilt our official email list from scratch using the free Mail Chimp platform and the current email addresses I had, but we were still only at 94 subscribers. Obviously, this is not acceptable as we could only communicate with about 25% of our total alumni base.
The Solution: Class Captains Email Drive
We put the email sign-up form on our website homepage, and I've enlisted our Class Captains to help get the word out that we need everyone to sign-up on our official Beta Delta Alumni Email list.
The process is simple and painless, and we won't bury you with spam emails. It's more about sending out important announcements, pdf versions of the Bugle, and details on upcoming social events.
To succeed, what we really need is for every Rutgers OX alumni brother to manage their own subscription info. If you received my email about the "2nd Annual Alumni Dart Tournament" delivered to the right inbox, then you're good-to-go. If not, please be sure to visit our homepage and fill in the short email sign-up form. Be sure to click the mail chimp confirmation email that gets sent to your email address.
Thanks to the effort of the Class Captains so far, we've already increased from 94 to 120 subscribers in just 2 weeks. Personally, I'd like to see us get over 250 subscribers, so please spread the word and encourage others to visit "betadeltaonline.com" to sign themselves up.