Left to right: Citation recipients John Lawson, Virginia Tech ’75, Alan D. Wilson, Tennessee ’79, Charles E. Amato, Sam Houston ’70, Patrick Lawler, Memphis ’77
At the Arete Awards Luncheon at the Grand Chapter Conclave in Nashville, Tenn., brothers were recognized for achieving excellence in their careers, their chapter housing initiatives, and in the case of two recent graduates, their commitment to each other and pursuit of greatness.
Sigma Phi Epsilon Citation recipients
Four distinguished alumni were recognized for their examples of consistent excellence and remarkable achievement in the workplace.
Charles E. Amato, Sam Houston ’70, is co-founder of Southwest Business Corporation (SWBC) and has been the company’s chairman since 1976. He is heavily involved in the Texas business community and is an inductee of the Texas Business Hall of Fame. He has served as chairman of the Texas State University Board of Regents, chairman of the Board of Trustees at the University of the Incarnate Word, and chairman of the Children’s Miracle Network Hospitals. He is also a generous supporter of United Way, the American Heart Association, Jr. Achievement and Sigma Phi Epsilon.
Patrick Lawler, Memphis ’77, is founder and CEO of Youth Villages, a private nonprofit dedicated to helping emotionally and behaviorally troubled children and their families. Lawler’s $200 million organization serves more than 23,000 families in 70 locations across 20 states each year. He is a member of the Society of Entrepreneurs, an annual lecturer at Harvard and Columbia, and was recognized as one of “America’s Best Leaders” by U.S. News & World Report.
John Lawson, Virginia Tech ’75, is CEO of W. M. Jordan Company, the largest construction company in Virginia. He is a 15-year board member of the Children’s Hospital of the King’s Daughters and has been honored with the Lenora Mathews Lifetime Achievement Award from Volunteer Hampton Roads and the United Way Volunteer of the Year Award. He is a lifelong donor to Virginia Tech. The Myers-Lawson School of Construction at Virginia Tech was named in his honor.
Alan D. Wilson, Tennessee ’79, is chairman, president and CEO of McCormick and Company, the world’s largest spice provider. After serving as a U.S. Army Captain, he held progressively responsible positions at Proctor and Gamble. At McCormick, he more than doubled the company’s market value. He supports Family Tree, an organization for the prevention of child abuse, and in 2013 was named the United Way of Central Maryland’s Philanthropists of the Year. He is a generous donor to the University of Tennessee and his beloved Tennessee Alpha Chapter.
The Virginia Tech AVC and Cincinnati AVC were both recognized for recent housing initiatives that left their chapters better housed and better positioned for future success.
Virginia Tech AVC
The newly completed $5 million Virginia Kappa home sits adjacent to Virginia Tech’s golf course. It is designed to foster an educational environment for its residents, members and visitors. The house has a 120-person classroom, multiple study spaces, a conference room for collaboration and presentations, and a dedicated library for quiet work.
The Virginia Tech Chapter will recolonize this fall. Already, the AVC has recruited three faculty fellows from the Myers-Lawson School of Construction, and they are partnering with the leadership school to support the chapter’s Balanced Man Program.
2015 Citation recipient John Lawson, Virginia Tech ‘75, drove the effort along with AVC President Todd Lewers, ‘78, Vice President of Housing Bill Thomas, ‘72, and District Governor Ed Bishop, ‘73.
When John Abraham, Cincinnati ’77, realized his chapter’s aging facility was no longer meeting the needs of the undergraduates, he and the Ohio Theta alumni sprang into action along with AVC President Rey Medina, ‘99, and alumnus Dean Lutton, ‘01.
The AVC raised $1.3 million to fund the project, including $50,000 from the undergraduates themselves. The facility includes a 150-person classroom, multiple dedicated study rooms, and 13 additional beds, raising the house’s capacity to 49 brothers. In spring 2015, the classroom was used to host a University-accredited economics course.
The Ohio Theta Chapter also won their 14th consecutive Buchanan Cup this Conclave.
The Clayton-Doud Award
University of South Carolina brothers Max Fowler, ’15, and Zach Knight, ’14, were named the recipients of the Clayton-Doud Award. The biannual scholarship is awarded to SigEps who exemplify the Fraternity’s charge to help fellow brothers in their time of need.
Fowler and Knight joined SigEp together in 2011 and supported one another during a critical time in their chapter’s history. Working together, they reversed a negative culture of hazing and reckless behavior in their chapter and put the chapter back on track. See their story—The truth about pledging.
Brothers Max Fowler, South Carolina ’15, (center left) and Zach Knight, South Carolina ’14 (center right)