At the Conclave Luncheon on Friday, brothers and guests witnessed the bestowal of the inaugural Frank Rader Memorial Wrestling Award. The award recognizes undergraduates who embody the ideals of Sound Mind and Sound Body by engaging in competitive wrestling during college while demonstrating strong community leadership and academic performance.
Past Grand President and Order of the Golden Heart recipient Gary Griffith, Texas-Austin ’70, announced the award.
Frank E. Rader, Davidson ’71, was a national figure in the world of wrestling, Griffith said. “His impact on SigEp was beyond measure. As a wrestler at Davidson, Frank learned to balance his academic endeavors, social life and athletic interests. Over the course of his career, he would find repeated opportunities to merge his interests, using wrestling as a way to serve others and share the lessons he learned through SigEp.”
In 1982, Rader was named USA Wrestling Man of the Year. He went on to serve on the Olympic wrestling staff for the 1984 Los Angeles Games and the 1996 Atlanta Games.
Throughout his life, Rader served as a chapter volunteer and was known for his willingness to invest time in brothers and continually challenge himself and others to learn and grow, Griffith said.
Following Rader’s passing in May, fellow North Carolina Epsilon brother and lifelong friend Jay Hurt, Davidson ’88, established the scholarship in Rader’s honor.
Undergraduate Matthew Davis, Ohio State ’17, was named the recipient of the award.
“Like Frank, Matthew lives his life in order to serve others,” Griffith said.
Griffith said Davis has served as a campus mentor and recently created a program to empower minority voices in the Greek community. During college, he has helped raise more than $10,000 for Relay for Life, assisted with Red Cross blood drives, led group Bible studies, and spent time visiting with a 6-year-old cancer survivor and his family. He currently maintains a 3.94 GPA as a biomedical science major with a minor in economics.
“Matthew, like Frank, you are a servant to those around you,” Griffith said, “a force for good in the world, and a leading example for every SigEp.”