It is with great sadness that we share the passing of Past Grand President and Order of the Golden Heart recipient Wallace C. Doud, Wisconsin ’48.
Brother Doud reconnected with Sigma Phi Epsilon in 1971 when the Fraternity awarded him the Citation for his extraordinary professional success at IBM, where he rose from junior salesman to executive vice president. Brother Doud then joined the national board in 1975, and served as Grand Treasurer from 1983 to 1985 until his election as Grand President in 1985.
At the conclusion of his term in 1987, Brother Doud was honored for his exceptional impact on Sigma Phi Epsilon with the Fraternity’s highest recognition, the Order of the Golden Heart.
His passion for supporting SigEp’s mission led Brother Doud to take on a leadership role on the Educational Foundation’s Board of Trustees from 1993 to 2005, and he was named a Life Trustee of the Foundation shortly after. He continued to be a faithful presence at Conclave and other SigEp events throughout his life, and was considered a mentor and devoted brother by many.
It was in honor of Brother Doud that in 2006, Jim Clayton, Tennessee ’57, established the Clayton-Doud Award. When Brother Clayton’s company, Clayton Homes, experienced a period of turmoil, he turned to Brother Doud for help. Drawing on his experience with IBM, Motorola and other public companies, Brother Doud joined Clayton Homes’ board to help right the ship, leading to the company’s eventual acquisition by Berkshire Hathaway. The Clayton-Doud Award continues to be given each Conclave to SigEps who exemplify the concept of “brothers helping brothers,” like Brother Doud did throughout his life. The most recent recipients include two Maine Alpha alumni who were inspired by a late chapter brother’s love of music to create a music therapy practice to help people with injuries or disabilities.
Ever generous, Brother Doud established endowments for his chapter and the national Fraternity’s operations. Wherever he was throughout his career, in Maine, New York or Florida, he gave his time and leadership to civic organizations like the United Way and local parks department. An avid golfer and devoted family man, Brother Doud is survived by his wife of 40 years, Jean, seven children, 15 grandchildren and 15 great-grandchildren.
Below are some words from the friends and brothers who knew him best:
“Wally Doud was a true SigEp. He lived HFF all his life, for me and so many others who followed Wally’s career of helping every brother who asked for his help. He was an idea man, but what was rare is that he would listen and be able to get enthusiastic about yours.
Wally always believed that if we were truly the best, we would attract more of the best young men than any other fraternity. That was his goal for us. I hope we honor Wally by trying to live up to that idea.” — Past Grand President Bill Tragos, Washington-St. Louis ’56
“During the 1970s and ’80s, it was Wally Doud’s insight and wisdom that helped lead SigEp through some difficult and challenging times into being the leader of the fraternity world. He challenged the process in true IBM fashion, while always encouraging brotherly love in the spirit of Sigma Phi Epsilon. He was a forward thinker, pushing us past our perceived limitations. After the day’s work was completed, Wally and Jean always made it fun, leading the good times following national board meetings. We all had to learn the IBM fight song. Well done thy good and faithful servant.” — Past Grand President John Hartman, Missouri ’61
“Wally Doud was Grand President when I was installed as a member of Sigma Phi Epsilon, and I remember him fondly as a bigger than life figure whose smile lit up a room. He has always been an icon for this Fraternity and an example of how important it is to be Virtuous, Diligent and full of Brotherly Love if you want to have a successful and fulfilling life.” — Grand President Tom Jelke, Florida International ’90
“While serving alongside Brother Wallace Doud on the Sigma Phi Epsilon Educational Foundation board, I often shared business growth and leadership issues with Wally. Brother Doud was generous with his time and advice.
In 1993, Wally graciously accepted my invitation to join the Clayton Homes board, where he contributed greatly. With Brother Doud’s support, CMH transitioned from a small family unit to a multi-billion dollar industry leader listed on the New York Stock Exchange — and was purchased by Warren Buffett in 2003. As a mentor, board member, advisor and fraternity brother, I owe Brother Wallace Doud more than I could ever repay.” — Jim Clayton, Tennessee ’57
“It was my good fortune to have Wally Doud as my fraternity brother, mentor and friend for 45 years. Wally and his wife Jean came to the 1979 Conclave in Cincinnati, her first exposure to Sigma Phi Epsilon, and there, my wife Susan and I took her under our wings, making her comfortable with Wally’s fraternity. Ever since, we have been close friends.
Wally had the good fortune to accumulate wealth through his career with IBM. He was generous with his good fortune, helping his large family and being one of SigEp’s most generous donors. He provided leadership to the Sigma Phi Epsilon Educational Foundation as it grew to be a major resource for the Fraternity. We were blessed to have him in our Fraternity, and Susan and I were blessed to have him and Jean as our friends.” — Past Foundation Executive Director Chuck White, Western Michigan ’62
We mourn with our brothers, who have lost a piece of our collective SigEp heart. But we rejoice because of the life that he lived. “Well done thou good and faithful servant.”