A Message from the President

Dear Fraters.
 
I hope my email finds you and your extended family well and healthy during these complex times.  I wanted to send an initial update since being installed as the TKE Mu-Omega Alumni Association President in September.  Thanks to all who paid their dues and voted in the recent election.  We had an unprecedented number of Fraters participate and hope others will see the value of the association as we execute on our mission in the next year.  I want to thank Frater Steve Payne (Scroll #96) for serving as our President during the 2019-2020 year.  Frater Steve, as many of you know, is battling a health issue so I hope each of you join me in wishing him good health and strength for the journey ahead.  

We’re off to a good start in 2020-2021 as we focus on a number of initiatives including:

  1. The recolonization of the Mu-Omega chapter on GMU.  The work of Frater PJ Malafronte, Expansion Coordinator from TKE IHQ is paying dividends.  It looks as if we will initiate 20-25 Fraters on November 8th in our efforts to establish a strong foundation for the future of the chapter.  Although given COVID-19, candidate recruitment was challenging, we have a promising group of young men to build the chapter.  Onsite participation is limited due to GMU protocols but all Fraters are invited and encouraged to attend the initiation ritual on November 8th at 2:00 PM eastern time.  The initiation will be broadcast on Zoom as well as a select few fraters may attend.
  2. Related to the recolonization, the colony, along with chapters of TKE across the country are raising funds in support of St. Jude.  These efforts support TKE Danny Thomas who is the founder of St. Jude Hospital and his dream that “no child should die in the dawn of life.” TKE alumni may also financially support this fundraising effort in two separate ways:
    1. ?The Mu Omega colony has a specific target/goal.  You may donate to the Mu-Omega colony team goal directly at https://fundraising.stjude.org/site/TR/TKE/TKE?pg=entry&fr_id=129846.  You’ll see a “Make a Gift” button on the main page.  Your contribution will support our young men in attaining their goal.  If you prefer:
    2. TKE Alumni may register at the site.  If you click the register button, there is a secondary button that says “join a team.”  The alumni team name is “Mu-Omega Alumni.” It will ask you to establish an account.  In this way, you can then share the link to your unique fundraise page with your family and colleagues.  Please direct any questions you may have on how to participate to Frater PJ Malfronte at pmalafronte@tke.org.
  3. ?We welcomed four first time Fraters to the board including Frater Thomas Block (Scroll #595), Frater Joe Dwyer (Scroll #649), Frater Martin Meehan (Scroll #345), and Frater Brad Warner (Scroll #380).  The entire board anticipates continued emphasis on programs to support our three pillar mission of Fellowship, Scholarship and Business Networking.
  4. Keeping with Fellowship for the moment, we continue to plan for the upcoming 50th Anniversary Celebration of TKE’s at George Mason which as you know is planned for October 16th.  Please RSVP before the end of the year to take advantage of the early bird pricing.   This is a must attend event for all TEKEs and Friends of Mu-Omega.
  5. Another key Fellowship program is the work of our Decade Champions finding the emails for our “Lost Fraters.”  You can help too, and it only takes a minute.  Go to the TKE IHQ Lost Fraters page to see if you recognize a missing Frater.   
  6. With the recolonization efforts underway, it’s important to reestablish the Scholarship efforts to financially support our undergraduate Fraters in their education.  With your help and dues, The Gene Barnes Memorial Scholarship fund will be the source of this support for years to come.  More information will be provided in the near future about our fund raising activities including a special story written by Frater Tom Cooney (Scroll #110) about the life and times of Frater Gene (Scroll #56).  It will be a must read for all of us.
  7. Finally, Board Secretary Frater Marty Meehan is catalyzing our business Networking efforts and programs to ensure that Fraters benefit from the business breadth of this large and growing association.

?That’s is for now.  From time to time, we’ll share additional information on the alumni board progress on the above as well as much more.  If you’re not a member of either the Alumni Facebook Group or the Alumni LinkedIn Group, please consider joining these important communication venues.  Lastly, please consider paying your dues for the upcoming calendar year.  In addition to establishing your good standing, your funds benefit each of the programs described above and will enable additional supportive efforts as we build our association together.  Thank you.

Yours in the Bond,
Don Early, Scroll #249

Remembering Frater Jason Panek

JPAH1332

Frater Jason Panek’s path in Tau Kappa Epsilon was not typical, and sadly has abruptly turned as he has passed into Chapter Eternal. He began his new member candidacy at the Mu-Omega Chapter,  and eventually upon transferring to Rutgers University, he was initiated into the Alpha-Eta chapter of Tau Kappa Epsilon, signing the scroll with number Alpha Eta 1332. He will be greatly missed and remembered fondly by Fraters from both chapters and across TKE Nation as a selfless and genuine individual who would do anything he could to put a smile on your face or improve your mood, even if it was at his own expense.

Below are Jason’s arrangement details and a public obituary:

https://www.facebook.com/jason.panek.3?fref=ts

Mu Omega Alumni March Madness Bracket Competition

Fraters, Our annual Mason March Madness bracket competition is up and running! This is always a big hit and we hope you can play again this year. Playing is FREE for everyone with one major catch, the only fraters eligible to win are those who have made an Annual Membership Endowment for 2015. So those of you who haven’t given by the first tipoff are in the hunt for bragging rights, but you can’t win the $200 prize money! Please use this page to make an Annual Member Endowment! Here’s the information:

Good luck to everyone in this crazy season! if anyone has any questions or problem signing up, just let me know. YITB Chris #645

Everything You Always Wanted to Know About Homecoming But Were Afraid to Ask

Dear Tekes and Friends of TKE,

Homecoming is nearly here!  Below is a quick reference guide for the weekend:

All Weekend Long:  Starting tomorrow: Stop by the 29 Diner and dine normally and when you check comes, ask for a donation to be made to the TKE Alumni Association!  Ten percent of your check will come to us as a fundraiser.

Friday Afternoon:

Friday Night:

  • ·    The SOLD OUT 45th Anniversary Partyis happening at the Blenheim Interpretive Center from 7pm-11pm.  Tickets are indeed sold out, but we may have a few cancellations to get you in if you make a donation to the Alumni Association, so if you are interested in coming and have not bought your ticket, contact me immediately! (christopherlee.townsend at gmail dot com)
  • The event will have food and drinks, I’m calling it “heavy appetizers plus”, more than toast points, but perhaps not quite a full meal for us hungry folk.  We will also have some dessert on hand too!  Food is coming from several of partner organizations, Red Hot and Blue, Brion’s Grille and the 29 Diner.  Please take care of them for the rest of the year like they are taking care of us tomorrow!
  • ·         Suggested attire is Jacket and Tie/Cocktail attire.  While we won’t be turning people away, we’re going to have VIP guests there and be taking pictures to send to TKE HQ, GMU, and other outlets.  It will be standing room only, so wear comfortable shoes, but be prepared to dance and have a good time with everyone!
  • There will be a short formal program, where we pay homage to the past and look to the future, but for the most part just be ready for some fun.
  • We’re going to have some places at the venue to take photos and selfies with old and new friends.  Please share them widely!  Suggested hashtags for the event are: #masonTKE45, #since1970, and of course #IAMTKE

  •  We do need to depart Blenheim promptly at 11, but don’t worry, we have something planned for the after party if you’re up for it…

Saturday — Happy Valentine’s Day

  • Tickets are still available for the Homecoming game.  Follow this link and use TKE as the password to get in our group block.  This is only available until Friday night at midnight, after that you’ll have to get group tickets.
  • Tailgating starts at 1pm in K lot.  The Alumni Association has helped to provide some fine roasted pig in honor of the occasion and bring your own beverages or other meat to share.  _______  Look for the big TKE letters
  • The Game is at 4pm  GO MASON!
  • We’re not doing anything formal after the event, but we’d always recommend Brions (hosting an open event with a cover charge), Red Hot and Blue, or the 29 Diner (open all night) as a place to continue the party.

Sunday

  • You still want more?  Go get brunch at the 29 Diner and try to recall events of the weekend as best you can, or review silly pictures from the reunion.  Remember that donation to TKE!

That’s it!  Who’s ready for a great weekend!

I love this Fraternity

Mu-Omega Honored by Fairfax City Council

Esteemed Fraters,

Tonight, through the coordinated efforts of the Alumni Association, Mu-Omega was honored for its 45 years of incorporation as a chapter of Tau Kappa Epsilon.  Mayor Scott Silverthorne issued a proclamation citing their achievements, especially the recent efforts of the chapter and their recognition as a Top Teke Chapter. Video of the presentation can be viewed here (notable portion begins at 2:45)
I was privileged to accept the award on behalf of the Alumni Association and many men of the active chapter showed up on short notice to lend their support.  Some pictures are attached and the full text of the proclamation reads as follows:
Proclamation
 
Whereas, The history of the Mu-Omega Chapter of Tau Kappa Epsilon of George Mason University began in 1968, as the group then known as the “Symposium”, and
 
Whereas, As Symposium became a colony of Tau Kappa Epsilon Fraternity, they took on the name “Symposium of TKE” and on February 21st 1970, the group was officially recognized by Tau Kappa Epsilon Fraternity and was founded in the Mu-Omega Chapter, and
 
Whereas, As the first recognized Fraternity at GMU, Mu-Omega has been operated consistently for the past 45 years and has initiated over 850 men into the bond of Tau Kappa Epsilon; and
 
Whereas, Over the years, the chapter has completed many philanthropic efforts including support of the Special Olympics, the Alzheimer’s Foundation, and the for the past two years has held a TKE Week event to raise over $15,000 for St. Jude’s Children’s Research Hospital in addition to conducting fundraising to benefit various local needs, and
 
Whereas, This past year, the collegiate members of GMU were recognized as top performers nationwide in all assessment areas including scholastic achievement, recruitment, philanthropy, chapter size, and alumni relations and TKE International will present them with the Top Teke Award at the 58th Biennial Conclave gathering to be held this upcoming August in New Orleans, Louisiana; and
 
Whereas, The TKE Mu-Omega Alumni Association was founded on September 29th, 2009 and is led by an executive board to provide mental, moral and social development opportunities for collegiate and alumni members.
 
Now therefore I, Scott Silverthorne, Mayor of the City of Fairfax, in concert with the City Council, do hereby proclaim February 21, 2015 as
 
Mu-Omega Chapter of Tau Kappa Epsilon Day
In the City of Fairfax and invite the community to join us in congratulating the Mu-Omega Chapter on their 45th Anniversary at George Mason University.
 
On this 10 day of February 2015
(signed Scott Silverthorne, Mayor)
 
 
Please join us in extending congratulations to all Mu-Omega members who worked hard over the past 45 years!
Looking forward to seeing everyone at the reunion on Friday.  This proclamation, along with other bits of Mu-Omega history, will be on display.

Chapter Eternal Memorial

Fraters,


Below is a message from Frater Joe Kennedy about an old friend and a new initiative. We hope you can take the time to read it and help us create something great for the future.–YITB  Chris Townsend

***

In 1984 we lost a special Frater.  Mike Turley pledged a year after I did.  He was a classic TKE – smart, good looking and won way too many dance contests late in the evenings at the local pubs.  He even rode his bike (not motorcycle, his bike) to one of our annual treks to Myrtle Beach.  I won’t go into all the stories (there will be many to tell at the reunion).  As Mike was nearly completing his time at GMU he was feeling exhausted and noticed sores in his mouth.  His girlfriend immediately sent him to be checked up.  After meeting with medical staff he was immediately sent home and told they would contact him.

Needless to say he didn’t go directly home, he stopped by to see the guys at the cage (an aptly named apartment on campus) to have a beer and hang out.  He never finished the beer.  When he arrived home his parents were waiting for him.  He went right to the hospital and never left it.  Leukemia.

This was a very traumatic time for the members.  We had all rallied to help him, donating blood and raising funds and awareness.  Back then, I was told by some alumni that they had a similar experience when Gene Barnes died.  There are others that have died, maybe shortly after their school term ended and others after many years away.

Why do I bring this up?  The membership dedicated a plaque in Mike’s honor and planted a tree.  This past semester I took one of my children to tour GMU.  As we walked the campus I slowly steered her over to that place near Robinson and the Library that I had not visited in years.  It was gone.  Billy Reilly quickly located it.  Lightning had hit and killed the tree.  The grounds crew cut down the remainder of the tree and put the plaque in storage.  Obviously this is just wrong.  But we have something we can do.

With your help we can plant a new tree, replace that plaque and add a new plaque for all our members (past and in the future) who enter Chapter Eternal.  Please consider donating to the Alumni Association to make this happen.  We need your yearly endowment to keep the Alumni Association viable.  We also need you to donate in the name of a deceased Frater so we can make this a reality.

As of now I have been able to identify sixteen Fraters who have entered Chapter Eternal.

Please help us remember:

56       Gene W. Barnes

86       Douglas E. Beaman

95       Thomas E. Nachazel

119     Lawrence B. Emerson

134     Douglas A. Berliner

168     Alan D. Weggeland

170     Michael A. Aiken

178     Ralph D. Day

187     Robert P. Lehrman

215     Michael K. Colgan

352     Mike Turley

400     Glenn T. Milich

404     Eric W. Clement

492     Alan R. Ahalt

564     Kenneth M Caputo

742     Christopher McCarthy

 

Yours in the Bond,

Joe Kennedy

#316

Homecoming Basketball – TKE Block Tickets

After the big 45th event on Friday Evening Feb 13th, we will also be supporting the GMU Men’s Basketball team at the annual Homecoming Game at the Patriot Center on Saturday, February 14th.

The Alumni Association has reserved a block of tickets for our membership and guests at a deep discount but supply is limited, so act fast to get yours! Don’t forget to join us before the game at the tailgate!

https://oss.ticketmaster.com/html/go.htmI?l=EN&t=gmu&o=3276287&g=2101

password: tke

45th Anniversary Party

–Ticket Sales for the 45th Anniversary Event have been closed as we have reached capacity for the venue.–

 

Come on out to the 45th Anniversary party of Mu-Omega! The event will be held at Historic Blenheim (3610 Old Lee Highway, Fairfax, VA 22030) on Friday Feb 13th, from 7pm to 11pm. We will have food, drinks,  music and a few surprises on the way.

We are privileged to be hosting several special guests from TKE International HQ and the Grand Council. Also Blenheim, the venue for the event,  is recognized on the National Register of Historic Places. As such, the dress for the reunion is jacket and tie suggested attire for the event.
Can’t make the event? You can still show your support by contributing to the Chapter Eternal Memorial or making an Annual Member Endowment!