Board Meetings Page Title



Theta Elders Association, Inc.
Annual Corporation Meeting Agenda
September 11, 2011     

The meeting was called to order at 4:00 PM by President Doug Donaldson.

Roll Call by Ron Niederwerfer.

  • Secretary called the role by passing a sign in sheet.

  • Directors in attendance: Doug  Donaldson, Chris Heacox, Bob Kravecs, Ron Niederwerfer, Tom Stevens, Tristan Lawrie, Bob Kelley,  Steve Rogers, Shelly Katz, Jeff Davis, Dennis Johnson, Tim Vellrath and Don Burr.

  • Voting Members in attendance: Shane Schaffer, Chris Johnson, Bob Bentley, Pete Olson.  Cal Lord attended the first few minutes of the meeting but was called a way to do the Lords work.

  • There were no Non-voting members present were:  recent grads who pay their dues become voting members after the time lag in the by-laws).

  • Undergraduate Guests Attending: Joe Aven, David Mille, Kevin Keubler, Trevor Comstock, Jack Zachary, Stephen Brandenburg (Phi), Jeffrey Scappini, Kyle Fortin, Ryan Curtin, Brian Kurul, Josh Berger.

Declaration of a Quorum by Doug Donaldson.

  • President Donaldson reviewed the role call and declared that a quorum was present.

Opening Ode

  • All the Brothers joined in a spirited rendition of our gathering song.

Appointment of Parliamentarian.

  • President Donaldson appointed Bob Kelley to serve as Parliamentarian.

Approval of Minutes from the last annual meeting.

  • The minutes of the 2010 annual meeting were approved without revision. Motion by Brother Bob Kravecs; Second by Brother Tom Stevens; Carried.

President's report

  • President Donaldson thanked the Directors and Officers for their service again during the past year.  He singled out Brothers Burr and Niederwerfer for their long term service.

Secretary's report:

  • Brother Ron Niederwerfer chose not to submit a report.

Treasurer's report:

  • Brother Don Burr's written report was distributed:

    • General Checking Account                $   2,289.71    (was $3,102 in 2010)

    • Certificates of Deposit                       $ 65,962.00   (was $64,551 in 2010)

    • Fidelity Investment Account             $ 45,516.62   (was $45,009 in 2010)

  •  There are three certificates of deposit with rotating maturity dates approximately every six months to one year.  Interest rates range from 0.65% to 1.1%.  Brother Don Burr reported that interest rates have dropped again and when these certificates are rolled over we will not be able to renew at the rates we have now.  The accounts are at Bank of America and the Savings Institute Bank and Trust.  Brother Burr and Brother Tom Stevens are authorized signatories on the accounts.

  •  Brother Burr also provided a detailed balance sheet and singled out Brother Tristan Lawrie to thank him for his $500 gift as it was the single largest gift received in 2011.

  • Brother Bob Bentley moved acceptance of the report and Brother Bob Kravecs seconded: Carried.

Housing Committee Report

  • Brother Doug Donaldson reported that the committee remains in touch with local realtors Brother Peter and his wife Doryann Plante to research property in the Storrs area. 

  • 2010 changes to Mansfield zoning regulations. (reduction from 4 to 3 in the number of non-related people who may share a residence and all parking spaces must be paved and marked) were reviewed briefly.

  • The Housing Committee feels that the only street in town that makes sense for us to own a property would be Hunting Lodge Road.  Therefore, we will concentrate all future efforts there.

  • Discussion of University Housing ensued.  It was decided that the Active Chapter supports an attempt to secure a University facility in Husky Village.  As such, the committee will contact the Greek Life office and make our thoughts known.

  • 5 Zetes live in the current leased house (formerly known as “Puke House” because of the unfortunate color it is painted.  Hereafter we recommend that it be referred to exclusively as the “Zete House.”

  • Josh Berger, Jeff Scappini, Stephen Brandenburg, Steve Rogers and others all made comments to the group and the decision was made to contact the landlord, Mr. Radu Gageonea at 860-208-3830; Gageonea2003[at], to request a $500 grant from him to support the house beautification project.  It was further decided to move forward with or without Mr. Gageonea’s financial participation but we still will need his permission.

  • Joe Aven, Josh Berger and Doug Donaldson were appointed to the committee.  Brother Donaldson volunteered to donate $1,000 to the fund.

  • SUBSEQUENT ACTION REPORT:  Doug Donaldson met with the landlord to discuss the upgrade proposal.  The project will be postponed until Spring to allow for a richer discussion with the landlord.

  • Brother Steve Rogers moved acceptance of the report.  Brother Shane Schaffer seconded.  Carried.


Website Report:

  • Brother Michael Joyce reported that the web page continues to be visited regularly,  We are still looking for a complete email list so please submit updates whenever your address changes.  He updates the page regularly with new news and photos as well as reports from the undergraduates.  He is still seeking news and photos with which to refresh the site.  He remarked that the lost Elder list is growing.

  • The “Theta is 50” photos are posted and are getting a lot of visitation.

Active Chapter Update:

  • There were 11 undergraduates in attendance.

  • House is in acceptable shape.

  • The Chapter's major goal, clearing their debt to the Grand Chapter, was accomplished with help from the Theta Fund at Zeta Psi Headquarters.  The Chapter paid over $6,000 and the Fund paid an additional $4,000 to clear the books.

  • The Phi is Stephen Brandenburg.  He reported that the goal is 10-20 new Pledges.  There are currently 25 members but most are Juniors and Seniors so a good rush class is essential.  Josh Berger is the Rush Chairman.  Josh thanked Brothers Donaldson and Bentley for attending a rush event a few nights ago.

  • Initiation is set for 11-11-11.

Theta Chapter Active Scholarship Grant:  

  • Following extended discussions, Brother Steve Rogers moved that we allocate $1,000 for an unrestricted grant to the Active Chapter rather than the prior scholarship grant.  Brother Tim Vellrath seconded and the motion carried.

Theta Fund at International Headquarters: 

  • A restricted fund has been established at the Grand Chapter.  Brothers who make gifts to the International Fraternity may wish to earmark their gifts to the Theta Fund.  Brother Doug Donaldson reminded the Brothers that this was not a tax deductible donation if it is made to the Fraternity.  Gifts to the Educational Foundation are tax deductible but they can not be used for non-educational expenses.


Moment of Silence:

  • The entire Brotherhood stood for a moment of Silence to honor the departed Brothers of Zeta Psi as well as those who lost their lives in the 9-11 attacks on NYC and subsequently those service men and women killed defending our country.

Approval of Actions Taken by TEA Board since last meeting: 

  • Brother Jeff Davis made a motion to approve all of the actions taken by the Officers and Directors since the last annual meeting. 

  • Brother Tom Stevens seconded and the motion carried.

Report from the New York Convention

  • Brother Doug Donaldson reported that Brother Bill Ruggles received an award for his Chairmanship of the “Big Brother-Little Brother Convention Sponsorship Program.”

  • Brother Donaldson urged the undergraduates to have a representative attend next year’s convention.

Zete for Life:

  • A new program was unveiled at the convention designed to provide long term financial support for the Chapters.  All graduating Seniors will be asked to sign up for the Zete For Life program.  In it they authorize the Grand Chapter to charge a credit card a preset amount per year.  One half goes to the Grand Chapter and one half would be sent to the TEA to support the Active Chapter.

Summer Picnic: 

  • Brother Steve Rogers offered to host the next Summer Picnic at his home and the board accepted gratefully.

New Program Needed:

  • No discussion ensued regarding the need for an annual “classic event” that would draw large numbers of attendees akin to Commemoration Day in Toronto.

Reinstate Annual Mailing:

  • Brother Pete Olson expressed his willingness to prepare and mail a newsletter and dues invoice.  Brother Olson then made a motion to finance the projects costs for postage and production.  Shelly Katz seconded and the motion carried.

Work Party at Zete House:

  • Tim Vellrath volunteered to schedule and coordinate a work party at the Zete House for painting and landscaping.  Doug Donaldson will assist along with Undergrads Joe Aven and Josh Berger.

Facebook Page:

  • Ryan Curtin and Shelly Katz were tasked with creating a Website with membership photos so Elders can see the names of the Actives.  Chris Heacox moved that TEA authorize up to $250 to fund the creation of the page.  Tim Vellrath seconded and the motion carried. 

  • Shelly Katz indicated that he has the technical capability to handle this for a total expense of about $15 per year for domain registration.

DCD Contact:

  • Steve Rogers told the story of the DCD brother who was looking to connect with his Brothers.  Steve volunteered to include them in the next picnic and future events as appropriate.

Election of Directors: 

  • The following Brothers were elected as directors:  Tom Stevens, Don Burr, Ron Niederwerfer, Doug Donaldson, Chris Heacox, Bob Kravecs, Tristan Laurie, Michael Joyce, Bob Kelley, Steve Rogers, Pete Olson, Bob Bentley, Tim Vellrath, Shelly Katz and Dennis Johnson.

  •  The Brothers elected as directors then selected the officers for the ensuing term to be President, Doug Donaldson; Vice President, Bob Kravecs; Secretary, Ron Niederwerfer; Treasurer, Don Burr; Corresponding Secretary, Jeff Davis;  Pete Olson, Beta Pi; Tristan Lawrie, Beta Pi.

HA Plaque:

  • Brother Ron Niederwerfer was nominated and elected unanimously for booking the wrong date for the picnic causing us to get thrown out by the park rangers.  “Him, Him, F*** Him!”

Good and welfare:

  • The gavel was passed and all Brothers present expressed their pride in being Zetes and part of the Theta Chapter.

Closing Ode and Adjournment

  • The meeting was adjourned at 5:03 PM with the signing of the “Farewell Ode.”  Following the meeting a great steak dinner was enjoyed by all.

Respectfully submitted in Tau Kappa Phi,  

Ron Niederwerfer


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