Renowned surgeon Cooley a smooth operator on, off court
By Dale Robertson
March 17, 2013
Long before he became a world-famous heart surgeon and Houston icon, Denton Cooley had a nickname.
Artist Daddy-O Wade's "Smokesax" on its Way to a New Gig
"Sigs for Sax" Join Together to Support its Future
Bob "Daddy-O" Wade's colossal "Smokesax" sculpture, the long-time landmark of Houston's Billy Blues Restaurant and Bar, made its 13-mile journey on February 28 from Richmond Avenue to its new temporary home at The Orange Show on Munger Street.
Bill Gallagher '57 commissioned Wade '62, his good friend and Tau brother, to create the 70-foot-tall sculpture for his namesake restaurant in 1993. Constructed from a VW Beetle, oil field pipes, a surfboard and other recycled parts, the giant blue saxophone has been a folk art icon at this Galleria area site for 20 years. But Billy Blues has long since gone and it was time for "Smokesax" to move on as well. To ensure its preservation, the property owners donated "Smokesax" to The Orange Show Center for Visionary Art.
Wade oversaw the complicated and bittersweet process of watching one of his most acclaimed works of art be sawed into five pieces before it could be transferred to its temporary location. The Orange Show, a nonprofit organization, underwrote the cost to dismantle and transport the sculpture to an onsite warehouse, where it will remain until a site for its permanent display is selected.
Several Kappa Sigs, including Dan Moody '60 and Bob Moor '64, have joined together to create an underwriting campaign they're calling "Sigs for Sax." Moody has donated $10,000 toward the funds needed for its preservation and future relocation to a new site.
Denton Cooley Tau Classic's Sig-Am
Format Adds a New Twist in 2013
This year's Denton Cooley Tau Classic Golf Tournament, held February 19 at Houston's Memorial Park, attracted the largest number of players to date, with more than 90 golfers participating.
The new Sig-Am format -- Sigs with non-Sig partners -- increased the number of players and added a new spark of fun as well.
Players and guests enjoyed beautiful weather, a delicious lunch on the terrace and a relaxing happy hour to cap off a wonderful day.
Guests included parents of current actives, old rushees who didn't pledge Kappa Sig but wish they had, Kappa Sigs from other chapters, including A&M, Ole Miss and LSU, and friends of Dr. Cooley and other Tau alums.
Congratulations to our winners: John Martin '79, Steve Casacia, Jim Widner '78 and Tom Lockwood '81.
Tournament directors Jim Pritchett '71 and Chuck Berson '67 extend a warm thank you to everyone who played and volunteered,with a special thank you to the Cooley Tau Classic sponsors: Tito's Vodka, (Tito Beveridge '81), Oil and Gas Journal (Roy Markum '68), Guero's Taco Bar (Rob Lippincott '67) and John Martin '79.
The seventh annual Denton Cooley Tau Classic is scheduled for February 18, 2014, so save the date!
Bill Wittliff Kappa Sigma Man of the Year
The opportunity to honor Bill Wittliff '59 as the 2012 National Kappa Sigma Man of the Year was an event that we as Tau brothers will cherish for the rest of our lives. Many of you have heard me tell the story about Bill wagging his finger at me, clearly irritated when he learned that I had submitted his name for nomination. His reaction didn't surprise me. His life's work has been about putting the spotlight on others, while deflecting it himself. He's one of the most accomplished men I know, but also one of the most humble. After the National Committee announced that Bill was their choice, he slowly warmed to the idea and grew to embrace it. When the big day arrived on January 12, Bill had a smile on his face and a twinkle in his eye that never went away. He was honored to accept the award, but the real joy for Bill was being with so many of his Tau brothers to share great memories and appreciate how strongly those Kappa Sig bonds have held us together throughout the years.
Bill, you're everything that's good about being a Kappa Sig. There's no one more deserving of this honor than you.
Hagen McMahon '66
They tell you when they are rushing you that these are the guys who will be in your wedding, who you will travel with through life, and some who will be pallbearers at your funeral. I have found that to be exactly right, and I'm glad to have a body of friends like that. What a great joy.
Bill Wittliff '59
Rob Lippincott '67, Tito Beveridge '81 and Cathy Lippincott
John Cochran '61, Rolf Larson '59, Mike Goldstein, M.D. '61,
Bill Wittliff '59, Jim Carroll '59 and Joe Howell '61
Hagen McMahon '66, Mike Sharpe '79, Jim Pritchett '71 and Reggie Tuck '69
Tau Alumni Visit the Hallowed Grounds of the Original Kappa Sigma Tau Chapter House
On January 13, the morning following Bill Wittliff's Kappa Sigma Man of the Year celebration, a group of alumni and family gathered at the former site of the original Tau Chapter House for this photo. Located on what was then West 19th Street (now Martin Luther King Blvd.), the house faced the UT campus, with a direct view north to the Tower. It was the home of UT Kappa Sigs for more than 70 years, until the fraternity relocated to West Campus on San Gabriel in 1972, and then to 1002 West 26th Street in 1996. The gathering was a great opportunity to cap off the best Tau alumni reunion in recent history.
Burck: Higher education deserves careful selections
Posted: 12:00 a.m. Saturday, Feb. 2, 2013
By Dan Burck
From secretary of state to alcoholic beverage commissioner, Gov. Rick Perry has hand-selected the individuals who bear responsibility for how much of Texas' state government runs. Perhaps more than any other appointment, a selection to the role of regent of one our state's six university systems carries with it a tremendous responsibility and burden for the future of our state.
Our institutions of higher education don't just educate - they generate research and development, attract new businesses and industry and help create knowledge that will propel our state forward in the future. The role of regent is one that requires thoughtful and engaged oversight - and a commitment to take the long view, respecting the legacy of the institutions while promoting a future that serves the complex and growing needs of our diverse state.
University systems are vast enterprises that require tremendous skill, dedication and commitment to govern effectively. As a former chancellor of the University of Texas System, I am keenly aware of the daunting task of managing one of our state's most important entities. The UT System is a tremendous economic engine for the state of Texas, and with its six health institutions, nine academic campuses, more than 200,000 students, over 18,000 faculty members and nearly 70,000 employees, it has an important role in charting the course for our state's future.
I have become increasingly concerned about the current debate over the direction and future of higher education in the state. Texas has worked over many decades to earn a reputation for quality that is helping us attract world-class teachers and students to our universities. The businesses that seemingly flood into our state, helping create jobs and buoy our economy during a time of a national recession, do not just come here for the tax incentives and pro-business climate we have engendered. They come to Texas - many to Austin - for the human capital that germinates around our world-class teaching and research institution, and the subsequent innovation, research and development and industry it generates.
Historically, the members of the Board of Regents have been champions of the system's flagship campus in Austin. Yes, challenging the institution to be more effective and efficient, and addressing issues of concern, but also praising its leaders and their efforts, and supporting them publicly when unfairly criticized. However, some of the most recent regents selected by the governor have worked to dilute, undermine and even attack the mission that they swore to protect.
In fact, Brenda Pejovich, a current member of the UT System Board of Regents is also a board member of the Texas Public Policy Foundation, a privately funded interest group with a record of criticizing UT-Austin and recommending reforms that would undermine the quality of the institution, repel talented faculty and researchers, and have a chilling effect on critically-needed philanthropy - philanthropy that is increasingly crucial as state funding continues to shrink.
The terms of 17 regents of Texas public university systems expired last week. Three of those members are from the University of Texas System. In its handbook for public university systems, the American Association of Governing Boards provides a number of "hallmarks" for effective boards, cultivated over years of experience. For example, an effective board:
* Understands and respects the vital difference between governing and managing;
* Always balances the institution's interests and welfare, with the needs and priorities of the state;
* Nurtures and enhances the legacy of the institution;
* Balances advocacy and oversight.
It is my hope that when the governor makes his appointments, he will chose individuals who reflect these important hallmarks and who commit to strengthening and supporting our institutions - not tearing them down.
Texas is a diverse state whose population deserves a diversity of high-quality higher education opportunities. We need a wide range of educational options to meet these diverse needs, from low-cost, broad access institutions to Tier One research universities with the very highest standards of quality and excellence. And we need regents who respect the diversity of those interests and support the institutions in their quest to achieve their missions.
Distinguished Alumni Speaker Series
Jay Chernosky '78, managing director in the Energy & Power Investment Banking group at Wells Fargo Securities in Houston, was the featured Alumni Speaker at the Kappa Sig Lodge on October 18.
Jay spoke to the Chapter about investment banking with a focus on the oil and gas industry, outlining in a PowerPoint presentation entry level positions and work expectations. He also spoke about Wells Fargo Securities and recent activities within the firm.
Jay currently develops strategic and financial ideas and solutions for relationships he manages for the investment bank. He also creates and executes public and private capital market activities, including equities, bonds, convertibles, private placements, loan syndications and advisory services. His primary focus is on the upstream and midstream sectors.
Prior to joining Wells Fargo, Jay was with the Energy Division of First City, Texas - Houston for ten years, ultimately serving as vice president and manager of the Western Group of the Petroleum and Minerals Department from 1989 to 1993.
Jay serves on the Regional Board of Directors of the Independent Petroleum Association of America. He has served on the Board and as President of the Houston Energy Finance Group and on the Board of Directors of the Houston Producers' Forum.
Jay graduated from The University of Texas with a BBA and received an MBA from the University of Houston. Jay is also a graduate of the Southwestern Graduate School of Banking at Southern Methodist University.
Jay and his wife, Melinda live in Houston and have two grown children, Tommy, 24, who graduated from TCU with a degree in mechanical engineering and Ellie, 22, a UT graduate in Plan II.
Rob Lippincott '67 is not only the proprietor of the popular restaurant, Guero's, he's a visionary who spearheaded the revitalization of South Congress Avenue, now known as SoCo, one of Austin's most successful and colorful retail and restaurant districts.
"I've known Rob for 45 years and have seen him operate and grow his business in Austin for over 20 years," said Tim Herman '63, who introduced Lippincott to the Chapter at Alumni Speaker's night at the Lodge on November 12. "The most impressive thing about his career and business is the absolute absence of turnover in a business where employee turnover is a way of life. It illustrates the fairness and generosity with which he treats his employees - and enjoys their undying loyalty in return. His approach is key to a successful life and career."
Rob and his wife, Cathy, after living in Mexico for several years in the 80s, returned to Austin and opened the original Guero's in a former convenience store on East Oltorf. In 1995, looking to expand to a larger venue, they bought what was formerly the Central Seed and Feed Store on South Congress and created the iconic Guero's Taco Bar of today, a beloved neighborhood eatery and hang-out for the locals and a legendary destination restaurant for out-of-towners, including celebrities and world leaders. Former Presidents Bill Clinton and George W. Bush are known to be avid Guero's fans.
Inspired by the great cantinas of old-world Mexico, Guero's is famous for its hand-shaken margueritas with fresh-squeezed lime juice, a huge selection of Mexican beers, and specialty dishes such as caldo de pollo and tacos al pastor.
Guero's Oak Garden is a popular live music venue and a favorite gathering place for Kappa Sigs.
Rob and Cathy have two daughters, Bette and Lyle, both who now live in Chicago.
Bob "Daddy-O" Wade '61 Brings "Cowgirls and Critters" to Fort Worth
Painter and sculptor Bob Wade's collection of work entitled "Cowgirls and Critters" was a featured exhibition at Fort Worth's William Campbell Contemporary Art gallery in November. The 20-piece collection drew enthusiastic crowds and critical acclaim. Visit Bob Wade's work online at bobwade.com.
Sharing some laughs with Bob "Daddy-O" Wade '61
are Keith Tura '11, Travis Hayes '10,
Thomas Dowlearn '10 and Evan Breeland '10.
Rick Thielke '04 Makes Forbes "30 Under 30" List
Rick Thielke, a portfolio manager at SandRidge Capital in Houston, was recognized by Forbes magazine as one of its select "30 Under 30" outstanding achievers in the field of energy. The online magazine reports that "Forbes editors and reporters worked with panels of expert judges to choose the fields's brightest stars under the age of 30" for its annual listing. (Read more)
Tau Alumni Win Top Honor
at 2012 National Leadership Conference
Tau Trustees Mike Sharpe '79 and
Jim Pritchett '71 accept leadership award
on behalf of the Tau Alumni Chapter
from Worthy Grand Master
There was much to celebrate for UT Kappa Sigs who attended the Kappa Sigma Eastern Region's Leadership Conference in New Orleans, LA on July 27 and 28. Chosen from a field of 252 North American Chapters, the Tau Alumni Chapter was awarded Kappa Sigma National's "Alumni Chapter of the Year."
"This award is presented to the Tau Chapter alumni for the great work they have done this past year and in recent years," said Mitchell (Mic) Wilson, executive director of Kappa Sigma Fraternity International. "They have organized the alumni into a tremendous resource for Kappa Sigma and especially for the undergraduate Chapter. The Brotherhood in this Chapter is as strong as I have seen," he added.
Jim Pritchett '71 and Mike Sharpe '79, Texas Kappa Sigma Educational Foundation president and treasurer, respectively, accepted the award on behalf of the Tau Alumni Chapter.
This year's leadership conference was the largest gathering of Kappa Sigs ever -- with more than 2,000 members in attendance.
Alumni Speaker Series Begins a New Term
Our Distinguished Alumni Speaker series for the new term offers an exciting line-up of Kappa Sig alums who are among the best in their fields.
Energy investment banking specialist Jay Chernosky '78, Managing Director at Wells Fargo Securities in Houston, is scheduled to speak Thursday, October 18.
On the horizon for future speaking dates are Legislative consultant Nick Kralj '62 and Austin-based attorney Joe K. Longley '63, both former "Tau Man of the Year" honorees.
Nick Kralj, now a top lobbyist at the Texas Legislature, began his career in politics as an aide to Ben Barnes during his terms as Texas House Speaker and Lt. Governor.
Joe Longley was named to Texas Lawyer's list of "100 Legal Legends" in 2000 and received the State Bar Insurance Section's Insurance Legend award in 2011.
We have tentative commitments from several other alumni and we'll announce those names and dates when they are confirmed.
Thanks so much for your support of this great program.
Reggie Tuck '69
Texas KS Educational Foundation
Tau 125 Campaign Phase II: Please Make Your Pledge Today
Dear Tau Trustees & Alumni,
Time is running out to reach our pledge goal of $1.5 million -- the amount needed to begin construction on the new Kappa Sigma House in 2013. If we do not have pledge commitments by October 20 for the full $1.5 million, construction plans will be delayed.
We appeal to you today to make your pledge to the Tau 125 Campaign so that Phase II -- the Kappa Sigma House -- can be completed on schedule.
The Kappa Sig Lodge -- one of the finest fraternity facilities in the state -- is here for today's Tau Chapter and for future Chapters because you stepped up and honored your commitment to your Kappa Sigma brotherhood.
We ask that you step up once again and make your pledge today. Our contact information is below.
Let's continue the proud Tau legacy for today's and tomorrow's UT Kappa Sigs.
Thank you in advance for your support.
Cell: (214) 202-3876
Cell: (832) 276-1964
P.S. The preliminary designs and specifications for the Kappa Sigma House are illustrated in this downloadable brochure.
Distinguished Alumni Speaker Series Features Tito Beveridge '81
Tito Beveridge's formula for success goes beyond his ability to create the sublimely drinkable sipping vodka now famously known in all 50 states as Tito's Handmade Vodka. His big picture formula? Find your passion, find a way to do it better than anyone else is doing it and build a brand with your own personal story in a way that turns tasters into brand-loyal word-of-mouth promoters.
As guest speaker at the Kappa Sig Lodge on April 23, Tito shared the journey that brought him where he is today with a captivated audience of more than 100 Tau actives.
A Kappa Sig who graduated from UT in 1984 with degrees in geology and geophysics, Tito worked in the oil and gas business in Texas and then in Venezuela and Columbia, where he ran heli-portable dynamite seismic crews. He returned to Texas and started a drilling company in Houston, but "got tired of chasing the buck" and moved back to Austin.
Working in the mortgage business, he started making flavored vodka to give as Christmas presents to his friends. Enthusiastic comments from both friends and strangers who tasted his customized drink prompted him to take the leap from amateur to pro as a vodka maker.
After would-be investors turned him down with nay-saying predictions that he would never get permits or never get a distributor, he used his personal savings and 19 credit cards to put himself in business.
He engineered and built a production still on his own and served as a one-man production, sales and marketing force. Then a pivotal moment came with an invitation to the World Spirits Competition. Too busy to attend the competition himself, he sent a couple of bottles as entries. Not only did Tito's vodka place first, it won the double gold medal, the unanimous judges choice, beating out 72 other vodkas from around the world.
Tito's numbers are impressive -- more than $60 million in gross sales made in 2011 alone. But what's even more impressive is the determination and optimism that fueled his efforts to launch his fledgling operation almost 20 years ago.
Tito's Handmade Vodka is produced in Austin at Texas' first and oldest legal distillery. Made in small batches and micro-distilled in the same way as fine single malt scotches and French cognacs, it's designed to be savored by spirit connoisseurs and everyday drinkers alike.
Tito lives in Austin with his wife, Lori, and their three children.
Health & Fitness Sports Magazine Features Robert Whilden
By Tom Behrens
Sometimes, an athlete's strongest motivation to improve isn't just his or her own personal best performance, but that of a fellow competitor's. And that was exactly the case for 76-year-old Robert Whilden.
As a young track athlete, Whilden became involved in sprinting while attending Lamar High School, where he won the state championship in the 220-meter dash and second place in the 100-meter dash. He took his talents to the University of Texas and won the 100-meter dash event at the Border Olympics, West Texas Relays, Kansas Relays and the Southwest Conference Meet. With sprinting as his specialty, Whilden was a finalist for two events in the U.S. Olympic Trials in 1956.
1958 Touch Football, Class A Runner-Up Kappa Sigma Front Row: Roy Arthur Menge, Larry Sikes, Johnny Richard Warren, Clifton Howington Morros Jr., Robert Harral Whilden Jr.
Back Row: Dwight Leon Hill, Lynn Prewit Carter, Ronald Hugh Waldie, J. Brown Cutbirth, Robert Lee Stillwell, Tom Walker Burke
Copyright © 2012 The University of Texas at Austin
Division of Recreational Sports.
But after he graduated from UT, he went on to attend law school, landed a career practicing law with Vincent and Elkins and started a family with his wife, Mary. At the age of 39, Whilden had long since hung up his track shoes and hadn't competed in sprints since college. But his competitive fire was reignited when he just happened to read an article on Thane Baker's 100-meter dash win at the Masters. Baker's time clocked 10.7 seconds, and it left Whilden wondering if he could beat Baker's time.
So he purchased a new pair of running shoes and started getting into shape. A year later, he was sprinting again, and he competed at the national Masters meet and won, tying the record at 10.7 seconds.
From the age of 40 to 70, he never ran another meet. "I got my exercise through tennis and golf, but I never ran," he said. "I was never, even today, not just a fan of going out and running. Some people go out and run three to four miles or more. To tell the truth, unless I am in some type of competition, I don't consider just plain old running that much fun."
Wouldn't you know it, at the age of 70, the competitive spirit in Whilden surfaced again. "I kept up with what was happening in the Masters meets and I started wondering if I got back in shape, could I beat the times of the winners? It took me over a year to get where I could really sprint again," Whilden said. He now competes in several state and national sprint events throughout the year.
Photo Tom Behrens
Recent accomplishments include a second place finish of 14.27 seconds in the 100 meters at the Senior National Games in Houston; 13.68 at the Penn Relays, and then a 13.55 in the 100 meters in the Huntsman World Senior Games in Utah, all happening in 2011.
To stay in shape, Whilden practices with a group of runners at the Rice University track three days a week under the tutelage of Billy Collins, another famous Houston runner. "This guy deserves all the recognition you can give him," Collins said of Whilden, "one fantastic gentleman. Some runners think of all the different things they have to accomplish to become a better runner. For Bobbie, it's just perfecting the efficiency of his movements on the track. There are certain things as a coach you can't teach. They just have to be there. He has those talents; you just have to guide him."
"I feel good all the time," Whilden said. "I'm not tired, my health is good. I'm never sick. I'm not going to say that this is all attributed to running, but I do think it's a major part of my staying fit. I don't want to stop again. It's hard to come back when you stop."
Bill Jackson '86 is Distinguished Alumni Speaker in February
Bill Jackson '86, one of Texas's leading environmental lawyers, was the Tau Chapter's Distinguished Alumni Speaker on February 27.
Jackson is recognized by Chambers and Partners' USA guide, Texas Super Lawyers-Rising Stars publications, Houston and H-Texas Magazines, and as "AV-Preeminent" by Martindale Hubble.
He is a Life Fellow of the Texas and Houston Bar Associations, currently serves on the Trees for Houston and Galveston Bay Foundation boards and is President of the University of Houston Law Alumni Association.
While at UT, Jackson was Austin-Area Rush Captain, Grand Procurator (Treasurer), Grand Master of Kappa Sig and a member of Silver Spurs.
After earning a B.A. in Government in 1989, he attended law school at the University of Houston Law Center. He was awarded the Harold Sellers Scholarship as the top student in his first year section and was an associate editor of the Houston Law Review.
In 1992 he graduated from law school and began practicing law in the Houston office of Mayer Brown & Platt, a Chicago-based firm with an international practice. In 1996, he moved his litigation practice to a Houston-based firm, where he made partner in 2001.
In 2008, he started his own firm, Jackson Gilmour & Dobbs, P.C. Now with almost 20 years of experience in handling a broad range of energy, environmental and natural resource litigation matters, Jackson has built a highly respected national practice focused on key natural resource damages cases.
Shortly after the Deepwater Horizon Oil Spill began, Jackson was retained by the Jindal Administration to represent the State of Louisiana in assessing natural resource damages and economic impacts to the State as a result of the disaster. He likewise serves as Special Counsel to the State of New Jersey regarding the natural resource damages to the Passaic River and Newark Bay and as lead counsel in the Passaic River litigation against the successors to the Diamond Alkali Superfund Site.
Jackson also represents private sector clients, such as Union Pacific Railroad, in significant environmental and natural resource matters across the country, including the Portland Harbor Superfund Site and the Upper Clark Fork River Basin Superfund Site in Butte/Anaconda Montana.
He and his wife, Shawn, have two children, Catherine, age 11, and Will, age 10. They live in Houston.
Rick Warren '78 is Distinguished Alumni Speaker in January
John R. (Rick) Warren, Jr. '78, venture capitalist, philanthropist, world-traveling big game hunter and fisherman and major fundraiser for the Tau Chapter, was the Distinguished Alumni Speaker on January 23.
Warren earned a Mechanical Engineering degree from UT in 1981. He joined Treanor Equipment in the mid-80s, a Caterpillar dealer in Abilene serving 40 counties in West Texas. After 18 months in Abilene, Warren, his father Johnny (Tau '55) and other family members purchased a Caterpillar dealership serving 47 counties in Northwest Texas.
In 1990 Warren moved the headquarters from Amarillo to Midland to be close to another family-owned business, Compressor Systems, Inc. (CSI), today an industry leader in all phases of gas compression.
With Warren as president, West Texas Cat enjoyed nine consecutive years of growth serving government entities, as well as the construction and oil and gas industries. The Cat dealer has since been granted additional service territory which now includes 99 counties in West Texas and Oklahoma.
In 1999, Warren moved his family to Austin to pursue other interests. He became a professional day trader and enjoyed four years of tremendous success.
Warren has two grown children, Trey, 28, a chef in Miami, and Haley, 25, married and living in Ft. Collins, CO.
Warren was instrumental in launching the Tau 125 Campaign. He plans to stay involved throughout the completion of Phase II. "I'm dedicated to helping the Chapter be the best fraternity on the UT campus and one of the best Kappa Sigma chapters is the country," said Warren.
In 2010, Warren received the Frank C. Erwin award for his many years of outstanding service to the Tau Chapter.
Doug McLeod '60 Donates Tau Man of the Year Plaque
On behalf of the Chapter, Tau House Manager Nash Horne '10
receives the new Tau Man of the Year plaque from Doug McLeod '60,
current Tau Trustee and 2004 Tau Man of the Year.
Doug McLeod '60 has graciously presented a plaque to the Tau Chapter comprising the names of Tau Men of the Year dating back to 1963.
We appreciate his investment of both time and money to have this roster of outstanding Tau men produced as a handsome commemorative plaque to hang in a place of honor at the Lodge.
A Great Day on the Greens
The Fifth Annual Denton Cooley Tau Classic golf tournament was held February 21 at Houston's Memorial Park.
Denton Cooley, MD '38 and tournament director Jim Prichett '71 prepare for a fun day of golf with the Kappa Sigs.
Dr. Cooley's celebrated opening tournament shot. He's still got that swing!
More than 80 players from Houston, Dallas, Fort Worth, Austin, Atlanta, Kerrville, Las Vegas, Tyler and San Antonio participated in the tournament.
Sponsors included Bobby Stillwell '56, Rick Warren '78, Tommy Schillaci '67, Roy Markum '68, Jim Pritchett '71 and John Martin '79.
Congratulations to the winning team: Randy Wheeles, George Reid and Howard Lederer '72.
Distinguished Alumni Speaker Series Features
Bob "Daddy-O" Wade (Tau '61)
Kappa Sigs are loaded with legends, but none more colorful than Bob "Daddy-O" Wade. Most famous for his oversized sculptures of Texas symbols, "Daddy-O" is an artist noted for "helping shape the 1970s Texas Cosmic Cowboy counterculture."
As featured Alumni Speaker at the Kappa Sig Lodge on September 26, Wade regaled the Tau Chapter with stories from his college days as a Kappa Sig in the early 60s.
As fate would have it, his Alumni Speaker appearance marked the golden anniversary of a life-changing event. "It's an honor to be here on the 50th anniversary of my 1961 pledge class date with guys like 'Mother Hagen' McMahon, Nick Kralj, Joe Longley and many other great and successful characters," said Wade.
Wade recalled that a high school friend's older brother encouraged him to hook up with the "Sigs" when he got to UT and to "tell them Machine Gun Kelly" sent him.
Arriving from El Paso, Wade's customized hot rod, slicked-back hair and hipster language quickly earned him the lifelong moniker "Daddy-O," given to him by the older Kappa Sigs. "Then they cast me in a skit for the Varsity Carnival playing a native American," said Wade. Bill Wittliff (Tau '59), screenwriter/producer for feature films including Lonesome Dove and The Perfect Storm, was one of the writers. Rife with bawdy humor, the skit raised many eyebrows in the audience. "As planned, we grossed out the sororities," said Wade.
Wade spoke fondly of many lifelong friendships that began at the Kappa Sig house, including with one of his closest friends, Monk White (Tau '61). "Monk and his Fort Worth guys introduced me to country music. I can still hear him singing "There stands the glass."
Much of Wade's artwork is now in the collections of Tau brothers.
"For a guy from isolated El Paso, it's been an unbelievable journey of friendships and networking. Pledging Kappa Sig was one of the best things I ever did," said Wade.
He concluded by encouraging the actives to cherish their Kappa Sig bonds and stay active in the Chapter.
Wade received a BFA from UT and an MA from the University of California at Berkeley.
He has received three NEA grants and his work has been included in Biennials in Paris, France; New Orleans, LA; and the Whitney Museum of Art, New York, NY. Collections include Chase Manhattan Bank, AT&T, the Menil Collection, the Houston Museum of Art and the Austin Museum of Art.
Wade has produced three books and his work is included in "Oil Patch Dreams: Images of the Petroleum Industry in American Art" (Austin Museum of Art, March '98). His work can be viewed online at
He lives in Austin with his wife, Lisa. Their daughter, Rachel, is a senior -- and an art major -- at UT.
Initiation Date Arrives 29 Years Later
Robert Glauser joined Kappa Sigma in 1972 and would have been initiated the following year -- had it not been for a car accident. Fortunately, he made a full recovery, returned to UT and today is president of Glauser McNair, a landscape contracting company in Houston.
On November 4, Glauser, with the help of more than a dozen Tau brothers, was initiated into the Kappa Sigma brotherhood.
Congratulations, Robert Glauser!
Initiation Day: (Left to Right) Matt Gose, Mike Doherty, Tom McCarthy, Mark Hablinski,
Howard Lederer, Robert Glauser, Jim Pritchett, Kevin McConn, Hagen McMahon,
Richard Lucas, Joe Bailey, Chuck Fleming, Jay Piper, Doug Pritchett
Parents' Weekend Celebration
2011 Tau Man of the Year Wade Kilpatrick and his band "Mid Life Crisis and the Hot Flashes"
played for an enthusiastic crowd at the Kappa Sig Lodge following the awards ceremony on November 5.
Enjoying the Parents' Weekend frat party are Allison Bailey, Joe Bailey (Tau '73),
Libby Alcorn, George Alcorn, (Tau '53 ) and Tucker Willis (Tau '59).
Joe Bailey, Jr. (Tau '03) Earns International Acclaim for Documentary
Austin filmmaker Joe Bailey, Jr.'s first feature-length documentary has created a buzz of excitement that even the most seasoned filmmaker's work rarely enjoys.
"Incendiary: The Willingham Case," the award-winning documentary Bailey co-directed with Steve Mims, is described by Bailey as "equal parts murder mystery, forensic investigation and political drama."
"Incendiary" made its world premiere at the 2011 SXSW film festival in March, winning the prestigious Louis Black Special Jury Prize. Premiering on the east coast in June, it was a 2011 Official Selection at AFI Discovery SILVERDOCS, an international film festival noted as the "premiere showcase for documentary film," by Hollywood Reporter.
About the film:
In 1991, Cameron Todd Willingham's three daughters died in a Corsicana, Texas house fire. Convicted largely on faulty arson evidence, Willingham was sentenced to death for the murder of his children.
At the center of the controversy is Governor Rick Perry, who ignored the science that could have saved Willingham's life and allegedly manipulated a state forensics commission evaluation of the case in the years to follow.
"We set out to make a film that sticks to the facts of the original event and the scientific evidence surrounding the case," said Bailey. "We had no other cause. But with the inevitable injection of politics into the story, the film needed to pull back the curtain on some rough and ready political hardball."
Bailey began working as a cinematographer and sound recordist after graduating from the University of Texas School of Law. Finishing up a postdoctoral fellowship at the law school in 2009, he enrolled in Steve Mims' Production Two course. A conversation after class about clemency, criminal process and forensic science went on for days and became a film.
INCENDIARY opens at Austin's Violet Crown Cinema on Friday, September 23. Tickets will be available at the cinema or through violetcrowncinema.com. Tau alumni in Austin this fall who would like to catch a screening should contact Joe at (firstname.lastname@example.org). If he's in town, he'll be happy to meet you at the VCC bar to say hello and discuss the film after the show.
The film opens at the Landmark E Street Theatre in Washington, DC the following week (9/30); additional cities will be announced soon.
For more information and to view the film trailer, visit INCENDIARYMOVIE.COM.
Distinguished Alumni Speaker Series Enthusiastically Received
The "Distinguished Alumni Speaker" Series is off to a great start. Denton A. Cooley, M.D. (Tau '38), internationally acclaimed heart surgeon, served as our inaugural speaker on April 11 and former Chancellor of The University of Texas System R. D. (Dan) Burck (Tau '51) followed on May 2.
Dr. Cooley provided a delightful and inspiring video presentation sharing great memories of his days as a Kappa Sig active and insightful comments about his career and personal life since. Summing up his philosophy about the choices we make in life, he recited the following poem, which is inscribed in the foyer of the Texas Heart Institute:
"A Bag of Tools"
Isn't it strange
That princes and kings
And clowns that caper
In sawdust rings,
And common people
Like you and me
Are builders for eternity?
Each is given a bag of tools,
A shapeless mass
A book of rules;
And each must make
Ere life has flown
A stumbling block
Or a stepping stone.
American Poet R. L. Sharpe
May's featured speaker, Dan Burck, is currently Chairman of the Board for American Campus Communities (NYSE) and serves as a special advisor to The University of Texas System. Prior to his work with the University, Burck was a major force in the private sector in both the national and international worlds of business.
The actives listened with great interest as Chancellor Burck talked about his experiences managing Getty Oil Company's worldwide holdings and the exciting days of launching ESPN, the first cable TV sports network, which Burck helped create.
On behalf of the Chapter and Alumni, I extend my deepest gratitude to both Dr. Cooley and Chancellor Burck who truly define the term "distinguished" and who exemplify the best of the Kappa Sigma traditions of honor, excellence and contributions to humanity.
Reggie Tuck (Tau '68)
Texas Kappa Sigma Educational Foundation
Tau Open at Lakeway a Huge Success
Jack Doherty, Joe Bailey Jr.,
Lane Dodds, Matt Coscio
The 19 teams participating in this year's Tau Open at Lakeway, held April 8 and 9, enjoyed beautiful weather and great fun.
Congratulations to our tournament champions and our other placement teams listed below:
Tournament Champions - Jack Doherty (Tau '03), Lane Dodds (Tau '03), Matt Coscio (Tau '03) and Joe Bailey, Jr. (Tau '03)
First Place - Low gross - Drew Brown (Tau '05), Tom Browder (Tau '06), Brent Pickerell (Tau '05) and Chris Bailey (Tau '04)
Second Place - Low net - Reggie Tuck (Tau '68), Cody Tuck (Tau '07)
Travis Tuck (Tau '10) and Russell Bailey (Tau '09)
Third Place - Low net - Jim Pritchett (Tau '71), Tom McCarthy (Tau '73), Jim Holley (Tau '78) and Matt Thanheiser (Tau '77)
Tentative plans for next year:
Dates: Friday, April 27 & Saturday, April 28
Co-chairmen for 2012: Jack Doherty, Lane Dodds, Matt Coscio and Joe Bailey, Jr.
We will award the green jackets at next year's dinner on Friday night, with plans for burgers or steaks in the newly remodeled Lakeway Live Oak Party Room immediately following the tournament.
Thanks again for everyone's support and participation. Best of luck to next year's tournament coordinators.
Jay R. Houren (Tau '78)
Co-chairman, 2011 Tau Open