The Fall 2014 issue of The TRIAD is now here! As Acacia remains a constant through the changing seasons, learn more about our chapters' service efforts through Acacia Claus and Seven Days of Service, read about our successful 58th Biennial Conclave and Leadership Academy, and get the latest news on Acacia's chapters, colonies, and alumni. Read the issue online below (it may take a moment to load)...
International Acacia leaders spent several months collaborating over the spring and summer to create the next Strategic Plan for the fraternity. With input from alumni and undergraduates alike, the 2014 Strategic Plan, Playing in Rhythm, was adopted by the 58th Biennial Conclave delegation and outlines the fraternity's vision, objectives, and goals over the next six years. Download the 2014 Strategic Plan (PDF)
It started like any normal workday. I came to the office, started with a cup of coffee, responded to my e-mails, then turned myself in for a "jail" sentencing, where I stood before a judge, got my stripes and a mugshot, and well... you MIGHT be able to guess the rest of that story! On March 20, 2013, I spent my afternoon "behind bars" as part of the Muscular Dystrophy Association Lock-Up. The MDA Lock-Up is an annual event to raise money in the fight against muscle disease. I was contacted in late February to take part in the event, and although I had never done it, I thought this would be a good way for me to give back to the community. On the day of my "arrest", I appeared before the judge -- every bit as wise as his age of 10 years old -- who sentenced me to more time until an additional $250.00 could be raised. I was then whisked off to don my prison attire and handcuffs and have my mugshot taken for all to see.
As you can probably guess, the event was not actually a lock-up, but was treated like one, nonetheless. The judge, bailiff, and most others that were "in charge" were children who have been affected by some type of muscular disease. It was very easy to see why this is a worthwhile event, especially when these kids were so excited to see more people appear before the judge and go to jail.
My bail was set at $2,400.00, a number that I thought might be unachievable. But, with the help of many brothers and friends, we were able to present MDA with $2,970.00 for their organization. Thank you to all our Acacia brothers that helped me achieve this goal and exemplify our motto of Human Service.
As another winter approaches and the last autumn leaves fall to enrich our mother earth, our thoughts turn again to the celebration of holidays and time spent with family and friends. These seasonal rituals serve to remind us of both the present and the everlasting, and no matter where we may happen to be, evoke feelings of home. For so many of us, Acacia has served as a home away from home. Thanksgiving dinners at the chapter house, invitations to Christmas dinner, the lighting of Chanukah candles, or just a shared car ride to our hometowns -- we’ve all been reminded at this time of year of just how fortunate we are. Such blessings also bring into focus those who are not so fortunate. And so, as Acacians, it is a special time for us to give light to our fellow man and exemplify our motto, Human Service.
This season finds Acacians serving our local communities and traveling far and wide to help others. The 9th annual Acacia Claus holiday toy drive is already underway at a number of chapters across North America, with more and more Acacians participating every year. This month, the California University of Pennsylvania Chapter worked with Alpha Sigma Tau sorority to collect over $2,000 worth of toys for Toys for Tots. The brothers of the CUP Chapter serve their community year-round, and this is only one example of their efforts.
In Philadelphia, three hundred miles east of California, PA, Brother Konstantinos A. Fotiadis, Purdue ’98 saw the devastation wrought by Hurricane Sandy and took it upon himself to make a difference. What began as an effort to raise a few hundred dollars for relief goods from friends on Facebook resulted in a loaded semi truck full of 25 lb. food kits, cleaning kits, water, and diapers to supply 400 families, plus Brother Fotiadis’ own truck and U-Haul trailer full of supplies, and a 15-volunteer effort to distribute it all in Holmdel, New Jersey.
Meanwhile, the devastation in Haiti from the 2010 earthquake is still severe. This coming January, Brother Brandon M. Nordhoff, Indiana ’04 is traveling to Carrefour, Haiti to assist in relief efforts. He and his volunteer group will deliver needed supplies and provide medical aid to those who need it most. You can make a contribution to support Brother Nordhoff’s efforts here: http://www.indiegogo.com/p/276104.
From the Ritual: It is a measure of their wisdom that the men who shaped Acacia in its early years selected Human Service as our guiding principle. To those men of thought and vision, human service was the profoundest Truth upon which we can base our lives. For they knew that in serving our fellow man we find the ultimate expression of our own humanity.