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  • Writer's pictureKip Barton

2024 President's Letter

Updated: Feb 1

2024 is moving at a fast pace, and I expect it to continue this way, so before I get too far behind I want to update you on the latest news. In 2023, we hosted several luncheons at the San Diego Yacht Club. We were lucky enough to have our beloved Brother, Jerry Sanders, as our guest speaker in March. Also in March, we celebrated Founders Day at The Catamaran Resort. It was so nice to restart Founders Day! We continued our Padres/ Brews with Bros event at Petco Park. In October, coach Brian Dutcher was our guest speaker. It was great to recount the magical run that the Aztecs made in March, culminating in an appearance in the Final Four in Houston. I believe...

The annual Holiday Party was at the San Diego Yacht Club, and we all enjoyed the good cheer, delicious appetizers, and of course the brotherhood.

Many of you have asked about membership for the coming year, and we’ve revamped the membership program to provide more benefits at each membership level. We’ve expanded membership to the following levels: Neophyte Club, Phoenix Club, Lion Club, Minerva Club, and Phi Alpha Club. Of note is the benefits that come with the Lion, Minerva and Phi Alpha Clubs. These memberships provide free access to various events, luncheons and more. Check out the details on our website and be sure to join!

BREAKING NEWS: Founders Day is back! Last year, it really hit home when we were speaking with the undergrads at Cal Theta and not one of them had ever been to a Founders Day event, let alone even heard of it! We had a great turnout of undergrads for the event last March. We are happy to announce that we will be having a Founders Day dinner on March 9, 2024.

The Catamaran Resort in Mission Beach will host the dinner in the Aviary Ballroom. As many of you know, The Catamaran hosted many Founders Day dinners over the years, so we felt it was the right place to continue this special event there. We can’t wait to see a room full of alumni and undergrads (from Cal Theta and Cal Alpha Gamma) celebrating the founding of Sigma Alpha Epsilon. Ben Johnson (Eminent Supreme Deputy Archon) will be our guest of honor and invitations have been extended to other special guests. We are counting on alumni to go big and show up for this special evening. Grab a few of your favorite brothers and urge them to participate. Last year, of the 125 in attendance, the undergrads outnumbered the alumni 75 to 50! We need to show the undergrads what Founders Day is all about so please make an effort to be there.

A new initiative that has gained traction is called “ΣΑΕ Third Thursdays”. It’s a “Dutch treat” alumni engagement initiative to gather Brothers together on the third Thursday of each month in locales and cities throughout the Realm. Whether you are new to your city, a long-time resident, seeking to build your professional network, or simply enjoying meeting other ΣΑΕs, Sigma Alpha Epsilon wants you to have a place where you can celebrate Brotherhood on the third Thursday of each month. The ΣΑΕ network is vast and powerful, and we know Brothers who attend these informal gatherings will find great value to broaden personal and professional connections, deepening the Bonds of Our Beloved Order. As you know, we have been doing an event called “Brews with Bros” for the past few years. ΣΑΕ Third Thursdays have the same objective as Brews with Bros, but it is being promoted on a national level. There are a number of ΣΑΕ alumni (from across the realm) in San Diego County who have not engaged with our Alumni Association. With this initiative, I am hoping to draw more brothers to our events and grow our membership. We are scouting new locations for the first “Third Thursday” of 2024, so keep an eye out for details (time is usually 5-7 and location rotates among local craft breweries, restaurants, or bars).

CAL THETA TURNS 75! October 8th marks the 75th Anniversary of Cal Theta. We are looking into planning a special event to commemorate this milestone. Keep your eyes and ears open for an announcement. Also, if you have any ideas or suggestions, please reach out to me to discuss.

In 2024, we plan to continue the events that you have become accustomed to (quarterly luncheons, Founders Day Dinner, Padres Night with the Bros, and the Holiday Party) while adding new and different events in order to attract new members. It is imperative for the health of our fraternity that there are strong alumni associations across the realm that not only provide an avenue of ΣΑΕ to their alumni members but also provide help and support to their undergraduate chapters. We are fortunate to be members of one of the strongest alumni associations in the country, and it is no surprise that we have two solid chapters here in San Diego. That, of course, could not be possible without the year-in and year-out support of all of you. Thank you in advance for your continued membership and participation! I look forward to seeing you soon.

Kip Barton

President, San Diego Area ΣΑΕ Alumni Association


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