By Bob Poulsen
On Saturday morning September 22nd our region’s second annual Leadership Transition Forum was held by our San Diego Area Alumni Association at Cal Theta’s house neighboring SDSU’s campus. The Forum’s purpose is to help train and equip the fraternity’s promising new leaders for the challenges and was attended by 34 chapter officers from UCSD (CA Chi), Cal State San Marcos (CA Alpha-Gamma) and San Diego State (CA Theta). The participating undergraduates and twelve alumni were all made welcome by Alumni Association President Adam Porter, who recognized CA Alpha-Gamma for receiving our National’s John O. Moseley Zeal Award, after which he invited all to sit down and enjoy a breakfast sponsored by Province Chi-Alpha.
Following breakfast the officers each moved on to one of the ten breakout groups focused on the leadership position (ranging from Eminent Archon to Social Chair) held. Each group was staffed with an alumni facilitator to help guide the discussion and ensure that the roles, requirements and responsibilities were covered. An added benefit beyond exploring the topics was the interaction between, and the relationships formed, by members of the three chapters (an exchange of contact information was encouraged).
A highlight of the day was a guest presentation by Dean James Ellis. Brother Ellis obtained his undergraduate degree from University of New Mexico; a master’s degree from Harvard; served as a business executive; joined the faculty of USC as a professor in 1997; and has served as the dean of its Marshall School of Business since 2007. He provided our audience with a personal description of the challenges and needs which they face as young leaders – the significance and helpfulness of having long term goals; the skill and importance of listening to others; his view that a failure or setback is really a learning opportunity; and many more helpful takes.