I pledged Phi Kappa Tau Fraternity when I first arrived at University of Louisville in Fall 1984 and initiated in January 1985. The chapter name is Beta Beta, which means it was the 54th chapter formed. During Fall Rush, I looked at all the other fraternities, but I felt most at home at the Phi Tau house. I can vividly remember walking up the front porch steps and President Bob Gillespie smiled and shook my hand. He invited me in to see the rest of the house and to meet the Rush Chairman Charlie Fell. I am lucky that God gave me a brain, but I felt like I needed slightly older guys to help mold my social skills. This was such a milestone in my development into the man I am today.
Our Pledge Class was Beta Omega. Our cheer was, “Go to Hell in a Vega, Beta Omega”. As a fundraiser, we sold Krispy Kreme doughnuts. We transported them from the store in my 1984 Cheverolet Chevette – and it smelled like that for months after.
That car was one of the best/most dependable cars I’ve ever owned. My parents gave it to me brand new as a High School Graduation gift. Our Hell Week was during a bitter winter snowstorm. My car was the only one that would start (since it and the battery was brand new), so we drove it – with my 15 Pledge Brothers in it. 😉
With the proceeds of the doughnut sale, we bought a microwave for the house.
I was selected to represent my high school (Grant County High School) in the very first Kentucky Governor’s Scholars Program in 1983. As a result of that, University of Louisville offered me a full academic Pre-Med scholarship. Read more about that mind-blowing opportunity here.
I was the first Pledge to be awarded the Beta Beta Michael Sherman scholarship (in 1984) that pays for one pledge’s Initiation Dues in every class. Mr Sherman was killed by a drunk driver the year before. A year or 2 later, his younger brother pledged and I told him how grateful I was for his family’s gift.
I was the Spring Formal Chairman for 2 years. I never served on the Board. My Theatre/Acting studies involved a lot of time commitment in my personal life/outside of the classroom. I felt like I wouldn’t be able to give enough to the demands of helping to run the fraternity.
I lived in the house the first 2 years, off campus the next 2, and moved back in for my last year. So the fraternity was a big part of my college life. Usually, the Brothers who live in the house are the most active. With my major (BFA in Theatre), it is almost impossible to graduate in only 4 years. Besides, this gave me an extra year to slow down and enjoy myself.
My Dad was the Old School/John Wayne type. He was a great guy, but wasn’t very open/didn’t talk much. Coming from a small town, I wanted guys that are a little older to teach me important skills, like how to get a job, how to dress respectably, how to fit in.
My two biological brothers are quite a bit older than me. All these guys in the fraternity are just a year or 2 older than me, taking the same Core classes (regardless of your Major), already been thru the system – they seemed so much older and mature than me and who I wanted to emulate.
Technically, I graduated in December 1989. I always made a lot of money at Derby time every year, so I chose to stay a little extra longer. I worked at Casa Grisanti (4 Star Italian restaurant) all thru school. By the time I left, I was a Supervisor in the Catering Department. I look back on it and realize – that was a lot of responsibility for a young kid. However, the clients kept asking for me every year.
Yes, there was a lot of drinking in college, but I also developed lifelong bonds with guys that I still keep in touch with. They are the first guys I would call to bail me out of jail. 🙂
I wish I could have volunteered at the Hole in the Wall Gang that eventually became SeriousFun. However, I was performing in various summerstock companies, so could never do it. What an amazing charity!
Of course, no post about fraternity life would be complete without mentioning the movie, Animal House. Here is the trailer.
I’m trying to track down the other House Composites when I was at UofL. I will post them here. Thank you Jon Brockman for the first two.
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My Social Media links are at the bottom of every page.
From this website you can download Pictures, Headshots, Character and Body Shots, Behind the Scenes photos.
On the Resume‘ page, you can see some of the shows I’ve worked on.
On the Video page, are many reels from the various Film, TV, New Media, Industrial, and Theatre shows I have worked on. Many people call themselves an “actor”, but here you can actually see my work.
I have worked as a Bartender for longer than I want to admit. I can teach you how to make a proper Martini.
Of course, you will want to Contact me after watching all my video and reading this fabulous content.