Throughout the years, Phi Delta Theta has recognized every day Phis doing extraordinary things through its Road to Greatness campaign, with nominations submitted by readers like you. In addition to our Road to Greatness campaign, we asked for nominations for the Fraternity’s inaugural 30 Under 30 class. The votes are in, and the class is filled with individuals who live out our Cardinal Principles through their achievements and significant contributions to their professions, communities, or universities.
Introducing the Innagural 30 Under 30 Class
Steven Babiak, Chapman ’15
Steven Babiak is a vice president in investment banking at MUFG Bank, Ltd., where he specializes in originating bank and bond financings for utility-scale power projects within the United States and Canada. Based in Los Angeles, he has arranged over $14 billion in debt capital for renewable, thermal, and transmission assets, with his transactions earning six “Deal of the Year” industry awards. His most prominent deals include the $2.3 billion in total financing for Capital Dynamics’ acquisition of 8point3 Energy Partners and the $900 million financing for the development of the 1,250 MW Three Rivers gas project near Chicago. Steven was recently selected for a three-month rotation to MUFG’s Tokyo headquarters in 2023, where he will work on renewable power and infrastructure deals in East Asia. He previously completed MUFG’s Global Analyst Program, which included a month of training in Japan.
Steven graduated from Chapman University in 2015 and remains a very active and proud alumni volunteer, serving on the Alumni Association’s board of directors. At Chapman, he was a founding father of the California Phi Chapter and their first risk management chairman. He has served on the chapter’s advisory board for more than six years and remains close with many Phis across the world. In his spare time, Steven stays active by playing tennis and softball and thoroughly enjoys the LA music scene, having gone to eighteen concerts, three festivals, and one rave in 2022.
“I found my wonderful experience in Phi Delta Theta to be a great starting ground for ‘real world’ life post-graduation, where Friendship, Sound Learning, and Rectitude matter immensely in who you are, are known to be, and what you do in this world.”
Jim Byron, Chapman ’15
Jim Byron, a twenty-eight-year-old nonprofit executive whose career with the Richard Nixon Foundation began in 2007 as a fourteen-year-old marketing intern, is now president, CEO, and a member of the board of directors of the foundation. Jim represents the next generation of civic leaders, displaying the characteristics needed for his role: energetic, creative, decisive, and forward-thinking with management skills far beyond his years. Prior to being named president and CEO, Byron served as executive vice president of the Nixon Foundation and oversaw all administration, marketing and communications, development, finance, human resources, and operations. Jim leads the Nixon Foundation in its exciting next phase of growth, expanding its educational offerings, growing its digital presence and increasing Library attendance through investments in international tourism markets.
At Chapman, Jim was a founding father of the California Phi Chapter and served as vice president. He currently serves as chapter advisory board chairman.
Vianney Careaga, Arizona ’18
A Tucson, Arizona native, Vianney Careaga joined Phi Delta Theta during his freshman year at the University of Arizona and served the Arizona Alpha Chapter in numerous roles, including alumni secretary, awards chairman, chaplain, scholarship chairman, warden, and president. While serving as chapter president, Vianney was appointed by Governor Doug Ducey to the Arizona Board of Regents as the student regent for the 2016–18 term. He joined US Representative James F. McNulty Jr. and US Senator Dennis DeConcini in being the third Arizona Alpha alumnus to be appointed to this board.
After graduating, Vianney relocated to Phoenix to pursue a master’s degree in legal studies from the Sandra Day O’Connor College of Law at Arizona State University. He then began his career coordinating the Arizona Human Trafficking Council and Governor’s Youth Commission for Governor Doug Ducey. He now serves as the director of public policy for Greater Phoenix Leadership, where he works with 150 CEOs to engage on local, regional, state, and federal policy issues that impact the business community.
Vianney was recently appointed as the Omega West Province President for Phi Delta Theta. Outside of Phi Delt and work, Vianney enjoys spending time with friends and family through traveling, hiking, backpacking, and camping. He has goals to climb the seven summits of the world and the highest peaks in each US state. His passion for the outdoors and adventure stem from his time in the Boy Scouts of America. Vianney is a proud Eagle Scout and flew to Romania over Memorial Day Weekend in 2022 to serve. Alongside five other Eagle Scouts (and a fellow Phi) they built a new kitchen and dining facilities at a camp to accommodate Ukrainian refugees fleeing the conflict and humanitarian crisis that had been brought on by the Russian invasion.
“Phi Delta Theta cultivates an environment where brothers hold each other accountable, develop their leadership skills, make an impact in their campus communities, and give them a place they can call home. These experiences empower our brothers to rise above their expectations and become the greatest versions of themselves.”
Dan Carrick, UConn ’18
Dan Carrick is the manager of the Philadelphia 76ers Member Services team. He supervises the representatives who oversee and manage all season ticket holders for the organization, maintaining revenue while simultaneously creating lifetime memories for fans. Throughout his young career, Dan has accomplished much, most notably selling over $1 million during the 2021-22 season. His career in the sports business industry took off after completing a 76ers Ticket Sales internship with Harris Blitzer Sports and Entertainment (HBSE). Dan has worked for HBSE throughout his entire professional career, first as a sales associate for the New Jersey Devils, then as an account manager for the 76ers, and now his current role. His favorite part about working in sports is the impact he has on people, whether it is creating memories for fans, hiring future stars in the industry, or helping his team grow both personally and professionally.
Dan attended the University of Connecticut and studied Sport Management. While at UConn, he worked within the athletic department in marketing and event operations. Dan helped bring Phi Delta Theta to campus and is a Founder of the Connecticut Gamma Chapter. Within the chapter, he served on the executive board as the risk management chairman.
“Phi Delta Theta was a crucial part of my college experience. The Fraternity provided leadership and management skills and gave me lifelong friendships.”
Michael Cheromiah, New Mexico ’18
Michael Cheromiah joined Phi Delta Theta Fraternity in 2015 and was initiated into the New Mexico Alpha Chapter at the University of New Mexico. During his time as an undergraduate, he served the chapter as alumni and public relations chairman.
From Isleta Pueblo, New Mexico, Michael’s entire career has focused on helping the people of New Mexico. A high school teacher and head girls’ volleyball and basketball coach at Abundant Life Christian School, a school that serves a low-income population in Albuquerque, New Mexico, Michael strives to teach college readiness among future first-generation university students. He has introduced Girls Who Code and connects students to the Summer Engineering Program at the University of New Mexico.
Civic service is also important to Michael. In 2021, he was given a judicial appointment in the Village of Bosque Farms, and in 2022, Cheromiah would be elected municipal councilor, where he has worked to promote economic development and make voting easier. Cheromiah also serves on the Alumni Spirit Committee at the University of New Mexico, a committee that seeks to promote university pride and foster alumni involvement.
“The Cardinal Principles of Phi Delta Theta have played an important role within my life. I strive to emphasize the value of Friendship within my classroom, continually demonstrate the value of Sound Learning not only as an academic endeavor but also as a life skill, and display Rectitude by being involved civically and teaching students that we are to glorify God through our morally good action.”
Fabian Doñate, UNLV ’18
Fabian Doñate is a Nevada State Senator representing the Las Vegas Strip and Central Vegas (SD-10). Fabian was twenty-four when he was appointed to the District 10 seat in February 2021, replacing Yvanna Cancela after she took a job in the Biden administration. Fabian is a young professional with dual degrees in public health and health administration. As the son of Mexican immigrants, he has devoted most of his career to raising awareness for causes that will make his community a better place. Fabian has served as a consultant for major health systems and smaller organizations, primarily seeking to integrate innovation and digital technology into evidence-based strategies to advance public health. He recently served on President Biden’s Health Policy Committee.
Fabian was the first in his family to graduate from college and obtain a graduate degree. He earned his bachelor of science in public health from UNLV, and completed his master of health administration at the University of Maryland, College Park. His Phi Delta Theta résumé is quite extensive, including serving as chapter president, vice president, alumni secretary, community service chairman, and awards chairman for the Nevada Beta Chapter. While attending graduate school, he served on the chapter advisory board for Maryland Alpha at the University of Maryland
“I’m honored to be a member of this Fraternity, and I’m forever inspired by the teachings instilled by our brotherhood. Phi Delt was an instrumental part of my early adulthood, and I’m thankful for the lifelong friendships and mentorships that I’ve gained along the way.”
Kaleb Dschaak, North Dakota ’20
Service is at the core of Kaleb Dschaak’s beliefs. He found his passion for education and esports as he progressed through his college career and is now CEO and founder of FenWorks, an esports and UAS educational company for grades K–12 that gives young people a place to belong through esports. In less than three years, Kaleb has grown the business from one person to over twenty employees with a footprint that covers statewide athletic association-sanctioned esports and student development leagues. He is recognized in the area startup community as a budding innovator and speaks regularly at startup and governmental events. Kaleb was selected by North Dakota’s governor to participate in the Western Governors Association’s young leaders program.
Kaleb also serves his community by being involved in nonprofits. He serves on the board of the North Dakota STEM ecosystem that helps to grow and strengthen STEM activities in the state. He also serves as vice president of the Evolve Grand Forks Board that helps entrepreneurs by building a community that fosters their success. As a student at the University of North Dakota, Kaleb was a leader at the North Dakota Alpha Chapter, student body vice president, and a voting member of the state board of higher education.
“Phi Delta Theta connected me to a support system of exceptionally moral, outstanding, committed men. The values of Friendship, Sound Learning, and Rectitude stay with me to this day thanks to my mentors and fellow Phis, Cole Bachmeier and Eric Gefroh.”
Will Edwards, Arkansas ’15
Will Edwards is the co-founder and CEO of Firehawk, a rocket engine design and manufacturing firm based in Dallas, Texas. Since its founding in 2019, Firehawk has raised $22M and is under contract with some of the aerospace industry’s largest companies like Raytheon Missiles and Defense. Will collaborates daily with entrepreneurs, investors, and engineers, who are passionate about making space safer, affordable, and more accessible.
Will grew up in Tulsa, Oklahoma, and is a 2015 graduate of the University of Arkansas. Since graduation, Will has earned multiple awards including a $50,000 St. Louis Arch Grant as well as being listed on Forbes 30 under 30 Class of 2021.
“Phi Delta Theta was a great place to call home at the University of Arkansas. We had a chapter filled with strong leadership that emphasized both education and building internal relationships. I actually met Firehawk’s current CFO and Phi Delt, Ben Allen, while at the University of Arkansas.”
Bradley Haaland, Southern Methodist ’16
Bradley Haaland grew up in Menlo Park, California, before departing for college at Southern Methodist University in Dallas, Texas, where he double majored in engineering management and economics. A member of the Texas Delta Chapter of Phi Delta Theta, he served two years as recruitment chairman. While in school, Bradley started the club water polo team and played on the intramural beach volleyball team.
After graduation, Bradley returned to California where he began his professional career in technology partnerships and has become a renowned leader and executive in the advertising and marketing technology sector. He spent time leading key initiatives at industry leading companies, Oracle Advertising and LiveRamp, and now serves as Instacart’s head of ad agency partnerships. Bradley lives in San Diego, and when not working, spends his free time surfing, hiking, playing beach volleyball, and studying personal finance. Bradley continues to mentor many younger Phis and non-Phis and loves helping with career and personal finance advice.
“Phi Delta helped shape my disciplined work habits and strong values.”
Ben Kennedy, Florida ’14
Ben is an American motorsports executive, professional stock car racing team owner, and former driver. He currently serves as NASCAR’s senior vice president of racing development and strategy. Ben was hired by NASCAR to be a part of the racing operations team as well as help develop the sport internationally. He was promoted a year later when he became the vice president of racing development, and promoted again in July 2020 as the vice president of strategic Initiatives, where he oversaw racing development initiatives for all three national series. In June 2021, Ben was named the senior vice president of strategy and innovation and was tasked with creating the schedule for the three top series of the sport. It was in this position that he helped craft the idea of the Busch Light Clash at The Coliseum, which saw a pre-season race being held at the Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum. Ben ranks #5 of the list of top Iron Phi fundraisers.
William Kneip, Ole Miss ’16
William Kneip was born in Mobile, Alabama, and attended St. Paul’s Episcopal School, where he developed a passion for service. Kneip would go on to attend Ole Miss, where he studied public policy and leadership and began investing his time in various student organizations. In 2012, William pledged the Mississippi Alpha Chapter of Phi Delta Theta, where he held various officer positions before being elected president in 2015 and receiving the IFC president of the year award.
Upon graduation and being inducted into the Ole Miss Student Hall of Fame and elected Mr. Ole Miss, William felt a calling to Mississippi and began his career as a major gifts fundraiser to expand support for student scholarships and other initiatives to improve access and quality of education for Mississippians. In 2019, he was appointed director of external relations and assistant to the Chancellor for executive affairs at Ole Miss. In his role, William works across the university to advance strategic initiatives and priorities. As a member of the senior leadership team, he works closely with his colleagues on behalf of the chancellor. Kneip serves as the leadership liaison to the university’s medical center and board of trustees while partnering with community members and federal and state officials to advance institutional priorities.
In June of 2022, William married Adelyn Spees, and the couple resides in beautiful Oxford, Mississippi. If they are not trying out new restaurants around Mississippi, they enjoy traveling and spending time with their corgi, Peaches. William continues to serve Mississippi Alpha on the chapter’s house corporation board.
“I’ve always been driven in life by a passion for service. While I discovered this growing up, it was Phi Delt that allowed me to open the door to a life full of purpose-driven opportunities. The values learned and relationships built at Mississippi Alpha have led me to exactly where I am today, and for that, I’m forever grateful.”
Curtis Lary, Georgia Tech ’20
Curtis Lary studied mechanical engineering at the Georgia Institute of Technology, graduating in 2020 during the pandemic. Through his time as a Phi, Curtis took part in three marathons throughout Georgia and one Ironman 70.3 Triathlon. He participated in the Alpha Phi King of Hearts talent show along with his brothers and was also featured in the college-wide innovation showcase “The Inventure Prize” which was broadcasted on national television. Curtis was involved in many extra-curricular engineering projects/ventures at Georgia Tech, one of which was an automatic robot food delivery system that was deployed and operated at a restaurant within the university (W8R Systems). The project landed him a spot as a finalist in Georgia Tech’s competitive 2020 InVenture Prize competition.
Since graduation, Curtis has gone on to pursue a career as the founder and CEO of the technology startup Hextronics, where he and his team are developing products for drone autonomy (Hextronics.Tech). Hextronics is focused on “enabling aerial autonomy” when it comes to developing compact Drone Nests that work with a variety of the industry’s leading drones. Curtis was able to convince one of his fellow Phi Delt brothers, Nicholas Mulka, to join him on this venture, and he came aboard in 2021 as another mechanical engineer to increase the company’s technical ability. The engineering team at Hextronics is constantly growing, and their systems are already deployed in over twenty countries, serving industries of construction, mining, agriculture, and first responders.
“The fraternal experience of Phi Delta Theta prepared me to take on seemingly impossible challenges by working together with my team and brothers!”
Brian Le, Ashland ’19
Brian Nguyen Le is currently the deputy legislative director at With Honor Action, an organization that works alongside veterans of both parties in Congress to pass consequential legislation on national defense, veterans’ affairs, and national service. While his primary legislative portfolio is emerging technology and national defense, Mr. Le has worked on a variety of legislation, including being a part of the successful efforts to build the Global War on Terror Memorial on the National Mall, expansion of support to our Afghan allies after the US withdrawal from Afghanistan, and ongoing efforts to support veterans and the military community. As the son of Vietnamese immigrants, he is proud to give back to his country through public service, and especially to the veterans and military families community for whom he works for. Each summer, Brian has the distinct honor to serve as a counselor at the American Legion’s premier Buckeye Boys State program, a week-long citizenship and leadership development program that he credits for his passion for public service.
Prior to his time at With Honor Action, Brian was a graduate fellow at The Ohio State University where he obtained a master of public administration, and is a 2019 graduate of Ashland University where he obtained a BA in history, political science, and international political studies. He is most proud to be a member of the Ohio Mu Chapter of Phi Delta Theta, an organization that he still currently serves as a member of the chapter advisory board.
“After graduation, I continued my involvement with the Fraternity, because I learned the importance of surrounding yourself with good people as a brother of Phi Delta Theta. Whether it’s in North Ridgeville, Ohio, where I’m from, to the halls of Congress in Washington, DC, having a brother that you can rely on and trust, is worth the time you invest to have friends become brothers and brothers become family. I am especially indebted to my Big Brother Ian Kieffer who has been a steadfast friend and mentor in loftiest highs and my deepest lows.”
Blake Manion, Louisville ’17
Blake Manion is an emerging healthcare executive and advocate for a simpler, more affordable healthcare experience for American consumers. He currently serves as the vice president of business and program development at Evernorth Care Group (Cigna’s wholly owned primary and multispecialty care medical group) in Phoenix, Arizona, where he has business accountability for the group’s growth/retention strategy and management of strategic partnerships that allow the group to increase access to high quality healthcare in the Greater Phoenix community. Blake has held multiple strategic and operational roles both within and outside of Evernorth & Cigna since beginning his career in 2015.
As a member of Phi Delta Theta at the University of Louisville, Blake served on the executive committee as the risk management chairman and as the broader Interfraternity Council’s vice president of risk management, overseeing risk prevention and anti-hazing programming for over one thousand young men. Blake continues to be active with the Fraternity, having joined the Arizona Beta (Arizona State) CAB as the finance adviser, where he assisted with rechartering activities. He is a proud Iron Phi (#400).
Originally from Clarkson, Kentucky, Blake received a BA in public health from the University of Louisville School of public health and information sciences and later graduated from the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of public health with a master in health administration. In his free time, Blake enjoys spending time with his family, golfing in the Arizona weather, and entertaining his golden retriever.
“My experiences in Phi Delta Theta led to some deep, meaningful friendships that I now consider family, while making me a more well-rounded individual, both personally and professionally, along the way.”
Christian Meza, Utah ’22
Christian Meza graduated in May 2021 from the University of Utah and is a member of the Utah Alpha Chapter of Phi Delta Theta. As an undergraduate, Christian held many leadership positions in the Fraternity including recruitment chairman, historian, and pledge class social chairman, along with becoming an Iron Phi.
Filled with hard-work and steadfast dedication, Christian has made a concrete impact in the nonprofit space through the Folds of Honor Nevada Chapter that he founded alongside his mother, Pamela. After losing his father in high-school due to a PTSD heart-attack, the local Folds of Honor Chapter reached out to Christian and his family to offer financial and emotional support. The National Folds of Honor organization gave Christian the opportunity to go to college debt-free, and since this gesture, Christian has made it his lifelong goal to give back to the organization. Over the past two years, Christian has traveled all over the United States sharing his story and inspiring others to raise awareness for the cause. After raising over $30,000 at his inaugural event, Christian has just begun his journey in making a difference for the surviving dependents of the fallen military heroes.
Christian is an avid skier, golfer, and shooter, loves to travel, and enjoys playing chess in his free time.
“Joining this bond of brothers has grown into lifelong friendships. Several years out of school, we still vacation together, frequently stay in touch, and have even gone into business together. My experiences in this Fraternity will resonate with me forever, and I will always strive to become the greatest version of myself!”
Jackson Mores, Iowa State ’16
Jackson Mores, PT, DPT, MPH is a licensed physical therapist in Overland Park, Kansas. He currently works with the University of Kansas Health System’s Sports Medicine and Performance Center treating orthopedic and sports-related injuries in athletes of all ages and abilities. He inspires change through movement and aids medically-underserved populations.
As a graduate student at the University of Kansas, Jackson founded three on-campus organizations dedicated to improving the health of his community. Accomplishments included raising over $28,000 for the Children’s Miracle Network affiliate hospital, KU Pediatrics, starting a monthly community-based exercise and health education program for area residents, and co-founding a physical therapy clinic, providing free musculoskeletal and rehabilitation care to more than 1,700 medically-underserved students.
Jackson is an active member of the American Physical Therapy Association where he served on the board of directors on the Kansas Physical Therapy Association’s Student Special Interest Group. In addition, he’s presented at five state and national conferences and co-authored two papers on the topics of pro bono collaboration, vestibular dysfunction and spatial cognition in soccer players, omega-3 dietary intake in athletes, and sexual violence in Kansas.
Within Phi Delta Theta, Jackson is a former chapter president of Iowa Gamma and the chapter’s current alumni relations advisor. He was the 2014 and 2015 Robert J. Miller Leadership Award Winner and the Iowa State University 2014 Greek Man of the Year.
“Phi Delta Theta has and always will hold a special place in my heart. This Fraternity is what shaped me into the young professional I am today, and it will always be my goal to pass on my knowledge, wisdom, and passion to those who may follow after, not only, not less, but greater than it was transmitted to me.”
Josh Nudelman, Chapman ’16
Josh Nudelman is an experienced public engagement professional who is passionate about helping make a difference in connecting organizations with the greater public. Josh’s experience includes managing and creating programming for events with over two million social media impressions, over ten thousand students, and hundreds of celebrity influencers. Josh is currently working at the White House for the Office of Intergovernmental Affairs as the intergovernmental affairs coordinator and policy analyst. In this role he serves as a liaison between the administration and state, local, and Tribal governments, in addition to elected officials to address the most pressing issues impacting our country and communities.
Prior to joining the White House, Josh served as associate director of engagement for the US Surgeon General. In his role he helped lead the surgeon general on his youth mental health work. Josh also served as the public engagement and community outreach manager for Mrs. Obama’s Reach Higher Initiative. He helped low-income minority youth take the next steps after high school and assisted them to reach higher.
Josh graduated from Chapman University and hails from Lake Oswego, Oregon. While at Chapman, Josh served as student body president and the InterFraternity Council’s vice president of scholarship and public relations.
“My Phi Delt experience really helped be that support and backbone I needed to push me to become the greatest version of myself. While at Chapman, they were the ones who pushed me to run for student body president, and even after graduating, they still push me to continue reaching for my goals.“
AJ Persampiere, Central Florida ’17
A.J. Persampiere is a member of the Florida Iota Chapter of Phi Delta Theta and graduated from the University of Central Florida (UCF) in 2017. During his four years at UCF, A.J. represented Florida Iota at the Kleberg Emerging Leaders Institute, lived among brothers at the chapter house, and supported chapter fundraising efforts for ALS. After completing an MBA with a concentration in Finance at Florida State University, A.J. accepted a position as a senior associate at Silicon Valley Bank based in Boston, where he addressed the complex financing needs of enterprise software businesses and private equity investors in the Boston area and beyond. Recently, A.J. took the next step in his career by accepting a vice president position on the technology finance team at PNC Bank, where he continues to work with private equity investors and technology businesses.
A.J. was able to achieve the above while battling significant adversity, having needed three heart surgeries to correct a congenital cardiac defect. Outside of his professional pursuits, he has spent time volunteering with Second Harvest Food Bank and Technology Underwriting for the Greater Good. A.J. currently lives in Orlando, Florida, and enjoys playing golf, reading, and traveling.
“My time spent in the Florida Iota Chapter helped me to develop into a greater version of myself than I could have on my own. While surrounded by a group of men focused on empowering each person to exceed their personal expectations, I was able to collaborate with brothers on our academic pursuits and build friendships within the chapter. I would not have graduated with the confidence and knowledge I did without the support of Phi Delt, and I was able to leverage the Phi Delt network to begin my career through a chapter alumnus who guided me through applications and interviews.”
Hunter Porter, Kentucky ’15
Born and raised in Lexington, Kentucky, Hunter Porter attended Lexington Catholic High School and graduated with a BS in economics from the University of Kentucky (UK) in 2015. While at UK, Hunter was a member of the Kentucky Epsilon Chapter of Phi Delta Theta and served both the chapter and campus in numerous leadership positions, including Phi Delt president and IFC president. He currently serves as Chapter Advisory Board chairman for Kentucky Epsilon.
Hunter is a senior associate at BC Wood Properties, a privately held real estate investment firm, where he manages 1.8 million square feet of commercial real estate throughout the southeast United States. He also holds the position of principal broker for True Line Real Estate, BC Wood’s in-house real estate brokerage. Hunter has a passion for community involvement, serving on various boards for the Explorium of Lexington (children’s museum), United Way of the Bluegrass, University of Kentucky DanceBlue Marathon, and the Lexington Public Library. He also serves as a hospitality minister for Historic St. Paul Catholic Church, the school/church he attended as a child. In his spare time, he enjoys playing basketball and golf, reading, and attending UK sporting events.
Adam Ruble, Monmouth ’15
Adam Ruble first began his career as a fundraiser when he held the philanthropy chairman position at the Illinois Gamma Chapter of Phi Delta Theta at Monmouth College in Illinois. In this role, he raised several thousand dollars for ALS. Since graduating in 2015, he has raised more than $8.5M for higher education and other nonprofit organizations, both in the US and abroad.
From 2017–19, Adam had a fellowship in Australia through CASE (Council for Advancement and Support of Education.), where he successfully launched Australia’s first giving day in the higher education segment. VP of the Alumni and Development Office at Queensland University of Technology Margo Powell, said, “Adam consistently displayed remarkable leadership and maturity to lead QUT to realize the most successful donor acquisition campaign in its history. His contributions to QUT and to the fundraising profession are extraordinary and inspiring.”
Now based in Normal, Illinois, Adam has a wide range of interests and responsibilities. Adam is the international development chairman for his local Rotary organization, he volunteers with many organizations, most recently organizing a tree planting, and he sings with the Sound of Illinois Chorus, an award-winning Barbershop Chorus. Adam also serves as chapter advisory board chairman for Illinois Gamma. In 2022, Adam was named Rotarian of the year for the Central Illinois district.
“I continue to strive towards Phi Delta Theta’s pillars of Friendship, Sound Learning, and Rectitude. As a student, Phi Delt opened my world to so many different possibilities and opportunities, and it’s clear how those experiences have shaped me into the person I am today.”
Ashwanth Samuel, Virginia ’19
Ashwanth Samuel, who graduated first in his class at Olathe Northwest High School, arrived at the University of Virginia (UVA) as a Jefferson Scholar, a highly selective, full-scholarship award program that brings some of the world’s most exceptional high school seniors to UVA. During his first year, he became a probational guide with the University Guide Service, a highly esteemed and competitive group of students who give tours to prospective students and members of the public year-round. In his second semester, he decided he wanted to pursue some independent research, and secured a generous award from the Center for Global Health that sent him to his parents’ native country, India. There, he and two teammates studied the effects of mobile banking on the traditional, male-dominated household structure in rural areas.
As an Echols Scholar, an award that allowed him more freedom to chart his own academic pursuits, Ashwanth racked up an impressive list of achievements during his four years at the University of Virginia. He earned a bachelor’s in statistics, with a minor in history, in three years, then returned to campus to pursue a master of science in data science. Ashwanth is also a classically trained violinist, was named the Ernest H. Ern Distinguished Student, Emerging Greek Leader of the Year, and was a member of the Dean’s List.
As mentioned by fellow Phis, Ashwanth single-handedly changed the face of both Greek life and Phi Delta Theta during his time at UVA. He was the youngest chapter president Virginia Beta had ever seen and went on to be IFC President during which he navigated a tumultuous time for fraternities at UVA. Upon graduating, he quickly climbed the ranks at the prestigious Bain and Company until recently, where he joined Protocol Labs, a cutting-edge startup.
Kenny Selmon, North Carolina ’18
Kenny Selmon was born and raised in Mableton, Georgia, and attended school at Pace Academy. He played every sport growing up, but it was track and field where he excelled most. In 2014, Kenny made his first USA team, where he competed in the 400-meter hurdles in Donetsk, Ukraine. Following his initial success on the international stage, Kenny would go on to win five state championships, three All-American honors, and one national title before starting school at the University of North Carolina (UNC).
At UNC, Kenny majored in business administration at the Kenan-Flagler Business School and joined both the track and field team and the North Carolina Beta Chapter of Phi Delta Theta. He won six ACC Championships, received five All-American Honors, won a USA National title, and received the UNC Patterson Medal. He is the current 400-meter record holder at UNC. Upon graduation, Kenny went pro in track and field and was sponsored by Spyder Korea for two and a half years. In 2021, he made the Tokyo Olympic Team where he placed ninth. During his professional track and field career, Kenny created an application called Stoke with his best friend and fellow Phi Delt, Carter Draughon. Stoke is a social network centered around live chat rooms for sporting events. The app has ten thousand users, and the duo is initiating their first round of fundraising March 2023. Kenny currently lives in New York City where he also works in fitness for Barry’s.
“Phi Delt was an integral part of my UNC experience. Phi Delt provided me with a welcoming, intelligent, and empowering community outside of my chaotic athletic career that consumed so much of my life. The Phi Delt brothers were not only massive pieces of my support foundation during school, but they have been life lines of support during all of my athletic endeavors and beyond. These are a few of the reasons why I agreed to serve on the North Carolina Beta Chapter Advisory Board as we work towards our on-campus goals in the coming years.”
Alex Shannon, Akron ’15
Alex Shannon is a financial consultant for Legacy Strategic Asset Management. He began his career in 2015 working as a development officer at Akron Children’s Hospital, where he was responsible for raising money for the hospital. Responsible for business development and marketing plan execution, Alex now applies his knowledge to helping current and prospective clients understand the benefits and knowledge Legacy Strategic Asset Management offers to foundations, endowments, employee benefit plans, families, and family offices as investment consultants.
Alex has a bachelor of science in accounting from the University of Akron, masters in business administration from Malone University, and is pursuing a masters of science in business psychology from Franklin University.
Alex lives in Stow, Ohio, and cherishes family time, playing golf, basketball, and reading. He volunteers his time serving as president for the Stark State College Foundation Board of Directors, chairman of the Finance Council for the Newman Center at Kent State University, executive board of Phi Delta Theta Ohio Epsilon’s Scholarship Committee, board member at Project Outrun, and is a member of the Leadership Akron Class 36. Alex was recognized by the University of Akron Alumni Association in 2019 for their ‘5Under35.’
“I’m incredibly grateful for the friendships and mentors I gained through my time at Phi Delt, such as Roger Read and Brad Millard. The values Phi Delta Theta reinforces regarding philanthropy, friendships, and education helped shape me personally and professionally to what is important in life.
Matthew Stang, Akron ’22
During his time as an undergraduate at the University of Akron, Matthew Stang held multiple positions at Ohio Epsilon. As director of alumni relations, he orchestrated the chapter’s annual Family Day where three hundred family members and friends gathered to celebrate the Fraternity’s accomplishments and brotherhood. He also revitalized the chapter’s newsletter, bridging the gap between more than six hundred alumni and undergraduates. As chairman of philanthropic fundraising, Matthew instituted a strategic plan that allowed the chapter to see a 1,000 percent increase in philanthropic fundraising from the previous year, leading Ohio Epsilon to raise over $35,000 during the 2021–22 academic year for ALS support. This achievement led Ohio Epsilon to win Lou’s Olympics, The Clark Jackson Award, The Lubbock Trophy, The Stan Brown Award, and The Founders Trophy this past summer, and helped ten brothers, including Matthew, to receive Iron Phi status. Matthew also helped the chapter get involved in a monthly food distribution at his church where brothers distribute food to over one thousand people in the Greater Cleveland Area.
Matthew was recognized at the University of Akron as a 2022 Top 10 Senior for his exceptional contributions in scholarship, involvement, and leadership throughout his undergraduate career. He also was awarded the 2022 Outstanding Officer Award, the 2021 Thomas J. Vukovich Award for Outstanding Leadership, and Phi of the Year by Ohio Epsilon.
Matthew graduated in May of 2022 with a degree in mechanical engineering and is currently working at NASA helping to test Stirling Engines for future missions to the Moon, Mars, and beyond.
Brent Uberty, Utah ’16
Brent Uberty is the managing director of BW Productions, a video production company, and CEO of Cinema Forte, a motion picture company based in Salt Lake City, Utah. He has more than ten years of industry experience working with various organizations and companies ranging from small nonprofits to Fortune 50 companies. Brent has focused on telling stories that matter and making the video production process simple and easy to navigate for all.
Inclusivity for women in production, creating community, and supporting small businesses are three areas where Brent strives to create change and foster growth. Brent led BW Productions in founding the Utah Women in Production and Photography group to focus on building a network for women to advocate for each other in production. He is very involved in his community and has held positions including chairman of the Salt Lake Community College Business School Advisory Board, vice president of marketing for Boy Scouts of America: Great Salt Lake Council, director of the Salt Lake Rotary Club, active Salt Lake Chamber member, and sponsor of the Salt Lake Chamber’s annual Women & Business Conference.
“Phi Delta Theta laid the foundation of leadership, hard work, and community while I was an undergraduate member of Utah Alpha at The University of Utah. Much of my success is tied to the friendships and values I cultivated while in college and now to the wide network of fellow businessmen and leaders I’ve been able to connect with and learn from.”
Alexander Uryga, Valparaiso ’15
Alexander Uryga was initiated into the Indiana Iota Chapter of Phi Delta Theta at Valparaiso University in the fall of 2013. During his time as an undergraduate, he served as scholarship chairman and was a member of Order of Omega. In addition, Alexander was president of the Student Body on Student Senate, and he was an intern on Capitol Hill for a United States senator.. In 2015, Alexander graduated summa cum laude and Phi Beta Kappa with a bachelor of arts in political science and history and as a Christ College, The Honors College, Scholar. After graduation, he worked at a government relations firm and then at a not-for-profit, and also served in AmeriCorps at a learning center.
Alexander currently works in the field of education. He holds a master of education from the Harvard Graduate School of Education and has completed additional studies from Columbia, Notre Dame, Northeastern, Georgetown, and Purdue. He has been recognized over the years—in 2016 as a James Madison Fellow; in 2017 with the William R. Richardson Fellowship and Robert J. Miller Leadership Award from the Phi Delta Theta Foundation; in 2019 for making the Michiana (Southern Michigan and Northern Indiana) Forty Under 40 list from the South Bend Regional Chamber; in 2021 with the Carolyn & Peter Lynch Award from the Lynch Foundation; and in 2022 with the Richard Aieta Promising Teacher Award from the Massachusetts Council for the Social Studies.
“I took Phi Delta Theta’s Cardinal Principle of Sound Learning very seriously, and in doing so, it has made me the leader I am today in the field of education.”
Patton Vo, Widener ’15
Focused on excellence, and with diversity and inclusion front of mind, Patton Vo gravitates naturally to wanting to make a real difference. An award-winning professional at the intersection of philanthropy, education, and healthcare, Patton has spent much of his career bridging the gap between social mobility and access by fundraising for organizations like Penn State University, where he currently serves as director of campus development. His professional achievements helped create and fund cutting-edge research, scholarships, new vital community spaces, and endowments at institutions like Swarthmore College, Widener University, Arcadia University, and the Solebury School. Patton has supported two capital and comprehensive campaigns at Widener University and Swarthmore College, raising $65M and $440M respectively.
In 2019, Patton was honored with the Rising Star Achievement Award for the mid-Atlantic region by the Council for Advancement and Support of Education (CASE) for his leadership and commitment to the profession. Outside of higher education, Patton served as the senior vice president of operations for Grapefruit Health, now InSite Health, overseeing the delivery of care for over two hundred school districts nationwide and 250,000+ patients on services related to medical testing, mental health services, and tele-psychiatric care. He has also consulted for organizations like Black Women in Sport Foundation, Yleana Leadership Foundation, and the Annual Giving Network on topics of fundraising/philanthropy, leadership, and organizational development.
Patton balances his professional life with a robust volunteer schedule that includes serving on the Alumni Council of Widener University, his alma mater, the Human Rights Campaign, Stonewall Sports Philadelphia, and the Council for Advancement in Support of Education (CASE).
“Phi Delt has provided me with lifelong connections, experiences, and lessons that transcends beyond any classroom. Perhaps one of the better kept secrets about Greek life is all the good that fraternities and sororities do, instilling a culture of service and philanthropy. It is that first exposure of paying it forward that has defined who I am and what I do today. Phi Delt gave me a sense of purpose that I will always be grateful for.”
Nathan Williams, Georgia ’16
Nathan Williams grew up on a farm in North Georgia and became a first-generation college graduate at the University of Georgia. After graduation, he lived in the United Kingdom for a year where he earned a master’s degree at the London School of Economics before attending law school at Georgetown University. Nathan has worked in the US Senate for nearly two years and now serves as chief counsel to Sen. John Neely Kennedy who is the ranking member on the Subcommittee for Federal Courts. He became one of the youngest chief counsels in history when he joined the US Senate Judiciary.
Every day is a new adventure for Nathan, but they all share a common theme: working to protect the individual rights of American citizens to the best of his ability by ensuring the justice system works for everyone. From planning hearings on topics like expanding the government’s antitrust enforcement tools and protecting small businesses from monopolistic competition, to drafting prison reform legislation that better allows inmates to vindicate their constitutional rights in federal court, and reforming the federal bankruptcy code so asbestos victims receive fair compensation, the challenges he helps senators navigate impact people every day from coast-to-coast.
“The Phi Delt brotherhood has taught me so many things about what it means to be a man, a friend, and a leader. My Phi Delt experience, including the diverse friendships bonded and lessons learned along the way, helped get me to this point in life and will continue helping me do what ought to be done.”
Josh York, Michigan State ’16
Josh York is a 2016 graduate of Michigan State University with a degree in supply chain management and German. He served as president and chorister for the Michigan Beta Chapter. Professionally, Josh has worked in supply chain roles at Grainger, Boeing, and Abercrombie & Fitch before returning home to Detroit to pursue his business full time. Josh now runs a garment factory and soon-to-be dye-house in Detroit, operating under two brand names, Soft Goods and York Project. Soft Goods is a cut-and-sew garment factory that produces premium knitwear for brands like Shinola, Stella Artois, StockX, Foot Locker, and many more. York Project is the in-house brand of streetwear that donates one-for-one to the homeless, contributing over $100,000 to nonprofits in Detroit to support the homeless. The brand has also contributed hundreds of community service hours through regular volunteer days each month. During 2020 COVID shutdowns, the business pivoted producing over 50,000 facemasks for local hospitals and businesses, and 5,000 hospital gowns. At its peak, the business had eighteen employees.
Outside of work, Josh is equally proud of his personal life. In 2019, Josh overcame a spinal surgery to remove a tumor that risked paralyzing him, which became a huge part of his motivation toward becoming the greatest version of himself and living life to its fullest. He got married this fall to his amazing wife (a Delta Gamma) and enjoys playing hockey, guitar, and spending time with an always growing family.
“Phi Delt introduced me to some of my very best friends during college and that I still spend time with today. I now also live next door to a Phi Delt from another chapter and had an instant connection. It’s been so great to build a network of great brothers that I’ll cherish for life.”