The Raymond L. Gardner Alumnus of the Year Award is made annually to the Phi Delt alumnus considered by the Gardner Award committee to have made the most significant contribution in three areas: Fraternity service, service to higher education, and community involvement. The award was originated by the Seattle Alumni Club in honor of Raymond L. Gardner, Washington 1918. This year, at the 84th General Convention, Phi Delta Theta awarded Bill J. Poston, Texas State ’88, the recipient of this prestigious award.
Poston was initiated by the Texas Mu Chapter at Texas State University on January 19, 1985, where he later served as chapter president. He received his BBA in finance from Texas State University in 1988 and his MBA in corporate strategy from the University of Texas in 1994.
Bill is an entrepreneur, business adviser, investor, philanthropist, educator, and adventurer. As the founder or principal owner of over twenty companies and nonprofit organizations, he has a multitude of experiences. His most recent focus is The Launch Box, founded in 2020, which is a platform for starting and growing professional service firms that enable founders to focus exclusively on selling, serving clients, nurturing talent, and growing the business. The Launch Box offers strategic advice, investment capital, and a comprehensive set of turnkey services that solidify founders for success.
Bill has vast business experience. After obtaining his degree, he started as an assistant manager for the Driskill Hotel in Austin and the Ilikai Hotel in Waikiki thereafter. As mentioned, he obtained his MBA and became a partner at Deloitte, a consulting firm. In 2004, after working at Deloitte for ten years, he started the innovation consultancy Kalypso, along with a friend and colleague. Kalypso was a success, operating at a global scale with over 300 people delivering on the promise of innovation to the world’s most successful companies. As co-founder and managing partner of the firm, Bill helped define the core values that set the company up for many successful years of service.
Bill also has significant leadership experience in industry and nonprofit organizations. He currently serves on the board of eight different companies. He is the chairman of Muy’Ono Resorts, managing a portfolio of tour businesses in Belize with an “adventure in luxury approach.” This goes hand-in-hand with Bill’s adventurous side, as he enjoys SCUBA diving, fishing, boating, and skiing. Kianalei Capital is the asset management firm where Bill also serves as chairman. Kianalei Capital works with investments across a broad spectrum of sectors, from real estate, technology, and insurance, to wine and entertainment services.
Bill founded a nonprofit organization, the Stelos Alliance, in 2008. Their goal is to help extraordinary young leaders reach their full potential, removing challenges students may face financially and investing in them through a strong mentorship program. The Stelos Alliance strives to assist students not only through the way of scholarship dollars but through hands-on experience with leadership development while also empowering them to excel at a university level. Bill is also the principal professor of the Housley Principled Leadership Program, which was created as a memorial to a friend. This is a semester-long course taught to undergraduate students at the Honors College at Texas State University, where he also was the recipient of the Texas State Alumni Star Award. It is also an initiated course at Angelo State and is taught at Trinity College. Bill teaches with a passion and a purpose to empower dozens of young people every year.
Brother Poston was featured in 2016 as a Phi on the Pursuit of Greatness, which highlights everyday Phis doing extraordinary things. He participated in the leadership forum during the 2021 Presidents Leadership Conference and also attended the 2022 Kleberg Emerging Leaders Institute in Oxford as a Foundation Fellow.
For his enduring dedication and support of the Fraternity, higher education, and his community, it is with great pride and gratitude that the General Council of Phi Delta Theta International Fraternity recognizes Brother William J. Poston with the Raymond L. Gardner Alumnus of the Year Award.