Gamma Beta Chapter (Cal State-Northridge) and Delta Iota Chapter
(Central Florida) respectively win the 2011 Theodore G. Rich St. Louis
Alumni Association and the Joseph E. Glaser Awards

Recognized for Outstanding Achievement in Community Service and Philanthropy

Social Responsibility is one of the four principles of The Credo of Zeta Beta Tau. Thus, as members of ZBT, we are continually challenged to work for the betterment of the Brotherhood of Man. Many ZBT chapters and colonies accept the challenge to work to improve their various communities. Each year, the Fraternity presents two awards to chapters that stood above the rest with their outstanding achievements in living this principle and meeting the commitment, the Theodore G. Rich – St. Louis Alumni Association Award for Community Service and the Joseph E. Glaser Award for Philanthropy. The 2011 awards were respectively earned by and awarded to Gamma Beta Chapter (California State University – Northridge) and Delta Iota Chapter (University of Central Florida).

ZBT collage

The Theodore G. Rich – St. Louis Alumni Association Award was first awarded in 1950 to Phi Chapter (Michigan). To qualify for this award, chapters must have documented a minimum of ten hours of community service work for each Brother or the sponsorship of a significant service project within an academic year. There were numerous chapters worthy of the award this year, but one, Gamma Beta (Cal State – Northridge), with their creativity and determination to leave their community a better place than they found it, stood out among the other applicants.

Gamma Beta participated in Take Back the Night, an event focused on preventing sexual violence against women, children and men. Together, they marched across the CSU-N campus exhibiting their unity against this terrible behavior. Several Chapter members also participated in the Relay for Life, benefiting the American Cancer Society; these members walked for 24 hours showing their support of this cause and a cure for this disease which has affected so many of us. Members of the Chapter also volunteered their time at Upward Bound House, a local charity that helps to eliminate homelessness. They spent time working with the Boys and Girls Club in the San Fernando Valley, and they had some fun-in-the-sun with their Adopt-a-Beach project. Collectively, Gamma Beta donated close to 1,300 hours of member time to make a positive impact in their community.

Putting all this into perspective, Gamma Beta President Kirk G. Bilemdjian, Gamma Beta (California State University – Northridge) ’13, said, “It was such an exhilarating feeling to win this award. Gamma Beta worked hard this past year to help and improve our community in any way we could. It is because of the efforts of one member, Anthony Castro, who pushed all of us to keep doing more. For this upcoming year, we plan on doing more. We are incredibly excited for this year and plan on using the momentum to exceed expectations.”


Chapter Advisor Patrick S. Milman, Gamma Beta (California State University – Northridge) 1985, proudly added, “In the almost twenty years that I have been an Advisor to Gamma Beta, I have seen this Chapter through many up and down quality programming cycles. I am happy to report that today’s Gamma Beta is an example of a fraternity chapter on the rise; a group of young men determined to get the most out of the fraternity experience and college life, a true fraternity in every sense of the word. Dating back to 1963, Gamma Beta has a long and proud history of community service and philanthropy, and I am proud of these Brothers for upholding the very finest values of both ZBT and Gamma Beta. I know that our Alumni are especially proud that Gamma Beta has once again brought the Theodore G. Rich – St. Louis Alumni Association Award home to Northridge.”

Milman continued, “A special acknowledgement must be made of one particular Brother – Anthony J. Castro, Gamma Beta (California State University – Northridge) ’12.  Anthony has become the conscience of Gamma Beta, and we are truly fortunate that he has chosen to be a leader of ZBT. Anthony has continued to help ZBT contribute to the CSUN community – he is already planning the next Get On the Ball event and two Red Cross Blood Drives.  Anthony continues to inspire the Brothers at Gamma Beta, including this old Zebe.”

The two runners-up for the 2011 Theodore G. Rich – St. Louis Alumni Association Award were Iota Chapter at the University of Denver and Phi Alpha Alpha Chapter at George Washington University.

Service to the Brotherhood of Man may take many forms. Giving of our time can sometimes be just as important as giving of our resources. Named in honor of the long-time advisor to Beta Delta Chapter at Rutgers University, the Joseph E. Glaser Award is presented annually to the chapter that demonstrates its commitment to the community through philanthropic endeavors. To qualify for this award, chapters must raise and donate a minimum of $100 per Brother or sponsor a significant philanthropic project within an academic year. But to win this award, a chapter must not only raise a substantial amount of money for a worthwhile charity, it must also demonstrate creativity and bring positive awareness in doing so. By going above-and-beyond in 2010-11, Delta Iota (Central Florida) stood above the other worthy applicants.

Delta Iota should have themed its year for philanthropy as divide-and-conquer for the diverse range of charities it supported. The Chapter’s fundraising efforts benefited the American Cancer Society, the March of Dimes, the American Lung Association, Children’s Miracle Network Hospitals, relief efforts in Japan, Breast Cancer Awareness, the Elizabeth Glaser Pediatric AIDS Foundation, the Make-A-Wish Foundation, St. Jude’s Children’s Hospitals, Autism Speaks and the Court Appointed Special Advocates organization. There are not many other organizations out there this Chapter didn’t support.


Recognizing the ZBT commitment to the Brotherhood of Man, Delta Iota President Jonathan C. Balva, Delta Iota (University of Central Florida) ’12, said, “We are so fortunate with every opportunity we are given in life, especially the opportunity to be members of Zeta Beta Tau, and it would not be fair if we didn’t give back everything we could to the community. Our Chapter put in over 1,500 community service hours for well deserving causes, and I am extremely proud of all my brothers. To repeat this upcoming year, we plan to raise more money than ever before. I know we can do an even better job giving back to the community in the year to come.”

Founding Father and Chapter Advisor Ariel (Ari) Afek, Delta Iota (University of Central Florida) ‘07, has been actively involved with the Chapter from the very beginning and added his heartfelt pride, “We at the Delta Iota Chapter strive for excellence and consistently seek ways to improve and build upon our experiences. While we are far from achieving all of our goals, I am proud of our recent accomplishments under the leadership of our Executive Board and President Jonathan Balva – being named Most Improved Chapter in all of ZBT and winning the Glaser Award for Chapter Philanthropy. Our Chapter has been participating in Get on the Ball for since 2008. Last year, this cause took on a greater meaning following the death (cancer) of our Brother Charles Greely. Fueled by this tragic loss, freshman Daniel A. Balva, Delta Iota (University of Central Florida) ’14, took the role of Philanthropy Chairman and redefined the position. His vision and commitment for the Children’s Miracle Network was remarkable. I am very proud of my Chapter for their abilities to open their hearts and minds to those of need. As their advisor, this humbling experience has made it truly ‘great to be a Zebe’.”

Delta Iota and Daniel Balva were featured on the Making a Difference segment of the Orlando Local 6 Evening News for the philanthropic work on the Get on the Ball project for the Children’s Miracle Network. Click here to view the video segment.

Delta Iota’s philanthropic efforts were recognized by the UCF administration. IFC Advisor Tony Perry commented, “The ZBT Chapter here at the University of Central Florida ‘lives’ the five tenets of our UCF Creed – Integrity, Scholarship, Community, Creativity, and Excellence. We honor and congratulate their award winning efforts and look forward to their continued philanthropic excellence.” 

The two runners-up for the 2011 Joseph E. Glaser Award were Gamma Chapter at Northwestern University and Alpha Delta Chapter at the University of Southern California.

If you would like to make a tax deductible gift to the Zeta Beta Tau Foundation today in honor of any or all the Theodore G. Rich – St. Louis Alumni Association Award or Joseph E. Glaser Award finalists, please click here and you will be taken to the On-Line Donation page of the Zeta Beta Tau Foundation web-site.

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