Conclave 2019 Honorary Initiates & Circle Of Excellence Inductees

Conclave 2019 Honorary Initiates & Circle Of Excellence Inductees

Please join us in welcoming our newest honorary initiates and congratulating our Circle of Excellence Inductees.

Conclave 2019 Honorary Initiates


Known for his No. 1 debut hit "I Met a Girl," The 26-year-old Vicksburg, MS native is currently on the road with Alan Jackson, is in the process of recording a new album and recently treated fans to a sample with his new song "Brokenhearted. “I Met A Girl” topped Country Radio charts and SiriusXM’s “The Highway” Top 45 Countdown chart, has garnered over half a billion audience impressions, including over 20 million on-demand streams. His critically acclaimed album VINYL debuted in the Top 5 on Billboard’s Country Albums Chart.


Richard's extensive career in Executive Search includes more than 15 years working throughout Asia and 9 years in North America. He is Chairman of Asia CEO Awards, the largest business awards event in the Philippines and Chairman of Asia CEO Forum, the largest regular business event in the Philippines and one of the most important in the Asia region.
Richard is a featured presenter for Asia region conferences and provided Keynote Addresses for the following international expositions: HR Shared Services & BPO (Singapore), Successful Shared Services (Singapore), Executive Compensation & Benefits EXPO (Singapore).
Richard's clients are multinational corporations for senior management positions. Of the many international recruitment projects he worked on in the Asia Pacific region, one was particularly noteworthy as it was reported on national Korean television as the largest technical recruiting venture in Korean history. The project was also a cover story for ComputerWorld magazine throughout North America.
Richard has an Honours Bachelor of Science degree from the University of Waterloo, Canada's most prominent technical post-secondary institution. He possesses the designation of Chartered Financial Analyst from the CFA Institute with its world headquarters in Charlottesville, VA, USA.


Jake Newton is the son of Robert Newton of Omicron chapter and has been assisting in various ways with the reestablishment of the Kappa-Tau Colony for the past few months. He will be assuming the role of resident advisor for the new Fraternity house beginning this Fall semester as the colony moves into a new house. Jake has served his country in the 82nd Airborne as a platoon sergeant and has one combat tour in Afghanistan and continues to serve in the National Guard.

Circle Of Excellence Inductees

The Tau Kappa Epsilon Circle of Excellence is a group of Tekes who have achieved the highest level of professional success in their chosen field of endeavor. These men have been recognized by their peers for extraordinary achievement. Tau Kappa Epsilon has established the Circle to recognize these Fraters, to welcome their input on the activities of the Fraternity and Foundation, and to invite them to help develop our next generation of TKE leaders whenever and however possible. The Circle of Excellence is a genuine and heartfelt expression of Tau Kappa Epsilon that might be summarized in these four words: "Job Well Done, Frater." 

Iowa State University

Frater Edward C. Droste graduated from Iowa State University in 1973 where he initiated into Tau Kappa Epsilon at the Epsilon chapter. He was named TKE Alumnus of the Year in 1991, and in 2001, he received the Key Leader Award. A Life Loyal Teke, he received the Apollo Award at Conclave 2015. In his professional career, Frater Droste co-founded Hooters Restaurants, and he formed Provident Resorts, Inc., where he currently serves as Chairman of the Board. He also served on the Board of Directors for various local and nonprofit organizations including the Moffitt Cancer Institute Foundation Board, the Outback Bowl, Chapel by the Sea on Clearwater Beach, and The Clearwater Jazz Holiday. In 2008, Frater Droste and his wife Marsha received the Gayle Sierens Volunteers of the Year in Philanthropy Award.

Western Illinois University

Bob Nardelli serves as a Partner and Senior Advisor to Emigrant Capital Corp. and is a Senior Advisor to SAP, EY, and others, including many equity investments. He sits on the Board of Directors for BWXT Technologies, Inc., and the board of several private equity investment firms. Widely recognized as one of the best-operating executives in the United States, Bob Nardelli has grown the sales and profits of several multi-national corporations. During his nearly 30-year tenure at GE, he quadrupled operating profits for GE Power Systems. As chairman and CEO of The Home Depot he doubled the size of the company, and, as chairman and CEO of Chrysler, he helped save Chrysler and its iconic brands when the American auto industry began to collapse. His firm, XLR-8, LLC, Investment & Advisory Co., combines his 47-plus years of experience augmenting business performance with a team of professionals that have unparalleled skills in fixing and growing companies. XLR-8 helps companies identify weaknesses and improve performance. A Life Loyal Teke, Frater Nardelli graduated from Western Illinois University in 1971, where he initiated into TKE at the Zeta-Theta Chapter.

Miami University

Mark is President and CEO of Option Technologies Interactive, LLC and previously served as Vice President of Stage America Inc. He joined the Delta-Xi Chapter at Miami University in Oxford, Ohio, where he received his degree in sociology and served as Prytanis. Following graduation, he joined the TKE Professional Staff as a Chapter Management Consultant and is recognized as a Knight of Apollo for his eight years at the Offices of the Grand Chapter. A Life Loyal Teke, Frater Mark served as Grand Histor from 1997 to 1999, Grand Grammateus from 1999 to 2003, Grand Epiprytanis from 2003 to 2005 and Grand Prytanis from 2005 to 2007. He also was an active member of the TKE Foundation Board of Directors from 2005 through 2016 and served as Chairman of the Board from 2014 to 2016. In 2003, he received the Southern Order of Honor, Grand Prytanis, and Key Leader awards. He also received the Fraternity for Life Award in 2009 and the Order of the Golden Eagle Award in 2010.

Texas Tech University

Steve Walsh is a retired entrepreneur and business owner who sold his business in 2014 to a national company. Steve is a graduate of Texas Tech University and a founding charter member of the Omicron-Rho chapter of Tau Kappa Epsilon at Texas Tech in 1976. Steve has served on the Board of Trustees of the Omicron Rho chapter for the past 30 years. Presently he is the President of the Housing Corporation and Chapter Advisor for Omicron Rho. Steve is involved in his church and currently serves on the board of a local charitable organization. Steve is married to his wife Patti of 42 years, and they have two children. Steve and his wife enjoy traveling to interesting destinations both at home and abroad. When not at home in Texas or visiting family, Steve and his wife enjoy going to their vacation home in the mountains of New Mexico for peace and quiet.

For more information, please contact:

Garrett Thomas
Director of Communications
317-872-6533 ext. 252


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