August 3, 2019

$10 million in 10 years

Tau Kappa Epsilon makes the largest commitment by any men's fraternity to St. Jude Children's Research Hospital

“It is a great honor to share with you our next step in helping to achieve Frater Danny Thomas’s dream that ‘no child should die in the dawn of life.’ Today, we make history. Today, we dedicate ourselves to building a better world by making the largest commitment by any men’s fraternity to St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital. Today, we officially begin our campaign to raise $10 million over the next ten years for the children of St. Jude,” stated Hanson.
Tau Kappa Epsilon (TKE) fraternity and St. Jude Children's Research Hospital® announced a commitment to raise $10 million for St. Jude within the next 10 years, which will be recognized by the naming of the hospital's Bone Marrow Transplantation & Cellular Therapy Research floor.

This new iteration of fundraising was announced at Conclave, the fraternity's biennial celebration, and marks the third commitment TKE has made to the hospital since the fraternity officially began its partnership with St. Jude in 1972.

Watch the Announcement Video and help support our commitment by making a gift.


In 2011 TKE pledged to raise $1 million in five years towards the naming of an MRI suite in the Chili's Care Center on the St. Jude campus, which TKE met this goal a year early. Then in 2016, TKE pledged to raise $2.6 million for the hospital toward the naming of the proton therapy synchrotron/particle accelerator.

Support from partners like TKE and donors worldwide help ensure families never receive a bill from St. Jude for treatment, travel, housing or food – because all a family should worry about is helping their child live. St. Jude freely shares the discoveries it makes, and every child saved at St. Jude means doctors and scientists worldwide can use that knowledge to save thousands more children.

"Since Tau Kappa Epsilon first answered our Founder Danny Thomas' call for support more than 30 years ago, the fraternity has positively impacted countless events and programs to help live out Danny's dream that 'no child should die in the dawn of life,'" said Richard Shadyac Jr., President and CEO of ALSAC, the fundraising and awareness organization for St. Jude Children's Research Hospital. "The naming of the Bone Marrow Transplantation & Cellular Therapy Research floor is testament to the dedication of TKE and St. Jude to positively impacting the lives of children worldwide."

To learn more about the partnership between St. Jude and Tau Kappa Epsilon, visit stjude.org/tke.


Make a Gift In Support of This Commitment

April 9, 2019

$2.6 million in 3 years

Tau Kappa Epsilon completes our $2.6 million commitment three years early.

On April 9, 2019, Tau Kappa Epsilon (TKE) fraternity and St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital® announced the achievement of a $2.6 million fundraising commitment to support the lifesaving mission of St. Jude: Finding cures. Saving children.®

$2.6 million in 6 years, our largest philanthropic commitment (Clone)

February 13, 2016

$2.6 million in 6 years

Tau Kappa Epsilon announces $2.6 million commitment in six years to St. Jude.

In February 2016, Tau Kappa Epsilon announced a second commitment to raise $2.6 million in six years to fund the Proton Therapy Synchrotron/Particle Accelerator.

Proton therapy allows doctors to precisely target tumors with high doses of radiation while sparing nearby healthy tissue and organs. This new therapy offers a huge benefit for children with brain tumors and other cancers in sensitive areas like the eye, because it reduces harm to the developing body and lessens the risk of secondary tumors later in life. St. Jude estimates that within five years 80 percent of the pediatric patients needing radiation will receive proton therapy.

The proton therapy center is the first in the nation dedicated solely to children and designed specifically to meet the needs of young patients. The center includes three treatment rooms, treatment preparation and recovery rooms for patients, plus a musical staircase that leads to a rain forest-inspired waiting room. The multidisciplinary staff comprises specialists from oncology, radiation therapy, diagnostic imaging, nursing, child life and others.

The powerhouse of proton therapy is the synchrotron, a massive particle acceleration system that generates the proton beam. Highly-skilled technicians program the synchrotron to deliver a beam at the exact energy levels needed for each specific patient. The proton beam then travels through the vacuum of the synchrotron at seven-tenths the speed of light, directly to the treatment room where it will be administered with exactitude to the patient, via a nozzle.

The depth and intensity of the proton beam is guided by advanced control systems to conform to the shape of the tumor. The U.S. Food and Drug Administration cleared the features unique to the St. Jude proton therapy system in November 2015 and the center began seeing its first patients in December.

Pictured Below: Frater's Aldrich and Barr with representatives from St. Jude commemorating the accomplishment of TKE's $1 million pledge at Conclave 2015 




In February 1972, TKE officially joined Frater Danny Thomas in the fight against childhood cancer by raising money for St. Jude Children's Research Hospital. More than 40 years later, TKE remains committed to this amazing cause and will strive to continue the pledge set forth by our fellow Fraters. Even though Danny died in February 1991, his vision for St. Jude lives on.

Danny Thomas formed ALSAC to raise funds solely for St. Jude Children's Research Hospital. And while the hospital struggled to sustain growth during the early years, support from individuals and organizations like TKE helped keep it afloat. Danny noted in the Fall '78 edition of THE TEKE, "Every time we'd think we had enough for next year, the researchers would come up with a bigger need. Fortunately, with people like my Fraters in TKE, we have been able to accomplish what we initially thought was a hopeless task."

Though this was the era when fraternities were viewed as wild and reckless, Danny noted how Tau Kappa Epsilon seemed to be driven by a different beat - one of goodwill.

"There's a unifying bond that grows from young men working together for community service to others that will keep them together for the rest of their lives," Danny noted during a 1978 interview for THE TEKE. "And when they work for something as important as saving the lives of children, that experience can't be equaled."

Tekes began a Keg Roll for St. Jude that same year, and chapters from across the country participated. One of the first chapters that participated was the Theta-Mu chapter at the University of New Orleans where their event was a marathon distance (26.2 miles). Many other chapters followed suit and these fundraisers continued until the early 1990s. The negative connotation the keg brought to the fraternal world ended the TKE Keg Roll, but its philanthropic impact on St. Jude is still being felt.

Danny further stated in THE TEKE: "I am proud to be a Teke, and I know St. Jude is going to approve of this marriage between the greatest Fraternity in the world and the greatest hospital with the most miraculous research center."

In 2011, TKE committed to raising $1 million in five years. At Conclave 2015 in New Orleans, Chief Executive Officer Donald E. Aldrich and Past Grand Prytanis Bob Barr announced that Tau Kappa Epsilon fulfilled its 5-year, $1 million pledge to St. Jude Children's Research Hospital--a year early, nonetheless. Fraters across TKE Nation continue to support the children of St. Jude, but we still have work to do. Now is the time to make your work count!