- NIC Foundation
The Advisor Award of Distinction recognizes individuals who have shown exceptional commitment to guiding and mentoring a chapter, council or community. As the inaugural class of recipients for the Advisor Award of Distinction, these three 2017 honorees represent the highest standard and level of excellence in our industry.
Housing Corporation President, Kappa Alpha Order at University of Arizona
Wayne Dawson has served the Gamma Epsilon Chapter of Kappa Alpha Order at University of Arizona since 1999. During that time, he has led the chapter through recolonization and reorganization with unwavering support even during times of the chapter’s inactivity on campus. He has also overseen several major renovations of the chapter house while serving as both the housing corporation treasurer and president. His commitment at the local and national levels has not gone unnoticed; Wayne was the recipient of the 2002 Knight Commander’s Accolade, the highest individual award an alumnus can receive from the Fraternity, which recognized excellence in leadership, service and dedication to fraternal values.
“Over the past 16 years as both an undergraduate and alumni officer, I have witnessed firsthand how Wayne has impacted countless lives as an advisor, mentor, colleague and friend,” one nominator wrote. “What’s most amazing to me is realizing that Wayne has been committed to the ideals of Kappa Alpha and our brotherhood for over 50 years!”
Under Wayne’s guidance, five young KA men have received the Order of Omega Chapter President of the Year award. “Wayne has shown exceptional leadership skills, responsibility, humility and organization as our advisor, which is shown by the rapid growth and success of our chapter,” a collegiate nominator wrote. “Through his hard work and dedication, the two previous presidents and I have been able to lead our chapter to the best of our abilities, allowing us to be considered by many as a very successful chapter here at University of Arizona. We would not be where we are without him.”
Phi Gamma Delta
Chapter Counselor, Beta Theta Pi at Truman State University
Dr. Robert Tigner has served Beta Theta Pi as chapter counselor for Zeta Xi Chapter at Truman State University for more than two decades. “Twenty years ago, Zeta Xi Chapter, then only one year old, was in need of an advisor. Thankfully, there was a new, young psychology professor at the university who was hoping to become involved in the Greek community,” one nominator wrote. “I doubt many of the men at the time were aware of the impact this new advisor would have on the chapter in the years that followed. I certainly had no idea when I met him in 2001 the impact he would have on me as an undergraduate and more amazingly, still today as an alumnus.”
As a member of Phi Gamma Delta, Dr. Tigner demonstrates the value of interfraternal partnership and an overall commitment to advancing fraternity. He served on the steering committee for Beta Theta Pi’s Men of Principle Initiative and has facilitated the fraternity’s major leadership development programs. The organization awarded Dr. Tigner the Dr. Edward B. Taylor Advisor of the Year Award in 2005 and the regional Outstanding Friend of Beta Award in 2006. Truman State recognized Dr. Tigner as the E.M. Violette Outstanding Advisor of the Year in 2009 and 2010.
To those Dr. Tigner works alongside, he is a supportive and caring role model for young fraternity men who strives to emulate what it means to be a “man of principle.” A campus nominator wrote, “Rob is a model of how to do it right. He is a voice of reason offering suggestions for programming and providing general support on the best and worst days. He is able to help them develop their own skills, and he helps the men apply those skills to making fraternity something to be proud of.”
Assistant Dean for Greek Life, Leadership and Volunteer Programs, Valparaiso University
Dr. Carrie Whittier, a member of Alpha Omicron Pi, has a storied history of volunteerism within the fraternity and sorority industry and as a campus fraternity/sorority advisor.
“I think Carrie was made for this field,” a campus nominator wrote. “Her passion for her work with the fraternity and sorority community and the students in it is evident to anyone who talks to her.” Not only does Dr. Whittier represent and advocate for the fraternity/sorority community at Valparaiso, but she also invests much of her time in volunteering for and advancing the fraternal movement and profession in greater capacities. She is a past president of the Association of Fraternity/Sorority Advisors (AFA), current Vice Chair of the AFA Foundation, a consultant to other campuses regarding their fraternity/sorority communities, and a regular keynote speaker and presenter at national fraternal leadership events and workshops.
During her time as a volunteer for Sigma Phi Epsilon, which began in 1997 as a graduate student, Dr. Whittier has served in a variety of roles. At each of the institutions she has called home, whether for her own academic pursuits or as a fraternity/sorority life professional, she has continued supporting Sigma Phi Epsilon in capacities such as chapter counselor, a steward of the Balanced Man Program, and a member of alumni and volunteer corporations. “It is rare that anyone, let alone someone who is not even a member of SigEp, with other professional and personal responsibilities, would hold as many roles and do as good a job as Dr. Whittier,” one nominator wrote. “In short, her commitment to the success of SigEp and fraternities and sororities is phenomenal.”