It’s been a great opportunity to give back as well as pay forward for our fraternity. But it’s been nearly 14 years since I stepped up and accepted this role.
It came at a good time for me. I’d just ended ten years of exhaustive travel building a telecom startup in the former Soviet Union from zero to 800+ employees. We built operations in Moscow, Russia; Minsk, Belarus; and Tashkent, Uzbekistan. And, if that wasn’t enough, I’d been spread even further building and operating one of the leading radio stations in St. Petersburg, Russia. After ten years of this pace, I was ready for slowing down, staying closer to home, enjoying the family, and re-engaging with the fraternity.
For the past 14 years I’ve enjoyed this luxury of staying closer to home. Professionally I’ve focused on learning and mastering the wireless, digital, smartphone revolution. It is a sea change that is barely on most people’s radar, but it will change our lives dramatically and quickly. On the fraternity side, I used my newly freed-up time for the grad chapter, monthly luncheons, annual Pigs, and more – as time passed, I found it to be absorbing every minute I was willing to make available.
In my undergraduate years the fraternity was a life-influencing experience for me, and I am grateful to have had this opportunity to repay the gift.
What a time it’s been! For the luncheons in my early days, we were faxing the luncheon notices. For most luncheon attendees and the PIG our communications were primarily snail mail which consumed lots of time and money. Our transactions were cash and checks in-the-mail.
It almost seems like ancient history, because this was more than 160 luncheons ago, and more than 13 Pig Dinners. We embraced the new technologies to preserve and promote our traditions. Today we have a multi-function web site, a frequently updated blog, email notices going out to 1,300+ graduates monthly for luncheons, online payment processing, and an up-to-date contact list for 1,500+ graduates. Thanks to the efforts of many, we’ve won the Brightman Award for Graduate Chapters (75+) each of the past 15 years. And the undergrads continue to make us proud. We’re strong! And it’s time for me to pass the baton to those who follow.
Yodio is my mobile app publishing business. We’ve developed a core model for the tourism and hospitality sector that we believe can address a global market. We’ve been beta testing the VisitWA for tourism in the State of Washington, and next month we’re launching our international beta test in Lisbon, Portugal; therefore all indications are that we’re poised to break loose by end of the year. I’m busy raising a small round of investment, and it’s clear that I’ll be fully consumed with scaling to other markets….. and I’ll be back to an active travel schedule. Wish me luck, and I welcome your support as I enter this next stage. I’ll be attending the luncheons as my schedule permits.
Our fraternity is in good condition, and I thank all of you for the opportunity to lead, organize, and share-in the rich community of Seattle’s Phi Gamma Delta. Might Proud to be a Fiji!!!!!
You can reach me at: Clay@Loges.us
A note of thanks to guys who enthusiastically gave me assists over the years: Rob Outcalt ’86, Pete Stiles ’63, Brett Franceschina ’08, Jim Bowers ‘87 @ Precision Press, Jack Day ’59 @ RoxyAnn Winery, Gary Craig ’61, Bob Trimble ’64, Brad Whiting ’80, Ron Crockett ’61, and many others – not the least of which is Jack Rhodes ‘60.