Thanking our Veterans today – Walter T. Morey ’40

Walter Morey (2)

As a way to thank our Veterans today on Veterans’ Day, I thought that it would be interesting to share the nomination which was recently submitted for one of our own, Walter T. Morey ’40 for the University of Illinois Army ROTC Hall of Fame.  He had an exceptional career as a student, in the military and in civilian life and deserves to be recognized and remembered as do all of our many Gamma Zeta veterans.  We’ll find out during the spring of 2016 if he’s selected for the Hall of Fame.  Thanks to all of our veterans today!


I’d like to nominate Major Walter T. Morey ’40 for the Army ROTC Hall of Fame.  Here is some information about him:

Born: August 02, 1918
Died: March 18, 2009
Early life:
  • 1936 Graduate of Stephen Decatur high school with honors
  • Reached Eagle rank with two palms as a Boy Scout
  • Served as Assistant Scoutmaster
College life:
  • 1940 Graduate of the University of Illinois
  • Appointed in 1939 as Student Colonel to lead the 4,000 students in the University ROTC Brigade by Col. Fred R. Brown Commandant with approval of A.C. Willard, President of the University
  • Maintained an academic average in the College of Commerce of 3.92 and a military average of 5.0
  • Winner of the University gold medal, as the most outstanding sophomore cadet
  • Winner of the Connor’ cups for the best drilled freshman and sophomore in the field artillery in 1937 and 1938
  • Won the Hazelton medal during his first year basic course as the best cadet of that rank
  • Awarded an excellence bar with three stars for maintaining a military standing in the upper 4 percent of his class
  • Member of three military fraternities—Caisson club, Scabbard and Blade and Pershing Rifles
  • Member of Skull and Crescent, freshman activity honorary and Sachem, sophomore activity honorary, Ma-Wan-Da senior honorary society
  • Business Manager of the Illio
  • Active in Star Cross, Student Alumni Association, Accountancy Club and the YMCA
  • Cabinet member of the Inter-fraternity council
  • President of the Military Council
  • Chairman of the Military Ball
  • Treasurer and then President of the Student senate
  • Member of the Alpha Tau Omega Fraternity
  • 1947 Graduate of Harvard Law School
  • During WWII, served three years of active duty with the 36th Field Artillery in North Africa, Italy and France. Major Morey’s unit was the first to fire on the mainland of Europe in 1943
  • At the outbreak of the Korean War, he served as a battalion commander in Korea until 1951
  • Awarded the Bronze Star, Legion of Merit and three French Croix de Guerre
Post Military:
  • Attorney in Decatur
  • Founded and served as Chairman of the Board of Soy Capital Bank
  • Founded Security Savings and Loan
  • Partner in the development of Brettwood Village Shopping Center
  • Elected to the Decatur City Council in 1960 and served for six years
  • Trustee at Millikin University
  • Member of the University of Illinois President’s Council
  • President of the Decatur Bar Association, Rotary, United Way of Macon County and the American Red Cross in Decatur
  • He served as an elder at First Presbyterian Church
More info:
Link to great Daily Illini article from when Walter Morey was selected to be Colonel of the student ROTC Corp at Illinois – 039-DIL-1939-04-23-001-SINGLE (2)

Thomas Arkle Clark inducted into University of Illinois Fraternity and Sorority Hall of Fame

Dane Luhrsen, Billy Hanson, Thomas Wolfe, Mitchell Talbot, Jack Klues

Dane Luhrsen, Billy Hanson, Thomas Wolfe, Mitchell Talbot, Jack Klues

Last Saturday, Thomas Arkle Clark 1890 was inducted into the University of Illinois Fraternity and Sorority Hall of Fame along with four other distinguished greek alumni including, Roberta Shields of Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority, Peg Crawford of Alpha Omicron Pi Sorority, Bob Dudley of Phi Kappa Psi Fraternity and Burton Baskin of Zeta Beta Tau Fraternity.

Jack Klues ’77, Dane Luhrsen ’77, Mitchell Talbot ’17, Billy Hanson ’16 and Thomas Wolfe ’16 accepted on behalf of Gamma Zeta ATO.

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Nine time Illinois Sportscaster of the Year – Brad Palmer ’61

Did you know that former Chicago sportscaster Brad Palmer is a Gamma Zeta ATO ’61?

Known as “The Professor” by his viewers, Brad was voted “Illinois Sportscaster of the Year” a record 9 times by the National Sportscasters and Sportswriters Association. He joined WBBM-AM (CBS) the day it became Chicago’s first all-news station in 1968 and went on to become Sports Director and sport anchor of both morning and afternoon drive-time.

In 1977, he also became the color analyst on the Chicago Bears broadcasts, alongside play-by-play man Joe McConnell.

In 1985, Brad moved to WLS-TV (ABC). It was his weekly analysis of upcoming Bears’ games in front of a chalk board that prompted the nickname “The Professor”. Brad went 14-2 predicting Bears’ games in 2005. He went 10-1 both straight-up and against the point spread in the playoffs, and, on that note, he retired in January, 2006. He now resides in Phoenix, Arizona.

He’s created an incredible Youtube Channel featuring highlights of his 40 year career covering Chicago sports. If you love Chicago sports or sports in general, you need to check this out.

As the Stanley Cup Playoffs get underway, here’s some hockey history, an interview that Brad did with Blackhawks Hall of Famer, Stan Mikita.

Catching Up with Author & Screenwriter | Tom “TA” Anderson ’81

thumb0-tom anderson-a866a51eb3c855194a639674d583f285Tom “TA” Anderson’s ’81 career has taken some interesting twists and turns… from Paris, IL to Lomita, CA; from an internal staff attorney with a power company near Atlanta to a screenwriter and author. And, of course, he took a four-year tour at the ATO house at the University of Illinois, majoring in Engineering. That all makes perfect sense, right?

Tom, Lomita, CA… can you get any further from Paris, IL?

That’s funny – I always heard that Paris is further away from anywhere else! But Southern Cal is where a writer Continue reading

Mike LaVitola ’09 Co-Founder and CEO of Foxtrot Ventures

LavitolaMike LaVitola ’09 isn’t wasting any time. He’s still a semester away from graduation from The University of Chicago Booth School of Business and he’s already co-founded and assumed the role of CEO of startup, Foxtrot Ventures which “delivers drinks, eats and corner store necessities from your iPhone to your door in minutes”. I recently read an article titled something along the lines of “Five Questions to ask to know if you have a killer business idea”. Here’s how Mike responded to these questions… and a few more:

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Dan Blaho ’92 – “To have no narrower limits within which to work together for the elevation of man than the outlines of the world…”


Dan and Mirka Blaho with Andy, David and Matty

Dan and Mirka Blaho with Andy, David and Matty

(Editor’s note – I started to email with Dan Blaho ’92 simply because from what I had seen on his Linkedin bio, it appeared that he had taken an interesting path that would make for a good story for the Gamma Zeta News. Then, when the news hit of the protests and unrest in the Ukraine a couple of weeks ago, it all took on a new meaning. Despite living and teaching just 15 minutes from the heart of the protests and violence in Kiev, Ukraine, Dan took time to respond for the Gamma Zeta News.)

When Dan Blaho ’92 first learned the words form the ATO Creed, “To have no narrower Continue reading

Dr. Bill “Moley” Mohlenbrock ’61 with update on healthcare

mohlenbrockBill “Moley” Mohlenbrock MD, FACS ‘61 has done many interesting things in his life… member of the Illini Varsity Basketball team, married Betty Burch, Chi Omega ’62 – the Illini Homecoming Queen, served as a Naval flight surgeon aboard the aircraft carrier, USS Yorktown during the Vietnam War, completed an orthopedic residency at the University of California, San Diego, served as assistant clinical professor since 1973, and practiced orthopedic surgery for more than 25 years at Scripps Memorial Hospital in La Jolla, CA. He and Betty raised a wonderful daughter Kem, who has blessed them with four grandkids.  Any of these activities would make for a fascinating interview and many of Bill’s peers are content to settle into retirement with a lot of golf and some Continue reading

Congratulations Illinois 8A State Football Champion Coach Mike Stine ‘84

stineWhen someone reaches the pinnacle of their profession it’s certainly worth noting and one of our own, Mike Stine ’84 did that this past weekend. Mike is the Head Varsity Football Coach at Naperville Central High School and his team won the Illinois State 8A Football Championship on Saturday. The Redhawks had an incredible year fighting through the DuPage Valley Conference, arguably the toughest in the state, and then proceeding to win four straight in the playoffs against the best teams in Illinois to win the prestigious 8A crown (largest school class in Illinois).Continue reading

Peter “Raven” Korst’s (GZ ’76) Trip to Chile

Raven 1Peter Korst participated in a fascinating trip to Chile this past spring as a part of IBM’s Executive Service Corp. The following is an interview with Peter after he returned from the trip.

I understand that you just returned from a trip to Chile. How did you get involved and what was the purpose of the trip?… why Chile?

IBM is seeing its greatest percentage revenue growth in developing countries, termed “growth markets”.   Infrastructure can often be a bottleneck for those countries’ growth. Things like adequate roads and transit, water quality, power availability, education and healthcare are examples of basic infrastructure that may lag behind potential explosive growth and ultimately limit the economy. IBM is investing over $50M in pro-bono projects around the world to address some of these issues. We launched a “Smarter Cities Challenge” where cities would submit applications to land one of these projects. 400 cities applied and Valparaiso, Chile was one of 100 selected. Their application was based on economic growth which has personal automobile purchases and usage skyrocketing but with very limited space to carry the traffic, due to the geography of the region. They needed help developing an action plan to address the movement of people, goods and services in the Valparaiso region.Continue reading