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Open Letter to Our Sponsors and Supporters

September 30, 2016

Ray Burden

Raymond Burden
Chairman, GMES

Lee Topps

Lee Topps
Fund Raising Chairman

 

To: Our Sponsors and Supporters

The mission of Gamma Mu Educational Services, Inc. (GMES) is to provide and support programs that focus on the positive development of young men and boys. Collectively these programs are designed to empower them with knowledge, skills, and experiences needed to build confidence and foster personal and professional achievement in the class room and community. Your past support of GMES and our golf tournament has positively impacted the lives of over 400 boys and young men who have participated in GMES supported programs over the years. Thank you for your continued support of this mission. We have just completed our 2017 review of funding request and are proud to share that with your support we have committed $39,000 to organizations and programs that support and advance the mission focus of GMES. The following organizations are recipients of funding grants for the 2017 year.

 African American Men of Arizona State University (AAMASU) 

The mission of AAMASU is to engage in early outreach initiatives to prepare African American males for university entrance, retention and graduation. This is
accomplished through peer support, cultural awareness programs and increased exposure of students to educational and professional relationships outside of the university to enhance the collegiate experience.

Omega Youth Leadership Academy (OYLA) 

OYLA is an organization that primarily focuses on the development of young males 5th – 12th grades.   OYLA is a comprehensive community based youth development program designed to effectively empower and educate males of color to realize their academic and personal potential.  Programming involves a measurable out of school academic enrichment curriculum that takes place through bi-monthly culturally competent interactive seminars and workshops including youth designed community service-learning projects. 

Kappa League Guide Right Program 

Programs designed to aid young men of high school age to grow and develop their
leadership talents in every phase of life; home, school, community and career. “Guide Right” specific areas of focus include fostering curiosity and comprehension in Science, Technology, Engineering & Math (STEM); assisting Kappa League participants with resources and tools for academic excellence; teaching responsibilities of manhood and fostering appreciation of history, culture and community engagement.

In addition to these organizational funding grants, GMES continues to sponsor the “Learning Lounge Speakers Series” program at Grand Canyon University and the “Arizona Living History Program”. Both these programs include funding and the administration and active participation of GMES/Boule members, all of whom are successful business and professional leaders.

We sincerely appreciate your support and look forward to having you join us for our 2017 fund raising golf tournament.  Please save the date of Saturday, May 13, 2017, for our fundraising golf outing at Grayhawk Golf Club.  

A Special thanks to Grayhawk Golf Club and the entire staff for your support and exceptional  service in the planning and execution of our 2016 golf tournament. 

We thank our business Sponsors and all the Archons and Archousa of  Sigma Pi Phi Fraternity, Gamma Mu Boule for your support. 

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2016 Board Chair Update

Ray BurdenSeptember 3, 2016

Dear Gamma Mu Educational Services, Inc. Board of Directors and Corporate Members,

It has been a while since I have provided you an update on GMES activities and as we arrive at the official end of summer this Labor Day weekend, I want to bring you up to date on actions and events that have taken place over the summer. I also want to solicit and encourage your active support of our planned activities that are associated with the start of the new academic year that has just begun.

 2015 Tax Filing – Our 2015 Tax return was filed on August 15, 2016. Thanks for the great team effort of Tyrone Strozier and Rufus Glasper in working with Mr. Sidney Ford, CPA, to get this done accurately and on time. We will have our 990 posted on the GMES website soon.

 Pathways to Excellence funding requests – We received a number of requests for funding for the 2016-2017 academic year.   Requests were received from The Alpha Phi Alpha Sphinx Educational Fund, the Kappa League, the Omega Youth Leadership Academy, and the African American Men of ASU. We established a review team made up of board members to assess the requests and make recommendations to the board for approval or not.   A preliminary report is being prepared by George Logan who chaired the team. We will publish the results once the final decisions are made.  

GMES 2017 Fundraiser Planning – Lee Topps is very proactively planning for our next fundraiser event. As an effort to explore improving our marketing and eventual financial revenues, he and a group of board and corporate members recently met with an organization called Executive OutReach Events (EOE). As a result of the meeting, EOE has presented a proposal that the fundraiser committee will review to determine if it feasible to contract with them and make a recommendation to the board.

Strategic Planning Task Force – This group did some really good work in preparing for the planning retreat held in May of this year. However, the work of the group will continue in the fall (late September) as the overall objective is to produce a comprehensive strategic plan that will be completed in time to kick off the new biennium.

Pathways to Excellence Program Support – Jerome Sims, our stalwart coordinator for the AAMASU program, has recently sent out a communication along with the 2016-2017 calendar to solicit members to speak on various topics in our endeavor to provide mentoring and leadership development to the men, and women of color at ASU. One of the things we want to accomplish this year is to expand our professional areas of concentration to take advantage of exposing the students to more of the phenomenal talent and experience we have within our ranks. Please take time to review the available dates and times and give Jerome and the students your support.

Kevin Robinson, our phenomenal coordinator for the Grand Canyon University PTE program, will be communicating with the us soon on some specific plans we have been coordinating with the leadership of GCU in recent weeks.   They are very excited about our coming back for another year and now have GMES involved with their Honors College for execution of our speaker’s series program. We have established specific dates for our events, the first date being Thursday, October 6, 2016. As mentioned above with ASU, we are also looking to expand the professional areas of concentration as you will see when Kevin provides further detail to us. We want to highly encourage all corporate members to be “hands-on” participants in our programs this year.

Partnership Exploration – Many of you know Brian Johnson from his involvement with Gamma Mu Boule in years past. He is currently Executive Director of an organization called Base 11. Base 11 is the operating name for the Center for Innovation in Education, a non-profit 501c3 based in Costa Mesa, Ca. The organization is focused on STEM in three main areas; internships and fellowships, a STEM Entrepreneur Program and STEM workforce development. Brian is looking to develop partnerships in the Phoenix metro area and he was referred to Tyrone Strozier who works for General Dynamics. Tyrone and I met with Brian to hear about Base 11 and think the board of directors and membership at large would also like to hear about their impressive program.

Well, that concludes the end of summer update. As always, thanks for all you do for your social action organization, GMES.        

Ray Burden,

Board Chair