Sigma Chi renames its Servant Leadership Certificate for Schefmeyer as lifetime support hits $5 million milestone


BOWLING GREEN, Ohio (Aug. 2, 2023) — The Sigma Chi Foundation announced today that Significant Sig Don Schefmeyer, SYRACUSE 1969, has made a $3.8 million commitment to support the Servant Leadership Certificate developed by the Sigma Chi Leadership Institute (SCLI) as part of Sigma Chi International Fraternity’s Transformational Leader program.

In honor of Schefmeyer’s commitment, which will bring his collective lifetime support of Sigma Chi’s leadership and scholarship initiatives to $5 million upon completion, Sigma Chi has renamed its Servant Leadership Certificate the Don “Fritz” Schefmeyer Servant Leadership Certificate as announced by Sigma Chi Leadership Institute chairman and 68th Grand Consul Mike Greenberg, ILLINOIS WESLEYAN 1982, during Wednesday’s opening session of Krach Transformational Leaders Workshop at Bowling Green State University.

“Servant leaders help others grow and develop into the best brothers, sons, partners, fathers and friends. There is no better example of a servant leader than brother Don Schefmeyer,” said Greenberg. “Don’s dedication and commitment to our Fraternity through his generous financial support of the Servant Leadership Certificate ensures Sigma Chi will continue to inspire our brothers to become aligned, focused and living our shared values.

“We are grateful for brother Schefmeyer’s dedication to future generations of transformational leaders who will successfully lead their communities at every table — from the kitchen to the boardroom and every table in between. I am honored to announce brother Schefmeyer’s sponsorship of the Servant Leadership Certificate. May his generosity inspire us as we continue in our commitment to the empowerment of others.”

A longtime commercial real estate development executive, Schefmeyer is president of Action Mortgage Corp. in South Bend, Indiana, a firm he founded in 1982. He was previously senior vice president of Whitcomb and Keller Mortgage Co. in South Bend and vice president of H.J. Ludington Inc. in Rochester, New York.

Schefmeyer earned a CampusMBA Faculty Fellow Award for his service as an instructor for the Mortgage Bankers Association (MBA) and taught for the Society of Real Estate Appraisers (SREA), now part of the Appraisal Institute.

A consistent benefactor of his home chapter, Psi Psi, and the Foundation’s leadership and scholarship initiatives, he is a member of Sigma Chi’s William Lewis Lockwood Society, which recognizes those who have provided significant financial support with a cumulative lifetime giving of $100,000 or more to support Foundation-sponsored leadership and scholarship initiatives at the international and local chapter level.

Today’s commitment places Schefmeyer in a select category containing fewer than 10 brothers, families or entities to reach the $5 million milestone of support for Sigma Chi.

“Brother Schefmeyer has already impacted thousands of our young brothers via his prior support of Sigma Chi’s Preparation for Brotherhood new-member education program and his home chapter via the Foundation’s Thomas Cowan Bell Chapter Challenge,” says Sigma Chi Foundation President and General Counsel John Price, OKLAHOMA STATE 1991. “This gift is a significant endorsement of our leadership initiatives and the ongoing work of the Sigma Chi Leadership Institute. Don’s generosity will not only impact our present and future generations of undergraduate brothers internationally, but cements his lifetime of support and love of Sigma Chi.”

For Schefmeyer, who has long been inspired by the servant leadership philosophy, the gift serves as both a commitment to the present and future members of the Fraternity, and a tribute in memory of his son, Alec.

“I feel so fortunate to be in a position to be able to do something like this,” said Schefmeyer. “There’s a personal factor involved. I had a son who passed away during the opioid epidemic. He tried and tried to beat it, but eventually it beat him. I [wanted] to do something in his memory and do something for the young men of Sigma Chi in the future because I consider them, to an extent — at this point — to all be my sons besides being brothers.

“I believe [the Servant Leadership Certificate] is an extremely worthy part of the [Transformational Leader] Program. Along with the Ritual, I believe having the ideals of Servant Leadership inculcated with [our undergraduate brothers’] college experience is absolutely essential for the future and is probably going to be one of the ways Sigma Chi is able to roll on as far as we can see.”

As one of the nine Transformational Leader program certificates, the Donald H. Schefmeyer Servant Leadership Certificate will help participants gain an in-depth understanding on how to build high-performing teams by leveraging differences in perspectives, experiences and social styles.

Learners will explore followership and the philosophy of subordinating their ego for the good and success of the mission. Participants will gain and leverage the skills and knowledge of mentoring and feedback in order to guide their teams toward becoming aligned, focused and living their shared values.

“I am deeply humbled and proud of the unwavering commitment displayed by Brother Don Schefmeyer. His generosity will shape the lives of countless undergraduate men within our Fraternity and have a lasting impact on the communities they serve,” said 73rd Grand Consul (international president) Bob Wilson, FORT HAYS 1981.

“Brother Schefmeyer’s generosity affirms our shared belief in the transformational power of leadership education and mentorship. His contribution will enable Sigma Chi to expand and enhance our existing programs, while empowering our undergraduate brothers with the skills and values that they will need to lead with integrity and purpose in their personal and professional lives.”

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ABOUT THE SIGMA CHI FOUNDATION: Founded in 1939, the Sigma Chi Foundation is a charitable and educational tax-exempt organization, separate and independent from Sigma Chi Fraternity, whose express purpose is to secure financial resources and provide faithful stewardship in support of Sigma Chi. Through Sigma Chi’s Transformational Leader platform and its legacy programming, such as the Krach Transformational Leaders Workshop and the Horizons Huntsman Leadership Summit, the Sigma Chi Foundation is preparing our young men to be the values-centered leaders of tomorrow. Learn more about the Sigma Chi Foundation at sigmachi.org/foundation.

ABOUT SIGMA CHI INTERNATIONAL FRATERNITY: Sigma Chi is one of the largest collegiate fraternities with undergraduate chapters at 230 universities and colleges and more than 360,000 all-time members. Sigma Chi provides a welcoming environment for young men of different temperaments, talents and convictions to enjoy a unique lifelong bond that extends far beyond college. Through world-class leadership training, extensive mentoring programs and a strong focus on academic achievement, Sigma Chi sets itself apart as the preeminent collegiate leadership development organization, challenging its members to live by its core values and exemplify Character-in-Action™ in every aspect of their lives, and the lives of others. Learn more about Sigma Chi at sigmachi.org.

ABOUT SIGMA CHI LEADERSHIP INSTITUTE: Sigma Chi Leadership Institute (SCLI) is an accredited, 501(c)(3) non-degree granting learning service provider based in Evanston, Illinois. SCLI partners with Greek-letter organizations and institutions of higher learning to provide high-quality leadership training and development that enhance the skills and knowledge of undergraduate students, faculty, and staff. SCLI employs the most innovative research in customizing leadership development that is relevant and responsive to the evolving needs of our world. According to our most recent Gallup study (2021/2022), over 50% of SCLI graduates report that their leadership training has led to job growth, promotion, and increased pay. SCLI is accredited by the Middle States Association Commissions on Elementary and Secondary Schools (MSA-CESS). Learn more about SCLI at scli.org.