Planned gift will support Sigma Chi’s Life Loyal Sig Annual Fund, ‘greatest need’ of organization


EVANSTON, Ill. (September 5, 2023) — The Sigma Chi Foundation announced today that Significant Sig Gordon W. Davis, Ph.D., WASHINGTON STATE 1968, has made a $1 million estate commitment to support Sigma Chi’s future transformational leadership and academic scholarship initiatives through the Life Loyal Sig Annual Fund.

To honor this generosity, Sigma Chi will recognize Davis’ support on a future historical display within the J. Dwight Peterson Sigma Chi International Headquarters in Evanston, Illinois.

Through its support of the Annual Fund, Davis’ legacy gift, which was formally unveiled during the Sigma Chi Foundation’s Bell Chapter and Distinguished Visitor Banquet at the 2023 Krach Transformational Leaders Workshop (KTLW), will benefit Sigma Chi and its members in a myriad of ways including funding of Sigma Chi’s general academic scholarships, the Transformational Leader program provided through the Sigma Chi Leadership Institute (SCLI) as well as historical initiative efforts the Douglas R. Carlson Sigma Chi Historical Archives and Preservation.

Said Davis: “In my 54-year career I have learned it is all about the kids and all about giving back.”

For 73rd Grand Consul (international president) Bob Wilson, FORT HAYS 1981, the importance of giving back to benefit others underscores the ways in which one brother’s actions can help the General Fraternity. “We are profoundly grateful to Brother Gordy Davis for his generous gift in support of Sigma Chi that will allow us to further enhance the support, educational and leadership experiences that we offer to our members,” Wilson says. “His commitment to the International Fraternity, as well as his home chapter at Washington State University, exemplifies the enduring impact that our brotherhood fosters.”

“One of the greatest ways an alumnus can ensure that future generations of Sigs are able to achieve their fullest potential is through an estate gift,” said Sigma Chi Foundation President John Price, OKLAHOMA STATE 1991. “Brother Davis’ commitment is significant in both size and the impact it will have on our members. At this year’s KTLW, I was proud to see first-hand the passion he has for Sigma Chi and the work we are doing to build the transformational leaders of tomorrow. We are grateful for his lasting generosity and support.”

Following graduation from Washington State and Texas A&M University, where he earned his M.S. and Ph.D., Davis, who was raised on a dairy farm in eastern Washington, served as a meat scientist at three universities (University of Tennessee, A&M, Texas Tech University), coached two national championship meat judging teams and has received 52 awards throughout his career, 13 at a national level, including his 2022 induction to the Meat Industry Hall of Fame.

In 1984, Davis embarked on an entrepreneurial experience when he started Creative Educational Video after finding traditional agricultural science textbooks were inadequate. In 1990, he left academia to focus full-time on CEV Multimedia (known today as iCEV), trailblazing the idea of bringing the expert into American classrooms through video, multimedia textbooks and ultimately online. This curriculum has reached an estimated 100M students worldwide.

A longtime philanthropist with 15 endowments at six universities and one foundation, Davis and his wife Joyce were featured by the Chronicle of Philanthropy (January 2023) among America’s 50 leading philanthropists as they’ve given more than $61 million throughout their lives including the largest single donation ($45M) in Texas Tech’s history. In honor of their gift, in January 2022 the university named the Gordon W. Davis College of Agricultural Sciences & Natural Resources.

In addition to his passions for education and agriculture, Davis has been a significant benefactor to his home chapter, Beta Upsilon, serving as the largest donor of Washington State’s new $6 million chapter house in Pullman, Washington, which is named in his honor.

His latest gift, impacting Sigma Chi at an international level, confirms a lifelong love and belief in the Fraternity, its values and how those values and principles can guide members throughout their lives — all topics he spoke of within his notable keynote speech during the Thomas Cowan Bell Chapter and Distinguished Visitor Recognition Banquet at last month’s Krach Transformational Leaders Workshop in Bowling Green, Ohio.

Also an author, filmmaker and avid golfer, brother Davis lives with his family in Lubbock, Texas.

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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.