Ashlee Canty Takes on Campus VP Role in the Northeast

Indianapolis, October 31, 2018—Known throughout the higher education community for her commitment to leadership development and interfraternalism, Ashlee Louise Canty will bring her experience to the North American Interfraternity Conference (NIC) as Vice President of Campus Operations for the Northeast region.

Joining staff November 7, Canty will deliver support to college fraternity communities and contribute to NIC educational and advocacy initiatives. Her work will focus on community development, council effectiveness and alumni engagement, which contributes to the NIC’s vision to enhance the fraternity experience. Canty will fill the position left open when Dominic Greene returned to a role at his organization, Delta Upsilon.

“Ashlee’s extensive experience in higher education and the fraternal industry makes her a valuable resource to support campuses in the Northeast,” said NIC President & CEO Judson Horras.

Canty comes to the NIC from Zeta Beta Tau Fraternity, where she served as Director of Fraternity Operations and oversaw planning and development of educational curriculum, program assessment, and the conduct process. Prior to ZBT, she worked at Sigma Alpha Epsilon headquarters, DePaul University and Syracuse University, and she served on the Association of Fraternity/Sorority Advisors Board of Directors.

“Ashlee has a true gift when it comes to student development and developing campus partnerships,” said ZBT Chief Executive Officer Laurence Bolotin. “Her track record is proof of that and her time at ZBT was no exception. We wish her well at the NIC and look forward to seeing her leadership on the broader movement.”

Canty is a member of Zeta Phi Beta Sorority, Inc. She earned her bachelor’s degree at North Carolina State University, her master’s degree in college student personnel from Western Illinois University, and anticipates completion of her doctor of education from DePaul University in 2019. Canty will work from her home in Winston-Salem, North Carolina, where she will be accessible to the campuses she serves.

“I hope that through this role I am able to have a positive impact on the experience of undergraduate fraternity men by building relationships that provide support, advocacy and leadership as a way to advance Fraternities on college campuses,” said Canty.

In another staffing change, on November 23, Director of Education & Leadership Development Melissa Kish will depart the NIC staff to join Zeta Beta Tau Fraternity as its Chief Operations Officer.

“In the short time she has been on our team, Melissa has brought enthusiasm and expertise to the NIC’s educational programs,” said Horras. “Her departure is bittersweet, as we are excited for her to take on this leadership role and glad to see the fraternity community will continue to benefit from her talent.”

Will Foran, a veteran of writing and facilitating NIC programs, will direct the NIC’s educational initiatives, while continuing to serve as VP of Campus Operations.Indianapolis, October 31, 2018—Known throughout the higher education community for her commitment to leadership development and interfraternalism, Ashlee Louise Canty will bring her experience to the North American Interfraternity Conference (NIC) as Vice President of Campus Operations for the Northeast region.

Joining staff November 7, Canty will deliver support to college fraternity communities and contribute to NIC educational and advocacy initiatives. Her work will focus on community development, council effectiveness and alumni engagement, which contributes to the NIC’s vision to enhance the fraternity experience. Canty will fill the position left open when Dominic Greene returned to a role at his organization, Delta Upsilon.

“Ashlee’s extensive experience in higher education and the fraternal industry makes her a valuable resource to support campuses in the Northeast,” said NIC President & CEO Judson Horras.

Canty comes to the NIC from Zeta Beta Tau Fraternity, where she served as Director of Fraternity Operations and oversaw planning and development of educational curriculum, program assessment, and the conduct process. Prior to ZBT, she worked at Sigma Alpha Epsilon headquarters, DePaul University and Syracuse University, and she served on the Association of Fraternity/Sorority Advisors Board of Directors.

“Ashlee has a true gift when it comes to student development and developing campus partnerships,” said ZBT Chief Executive Officer Laurence Bolotin. “Her track record is proof of that and her time at ZBT was no exception. We wish her well at the NIC and look forward to seeing her leadership on the broader movement.”

Canty is a member of Zeta Phi Beta Sorority, Inc. She earned her bachelor’s degree at North Carolina State University, her master’s degree in college student personnel from Western Illinois University, and anticipates completion of her doctor of education from DePaul University in 2019. Canty will work from her home in Winston-Salem, North Carolina, where she will be accessible to the campuses she serves.

“I hope that through this role I am able to have a positive impact on the experience of undergraduate fraternity men by building relationships that provide support, advocacy and leadership as a way to advance Fraternities on college campuses,” said Canty.

In another staffing change, on November 23, Director of Education & Leadership Development Melissa Kish will depart the NIC staff to join Zeta Beta Tau Fraternity as its Chief Operations Officer.

“In the short time she has been on our team, Melissa has brought enthusiasm and expertise to the NIC’s educational programs,” said Horras. “Her departure is bittersweet, as we are excited for her to take on this leadership role and glad to see the fraternity community will continue to benefit from her talent.”

Will Foran, a veteran of writing and facilitating NIC programs, will direct the NIC’s educational initiatives, while continuing to serve as VP of Campus Operations.

On Greeks and academic performance, national data tells a different story

We read with interest the Chronicle of Higher Education’s interview with William E. Even about the recent study he and Austin Smith published about the academic performance of sorority and fraternity members.

While we—and the sorority and fraternity community at large—welcome careful research that can inform how we support our members, this study shows a limited representation at one university. Looking at various data markers across institutions nationwide paints a more complete picture of the positive impact sororities and fraternities have on student academic success.

Research findings have consistently supported that membership has a dramatic, positive impact on retention and persistence to graduation. For example, research found first-to-second year retention rates among sorority members hit 93%, compared to 82% for non-members. Similar studies show fraternity members are 20% more likely to graduate, which is critical as men are attending college and graduating with less frequency than in the past.

Why? A host of studies show membership contributes to a students’ sense of community and belonging on campus, which provides a greater sense of attachment to a university. Further research shows the stress of first-year students stems from loneliness, and sororities and fraternities provide connection, friendship and a strong support system.

Membership also develops the whole student. Sorority women experience gains in science, writing and thinking skills; better emotional support; increased college engagement; and higher levels of service. Fraternity men experience higher levels

of development in critical thinking, self-awareness, communication, diversity, citizenship, leadership, and relationships, and those who join in their first semester show greater gains.

From day one in a member’s experience, organizations provide academic success programming and mentoring relationships that focus on student learning. Further, fraternal foundations provide more than $79 million in scholarship funds and educational programming funding annually, playing a significant role in ensuring college access and advancing personal development. And yes, both NIC and NPC have a long and robust history of nationwide data showcasing that members’ grades out-perform campus averages.

We applaud Even and Smith for putting the spotlight on academic performance in sorority and fraternity life, but urge readers to consider a broader picture of measures of student success.

Dani Weatherford
Executive Director of the National Panhellenic Conference

Judson Horras
President & CEO of the North American Interfraternity ConferenceWe read with interest the Chronicle of Higher Education’s interview with William E. Even about the recent study he and Austin Smith published about the academic performance of sorority and fraternity members.

While we—and the sorority and fraternity community at large—welcome careful research that can inform how we support our members, this study shows a limited representation at one university. Looking at various data markers across institutions nationwide paints a more complete picture of the positive impact sororities and fraternities have on student academic success.

Research findings have consistently supported that membership has a dramatic, positive impact on retention and persistence to graduation. For example, research found first-to-second year retention rates among sorority members hit 93%, compared to 82% for non-members. Similar studies show fraternity members are 20% more likely to graduate, which is critical as men are attending college and graduating with less frequency than in the past.

Why? A host of studies show membership contributes to a students’ sense of community and belonging on campus, which provides a greater sense of attachment to a university. Further research shows the stress of first-year students stems from loneliness, and sororities and fraternities provide connection, friendship and a strong support system.

Membership also develops the whole student. Sorority women experience gains in science, writing and thinking skills; better emotional support; increased college engagement; and higher levels of service. Fraternity men experience higher levels of development in critical thinking, self-awareness, communication, diversity, citizenship, leadership, and relationships, and those who join in their first semester show greater gains.

From day one in a member’s experience, organizations provide academic success programming and mentoring relationships that focus on student learning. Further, fraternal foundations provide more than $79 million in scholarship funds and educational programming funding annually, playing a significant role in ensuring college access and advancing personal development. And yes, both NIC and NPC have a long and robust history of nationwide data showcasing that members’ grades out-perform campus averages.

We applaud Even and Smith for putting the spotlight on academic performance in sorority and fraternity life, but urge readers to consider a broader picture of measures of student success.

Dani Weatherford
Executive Director of the National Panhellenic Conference

Judson Horras
President & CEO of the North American Interfraternity Conference

Parents who lost sons to hazing join fraternities and sororities to form anti-hazing coalition

New York—In an unprecedented partnership, four families who have lost their sons to hazing are coming together with fraternities and sororities to fight it.

Jim and Evelyn Piazza, parents of Tim Piazza; Stephen and Rae Ann Gruver, parents of Max Gruver; Rich and Maille Braham, parents of Marquise Braham; and Lianne and Brian Kowiak, parents of Harrison Kowiak, have joined the North American Interfraternity Conference (NIC) and National Panhellenic Conference (NPC) to form a partnership that will focus on pursuing and strengthening state hazing laws and significantly expanding education and training for high school and college-aged students.

Other organizations within the fraternal community—HazingPrevention.Org, the Association of Fraternity/Sorority Advisors (AFA) and Association of Fraternal Leadership & Values (AFLV)—have committed their support to these efforts.

“After meeting with Jud and some of his colleagues, the other parents and I saw a sincerity to make change and a real interest to work with us. We collectively agreed forming this alliance made sense,” said Jim Piazza. “While we may seem like strange bedfellows, we all want the same thing—to end hazing, so other parents don’t have to experience what we have.”

When students arrive at college, nearly half have already experienced hazing. This Coalition seeks to address the problem earlier through education, while also strengthening accountability and transparency through new model state legislation.

“The best way to inspire change in college students is to touch their hearts,” said Judson Horras, President & CEO of the North American Interfraternity Conference. “In working with these families, we have seen how deeply their personal stories resonate, and I’ve witnessed first-hand the powerful impact these parents have in helping young men.”

“We can do more together than we can alone to address this societal problem,” said Carole Jones, Chairman of the National Panhellenic Conference. “The fight against hazing requires that an entire community step up, including sorority women, who can and must do our part to create safer campus cultures where students advocate for one another.”

The coalition will:

  • Pursue state-based anti-hazing legislation that delivers greater transparency through stronger hazing reporting requirements, strengthens criminal penalties and encourages prosecution, calls for university accountability for bad actors, provides amnesty to encourage people to call for help, and calls for student education.
  • Expand awareness and intervention education, including providing a platform for the parents to speak to tens of thousands of college students.
  • Engage fraternity and sorority members in educating high school students to confront hazing and bullying.

Just this summer, these parents have spoken to more than 3,000 fraternity members at summer leadership conferences, including at Sigma Alpha Epsilon’s where hundreds of students and alumni moved by the program lined up to speak directly with the parents. Parents are also being invited to speak with sorority women at both the local and national levels.

The group has already begun discussion with lawmakers, and hopes to work in several states this fall to introduce model legislation. At the federal level, the organizations will continue to advocate for the REACH Act, which—if passed—will require colleges and universities to publicly report hazing incidents under the Clery Act and provide expanded hazing prevention education and resources to students.

“We are in full support of this partnership and look forward to working together in the months ahead to change the hazing culture,” said Steve and Rae Ann Gruver.

Further, this initial group of partners hopes to engage other organizations in the future.

“Our ultimate goal is to ensure no other child is killed or injured due to dangerous and illegal hazing,” said Richard Braham. “It will take more than tougher laws, greater parental awareness and university oversight or a timely display of moral courage and decency to eradicate hazing. It will take all of these things, plus young people understanding that you don’t become a ‘better man or woman’ by watching and remaining silent as your brother or sister is harmed or killed.”

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About the North American Interfraternity Conference
NIC is a trade association that represents 66 national and international men’s fraternities, with more than 6,100 chapters located on more than 800 campuses in the United States and Canada, with approximately 385,000 undergraduate members and nearly 4.2 million alumni. The NIC has introduced enhanced health and safety standards and programs, including last week’s ban of hard alcohol in fraternity houses and events.

About the National Panhellenic Conference
NPC is the umbrella organization specifically charged with advocating on behalf of the sorority experience. It is comprised of 26 national and international sororities that are autonomous social organizations. Collectively, NPC sororities are located on more than 670 campuses with approximately 418,000 undergraduate members and nearly 5 million alumnae.

About HazingPrevention.Org
HazingPrevention.Org™ is dedicated to empowering people to prevent hazing, by providing education and resources, advocating on hazing prevention, and building partnerships with others. Major initiatives of the organization include National Hazing Prevention Week™, Prevent.Zone™ educational online courses, seminars, books, and educational resources that touch the lives of thousands of individuals, organizations, campuses and communities.

About the Association of Fraternity/Sorority Advisors
Through programs, publications, networking opportunities and other resources, AFA represents the community of fraternity and sorority advisors and is the leading voice in aligning the fraternity/sorority and higher education experiences.

About the Association of Fraternal Leadership & Values
The Association of Fraternal Leadership & Values (AFLV) accelerates progress in fraternity and sorority communities, reaching more than 300 campuses and 4,000 student leaders and professionals through change-enabling experiences.New York—In an unprecedented partnership, four families who have lost their sons to hazing are coming together with fraternities and sororities to fight it.

Jim and Evelyn Piazza, parents of Tim Piazza; Stephen and Rae Ann Gruver, parents of Max Gruver; Rich and Maille Braham, parents of Marquise Braham; and Lianne and Brian Kowiak, parents of Harrison Kowiak, have joined the North American Interfraternity Conference (NIC) and National Panhellenic Conference (NPC) to form a partnership that will focus on pursuing and strengthening state hazing laws and significantly expanding education and training for high school and college-aged students.

Other organizations within the fraternal community—HazingPrevention.Org, the Association of Fraternity/Sorority Advisors (AFA) and Association of Fraternal Leadership & Values (AFLV)—have committed their support to these efforts.

After meeting with Jud and some of his colleagues, the other parents and I saw a sincerity to make change and a real interest to work with us. We collectively agreed forming this alliance made sense,” said Jim Piazza. “While we may seem like strange bedfellows, we all want the same thing—to end hazing, so other parents don’t have to experience what we have.”

When students arrive at college, nearly half have already experienced hazing. This Coalition seeks to address the problem earlier through education, while also strengthening accountability and transparency through new model state legislation.

“The best way to inspire change in college students is to touch their hearts,” said Judson Horras, President & CEO of the North American Interfraternity Conference. “In working with these families, we have seen how deeply their personal stories resonate, and I’ve witnessed first-hand the powerful impact these parents have in helping young men.”

“We can do more together than we can alone to address this societal problem,” said Carole Jones, Chairman of the National Panhellenic Conference. “The fight against hazing requires that an entire community step up, including sorority women, who can and must do our part to create safer campus cultures where students advocate for one another.”

The coalition will:

  • Pursue state-based anti-hazing legislation that delivers greater transparency through stronger hazing reporting requirements, strengthens criminal penalties and encourages prosecution, calls for university accountability for bad actors, provides amnesty to encourage people to call for help, and calls for student education.
  • Expand awareness and intervention education, including providing a platform for the parents to speak to tens of thousands of college students.
  • Engage fraternity and sorority members in educating high school students to confront hazing and bullying.

Just this summer, these parents have spoken to more than 3,000 fraternity members at summer leadership conferences, including at Sigma Alpha Epsilon’s where hundreds of students and alumni moved by the program lined up to speak directly with the parents. Parents are also being invited to speak with sorority women at both the local and national levels.

The group has already begun discussion with lawmakers, and hopes to work in several states this fall to introduce model legislation. At the federal level, the organizations will continue to advocate for the REACH Act, which—if passed—will require colleges and universities to publicly report hazing incidents under the Clery Act and provide expanded hazing prevention education and resources to students.

“We are in full support of this partnership and look forward to working together in the months ahead to change the hazing culture,” said Steve and Rae Ann Gruver.

Further, this initial group of partners hopes to engage other organizations in the future.

“Our ultimate goal is to ensure no other child is killed or injured due to dangerous and illegal hazing,” said Richard Braham. “It will take more than tougher laws, greater parental awareness and university oversight or a timely display of moral courage and decency to eradicate hazing. It will take all of these things, plus young people understanding that you don’t become a ‘better man or woman’ by watching and remaining silent as your brother or sister is harmed or killed.”

###

About the North American Interfraternity Conference
NIC is a trade association that represents 66 national and international men’s fraternities, with more than 6,100 chapters located on more than 800 campuses in the United States and Canada, with approximately 385,000 undergraduate members and nearly 4.2 million alumni. The NIC has introduced enhanced health and safety standards and programs, including last week’s ban of hard alcohol in fraternity houses and events.

About the National Panhellenic Conference
NPC is the umbrella organization specifically charged with advocating on behalf of the sorority experience. It is comprised of 26 national and international sororities that are autonomous social organizations. Collectively, NPC sororities are located on more than 670 campuses with approximately 418,000 undergraduate members and nearly 5 million alumnae.

About HazingPrevention.Org
HazingPrevention.Org™ is dedicated to empowering people to prevent hazing, by providing education and resources, advocating on hazing prevention, and building partnerships with others. Major initiatives of the organization include National Hazing Prevention Week™, Prevent.Zone™ educational online courses, seminars, books, and educational resources that touch the lives of thousands of individuals, organizations, campuses and communities.

About the Association of Fraternity/Sorority Advisors
Through programs, publications, networking opportunities and other resources, AFA represents the community of fraternity and sorority advisors and is the leading voice in aligning the fraternity/sorority and higher education experiences.

About the Association of Fraternal Leadership & Values
The Association of Fraternal Leadership & Values (AFLV) accelerates progress in fraternity and sorority communities, reaching more than 300 campuses and 4,000 student leaders and professionals through change-enabling experiences.

NIC fraternities ban hard alcohol in decisive action

Indianapolis—In an important, decisive action to enhance health and safety in fraternity communities, the North American Interfraternity Conference (NIC) recently adopted a Standard prohibiting hard alcohol from fraternity chapter facilities and events.

At its Aug. 27 Annual Meeting in a near unanimous vote of its 66 inter/national fraternities, the Conference determined that each organization will implement the new Standard by Sept. 1, 2019, across their more than 6,100 chapters on 800 campuses.

“At their core, fraternities are about brotherhood, personal development and providing a community of support. Alcohol abuse and its serious consequences endanger this very purpose,” said Judson Horras, NIC President & CEO. “This action shows fraternities’ clear commitment and leadership to further their focus on the safety of members and all in our communities.”

This is the latest in a series of NIC Health & Safety Initiatives launched in the last year, including Conference-wide adoption of medical Good Samaritan policies; piloting further measures to reduce alcohol; developing SocialSafe, an online event management platform and app; testing measures to reduce hazing in the new member experience; and advocating for stronger anti-hazing laws.

“Our IFC and member fraternities eliminated hard alcohol from facilities and events on our campus several years ago and have seen a positive shift in our culture when it comes to the health and safety of our members and guests,” said Seth Gutwein, Purdue University IFC President. “With all NIC fraternities implementing this critical change, it will provide strong support for fraternities to move as one to make campus communities safer.”

Under the resolution passed by the Conference, each NIC member fraternity will “adopt and implement a policy by September 1, 2019, that prohibits the presence of alcohol products above 15% ABV in any chapter facility or at any chapter event, except when served by a licensed third-party vendor. Chapter facilities and events outside the United States may have one additional year to achieve compliance. Any member fraternity that does not have a business meeting between Sept. 1, 2018, and Sept. 1, 2019, will be granted a one-year extension in adoption.” As with all NIC Standards, this is a minimum expectation; when member fraternities and campuses have more restrictive policies, students and chapters will still be expected to follow those.

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Click here for more information, including Frequently Asked Questions. The North American Interfraternity Conference is a trade association that represents 66 inter/national men’s fraternities, with more than 6,100 chapters located on more than 800 campuses in the United States and Canada, with approximately 385,000 undergraduate members and nearly 4.2 million alumni.Indianapolis—In an important, decisive action to enhance health and safety in fraternity communities, the North American Interfraternity Conference (NIC) recently adopted a Standard prohibiting hard alcohol from fraternity chapter facilities and events.

At its Aug. 27 Annual Meeting in a near unanimous vote of its 66 inter/national fraternities, the Conference determined that each organization will implement the new Standard by Sept. 1, 2019, across their more than 6,100 chapters on 800 campuses.

“At their core, fraternities are about brotherhood, personal development and providing a community of support. Alcohol abuse and its serious consequences endanger this very purpose,” said Judson Horras, NIC President & CEO. “This action shows fraternities’ clear commitment and leadership to further their focus on the safety of members and all in our communities.”

This is the latest in a series of NIC Health & Safety Initiatives launched in the last year, including Conference-wide adoption of medical Good Samaritan policies; piloting further measures to reduce alcohol; developing SocialSafe, an online event management platform and app; testing measures to reduce hazing in the new member experience; and advocating for stronger anti-hazing laws.

Our IFC and member fraternities eliminated hard alcohol from facilities and events on our campus several years ago and have seen a positive shift in our culture when it comes to the health and safety of our members and guests,” said Seth Gutwein, Purdue University IFC President. “With all NIC fraternities implementing this critical change, it will provide strong support for fraternities to move as one to make campus communities safer.”

Under the resolution passed by the Conference, each NIC member fraternity will “adopt and implement a policy by September 1, 2019, that prohibits the presence of alcohol products above 15% ABV in any chapter facility or at any chapter event, except when served by a licensed third-party vendor. Chapter facilities and events outside the United States may have one additional year to achieve compliance. Any member fraternity that does not have a business meeting between Sept. 1, 2018, and Sept. 1, 2019, will be granted a one-year extension in adoption.” As with all NIC Standards, this is a minimum expectation; when member fraternities and campuses have more restrictive policies, students and chapters will still be expected to follow those.

###

Click here for more information, including Frequently Asked Questions. The North American Interfraternity Conference is a trade association that represents 66 inter/national men’s fraternities, with more than 6,100 chapters located on more than 800 campuses in the United States and Canada, with approximately 385,000 undergraduate members and nearly 4.2 million alumni.

Clark J. Brown joins NIC team as General Counsel

CLARK J. BROWN JOINS NIC TEAM AS GENERAL COUNSEL

Indianapolis, May 29, 2018—Clark J. Brown will join the North American Interfraternity Conference (NIC) team as General Counsel beginning Aug. 31. In this role, Brown will provide expert counsel to the NIC, advocating for student and organization rights and responsibilities. He will oversee implementation of the forthcoming standard operating procedures for Interfraternity Councils (IFCs), and collaborate with key stakeholders to provide advocacy and expertise around campus relationship statements.

Additionally, he will lead establishment of all legal agreements and requirements within the NIC’s SocialSafe system, including third-party registrations, protocols for student organizations in signing and executing contracts, and other legal considerations for safe events.

Brown comes to the NIC from Sigma Alpha Epsilon (SAE) Fraternity, where he has served as General Counsel since 2013. He has been a powerful change agent for SAE and the industry, demonstrating a commitment to health and safety and a positive interfraternal experience. He was a major force in SAE’s elimination of pledging and adoption of its holistic member education program, and during his tenure, SAE’s litigation and insurance-claims exposure decreased to record lows.
“Clark is a dedicated brother of Sigma Alpha Epsilon and steadfast believer in fraternity,” said SAE CEO Mike Sophir. “His insight and perspective have greatly benefited SAE and thus the entire interfraternal movement. I am proud to see Clark take on a role with the NIC that offers even greater opportunity to make an impact.”

Prior to his role as General Counsel for SAE, Brown was an attorney in private practice at a litigation firm and a judicial law clerk (staff attorney) to the Honorable Kristine G. Baker, United States District Judge of the U.S. District Court in Little Rock, Arkansas. Brown has gained broad and valuable experience in legal and risk management issues in higher education with a particular focus on insurance matters.

“Clark’s knowledge and expertise around the work we’re doing is a tremendous asset to the interfraternal community in advocating for students’ rights,” said NIC President & CEO Judson Horras. “He is dedicated to a meaningful fraternity experience and has a vast understanding for the considerations our organizations, IFCs, alumni and undergraduate members face as they foster safe and vibrant communities.”
Brown is a two-time graduate of the University of Arkansas. He earned a B.A. in political science then J.D. from the School of Law, where he graduated magna cum laude and served as executive editor of the Arkansas Law Review. His published work has been cited multiple times by the Arkansas Supreme Court.

“I am honored to take this position during a critical time for our organizations, and I am thankful for the experience I gained serving my fraternity,” Brown said. “Chapters and IFCs must focus on instilling fraternal values and principles within young men, helping them understand their role in health and safety of fellow students and productivity of their communities. I firmly support the positive impact fraternity can have, and look forward to continued advocacy of that experience as part of the NIC team.”

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