Ribbon cutting a celebration at Alabama’s Omicron Chapter

Omicron Chapter house at University Boulevard

Notable brothers in attendance included Past National President Mark Jacobs, Chief Executive Officer Mark Timmes, Executive Director Emeritus Durward Owen and Mr. Pi Kappa Phi recipient Emmett Dendy.

Speakers at the event included Warren DeBardelaben, president of the Omicron Club; David Richardson, treasurer of the Omicron Chapter; Andrew Fowler, Archon of Omicron Chapter; Mark Timmes, CEO of Pi Kappa Phi Fraternity; Dr. Judy Bonner, president of the University of Alabama; Dr. Robert Witt, chancellor of the University of Alabama School System; Steve Trimmier, fundraising chairman; and Emmett Dendy, Mr. Pi Kappa Phi recipient, football player at the University of Alabama, WWII survivor and honorary campaign chairman.

omicron-ribboncutting2The ribbon was cut by Dr. Robert Witt, Dr. Judy Bonner, Emmett Dendy and Warren DeBardelaben.

The new chapter house is the first fraternity house visible as you arrive on campus via University Boulevard and includes 40 student rooms and a full housemother’s suite.

In 2010, with the University of Alabama rapidly expanding and several fraternities and sororities beginning the process of building new houses, Omicron Chapter was faced with a decision. The house they were in was nearly 50 years old and had only received cosmetic renovations throughout the years. There were three main options: sell the house and build a new one; refurbish the one they were in; or expand the one they were in along with major renovations. After studying the options and costs, the Omicron Club made the decision in 2011 that they would attempt to sell the house and build a new one.

They submitted a proposal to the university and, in the fall of 2011, were granted the last available lot on the university’s main entrance, University Blvd. The current house was quickly sold to another fraternity and the project for a new house was under way.

The University of Alabama engaged a third party, Pennington and Company, to work with the Omicron Club and complete a feasibility study on the necessary fundraising efforts they would need to build the new house. Over the next few months, Omicron engaged an architect, Kick Holmes of Mobile, Ala., to begin designing a house that captured the essence of Pi Kappa Phi (including a gate to the courtyard with an arch similar to College of Charleston as well as the great seal in the foyer). Omicron also worked diligently with Pennington to design campaign materials and arrange fundraising events. The hope was to gather a substantial amount of donations prior to the public announcement of the fundraising campaign. Emmett Dendy ’46 agreed to serve as campaign honorary chairman and Steve Trimmier ’63 agreed to serve as campaign chairman. Since Omicron was founded in 1917, the chapter was almost 100 years old; therefore, the theme of the campaign was “Building for the Next 100 Years.”

When the campaign went public, they had already garnered commitments of $1.1 million. The current donation total is $1.57 million. Omicron Club plans to continue their fundraising efforts until they reach $2 million. The donations run through the University of Alabama and are earmarked for the Omicron house.

If anyone is interested in giving or more information, they can visit www.uapikappaphi.com.

In 2017, Omicron chapter will celebrate its 100th anniversary. The chapter has initiated over 2,400 men.

The University of Alabama currently has over 33,000 students. Fraternity and sorority membership at Alabama is growing at a tremendous rate with over 56 fraternities and sororities and more than 6,000 members.


Omicron Photo Gallery


Facts about Omicron Chapter House:

  • It is 28,000 square feet with a cost of $7.8 million
  • Upstairs there are 40 student rooms with individual HVAC controls, a study hall, separate showers and lockers, a laundry room and kitchenette
  • Downstairs features include dining space for 152 brothers, a state of the art commercial kitchen, a separate study hall / meeting room, a spacious living room, a formal parlor room, a recreation room which doubles as a storm shelter (including sliding storm shutters) and the largest band room on campus (3,100 sq ft)
  • 4 ice machines throughout the house
  • Rooms built for bike storage and tailgate tent storage
  • Full Housemother’s Suite
  • Used paneling in the Chapter Room and Rec Room picked out personally by Brother Emmett Dendy from his sawmill