IEEE-Eta Kappa Nu, Missouri University of Science and Technology, Gamma Theta Chapter



The Gamma Theta Chapter of IEEE-Eta Kappa Nu (IEEE-HKN) serves the students in Electrical Engineering, Computer Engineering, and Computer Science at Missouri University of Science and Technology in Rolla, Missouri USA. The host department is now the Electrical and Computer Engineering (ECE) Department and HKN is one of the main in-department student organizations along with the IEEE Student Branch and the Amateur Radio Club. The chapter inducts students and professional members and it provides valuable service to the campus and community including administration of the ECE Student Projects Laboratory. This site was prepared and is maintained by the members of the Gamma Theta Chapter.

Gamma Theta Founders Day 2013

Missouri University of Science and Technology (S&T) was established in 1870 as Missouri School of Mines and Metallurgy (MSM) and later was known as the University of Missouri-Rolla (UMR). The university is a technological institution with a vast majority of its students in technical fields of study and it is known for its many student design teams. Electrical engineering was first taught through the physics department with the first BS EE degree being awarded in 1917. Electrical Engineering became a separate department in 1924. Computer Engineering became an option and the department became the Electrical and Computer Engineering Department in 1998. Computer Science degrees are offered through the Computer Science Department. BS, MS, and PhD degrees are offered in electrical engineering, computer engineering, and computer science. Rolla is located in south-central Missouri in the Ozarks region.

History of the Gamma Theta Chapter of HKN

Gamma Theta Charter April 26, 1052
Signature Book for April 26, 1952

The honor society chapter had its start in 1950. Following the procedures of the time, Electrical Engineering students at the institution that was then known as the Missouri School of Mines and Metallurgy established the Theta Mu honor society on December 5, 1950. An intention of this organization was to gain formal recognition from the honor society, Eta Kappa Nu (HKN). A petition was submitted for the charter of a local chapter. A charter was granted on April 26, 1952 establishing the Gamma Theta chapter. The founding president was Homer E. Coonce and the founding faculty advisors were Roger E. Nolte and Gabriel G. Skitek. The charter ceremony was officiated by Dr. Ovid W. Eshbach, National President of HKN and Dean of Northwestern University. Alton B. Zerby, Executive Secretary of HKN, and alumni of the Nu Chapter - Roger E. Nolte, M. G. Keeney, and Philip L. Bartleson, assisted with the chartering ceremony. University representatives were Dr. Curtis L. Wilson, head of MSM, and Dr. Israel H. Lovett, Chairman of the Electrical Engineering Department. Dr. Mervin J. Kelly, President of Bell Telephone Laboratories and Rolla alumnus from 1914, was a special guest and was inducted as a professional member of HKN.

The thirty-one HKN members at the induction of April 26, 1952 were Donald G. Bardon, Paul H. Breazeale, Homer E. Coonce, William Crawley, John N. Davidson, John H. Dickerman, Rodney E. Gilbreath, David L. Hillhouse, Mervin J. Kelly*, William P. Kimker Jr., Ernest Peter Longerich, Israel H. Lovett*, John G. Macke, George F. McCormick, Charles M. McDowell, William G. Meyers, Ferd Mullersman, Joseph J. Murphy, Claude J. Osbourne, Robert J. Owens, William A. Paar, Charles C. Poe, Robert E. Rasche, Michael C. Robel, James F. Ruhl, Wiley T. Ruhl, Gerald F. Sinnamon, Gabriel G. Skitek*, Frederick R. Wagner, Ronald R. Watson, and John Zaborszky* (* professional members). The professional members were Mervin J. Kelly, President of Bell Laboratories and Rolla alumni; Israel H. Lovett, Electrical Engineering Department Chair; Gabriel G. Skitek, electrical engineering faculty member; and John Zaborsky, electrical engineering faculty member.

The predecessor organization of Theta Mu was formed on December 5, 1950 by the following students at MSM: Ferd Mullersman, Richard G. Mallon, Charles M. McDowell, Martin F. Rust, John G. Macke, Edward R. Knauel, Homer E. Coonce, Maurice J. Ludwig, Joseph J. Murphy, Richard R. Robotti, and John N. Davidson. The faculty advisors were Gabriel G. Skitek and Roger E. Nolte. Richard R. Robotti served as the first president. The petition for an Eta Kappa Nu chapter was submitted November 1951. This petition was signed by the following students: Donald G. Bardon, Paul H. Breazeale, Honer E. Coonce, William Crawley, John H. Dickerman, Floyd M. Drummond, Rodney E. Gilbreath, Vernon E. Hackman, Milton H. Hellman, Paul L. Hydinger, William P. Kimber, Edward R. Knauel, Charles M. McDowell, John G. Macke, Joseph J. Murphy, Claude J. Osborne, Robert J. Owens, William A. Paar, Robert W. Rasche, James F. Ruhl, Frederick R. Wagner, and Ronald R. Watson. Homer E. Coonce was president when the petition was submitted.

Head table of the 1952 installation meeting of the Gamma Theta Chapter. L-R: Dr. Curtis L. Wilson (heard of the school), Robert L. Owens (Gamma Theta Secretary), Alton B. Zerby (National HKN Secretary), Mrs. I.H. Lovett, Dr. Mervin J. Kelly (President of Bell Telephone Laboratories and Rolla Alumnus from 1914), Homer E. Coonce (Gamma Theta President), Mrs R.L. Owens, Dr. Ovid W. Eshbach (Dean of Northwestern University and National HKN President), William P. Kimker (Gamma Theta Treasurer), and Dr. I.H. Lovett (EE Department Chair)
Front Row: John N. Davidson, John H. Dickerman, Robert J. Owens, Donald G. Bardon, Israel H. Lovett, Mervin J. Kelly, William G. Meyers, David L. Hillhouse, Joseph J. Murphy. Second Row: Fred Mullersman, Wiley T. Ruhl, John G. Macke, Ronald R. Watson, Gerald F. Sinnamon, Rodney E. Gilbreath, John Zaborszky, James F. Ruhl, George F. McCormick. Third Row: William A. Paar, Claude J. Osbourne, Paul H. Breazeale, William Crawley, Charles C. Poe, Frederick R. Wagner, Michael C. Robel, William P. Kimker Jr., Charles M. McDowell. Fourth Row: Homer E. Coonce, Ernest Peter Longerich, Gabriel G. Skitek, Robert E. Rasche.
Officials and Professional Members at Gamma Theta Charter. Front Row: Alton B. Zerby (National HKN Executive Secretary), Dr. Ovid W. Eshbach (National HKN President), Dr. Mervin J. Kelly (President of BellLaboratories), and Prof. I. H. Lovett (MSM EE Chairman). Second Row:Professor G.G. Skitek and Professor R. E. Nolte. (Professional member Professor John Zaborsky - not shown),
Charter Presentation by HKN President Ovid W. Eshbach to the Gamma Theta Chapter

The Presidents of the Gamma Theta Chapter are listed below. The 1950-1952 terms were for the academic year of the Theta Mu chapter. The terms for 1952 and beyond are for the Fall and Spring Semesters of the Gamma Theta Chapter.

Hand-painted HKN Shield for the Charter Presentation
Charter for Theta Mu Honor Society 1950 at MSM
Gamma Theta Chapter Presidents
Term Names
2022 Aaron Burke
2022 Elanor Jackson
2021 Elanor Jackson
2021 Danielle J. Baker
2020 Cailyn Crowley
2020 Chelsea Shaffer
2019 Richard Kell
2019 Rachel Bruner
2018 Alexander Hook
2018 Jacqueline M. Walters
2017 Joseph “Trenton” Drury
2017 Katelyn R. Brinker
2016 Clint R. Paes
2016 Kayla U. Ninh
2015 Kyle A. Teevan
2015 Emily M. DiGirolamo
2014 Paul Sappington
2014 Mallory Mitchell
2013 Kaitlyn M. Schikore
2013 Jeremy Johnson
2012 Vincent T. Allen
2012 Vincent T. Allen
2011 Kenneth N. Bassler III
2011 William Marchetto
2010 Kevin E. Robison
2010 Gina S. Hentschke
2009 Zachary R. Marsden
2009 Tori J. Ratliff
2008 Robert D. Zuroweste
2008 Tyler G. Sheeley
2007 Amy K. Perrey
2007 Jeffrey J. Labundy
2006 Luke A. Hogrebe
2006 Benjamin R. Moss
2005 Frances L. Pratt
2005 M. Ryan Bales
2004 Richard A. Milburn
2004 Jeremy M. Allyn
2003 Paul T. Mattione
2003 William F. Krekeler
2002 Jesse Lai
2002 James W. Fonda
2001 James W. Fonda
2001 John Fitez
2000 Sarah Taylor
2000 Kevin Kroeger
1999 S. Paul Hatfield II
1999 S. Paul Hatfield II
1998 Chris Olsen
1998 Chris Olsen
1997 Ted Zeeff
1979 Patrick Chapman
1996 Brian Willingham
1996 Carrie May
1995 Sean J. Bentley
1995 Matt Spaethe
1994 Chris Matt
1994 Jeff Watrous
1993 Steve Poulsen
1993 Warren Waas
1992 Todd Sublette
1992 Michael Pruitt
1991 William Alexander
1991 Ryan Elbert
1990 Jonathan Joplin
1990 Kevin Kohm
1989 Becky L. Dancy
1989 Lynn C. Berning
1988 Shelly Law
1988 Nancy Wojciechowski
1987 Chris Cooper
1987 Alan Simpson
1986 Elizabeth C. Rollheiser
1986 David M. Walling
1985 Rick Maness
1985 Rick Maness
1984 Clay Melugin
1984 Brent Jenkins
1983 William C. Schulze
1983 David Gaskill
1982 C. Frederick Kummer III
1982 Andrew W. Bonnot
1981 James K. Haberstock
1981 J. Keith Townsend
1980 Mark J. Nealon
1980 UNK
1979 Steve Diebold
1979 Robert W. Arnold
1978 Craig L. Agne
1978 Stephen L. Allen
1977 Robert C. Welsh
1977 Dennis C. Appel
1976 Alan V. Parks
1976 Paul Abney
1975 Dennis W. Leitterman
1975 Alan Erickson
1974 Paul L. Clites
1974 Michael E. Cerulo
1973 Jerry Sanders
1973 Leonard F. Laskowski III
1972 Ronald D. Fadler
1972 George W. Havenstein
1971 Donald A. Bene
1971 Jerry T. Sewell
1970 Constantine R. Jenkins
1970 Thomas D. Steury
1969 George M. Vernon
1969 Jerry Brown
1968 Robert J. Livengood
1968 James L. Wiseman
1967 Dennis Greer
1967 UNK
1966 James R. Armstrong
1966 Larry Robinson
1965 James E. Stangel
1965 James D. Spencer
1964 Donald E. Spirk
1964 Henry E. Fischer
1963 John Hollaway
1963 Kent W. Swearingen
1962 George Alexander
1962 Memphord Smith
1961 William H. Slocum
1961 Russell M. Ousley
1960 Lloyd Brunkhorst
1960 William McGovern
1959 Douglas M. Froemsdorf
1959 James H. Hahn
1958 Leland L. Lory
1958 Norval D. Wallace
1957 Orville L. Schaefer
1957 Paul E. Zahn
1956 Liston E. Neely
1956 Jack D. Stewart
1955 James F. Longshore
1955 Richard L. Kaiser
1954 Donald Gessley
1954 Jerry D. Swearingen
1953 Charles Poe, Jr.
1953 Donald G. Bardon
1952 Claude J. Osborne
1952 Homer E. Coonce
1951-1951 Homer E. Coonce
1950-1951 Richard R. Robotti

HKN Office at Rolla, Missouri USA

J. Robert Betten, HKN President 1982-1983 and Executive Secretary 1988-1999

During 1988-1999, the Eta Kappa Nu headquarters office was located in Rolla, Missouri while Dr. J. Robert Betten served as Executive Secretary of HKN. Betten was Emeritus Professor of Electrical Engineering. He was on the UMR faculty for 1962-1992 and served as department chairman for 1967-1978. Betten (1932-2000) received his BS (1955), MS (1959), and PhD (1962) from Iowa State University and was inducted into HKN in 1955 as a member of the Nu Chapter. He served the National HKN Association as Director (1977-1979), Vice-President (1981-1982), President (1982-1983), and Executive Secretary and The Bridge Editor (1988-1999). A special memorial issue of The Bridge magazine for Dr. Betten was published in the summer 2000 (Volume 96, No. 2).