Dave Finkbiner ’13: Hiking His Own Hike

As Dave looks back at his fairly recent time at Delta Chi, he remembers a group of men who were all learning how to collectively progress forward, grow and ensure that the organization reached its full potential. The chapter was, and still is, relatively young. It had only been reinstated a few years before Dave joined. That group was focused on (and accomplished) incredible work pertaining to chapter growth; so, during Dave’s years in the house, it was about utilizing that growth to start making an impression within Delta Chi on a national level as well as within the Michigan Greek system. 

A few of the memorable accomplishments that DX made during Dave’s undergraduate years include the chapter’s increased membership on Michigan’s Interfraternity Council, creation of the Jimmy V March Madness Charity Bracket and hosting of the Spring 2013 Regional Leadership Conference. 

Dave’s involvement in the fraternity via various leadership positions is something he will be thankful for and proud of forever. “I was very fortunate in that I held a significant number of leadership positions throughout my years at the house including housing manager, brotherhood chair, vice president, variety chair (also known as dance chair for Greek Week festivities) and regional conference chair where I organized the RLC [regional leadership conference] that was held in Ann Arbor during the spring of 2013,” he said.

Although there was a focus on growth of the fraternity, that doesn’t mean Dave and his brothers didn’t set aside some time for fun. One particular memory that sticks out was during the fall semester of his sophomore year — the first year he lived in the house. It was during Homecoming Weekend, and an alumni event coincided with this. A decent amount of the alumni stuck around after the event ended and hung out with the actives. The longer the alumni stuck around, the more integrated they became with all of the active brothers and the newly assembled fall semester associate members. “It was a very cool scene to look around the house and have such a large span of Delta Chi generations intertwined and immersed in conversation and Delta Chi story time,” said Dave.

Although those are certainly moments Dave will never forget, his fondest memories were the impromptu nights where people would just hang out around the house without much of a plan. It was during these times when things would organically come together for a great brotherhood night.

Dave only lived in the house for two years in a single room, but they were nothing short of eventful. He didn’t have roommates per se, but fondly remembers living with Adam Davis ’12, Brandon Breslow ’12, Tom Bence ’13, Erik Eklov ’13, Andrew Eckhous ’13, Mario Longobardi ’13, Mani Mahadevan ’13, Tim Curran ’13, Gabe Hendin ’13, Nelson Worner ’12 and Daniel Friedman ’13 during his sophomore year. During his senior year, he lived with Tom Bence, Kyle Taylor ’14, Rob Justice ’14, Mark Schork ’14, Matt Russell ’14, Alex Vigran ’14, Lewaa Bahmad ’15, Alex Nagler ’14 and Jared Helfman ’15. Dave feels fortunate that he has kept in touch with most of the members of the pledge classes of fall ’09 and spring ’10. 

Following graduation, Dave accepted a position as a technology consultant with Accenture, LLC, and has been there since 2013. He lives in the prime location of Farmington Hills, Mich., about 30 minutes North East of Ann Arbor. Dave considers himself lucky because he is able to make frequent return visits to see friends and attend events in the area.

When Dave isn’t working, he enjoys spending time with his two lovely parents, older sister and younger brother, especially since he and his siblings are all close in age. The only downside is that he is the sole Wolverine in his family whereas his mother, sister and brother all are Spartans, which has provided for some fun family rivalries.

As far as hobbies go, you will find Dave reading, learning or listening to podcasts while traveling. He also participates in endurance events such as marathons, triathlons and hiking trips. Hiking the Appalachian Trail (AT) the summer after graduation is one of Dave’s proudest moments and his biggest success in life thus far. The AT is a 2200-mile, continuous hiking trail that stretches from Springer Mountain in Northern Georgia to Mount Katahdin in the middle of Maine. The two main slogans for hikers on the trail were “hike your own hike” and “pay It forward,” which are great mantras that have improved the quality of Dave’s life since he began living by them. Having the ability and time to grow a “wicked awesome mountain man beard” was also a nice perk that he enjoyed immensely. 

On the other hand, Dave’s biggest regret up to this point in life is that he did not explore and learn enough when he was younger and had more time on his hands. From this learning experience, he chose to offer a piece of advice to the Delta Chi actives:

“Explore and take advantage of opportunities; experience is a fantastic teacher and will pay you back in dividends over the years.”