Knight Commanders

C. Douglas Simmons III

41st Knight Commander

Beta Tau–Mississippi State, 1995

Clyde Douglas Simmons III was born in Greenville, Mississippi, and is a lifelong, proud Mississippian. In 1995, while attending Mississippi State University, he was initiated by the Beta Tau Chapter and has been continuously involved with the Order. He served as Number VII and Number III. He graduated from Mississippi State with a Bachelor of Science in Agricultural Economics. He is the managing Partner in Simmons Planting Company in the Mississippi Delta where his family has been engaged in row crop production agriculture for several generations.

Simmons has been involved in several educational, civic, and professional organizations. He attended Washington School in Greenville, Mississippi, for his primary and secondary education and serves today as a trustee of the Washington School Foundation. He is a former member of the board of directors and immediate past president of the Highland Club at Lake Washington, Mississippi, the oldest incorporated social club in the State.

A champion of the United States Farmer, Brother Simmons, on behalf of U.S. Department of Agriculture, has officially represented the soybean and rice industries on five continents and in numerous countries. Additionally, he is: Mississippi State’s alumni representative to the Association of Public Land Grant Universities; a long-time board member of the Delta Council, an 85-year old organization focused on the promotion of agriculture, flood control, and development of transportation systems in the Mississippi Delta; the Governor’s appointee and vice-chairman of the Mississippi Soybean Promotion Board; appointed by the U.S. Secretary of Agriculture to represent Mississippi on the United Soybean Board, the federal entity responsible for the oversight and annual disbursement of more than $100 million to promote soybean production and market development; and, a former member of the Mississippi Rice Council board of directors, representing his stated on the board of the Rice Federation, a global advocate for all segments of the U.S. rice industry.

Upon graduation, Simmons joined the staff of the National Administrative Office in Lexington, Virginia, as an Educational and Leadership Consultant and visited chapters in every province in the Order. Upon his return home to join his family’s farming business, he became Alumnus Advisor to Beta Tau Chapter and served in that capacity until 2005, when he was elected as the Commander of the Emmett Lee Irwin Province. After three years of service as Irwin Province Commander, Simmons was elected by the Advisory Council to the Order’s Executive Council in 2008 serving continuously to the present. He has served on the Board of Trustees of the Kappa Alpha Order Educational Foundation since 2014.

He chaired Sesquicentennial Celebration Steering Committee; in 2015 at the 76th Convention and Sesquicentennial Celebration held in Roanoke, Virginia, he was elected Senior Councilor.

He is the recipient of the Knight Commander’s Accolade, and a member of multiple Courts of Honor. A long-time ritual lecturer and former Model Initiation Director, he authored the Stewards of the Order Program to ensure the initiation ceremony is conducted in a uniform way and to preserve the ritual unaltered. He has a strong appreciation for and knowledge of the history of the Order and the Kappa Alpha Laws.

Simmons resides in Tribbett, Mississippi, and is a communicant of St. Stephens Episcopal Church in Indianola.