Local resident Adam Blakey received the “Big Brother of the Year” award at the 2015 Volunteer Recognition Dinner on Thursday, July 23 at Hotel Fort Wayne for his exceptional work with the Agency and the profound impact that he has had on his Little Brother, Jaylin.
He was selected among six other nominees by a carefully selected panel of judges consisting of community leaders from across the Agency’s 13-county service area, who rated the nominees based on information from their Littles, the Littles’ parents and Agency staff members. The panel of judges is as follows: Eric Johnson, Tuthill Transfer Systems; Jason Knothe, JH Specialty; Gary Hamilton, Fort Wayne Police Department Chief; Kathy Callen, Old National Bank; Heather Henrickson, Kohl’s; Michael Zahn, First Federal Savings Bank; Doug Roth, Do It Best Corp.
Matched in 2007, Big Brother Adam and Little Brother Jaylin first met a Big Brothers Big Sisters event. The two connected instantly and were soon matched together in the Community-Based program. Today they enjoy watching movies, playing video games, going out to eat and honing in on Jaylin’s academics.
Over the years, Adam has watched Jaylin grow and mature into a confident young man. Since their initial match, Adam has graduated from college, earned a master’s degree, gotten married and started a family– all while maintaining his relationship with Little Brother Jaylin. From helping with his academics to watching him get his driver’s license and first job, Adam has always taken personal pride in Jaylin’s accomplishments and is always there to encourage and uplift him when times get hard. Together, they have forged a bond that seems more like family than a mentorship.