Create and support one-to-one mentoring relationships that ignite the power and promise of youth.
All youth achieve their full potential
By partnering with parents/guardians, volunteers , and others in the community we are accountable for each child in our program achieving:
* Higher aspirations, greater confidence, and better relationships
* Avoidance of risky behaviors
* Educational success
The Southern Lake Michigan Story
Big Brothers started as an interest group on the University of Notre Dame campus in 1968. Big Sisters began through a South Bend Concerned Women’s Group, led by Sylvia DeBoskey in 1969. Big Brothers Big Sisters merged locally in 1973 and secured funding through the United Way.
The agency bought its first offices in 1980 on Madison Street in South Bend to house staff and administrative records. In 1995, the first School Mentoring initiative began at Perley Elementary School in South Bend. We currently serve children in the PHM School District and have site-based programming in several South Bend after-school neighborhood Centers. The agency moved to a leased office space in downtown South Bend in 2006 to save on escalating building expenses associated with owning a large office building.
In January of 2020, Big Brothers Big Sisters of Lower West Michigan (with offices in Niles, Michigan) merged with the St. Joseph County agency and one new partnership was formed: Big Brothers Big Sisters – Southern Lake Michigan Region.
Currently, hundreds of children are supported each year in our one-to-one Community and School Mentoring Programs.
Chief Executive Officer
Marketing & Special Events Manager
Director of Programs
Program Support Specialist
Case Manager / Outreach Coordinator
2022 Board of Directors
TJ Jorgensen | Chairmen of the Board | TJ21 Media Group
Erin Lee* | 2nd Vice Chairwoman of the Board | Sanders Pianowski LLP
Casey Zitkus* | 2nd Board Treasurer | First State Bank
Brian Hake | Board Tresurer | Kruggel Lawton & Co, LLC
Sandra Pontius | Board Secretary | SJ Health System
Adrian Riley* | City of Elkhart Police Department
Alexandra Brown | Community Representative
Amelia Schroeder | Whirlpool Corporation
Brent Miller* | Everence Financial
Craig Blough* | Delaval Inc.
Curtis Gunter* | Forest River
Eric Becker | Whirlpool Corporation
George Bonin | Trutility LLC
Larry Sehy | Community Representative
Lynn Senter | Eaton
Michael Anthony | Golden Years Financial Advisors
Mike Steinau* | DJ Construction
Nathan Vogel | Inovateus Solar
Rebecca Ward | Community Rep
Robyn Minix | 1st Source Bank
Ryan Durham | Varonis Systems
Sarah Milovich | Carlton, Inc.
TD Ball | University of Notre Dame
T.J. Miller* | Crowe Horwath
Vickie Wagner | Community Representative
Willie Brown* | Heart City Health
* Indicates Board Member Representing Elkhart County