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Congratulations Bud Shaw 
2017 Big of the Year


Big Brothers Big Sisters of Central New Mexico honors Bud Shaw as Big of the Year for 2017. Bud and his Little, Greg, started their fantastic voyage of friendship April Fool’s Day in 2013. At first, Bud was apprehensive as there are decades of experience between Greg and himself. Bud wasn’t sure how they would relate to each other, because Greg was just 13 years old. He was worried about how the two would find common ground as a match. He soon discovered he was very wrong, and they had many things in common.

Greg’s mom really supported the Big Brothers Big Sisters match and wanted it to be a very positive influence on Greg’s life. During their first meeting, the pair sat at Greg’s house and they talked for at least 5 hours. At that meeting they decided if his Mom approved, they would meet every Saturday for at least a little while. A little while has lasted 4 years. Bud told Greg, “you get out of the relationship what you put into it, so let’s gear up and let’s roll,” and this started one of the best adventures of both of their lives. The pair agreed their priorities in the match will be: GOD, Self, Family, School, and Big Brothers Big Sisters. So, if a family event occurs during their scheduled meeting day or time, it has priority and the pair plans accordingly.

After the first few meetings, Greg became very outgoing, talkative, and enthusiastic about life. He shared the innermost details about his life like his feelings about girls and sports. As the match progressed, he went on to become Co-Captain of the High School Football Team, and his grades improved. The matches meetups all start with the decided 4- basic questions: “How is Greg?”, “How is Greg’s family?”, “How is Greg’s school?” and Greg later added “How is my girlfriend?” The pair has spent many hours and some long days doing things Bud would have never imagined that, at his age, he would be doing and enjoying! Some of these activities include: Inside and Outside Go-karts, Paint Ball, attending indoor Arena Football games, trips to the mall, 3 A.M. Balloon Fiesta events, being VIP’s at the UNM LOBOS Basketball games, and going to the Defined Fitness Gym to name a few.

At the gym, Bud had a trainer that was helping him and he asked the trainer if they could include Greg on Saturdays for their workout time. The trainer agreed and Defined Fitness waived Greg’s Membership Fees. The trainer started helping both of them learn new athletic training techniques, but most importantly, how to achieve goals no matter how big or small they are. The “finish what you start” mentality transfers to other projects and many other issues in life. While attending the gym, Greg became a figure head for Big Brothers and Big Sisters to everyone at the gym. The Defined Fitness Company asked the pair to be in a promotional news release that promoted Big Brothers and Big Sisters along with Defined Fitness to the community. The promotional spot ran 36 times over a three day weekend.

Tragically, six months after Bud and Greg met, Greg’s Mom passed away. It was an emotional and difficult time for Greg. Bud was the first person Greg called from the hospital after his mom’s passing. Bud remembers Greg telling him that he no longer had anyone, but Bud assured him that he did. Bud reminded him that he has a great supportive family, many friends, and a fantastic Aunt and Uncle. Bud was impressed on how everyone in his family came together during this tragic time. Greg’s aunt and uncle accepted Greg into their home, and supported his involvement in the Big Brothers Big Sisters Program. As Greg’s Big Brother, Bud was able to be there and help him with any support and whatever he needed to get through that very difficult time. Bud says, “I don’t think I would have done as well as he did in getting through this situation.”

The match continues to meet weekly, or as time allows. Their basic kick-off questions are always the conversation starting point, this allows them to find common questions to answer quickly and then tackle anything new that has come up during the week. Greg’s aunt often tells Bud, “Greg comes back from their meetings somehow different, with a great approach and outlook on life and better than before”. Bud says “Of all the things I have volunteered for over the years, this is by far the best! I am a listener, teacher, thought-provoker, friend and mentor.”

Congratulations to Bud Shaw, Big Brothers Big Sisters 2017 Big of the Year. Thank you, Bud, for all that you do!

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