Getting Big Brothers Big Sisters program in Brownwood, and ultimately for all of Brown County, took another step toward reality Monday with the appointment of a board and election of primary officers.

Tammy Robinson, one of two ladies to initiate a query of having a Brownwood Big Brothers Big Sisters program, was elected president of the charter board. Don Benedict, of Lake Brownwood who was a Big Brother volunteer for more than 25 years and is a former Austin Big Brothers Big Sisters board member was named vice president. Tammi Elliott will serve as the board’s treasurer and secretary.

Other board members include Marisha Parvis, Melanie Jackson, Brian Moore, Vincent Ornelas, David Broadway, Edda Ratliff, Ann Beadel, Sean Fitzgerald, Sandra Bradshaw, Jennifer Brinkley, Nancy Byler and Fred Kelly.

Janet Ardoyno, president and CEO of Big Brothers Big Sisters of West Central Texas, the division the Brown County BBBS will be affiliated with when it’s organized, said the organization bylaws allow for up to 40 members.

“Some people for a variety of reasons choose to be active volunteers, beyond mentoring a child, but cannot attend the meetings or maybe don’t have the desire to be on the board,” Ardoyno said at Monday’s meeting. “And that’s fine. We need a lot of worker bees and we need a strong, functioning board.”

Ardoyno said she continues to be encouraged by the interest and enthusiasm she sees generated in Brownwood.

“We said we hoped to be matching ‘Bigs and Littles’ by January, I see that happening. But I’m also seeing the possibility of opening the office here — in the Family Services Center — by October,” Ardoyno said.

Anyone interested in volunteering with the program, or wanting more information, can contact Ardoyno at or by phone at (325) 677-7839.

A premiere Big Brothers Big Sisters “Aiming To Help Kids” bow shoot is being organized for Sept. 22 at Camp Bowie Military Reservation off Highway 45.

The class shoot will be limited to 200 people, with classes for 13 and younger and 14 and older. For registration information, contact Jason or Amy Hubbard at 643-2125 or by e-mail at