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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
The Springfield Police Department is proud to announce that on March 27, 2019, SPD Captain Tad Peters was awarded “Big of the Year” by Big Brothers Big Sisters of the Ozarks.
Tad joined the Big Brothers Big Sisters of the Ozarks Board of Directors in 2011. It was at that time, he decided to become a Lunch Buddy where he could spend one lunch break per week mentoring a then fifth grader named Nick.
Tad said in a recent essay that he was told from the beginning their match may not be an easy one, as Nick frequented in-school suspension and had grown up without a positive male influence. Captain Peters didn’t shy away from the opportunity to be in Nick’s life.
Now, nearly 10 years later, Nick has enlisted in the U.S. Army Reserves with hopes to one day follow in Tad’s footsteps in law enforcement.
“We are proud and appreciative that Tad is finally getting recognition for his leadership at the organization and at the department,” said Police Chief Paul Williams. “I couldn’t think of someone more deserving of this award than Tad. He is humble, hardworking, a great role model and willing to put in the effort to make a difference in a young man’s life.”
Tad’s involvement in Big Brothers Big Sisters of the Ozarks has also helped to expand the Bigs in Blue program to SPD.
Bigs in Blue is a national campaign for Big Brothers Big Sisters to connect youth with police in communities throughout our nation to build strong, trusting, lasting relationships.
“The children we’re serving likely have had negative interactions with law enforcement already — maybe a parent was arrested in front of them or a sibling has been in juvenile court,” said Ashley French, BBBSO’s Chief Executive Officer. “That viewpoint may only worsen over time and can even result in a contentious and potentially dangerous situation later. If we can match that child with a police officer now, we could truly build stronger bonds between law enforcement and the families they serve.”
SPD currently has six officers participating in the program.
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# # # Media Contact: Jasmine Bailey, Public Affairs Officer 417-864-1786JNBailey@springfieldmo.gov