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Big Brothers Big Sisters’ 2015 STAR Award winner ‘He’s always exceeding expectations.’

‘He’s always exceeding expectations.’

Zack Isaacs wins 2015 STAR Award youth category

As a high school freshman, Zack Isaacs became interested in becoming a Big Brother. However, he was too young to become a Community Based Big and his school didn’t yet have a High School Bigs program. So, he suggested that his family become a Big Family. The family has been mentoring Little Brother Travis since the summer of 2012.

Two years later, his high school, Hackett Catholic Prep, became a High School Bigs program and Isaacs became a Big Brother to a second boy. “It is extremely rare for any Big Brother to be matched with two Little Brothers but that’s Zack – always exceeding expectations,” says Amy Kuchta, Big Brothers Big Sisters’ Chief Executive Officer.

Because of his volunteer work with Big Brothers Big Sisters, Isaacs received the 2015 STAR Award in the Youth Category (age 18 and under). In addition to being a Big Brother, Isaacs volunteers regularly at Big Brothers Big Sisters’ events and is a member of Volunteer Kalamazoo’s Youth Leadership Council. During his high school career, Isaacs volunteered more than 400 hours with Big Brothers Big Sisters.

When the Volunteer Kalamazoo Youth Leadership Council was looking for opportunities to volunteer together as a group, Isaacs suggested taking on a project for Big Brothers Big Sisters. As a result, the group decorated dozens of awards for the agency’s Bowl for Kids’ Sake events.

“While Zack is that normal high school student with a paid job, school work and sports, it’s obvious that he consistently considers volunteering part of his normal routine,” says Kathy Praedel, Big Brothers Big Sisters’ partnership manager. “He doesn’t view volunteering as just something to do once in a while or when it’s required. Volunteering to help others is naturally who he is! Big Brothers Big Sisters just happens to be the recipient of his volunteer service.”


What is STAR?

STAR is an acronym for Sharing Time and Resources, and the awards are a partnership between Volunteer Kalamazoo and the Kalamazoo Gazette. The STAR Awards recognize the top volunteers in the greater Kalamazoo area each year.