How do you celebrate national mentoring Day? By recognizing those in the community who step up, and that's just what the Big Buddy Program did Jan. 31 when it hosted its second annual Mentoring in Real Life awards ceremony at the Renaissance Hotel.

Real Life

Kathryn Dufrene and John Schempf were honored as Mentors of the Year at this year's celebration. Assisting Executive Director Gaylynne Mack in presenting the awards was Mayor Sharon Weston Broome. Featured speaker was the Rev. Ritney A. Castine, director of the Truth Initiative’s Youth Activism program and Historically Black Colleges & Universities Initiative.

Also recognized for their mentoring efforts were: Faith-Based Mentoring Award — Young Life Baton Rouge; City-Parish Mentoring Award — City-Parish Human Resources; Corporate Mentoring Award — Capital One; College Mentoring Award — SportQuest; Community Mentoring Award — Front Yard Bikes and Gamma Eta Omega Chapter of Alpha Kappa Alpha; Call to Action Award — Baton Rouge Community Policing; Mentoring School of the Year — Parkview Baptist High School; Social Service Mentoring Award — CASA (Court Appointed Special Advocates); and Professional Mentoring Award — Future Funds.

Award recipients were chosen by a committee of mentoring peers based on their work in the Baton Rouge mentoring community.

Follow Pam Bordelon on Twitter, @pamspartyline.