New BBBS Building Groundbreaking Ceremony

“Big Brothers Big Sisters Day” proclaimed as guests celebrated the start of construction and final phase of fundraising.

HOUSTON, May 26, 2016 – May 25th, proclaimed “Big Brothers Big Sisters Day” by Mayor Sylvester Turner and the City of Houston, was a monumental day for the donor and volunteer-supported youth mentoring organization as donors, board members, volunteers, partners, and staff all gathered together for an inspiring groundbreaking ceremony at the site of their new home at 1003 Washington Avenue. The ceremony celebrated the start of construction for the big building project as well as launch the final phase of fundraising.

KPRC2 News’ Rachel McNeill, a longtime supporter of Big Brothers Big Sisters (BBBS), served as emcee of the ceremony and was joined by City Council Member Jack Christie, a former BBBS Board Member and volunteer Big Brother, who proudly presented the Proclamation from the City of Houston. Serving as the Point of Light for the celebration was Tracy Dieterich, current BBBS Houston Board Chair, Big Brother, and former Little in Houston. Tei Carpenter, founder and principal of Agency-Agency, LLC, worked with the Rice University School of Architecture on the building’s conceptual design.She joined Steve McDaniel, BBBS Executive Board Chair and Building Campaign Chair, to share the vision for the building.“This project was a labor of love,” Carpenter shared. “The building is designed to be open, inviting, and inspiring with featured areas including a three-story atrium, Mentoring Hall of Fame, Café, children’s play room and a grand event space on the third floor with an open-air balcony showcasing stunning views of downtown.” In addition to Agency-Agency, generous building partners who donated their time and talents to the project include BURY, Cushman & Wakefield, JTB Services, Inc., Rice University, Roger-O’Brien Construction, ROSI Office Systems, Steelcase, Method Architecture, Triten Real Estate Partners, Vinson & Elkins LLP, and The Weitzman Group.

With hundreds of children on the waiting list and a pressing need to expand services, Big Brothers Big Sisters’ new 21,000-square-foot building will enable the organization to effectively meet these mounting demands and serve more children for years and years to come. The new building will be an inviting place for the children and families BBBS serves, a central gathering place for community partners to come together in collaboration, a landmark of generosity dedicated to the generous Houston community, and will give the mission heightened visibility, serving as a 24/7 billboard on the outskirts of Downtown Houston, I-45, and Washington Corridor.

Pierce Bush, BBBS Lone Star CEO, gave his closing remarks and acknowledged that while this memorable occasion marked the beginning of construction, fundraising remains a priority and donations are still needed in order to complete the big project. To date, over 60% of the funds needed have been raised thanks to the generous support of several foundations, companies, and individual donors. Bricks are available for purchase for those who want to make their mark and be a permanent part of the new building. “By supporting this building project, you are building much more than a new home for BBBS.You are building hope; you are building dreams; you are building a future for generations of Houston children to come,” concluded Bush.