Kristen Brown (second from right), a volunteer for B.I.S.O.N. Mentors of Leedey, receives an Outstanding Mentor Award from Oklahoma Foundation for Excellence Chairman David L. Boren (left) and President Anil Gollahalli during Oklahoma Mentor Day at the Capitol. They are joined by Kristen’s mentee, Nina. (Photo by Travis Caperton, Oklahoma State Capitol)
B.I.S.O.N. Mentors has selected Kristen Brown of Leedey as its outstanding mentor for recognition at Oklahoma Mentor Day. B.I.S.O.N., an acronym for “Believe In Some One Now,” serves Pre-K through 12th-grade students in the Leedey Public Schools.
Kristen has been matched with her mentee, Nina, since the B.I.S.O.N. program began three years ago. A graduate in special education and early childhood development, Kristen taught school for eight years before choosing to stay home to raise her daughter. Her husband, Jason, is also a B.I.S.O.N. Mentor.
“Working with children is my passion, and I love every part of that,” Kristen said. “I am so honored and lucky to have Nina as my mentee. She is a great kid!”
Kris Gore, director of B.I.S.O.N. Mentors, said Kristen is a kind and polite person who models positive social skills for her mentee.
“Prior to having a mentor, Nina would keep to herself and not interact much with other kids,” Kris said. “Since being matched with Kristen, Nina is much friendlier, more socially engaged and has really turned
the corner academically. This is largely due to Kristen’s commitment to make time for Nina and be someone she can count on.”
Kris said Kristen and Nina genuinely care about one another and enjoy spending time together. Some of their favorite activities include playing games, creating things with clay and painting them, and making blankets and wreaths. Most importantly, Kristen is teaching Nina skills that are helping her have a more positive and confident attitude, Kris said.“We are proud of Kristen and the positive relationship she has developed with Nina,” Kris added. “We look forward to good times between the two of them in the years to come.”