John Shaeffer

What’s your NFCC story?

Nick was a friend of mine from childhood all the way through going off to college, we had planned to join the same fraternity at UT and were looking forward to doing that together. I was talking about Nick to my children this morning and was reminded of his infectious personality and the fact that you wanted to be around him, he was such a positive person. Mary Elizabeth Hand (NFCC’s Executive Director) is a long-time friend of mine and when you put those two together, it would be impossible not to hear about NFCC.

NFCC has hosted our Crawfish Boil at Memorial Trail Ice House the past two years. Tell me why this event is special and why you wanted to host it at Memorial Trail?

How could I not, for such a fantastic cause, human, and family? It is an honor to be asked to host something like this. And it is a way I can do my little part of helping out NFCC. It is a joy to host it every year.

Truly, to remember a guy like Nick is so important to me. My seven and nine year old boys mentioned Nick this morning after he was discussed at church at St. Luke’s a few weeks ago. He still lives on and has had such an amazing impact on so many people. It is so cool to have known someone like that and still be able to talk about him. He is a true example.

In your opinion, what is the most important work NFCC does?

The most important thing NFCC does is the fact that it gives people a place where they can be heard in this busy, crazy, nonstop world we live in. The counseling center is a safe place for people to pause, reflect, and share their struggles, which is great.

What do you hope to see NFCC accomplish over the next five years?

I hope NFCC can continue their mission and continue their good work. I think their growth to date is amazing and it is truly because of the people behind it and their mission.

How do you take care of your own mental health in this crazy, busy world?

Candidly speaking, I frankly don’t do enough! I am huge proponent of exercise though, specifically going running. I take my shoes everywhere I go and whenever I run into problems; I take them vertically.