Bynum "Bufi" Rudisill

July 2, 2022

CHARLOTTE – Bynum “Bufi” Griffin Rudisill, loving wife, mother, sister, and friend, passed away at Atrium Health Carolinas Medical Center on Saturday, July 2, 2022 while recovering from a case of acute pancreatitis. She was born on August 8, 1953, in Monroe, NC, the third of four daughters to Bynum and Lura Griffin.

Named after both her parents, Bufi would combine what she learned from her mother and father to become her own irrepressible, individual self.  Her mother’s nurturing spirit and love of children would encourage her daughter to invite one friend over, and then one more, and one more.  Bufi delighted in visiting her father at Griffin Chevrolet where she not only learned about cars, but sold enough Girl Scout cookies to lead sales for Union County year after year. Surrounded by cousins, Bufi would claim the Griffins were kin to half the county.  From her earliest days in the church nursery at Central United Methodist Church, she began her lifelong collection of dear friends.  Bufi’s heart could always expand to hold one more friend.  From summer days at the swimming pool, beach trips, church school, then driver’s ed, church youth trips to Lake Junaluska, shopping trips to Atlanta with her sister Beki, and even hosting seven Monroe High School girlfriends for an impromptu snow-day sleepover, Bufi brought the same enthusiasm she would show throughout her life.

Bufi graduated from Duke University, where she was a member of the Zeta Tau Alpha sorority. She attended law school at the University of South Carolina in Columbia. She met her husband John F. Rudisill while both were studying for the NC bar exam.  She took and passed the NC and SC bar exams in the same week in 1978.  Bufi and John were married on March 15, 1980.  She attended First United Methodist and Avondale Presbyterian in Charlotte and was a member of planning committees and women’s circles at both churches.

Bufi joined the U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) in 1980, where she worked for 38 years until her retirement.  She served as lead regulatory policy attorney for the 504 loan program, which finances job creation and retention for small businesses.  Bufi served as legal counsel and lead attorney responsible for overseeing the national training curriculum and reviewing all closing packages.  Bufi and her team enabled the agency to increase the program loan size from $500,000 to $5.5 million, with a $15 billion national portfolio.

She was nationally loved and admired by her SBA coworkers, trade associations, and Certified Development Companies across the U.S. She was a brilliant attorney known for her wisdom and practical solutions as well as her quick wit.  Small business across the nation benefitted greatly from her work.  Bufi had a strong work ethic, mentored others, and had a strong sense of duty and integrity.  She was a model public servant who achieved much but was humble and graceful in her approach to life.

Bufi loved to cook, experimenting with all types of cuisines. She was an insatiable reader, especially of mysteries, and a lover of the library who expressed relief when overdue fines were suspended.  She enjoyed watching PBS series and detective procedurals. Bufi was a devoted fan of Duke basketball, from her fight song ringtone to her blue-and-white purse.  She loved to plan and take trips. Bufi aimed to travel to all the countries to which her daughter was posted with the U.S. State Department, but the pandemic thwarted that effort.  Still, she traveled to many countries and all over the United States.  Her favorite destination by far was Portugal, which she visited twelve times.  Bufi was a gifted storyteller and attended conferences to develop her talent. Her favorite holiday was Christmas, and she took immense joy in decorating her home and hosting others during the season.

Bufi will be remembered for her kindness and generosity to all.

Bufi is survived by her husband, John; daughter, Elizabeth and her husband, Nathan Michail; sisters, Buni Gaddy and her husband John and Beri Griffin and her siblings-in-law and many nieces and nephews. She was preceded in death by her parents; her sister, Beki Chandler and her husband, Joe and nephew John Chandler.

A memorial service for Bufi is 2:00 PM on Monday, July 11, 2022 at First United Methodist Church, 501 N. Tryon Street in Charlotte.  The family will receive friends following the service at the church.  The graveside committal will be held at 10:00 AM on Tuesday, July 12, 2022 at Forest Lawn West Cemetery, 4601 Freedom Drive in Charlotte.  The memorial service will be livestreamed at: and (go to bottom of page to view) for those unable to attend in person.

In lieu of flowers, the family asks that you take a friend or loved one to lunch and enrich their lives the way she enriched ours.

Arrangements are in the care of Kenneth W. Poe Funeral & Cremation Service, 1321 Berkeley Ave., Charlotte, NC 28204; (704) 641-7606. Online condolences may be shared at

Share your memories & condolences


  • Alyce Walker

    Everyone whose path was crossed by this precious soul will be in mourning. Bufi was talented, kind, giving, respected and loved by all who knew her. .

  • Sharon & Mike Smith

    Our deepest and sincerest condolences to John, Elizabeth, and all Bufi's family and friends. Bufi was my aunt who I have known my whole life. She was kind, caring, thoughtful, funny, creative, and a true joy to listen to and talk to. I will always remember her joyful laugh and wonderful sense of humor. I appreciate the kindness and friendship she shared with my family who always enjoyed visiting and hanging out with you all. May your lifetime of memories with Bufi always be a comfort to you. We love you!
    Love, Mike & Sharon

  • Jan Garlitz

    Dear John and Elizabeth,
    Bufi was the best! I worked with her for many years and she was always cheerful, practical and committed to helping small businesses.
    She will be sorely missed by all.

  • Terri Alsop

    John and Elizabeth
    Bufi was the best of all of us. Kind, caring, funny, loving, intelligent and a friend to be counted on when needed. The world is less bright since her passing. My love to you both. Terri.

  • Leslie Dunlap

    Dear John, Elizabeth, family and friends,
    My heart is broken to hear that our beloved Bufi has passed away. She is one of the kindest, funniest and smartest colleague and friend that I've ever known. Please know that you are in my thoughts and prayers as you go through this extremely difficult time.
    With Sympathy,
    Leslie Dunlap (Self-Help Ventures Fund)

  • Rebecca Williams Burns

    I am so saddened to hear of Bufi's death. Bufi & John were our neighbors when we lived on Berkeley Avenue.
    My condolences to John, Elizabeth, family and friends of Bufi. Peace Be With You.
    Kind regards,
    Rebecca Burns

  • Bud Thomas

    I am so saddened by the loss of my dear friend Bufi who I’ve known for 40 years. She was a great person in so many ways. I am truly fortunate to have known her.

  • Christine Gallis

    Dear John and Elizabeth, We are so sorry for your loss. We are still in shock as we mourn and try to accept the passing of our dear friend Bufi from this life. For years we and our family were fortunate to see Bufi on a daily basis and know her on a personal level. Together, we shared the good with the bad. Mostly, it was all good laughs and always words of encouragement for the younger members of our family. That’s just the way she was, never expressing negativity. Goodbye our dear friend. We are all richer for having known you. Rest In Peace and May your memory be eternal. John and Elizabeth, we pray that God will comfort you in the knowledge that your loved one left you such a beautiful legacy. Nick and Christine Gallis and Family

  • Robert and Phoebe Elliott

    John and Elizabeth:. We are so saddened to learn of Bufi's passing. Please know that we will hold you in our hearts and prayers.

  • Sophie Dudley

    Dear Family,

    Praying you'll be comforted with precious memories and God's presence to care for you in your loss.

    With Sympathy,

    Sophie Dudley (Ampac Business Capital )

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