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Press Release


Golden LEAF Loan Program at Self-Help Announced

Lt. Gov. Dalton joins Golden LEAF, N.C. Rural Center to announce
over $27.5 million in loans to help North Carolina's small businesses

October 8, 2009

ROCKY MOUNT, N.C. - October 8, 2009 - Lt. Gov. Walter Dalton today joined Golden LEAF, the North Carolina Rural Economic Development Center and the Center for Community Self-Help in announcing the creation of the Golden LEAF Loan Program and the Rural Center Loan Program, which will provide loans to help businesses access capital during tough economic times.

"During this economic crisis, we've watched as big business received massive bailouts, but not enough attention has been paid to small businesses, which really are the foundation of our economy," Dalton said. "As I have talked with small business owners, I have heard loud and clear that more help is needed and providing these loans is a powerful step. I want to thank the N.C. Rural Center for their support along with the Golden LEAF Board for their strong investment and vision."

Self-Help will administer the loan programs, which received a $5 million grant from the Golden LEAF Foundation and $500,000 from the North Carolina Rural Economic Development Center through an appropriation provided by the North Carolina General Assembly. These programs will leverage an estimated $27.5 million in loans to North Carolina business owners.

"Golden LEAF is proud to join with Lt. Gov. Dalton and these great partners to provide financial support for North Carolina's small businesses," said Dan Gerlach, president of Golden LEAF. "The Golden LEAF Loan Program will bolster our state's economy and protect jobs, consistent with our mission to promote the social welfare of our citizens and to provide economic impact assistance to North Carolina's tobacco-dependent, economically distressed and rural communities."

Priority for the Golden LEAF loans has been placed on North Carolina businesses in the following industries: healthcare, construction, green industries, agricultural, or manufacturing. Minority and women business owners are strongly encouraged to apply.

For more information about how to apply for a Golden LEAF loan, contact Self-Help Senior Loan Officer Karen O'Mansky at (919) 956-4400 or by e-mail at Karen.O'Mansky@self-help.org.

About the Golden LEAF Foundation:
The Golden LEAF Foundation is a nonprofit organization established in 1999 to help transform North Carolina's economy. The foundation receives one-half of North Carolina's funds from the 1998 Master Settlement Agreement with cigarette manufacturers and places special emphasis on assisting tobacco-dependent, economically distressed and/or rural communities across the state. The Golden LEAF Foundation works in partnership with local governments, educational institutions, economic development organizations and nonprofits to achieve its mission. The foundation has awarded 825 grants totaling more than $393 million since its inception. For more information about Golden LEAF, or to learn more about applying for a grant, visit www.goldenleaf.org or call (888) 684-8404.

About the N.C. Rural Economic Development Center:
The N.C. Rural Economic Development Center is a private, nonprofit organization whose mission is to develop sound economic strategies that improve the quality of life in rural North Carolina, with a special focus on individuals with low to moderate incomes and communities with limited resources. The center operates a multifaceted program that includes conducting research into rural issues; testing promising rural development strategies; advocating for policy and program innovations; and building the productive capacity of rural leaders, entrepreneurs and community organizations.

About Self-Help:
Self-Help (www.self-help.org) is a nonprofit lender whose mission is to create ownership and economic opportunity through: financing for small businesses, community facilities, and home ownership; downtown revitalization and affordable housing development; and responsible consumer financial services. Self-Help has branches across North Carolina.

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Media Relations

Jenny Tinklepaugh
jtinklepaugh@goldenleaf.org
888-684-8404

The Golden LEAF Foundation   301 N. Winstead Avenue   Rocky Mount, NC 27804
Phone 252-442-7474   Toll-free 888-684-8404   Fax 252-442-7404   Email info@goldenleaf.org


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