Golden LEAF Announces $10 Million Edgecombe Community College Grant for Advanced Manufacturing Center

Grant Enables the Creation of 800 Jobs at the Kingsboro Megasite

Rocky Mount, NC – The Golden LEAF Foundation’s Board of Directors announced today a $10 million grant to construct and equip a state-of-the-art Advanced Manufacturing Training Center at the Kingsboro Megasite in Edgecombe County. Edgecombe Community College will own and operate the Center.

Earlier today, Triangle Tyre (Triangle Tire USA), a leading Chinese tire manufacturer, announced its plans to invest $560 million and create 800 jobs in Edgecombe County by 2023. This is Triangle’s first US manufacturing facility, and represents one of the largest job announcements in eastern North Carolina in decades. The newly created jobs will have average wages of $56,450, well above the county’s average wage rates.

“The Golden LEAF Board of Directors strongly supported this investment in worker training to ensure that our citizens meet the needs of global companies such as Triangle and other manufacturers in eastern North Carolina,” said Dan Gerlach, Golden LEAF Foundation President. “Rural North Carolina can and will compete and succeed if we work together.”

Golden LEAF’s grant will fund the construction and equipment for a world-class facility to train potential employees of Triangle Tyre, and other manufacturers in the region. The facility will be located at the Kingsboro Megasite.

“The College looks forward to being the education and training partner for Triangle Tyre,” said Dr. Deborah Lamm, Edgecombe Community College President. “The new Advanced Manufacturing Training Center will enable College personnel to provide innovative pre-employment training for prospective employees and cutting-edge retooling and training for current employees to guarantee they meet the skill sets required by Triangle Tyre. This modern, state-of-the-art facility will ensure the long-term success of Triangle Tyre and its workforce.”

Today’s announcement is the latest investment in the Kingsboro Megasite by Golden LEAF. In 2016, the Foundation Board voted to grant $7 million toward the water and sewer infrastructure necessary to serve the site. The goal of that grant was to reduce the time and uncertainty of getting a site ready for development.

“Today we were able to see our efforts to transform the economy of rural, tobacco-dependent North Carolina come to fruition as we granted funding to train North Carolina workers for world-class jobs that are coming to our state,” said Randy Isenhower, Golden LEAF Board Chair. “This is a proud day for all of us, and shows that the state’s rural economy has much potential and appeal.”

About the Golden LEAF Foundation

The Golden LEAF Foundation is a nonprofit organization established in 1999 to receive a portion of North Carolina’s funding received from the 1998 Master Settlement Agreement with cigarette manufacturers. For almost 20 years, Golden LEAF has worked to increase economic opportunity in North Carolina’s rural and tobacco-dependent communities through leadership in grantsmaking, collaboration, innovation, and stewardship as an independent and perpetual foundation.

The Foundation has provided lasting impact to tobacco-dependent, economically distressed and rural areas of the state by helping create 61,000 jobs, over half a billion dollars in new payrolls and more than 65,000 workers trained or retrained for higher wages.

To learn more about the Golden LEAF Foundation, visit www.goldenleaf.org or call 888.684.8404.

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