ROCKY MOUNT, N.C., (October 7, 2021) – Today, the Golden LEAF Board of Directors awarded $3,018,555 in funds for the Golden LEAF Scholarship Program, $554,070 in funding to support the creation of 185 jobs through the Economic Catalyst Program, $568,440 in funding to support projects through the Open Grants Program, and $70,000 for an increase in Disaster Recovery Grant Program funding. Golden LEAF also heard an update from North Carolina House Speaker Tim Moore.
“We would like to thank Speaker Moore for taking time to speak with the Board,” said Golden LEAF Board Chair Bo Biggs. “We are grateful for the opportunity to receive an update from a member of the legislative leadership on issues impacting rural North Carolina. We are proud to be a partner of the State of North Carolina in providing funding to help create jobs and support strong workforce training programs.”
Today, the Golden LEAF Foundation Board of Directors approved changes to the Golden LEAF Scholarship Program for four-year scholarship recipients, guided by the recently adopted strategic plan. The Golden LEAF Board awarded $3,018,555 to the North Carolina State Education Assistance Authority to implement the Golden LEAF Scholarship for the 2022-2023 school year. The award increases the amount of the scholarships from $3,000 to $3,500 per year and will support 215 new scholarships and 608 renewal scholarships. The Board of Directors also provided direction on the new internship component of the Golden LEAF Scholarship Program. Information on the internship component will be announced on our website in the coming months.
“The Golden LEAF Scholarship improves access to education and workforce training to support the long-term economic advancement of our state,” said Scott T. Hamilton, Golden LEAF President, Chief Executive Officer. “These scholarships provide opportunities for students from rural North Carolina to attend our state’s four-year colleges and universities to gain the knowledge and skills necessary to help build the economy.”
In Union County, the Golden LEAF Board of Directors awarded the City of Monroe $554,070 under the Economic Catalyst Program for the relocation of a waterline to support expansion at Windsor Windows, resulting in creation of 185 new jobs averaging $47,198 and $74 million in capital investment by the company. The waterline would also serve other publicly owned industrial sites in the area.
Under the Open Grants Program, the Golden LEAF Board awarded $568,440 for three projects that will support job creation and workforce preparedness in Alamance, Hertford, Stanly, and Wilson counties.
The Golden LEAF Board awarded $100,000 for simulation lab equipment for Elon University’s new nursing programs—a 16-month accelerated and four-year Bachelor of Science in Nursing program—that started in the fall of 2021. The new programs help address the nursing shortage and increase the diversity of the nursing workforce in the Piedmont Triad.
In Hertford County, the Golden LEAF Board awarded $125,000 to the Town of Ahoskie for water infrastructure needed for an expansion at Enviva Biomass. Enviva plans to invest $25 million and create at least nine new jobs.
The Golden LEAF Board awarded Stanly County $200,000 to provide an access road in Riverstone Industrial Park that will serve American Racing Headers and Exhaust, Inc., which announced plans to locate in the park and to create 63 new jobs, as well as other sites within the park.
In Wilson County, the Golden LEAF Board awarded Wilson County Schools $143,440 for curriculum materials, lab equipment, and professional development training for career exploration and learning labs in two of the district’s middle schools. The career modules will include a range of pathways that support building a pipeline of trained employees for Wilson County area employers who want to fill jobs with local talent.
The Golden LEAF Board also approved $70,000 in additional Disaster Recovery Grant Program funding to an existing project for the Town of Lake Waccamaw in Columbus County. The Disaster Recovery Grant Program is funded through appropriations by the State of North Carolina to the Golden LEAF Foundation to award funds to governmental entities and 501(c)(3) nonprofits to repair or replace infrastructure and equipment damaged or destroyed by Hurricanes Matthew, Florence, Michael, and Dorian.
Over two decades, Golden LEAF has funded 1,951 projects totaling $1.1 billion.
About Golden LEAF
The Golden LEAF Foundation is a nonprofit organization established in 1999 to receive a portion of North Carolina’s funding from the 1998 Master Settlement Agreement with cigarette manufacturers. For 20 years, Golden LEAF has worked to increase economic opportunity in North Carolina’s rural and tobacco-dependent communities through leadership in grantmaking, 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 66,000 jobs, over half a billion dollars in new payrolls and more than 90,000 workers trained or retrained for higher wages.
For more information about Golden LEAF and our programs, please visit our website at www.goldenleaf.org.