Progress Energy announced a $40,000 gift to Discovery Place KIDS-Rockingham as part of an initiative to actively build and support the communities it serves. The Fortune 500 electric utility presented the donation at a formal check presentation on Tuesday in Rockingham with representatives from both organizations in attendance. Currently under development, the new museum in Richmond County will be the second Discovery Place KIDS, offering a hands-on, creative learning-through-play environment for children.
“Progress Energy is a proud partner with this community and Richmond County, and we are pleased to make this contribution to Discovery Place KIDS-Rockingham,” said David McNeill, community relations manager for Progress Energy Carolinas. “For more than a century, the success of our company has been closely tied to the growth and vitality of our communities. We are confident that this extraordinary museum will provide creative educational experiences for children and their families that will enhance the quality of life in this region for generations to come.”
Supporting education is a cornerstone of Progress Energy’s investment in the areas where it provides services. The company’s Sherwood H. Smith Jr. Energy Complex, located near Hamlet, provides 1,890 megawatts of electricity to Progress Energy customers. The company is taking a balanced approach to meet the needs of its customers, including aggressive energy-efficient programs, investments in renewable energy technologies, and state-of-the-art power plants and energy-delivery systems.
“Community strength is rooted in the companies, organizations and people that take the time to thoughtfully invest in those places, and Progress Energy has proven that they are a committed neighbor,” said John Mackay, president and CEO of Discovery Place, Inc. “Their leadership as a local company helping to ensure a thriving future for the community is impressive and we are grateful to have their support.”
The check presentation took place in the County Commissioners’ Chambers of the County Administration Building in Rockingham. Attendees included Progress Energy Community Relations Manager David McNeill, Discovery Place President and CEO John Mackay, Discovery Place KIDS Capital Campaign Co-chairs Russell Bennett and Neil Cadieu, Corporate Committee Chair Anne Edwards, Vice Chairman of Richmond County Board of Commissioners John Garner and Chairman of Richmond County Board of Commissioners Kenneth Robinette.
“This is a significant gift,” said Cadieu. “We feel like this will open doors and pave the road for other business gifts.”
The Progress Energy gift will go towards the museum’s program development. Discovery Place KIDS-Rockingham will be housed in the old McKenzie Furniture building located in downtown Rockingham. The City of Rockingham, as the facility partner, will own, operate and maintain the building.
— Staff Writer Dawn M. Kurry can be reached at 910-997-3111, ext. 43, or by email at email@example.com.