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SECU & Foundation Provide Gift of $5 Million to Develop Dorothea Dix Park in Raleigh

RALEIGH, N.C. – The largest joint giving to one entity from State Employees’ Credit Union (SECU) and the SECU Foundation was announced today – a $5 million contribution to the Dix Park Conservancy to support the development of a historic 308-acre public site into an urban park in Raleigh, the Dorothea Dix Park.

SECU’s corporate gift of $3 million combined with $2 million from SECU Foundation will honor the history and legacy of the land while bringing expansion to the landscape and surrounding communities. SECU’s gift aligns with its three pillars for corporate funding – culture and arts, health and wellbeing, and education. SECU Foundation’s grant supports its priorities of education, healthcare, and human services. The announcement was made by SECU and SECU Foundation board chairs during today’s groundbreaking event.

The funding will be used to transform three historic stone houses at the Dix Park entrance into a Welcome Center, Conservancy Corps offices, outdoor seating and classroom space, gardens, and an accessible pathway connecting the park to the nearby Rocky Branch greenway. It also will support the Conservancy’s plan to continue offering admission-free festivals and programming as a statewide community gathering place. The Park is expected to host one million visitors by 2024.

“Through the Foundation’s mission and collaborative efforts with the Conservancy, we are bringing an innovative project to life that demonstrates our shared philosophy of ‘People Helping People®’ through new and lasting connections,” said Bob Brinson, SECU Foundation board chair. “It’s a pleasure to share in the preservation of Dix Park through the restoration of historic buildings that will welcome, educate, and serve hundreds of thousands of visitors.”

“We support and join the vision for the development of Dix Park, an exciting initiative that will bring tremendous value to downtown Raleigh, the capital area, and our state well into the future,” said Chris Ayers, SECU board chair. “Dix Park will be a tangible reflection of the people who live and work here by offering recreational, educational, social, and environmental benefits for our community and visitors from across the globe. We couldn’t be more pleased to join the many supporters and respected community leaders working together to make this project happen.”

“SECU’s traditions and values make it the perfect partner for Dix Park on this landmark project,” said Janet Cowell, president and CEO of Dix Park Conservancy. “From its founding, SECU has supported state employees, thousands who have worked at our campus over the decades. And fundamentally, SECU is about people helping people. The professionals who lived in these historic homes also dedicated themselves to helping people. And going forward, Dix Park will help countless visitors connect with their environment and community. We thank SECU and the SECU Foundation for their generous support. And we look forward to enjoying the new facilities, reflecting on the thousands of people who came before and celebrating the countless visitors who will learn and flourish here in the future.”

About SECU and SECU Foundation

A not-for-profit financial cooperative owned by its members, SECU has been providing employees of the state of North Carolina and their families with consumer financial services for over 85 years. SECU is the second largest credit union in the United States with $53 billion in assets. It serves over 2.7 million members through 274 branch offices, over 1,100 ATMs, 24/7 Member Services via phone,, and a Mobile App. The SECU Foundation, a 501(c)(3) charitable organization funded by the contributions of SECU members, promotes local community development in North Carolina primarily through high-impact projects in the areas of housing, education, healthcare, and human services. Since 2004, SECU Foundation has made a collective financial commitment of over $235 million for initiatives to benefit North Carolinians statewide.


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