On September 27, the Charlotte community received an incredible gift: Albemarle Corporation and Bank of America jointly announced a $20 million commitment to support efforts to improve upward economic mobility for the region’s low-income families.
Bank of America CEO Brian Moynihan and Albemarle Chairman, President, and CEO Luke Kissam agreed to make the combined investment, knowing this approach would double the impact of each company’s individual investments.
The companies worked together to select 17 Charlotte nonprofits, including Communities In Schools, that will receive funding allocated over the next five years. Each nonprofit focuses on at least one of three key areas: early child care and education; college and career readiness; and family and child stability. These areas were identified as most likely to have the greatest influence on economic mobility in a report by the Charlotte-Mecklenburg Opportunity Task Force, which was formed in response to the 2104 Harvard/UC-Berkeley study that ranked Charlotte last among 50 large metropolitan areas for upward mobility.
“Advancing the economic health of Charlotte and creating shared success are core to how we drive responsible growth,” said Charles Bowman, Charlotte market president for Bank of America. “By addressing the underlying issues that impact economic mobility, we can help build a stronger local economy and a pathway for the future workforce.”
Sandra Holub, executive director of the Albemarle Foundation, which gives grants to nonprofits and receives its funding from Albemarle Corporation and its employees and retirees, said, “We hope this investment sets a tone to encourage others to step up however they can, with dollars, sweat equity or social capital, and help address economic mobility in Charlotte.”
Communities In Schools will receive a total of $2.5 million over 5 years ($500,000 per year). The funding will be used to provide students with targeted case-management interventions; to support a city-wide social capital initiative, giving students opportunity and access to social, cultural, and work-life experiences; and enhanced professional development for staff.
Albemarle Corporation is new to Charlotte, having relocated its headquarters from Louisiana to Charlotte in 2015. This $10 million investment is the largest donation the company has made in the Charlotte region. For Bank of America, its $10 million share is also among the largest the bank has made in Charlotte.
This is a momentous gift for the community as well as Communities In Schools, which will positively impact thousands of children and families. CIS is extremely grateful to Albemarle Corporation and Bank of America for their vision, generosity, and commitment to Charlotte and the families who live here.