Forsyth Tech has announced that the Lawrence E. Pope Foundation is giving the college a gift of $52,000, which will be distributed over a two-year period and used to update and expand the college’s Diesel and Heavy Equipment Technology program. A presentation of the initial grant check in the amount of $26,000 took place today at the college’s Transportation Technology Center in Winston-Salem.
In presenting the check to Forsyth Tech President Dr. Gary Green, Jeff Taylor, vice president and chief financial officer of the Pope Companies, and treasurer of the Lawrence E. Pope Foundation, said, “The Pope Foundation has a strong interest in making a difference in our community by supporting the educational needs of our area schools.
“This $52,000 gift to Forsyth Tech demonstrates our support for education by helping the college expand its growing Diesel and Heavy Equipment program in order to produce even more graduates who are prepared to go to work in the field on day one.”
Pope Companies founder, Lawrence Pope, had a life-long interest in grading equipment, over-the-road tractors and all manner of diesel-powered heavy equipment, according to Taylor. Pope enjoyed operating heavy machinery on company projects until his late seventies, Taylor added, a legacy that will continue through the Foundation’s support of Forsyth Tech’s Diesel and Heavy Equipment program.
“We are deeply appreciative of this very generous gift from the Pope Foundation,” said Green. “The Pope Companies, through their deep experience in the truckload transportation business, understand the importance of training a highly skilled workforce to meet the needs of current and future logistic and supply chain management operations. This gift will allow us to accommodate the increased enrollment in this program and meet the challenges of rapidly changing technology so that we can continue to provide our students for years to come with relevant, experiential training using state-of-the-art equipment.”
Forsyth Tech’s Transportation Technology Center is one of the premier facilities of its kind in the southeast.
The Lawrence E. Pope Foundation was formed in 2008 by Lawrence E. Pope, a Triad area business executive, who died in 2010. The Foundation is a non-profit corporation located in Kernersville, NC This organization benefits philanthropy, voluntarism and grantmaking foundations, focusing specifically on private independent foundations programs.
Mr. Pope was an entrepreneur and visionary businessman who started his career with American Tobacco Co., eventually becoming a buyer and plant manager. He left American to form L.E. Pope Building Co, Inc. in 1969, one of the companies in the business grouping known as The Pope Companies. L.E. Pope Building Co., Inc. was a large residential builder, developer, and sales agency in the Kernersville area for many years. In the early 1980s, the company shifted its emphasis to commercial development. Today, the company owns and/or manages over three million square feet of commercial and residential space in North Carolina, South Carolina, Kentucky, and Georgia.
Many of the Pope Companies business units deliver procurement, logistics, and supply chain services to the tobacco industry, making it one of the leading procurement and logistics agents for the tobacco industry in the United States.