Left to right holding check is Pat Simmons, director and CEO, North Carolina Zoo; John Ruffin, board chair, NC Zoo Society; Jama Campbell, executive director, SECU Foundation; Cheryl Armstrong, executive director, NC Zoo Society; Bob Brinson, board chair, SECU Foundation; and Smedes York, a campaign cabinet leader, NC Zoo Society. (Source: SECU Foundation). Left to right holding check is Pat Simmons, director and CEO, North Carolina Zoo; John Ruffin, board chair, NC Zoo Society; Jama Campbell, executive director, SECU Foundation; Cheryl Armstrong, executive director, NC Zoo Society; Bob Brinson, board chair, SECU Foundation; and Smedes York, a campaign cabinet leader, NC Zoo Society. (Source: SECU Foundation).

In the middle of North Carolina is the largest natural habitat zoological park in the world. The North Carolina Zoo, located southeast of Asheboro, draws nearly one million visitors pass through each year to see more than 1,800 animals in habitats on the 500-acre site. Earlier in May, zoo officials received a large gift from the SECU Foundation to make the zoo even bigger and better.

The SECU Foundation, which is the charitable arm of the Raleigh, N.C.-based State Employees’ Credit Union ($50.7 billion in assets, 2.7 million members), donated $2 million to the zoo to help fund an expansion and addition of the zoo’s new Asia habitat complex.

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Michael Ogden

Editor-in-Chief for CU Times.

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