ROCKY MOUNT, N.C. (WNCN) — In a video standing beside Rocky Mount’s City Manager, Keith Rogers Jr., Ron Green was all smiles.
That’s because Green had a deed in his hands.
Green is the CEO of the Boys and Girls Club of the Tar River Region. In that video posted recently, he announced that the club is the new owner of the former National Guard Armory in Rocky Mount.
“We’ve had a plan in place for the last couple of years and we were actually getting ready to build a facility close to where our current facility is. And we got wind that the National Guard Armory, the city was looking to repurpose it,” Green explained. “We looked at being in partnership with the city and then it got to the point that we ended up getting the deed to it.”
It’s a facility the city owned for several years.
“It’s going to give us a larger space to be able to be more creative and also to bring more people in and more teens in outside of the Rocky Mount area,” said Green.
His vision for the space is to make it a hub for workforce development for teens.
“We say we want them to be on track to graduate, but we want them to have a plan for the future,” green mentioned.
In June, President Joe Biden made a stop in Rocky Mount where he met with students at Nash Community College, which is part of a coalition that received nearly $24 million in federal funding. These funds stem from the American Rescue Plan for job training programs in clean energy with a goal to help rural and black communities.
According to the North Carolina Department of Commerce most recent numbers, in July, the Rocky Mount metro area had the highest unemployment rate in the state at 5.2%.
Green hopes the new space can slowly change that.
“At the end of the day, we are trying to transform a community,” he said.
Green also said they are already in the process of creating designs and programs for the new facility.