OBX Community Foundation unveils move to Manteo 

By on March 15, 2023

Plan to award new $40K grant also revealed at annual luncheon

Artist rendering of the new Outer Banks Center for Nonprofits and new offices of Outer Banks Community Foundation.

After a two-year COVID hiatus, the Outer Banks Community Foundation annual luncheon and meeting returned to celebrate a recap of the organization’s 40th year at Jennette’s Pier in Nags Head on March 14.

The day included the surprise announcement from Community Foundation CEO Chris Sawin that the organization would be moving from its longtime home in Southern Shores to the old Southern Bank building in Manteo located at 704 US-64 & 264.

Sawin’s announcement came as he described a number of new initiatives and funds the organization has developed since its founding in 1982.

“Our biggest new initiative, we’re going to move our headquarters…this year,” he said. Moving to a new location, according to Sawin, had been under discussion for some time “through a series of conversations which started before I got to the Community Foundation [in 2021], where we realized that our wonderful flat top was probably not the perfect place for a growing staff with a new kind of capability.”

Sawin added that the new location is “going to give us new visibility. It’s going to put us in the right location to be among a host of community leadership organizations from Coastal Studies Institute to Dare County government, social services, COA [College of the Albemarle].”

New Community Foundation Board Chair Jean-Louise Dixon explained that the new facility “will serve as a center for nonprofits across the Outer Banks, a facility to meet to engage to collaborate in a way that they have never been able to do so before.”

The Southern Bank building, Sawin explained, was something the organization felt it needed to pursue. “An opportunity came our way to purchase, at a deep discount, the Southern Bank building in Manteo which is across the street from Dunkin’ Donuts…A big thanks goes out to Southern Bank,” he said.

Dixon brought additional perspective to why the move was necessary. “It is a huge leap. This decision has not been made lightly. But in 1982, the population of Dare County was 13,377 people. Today we have over 40,000 year-round residents,” she said.

Plans call for the current headquarters to be sold to help finance the move to the new facility.

Although the move to Manteo was the most significant announcement for the day, one other new initiative in particular was announced.

Drawing attention to the Community Foundation’s 40 years of giving back to the community, Board Member Noel Preston described the new 40th Anniversary Impact Grant as a way to commemorate our 40 years and also to honor those visionary folks who founded this organization. The $40,000 grant is the largest one-time grant in the Community Foundation’s history. It is designed as seed money to create a self-sustaining program.

The decision to focus on drug and substance abuse Preston noted, came after discussions with a number of local community leaders in Ocracoke, Dare County and Corolla.

“Throughout these interviews or visits, where we listened and let the experts talk, mental health and substance abuse repeatedly came out as significant issues on the Outer Banks. For that reason, this $40,000 grant…will focus on mental health and substance abuse and ideally focus on youth programs,” he said.

Community Foundation annual meetings have also always been a time to call attention to individuals whose volunteer work over the years has been exemplary. The award is called the Champion Award and this year, it was presented to Jane Webster

Last year’s Community Foundation Chair Clark Twiddy described how Webster has gone about her volunteer work.

“Albert Schweitzer said once, ‘Example is not the main thing in influencing people. It is the only thing influencing people. ’And Jane has gone on to serve on just about every organization on the Outer Banks,” Twiddy said.

2023 Champion Award recipient Jane Webster with previous award winner Helen Ford. (Photo credit Kip Tabb/OBV)

Webster, whose late husband Sterling built and managed the Ramada Inn and Hilton Garden Inn, serves on multiple nonprofit boards and has done so for a number of years. Joining Webster as she spoke was a previous Champion Award recipient, Helen Ford.

Webster, who was a member of the Community Foundation Board for a number of years, will be stepping down, described her experience as a board member.

“I’m very sad to be rolling off the board. My whole impetus has been with the grants committee, and I can tell you my biggest reward from beginning to end was learning about all of the nonprofits that we have here on the Outer Banks, the large ones, the small ones, the stalwarts, the new ones, and how everybody rolls their sleeves up to work very, very hard to make this place a loving, giving place to live. I want you to know that when you see your reflection in the mirror, or as you’re passing by a store window, I want you to know that you are champions. It’s not just me, you all are champions,” she said.


Barnhill Building Group has been selected as the Construction Manager @ Risk by the College of the Albemarle and is seeking to pre-qualify construction trade contractors to submit bids for the furnishing labor, materials, equipment, and tools for the new College of The Albemarle – Allied Health Sciences Simulation Lab (COA Health Sciences) located in Elizabeth City, NC. Please note: Only subcontractors who have been prequalified by Barnhill will be able to submit a Bid.

The project consists of the new construction of a 38,000-sf, 2-story expansion to the existing Owens Health Sciences Center and will house classrooms, labs, and a simulation lab. The site is just over just over 4.5 acres and is located on an active campus. This new construction will be a steel structure with a brick and metal panel veneer, curtainwall, and storefront glazing with a PVC roof membrane.

Principal trade and specialty contractors are solicited for the following Bid Packages:

BP0100: General Trades

BP0105: Final Cleaning

BP0390: Turnkey Concrete

BP0400: Turnkey Masonry

BP0500: Structural Steel & Misc. Steel

BP0740: Roofing

BP0750: Metal Panels

BP0790: Caulking / Caulking

BP0800: Turnkey Doors/Frames/Hardware

BP0840: Glass & Glazing

BP0925: Drywall

BP0960: Resilient Flooring

BP0980: Acoustical Ceilings

BP0990: Painting & Wallcovering

BP1005: Toilet Specialties / Accessories / Division 10

BP1010: Signage

BP1098: Demountable Partitions

BP1230: Finish Carpentry and Casework

BP1250: Window Treatment

BP1400: Elevators

BP2100: Fire Protection

BP2200: Plumbing

BP2300: HVAC

BP2600: Turnkey Electrical

BP3100: Turnkey Sitework

BP3290: Landscaping

Packages may be added and/or deleted at the discretion of the Construction Manager. Historically underutilized business firms are encouraged to complete participation submittals.

HUB/MWBE OUTREACH MEETING: Barnhill Building Group will be conducting a HUB/MWBE Informational Session. You are encouraged to attend the following session to learn more about project participation opportunities available to you. These seminars will help to: Learn about project and scope; Inform and train Minority/HUB contractors in preparation for bidding this project; Assist in registration on the State of North Carolina Vendor link; Stimulate opportunities for Networking with other firms. Location and time TBD. Please visit our planroom at https://app.buildingconnected.com/public/54da832ce3edb5050017438b for more information.

Interested contractors should submit their completed prequalification submittals, by July 22, 2024, to Meredith Terrell at mterrell@barnhillcontracting.com or hardcopies can be mailed to Barnhill Contracting Company PO Box 31765 Raleigh, NC 27622 (4325 Pleasant Valley Road, NC 27612).


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