If You Build It …

If You Build It …

CEOs from around the Triangle trade in their suits for hard hats during Habitat for Humanity's CEO Build day


Habitat for Humanity hosted its fifth annual CEO Build in Durham for the first time. About 35 CEOs from around the Triangle gathered to lend a hand with a three-house building project on Angier Avenue. This project is a collaboration among the Habitats of Wake, Durham and Orange counties to tackle one common problem: lack of affordable housing.The event raises funds to build one house in each county. Since the CEO Build’s inception in 2011, the companies have sponsored and built homes for 11 families.

Blake Strayhorn, executive director of Habitat for Humanity of Durham, is most excited to bring this Habitat group to northeast central Durham, where they can focus on an area Mayor Bill Bell has declared a battlefield in the fight against poverty. “Many of these CEOs become passionate advocates for Habitat and often bring back employees from their own company to participate in future projects,” Blake says.

Over the next few months, volunteers from the participating companies will pick up where their CEOs left off. In lieu of a down payment, each partner homebuyer contributes sweat equity hours helping volunteers and Habitat staff build their future homes.

Local Durham vendors, including Rise, Tijuana Flats, The Durham Co-op Market, Caffe Bellezza and The Parlour, donated food and refreshments for the day.

Bill Dowse, Durham Habitat AmeriCorps member Georgie Kerber, John Warasila with Alliance Architecture, Jenny Myers and Jack Clayton with Wells Fargo, and Jason McGinnis with NeoNova Network Services.
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Durham Habitat’s Jesus Gutierrez, Southern Energy Management’s Maria Kingery and Habitat of Durham’s Executive Director Blake Strayhorn.
Art Pappas of Pappas Ventures and Chuck Swoboda with Cree.
Burt’s Bees’ Jim Geikie and Durham Habitat AmeriCorps member Sandra Fleming.
Wake Habitat’s Monique Delage with Orange Habitat’s Jennifer Player and Katie Thompson.
Excited for their new home, Tanessa Atwater (right) and daughter Jalissa Willis stopped by the build site to lend a helping hand.
Rory Ingram with Ingram Collection LLC and Tim Captain with Credit Suisse.
The Triangle CEOs start foundation work on the third house.
In the process of a roof installation on one of the houses on Angier Avenue.
Editorial intern Kayla Anderson is a recent graduate of N.C. State University and has high hopes to move to New York City in pursuit of a career in fashion editorial. In her rare but much appreciated spare time, you can catch her lounging on the beach with a good book in hand.