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AEP Foundation Completes the Square

by on August 23, 2017

Roanoke Mayor Sherman Lea cuts a ribbon in celebration of the new Children’s Museum at Center in the Square. The museum is named for retired AEP Board of Directors member Don Smith (seated) and his wife, Barbara.

(Story by Teresa Hamilton Hall)

ROANOKE, Va. — A generous donation from the American Electric Power Foundation helped fulfill a long time dream for a retired member of AEP’s board of directors. The Don and Barbara Smith Children’s Museum opened last week to an enthusiastic crowd gathered at Roanoke’s Center in the Square.

AEP Chairman, President and CEO Nick Akins and AEP Executive Vice President for External Affairs Charles Patton joined Appalachian Power President and COO Chris Beam for the Aug. 15 ribbon-cutting ceremony.

The AEP Foundation contributed $250,000 toward construction of the children’s museum. Don Smith served on the AEP Board of Directors for more than a dozen years and is a retired CEO and chairman of the board of Roanoke Electric Steel.

Smith applauded the AEP Foundation for its support. “This dream is now a reality,” Smith told the crowd gathered for the museum’s opening day.

The Children’s Museum – known as Kids’ Square – is located on the third floor of Center in the Square.

The museum’s highlight is an exhibit called Our Town that lets children participate in activities that mirror how citizens live and work in a community. The exhibit includes a bank, grocery store, classroom, hospital room, dentist’s office, and vet clinic, among others.

Roanoke Mayor Sherman Lea and several enthusiastic children cut a ribbon signifying the grand opening. Guests were then invited to tour the museum and take photos.

The AEP Foundation is funded by American Electric Power and its utility operating units.

The Foundation provides a permanent, ongoing resource for charitable initiatives involving higher dollar values and multi-year commitments in the communities served by AEP and initiatives outside of AEP’s 11-state service area.

From → News From AEP

2 Comments
  1. Great job AEP Foundation – helping to build up communities – a high calling!

  2. Way to go, AEP Foundation!

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