1-16-2020 Building named for Paul Broyhill

Posted on: January 16th, 2020 by admin

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January 16, 2020

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By Garrett Stell
gstell@newstopicnews.com

Jan 16, 2020 12:00 AM

 

The Broyhill name can be found on buildings and placards across Caldwell County, including the Satie and J.E. Broyhill Caldwell Senior Center in Lenoir, the J.T. Broyhill Highway (U.S. 321 from Blowing Rock to Hickory, and the T.H. Broyhill Walking Park.

 

Caldwell Community College and Technical Institute’s Board of Trustees voted Wednesday to add to this list and renamed the former Rite Aid building at the corner of Hickory Boulevard and Pine Mountain Road in Hudson the Paul H. Broyhill Center for Advanced Technologies.

 

The space will house a simulated factory floor to offer state-of-the-art training in modern manufacturing techniques and technology.

 

CCC&TI President Dr. Mark Poarch said that naming a center that will educate the next generation of manufacturers is a fitting way to honor Paul Broyhill’s contributions to the county.

 

“(Broyhill) is a man who has stood for innovation and progress, and this building represents many of those same ideals that he stood for and that made Broyhill (Furniture) a success for many years in our community,” he said.

 

Broyhill is the son of J.E. Broyhill, who in with his brother T.H. Broyhill started a furniture company that grew to become a worldwide leader in the industry. At its peak in the 1970s, Broyhill Furniture Industries had 20 factories and employed about 7,500 people, about 4,500 of them in Caldwell County.

 

Paul Broyhill, 94, served in the Army in World War II and returned after the war to complete his bachelor’s degree at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. He joined the then-family-owned company in 1947 and rose through the ranks to become chairman and chief executive officer.

 

The naming decision comes near the end of a long process of converting the property from a retail space to a modern factory and education space, which began when the board voted to buy the property last March.

 

The building had been vacant for over two years, since Walgreen’s bought about half of Rite Aid’s stores. Walgreen’s already had a store across the street from the Hudson Rite Aid.

 

The building is about 13,600 square feet, and Poarch said the college will install a simulated factory floor, computer lab, classrooms and faculty office space.

 

Trustee Bill Stone said that workers have installed new ceilings and a new sprinkler system so far.

 

Donnie Basinger, vice president of operations, said he expects the next major step to be installing new floors that can withstand the wear and tear of heavy industrial equipment.

 

Stone said that the building should be finished over the summer and ready to open in August. Poarch said that there will be an official ribbon-cutting and dedication ceremony, but no date has been set.

 

Reporter Garrett Stell can be reached at 828-610-8723.

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