GM CEO to donate $1M to housing program

Feb. 22, 2012 at 3:43 PM
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DETROIT, Feb. 22 (UPI) -- General Motors Co. confirmed Wednesday that Chief Executive Officer Daniel Akerson is writing a check for $1 million for Habitat for Humanity.

GM spokesman Greg Martin confirmed reports that the CEO, who has a long history of philanthropic giving, would write the check for a program called Leaders to ReBuild Detroit, Crain's Detroit Business reported.

The Detroit News said Akerson once walked into a soup kitchen in Detroit to give the program a five-figure check.

Akerson was scheduled to speak Wednesday at the J.E. Clark Preparatory Academy at a Leaders to Rebuild Detroit event, kicking off a three-year initiative to rebuild Motor City, the News said.

The initial focus of the program is the Morningside Commons neighborhood. The initial target is to assist at least 500 families in the next three years with housing projects, including repairs, weatherization and home construction.

Akerson became CEO of GM in the fall of 2010 after several tumultuous years for the automaker, including a stint in bankruptcy court in 2009.

His philanthropic check-writing has included a $25,000 gift to the Wounded Warrior Project in Detroit and sponsorship of the Chuck Davey Boxing Classic in 2010 and 2011.

In the fall of 2010, Akerson wrote a $10,000 check for Detroit Public Schools athletic programs. In earlier years, Akerson and his wife, Karin, gave generously to "So Others Might Eat," a food and shelter program in Washington, D.C.

In 2010, he received that program's McKenna Humanitarian Award, the newspaper said.

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