ABB donates $100,000 to Fort Smith Boys and Girls Club for STEAM Lab

by Talk Business & Politics staff ([email protected]) 368 views 

ABB, which operates a manufacturing facility in Fort Smith, is donating $100,000 to support work on a STEAM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts, and Mathematics) Lab at the Fort Smith Boys and Girls Club’s Jeffrey-Glidewell Unit.

The donation, according to the club, “will empower our young members with essential skills in science, technology, engineering, arts, and mathematics, while also igniting their passion for learning and innovation.”

A check presentation ceremony is set for 10 a.m., June 5, at the Jeffrey-Glidewell Unit.

Work on the unit work began in late 2022 to renovate and add new amenities to the building constructed in 1959. The estimated cost of the work is $3.1 million. The work added 3,600 square feet to the building, and the new space will include new classrooms, music and dance space, an innovation technology room, and new admin offices. The facility is located at 4905 N. O St.

Futsal courts will be added behind the renovated space. Futsal courts are smaller-sided soccer courts and can be used for other purposes, including pickleball and basketball courts. The new and renovated space expands the club to 14,500 square feet.

The Fort Smith Boys and Girls Club began in 1928 and has four facilities in the city. The club employs 40 and has around 2,000 children annually who use the facilities.

Zurich, Switzerland-based ABB acquired then Fort Smith-based Baldor Electric Co. in early 2011 in a $4.2 billion deal. In early 2018 ABB announced it was dropping the Baldor name and unifying all properties under the ABB moniker.

Prior to being acquired in a $4.2 billion deal in early 2011 by ABB, Fort Smith-based Baldor employed between 7,000 and 7,500 in 26 plants in five countries and sales offices serving more than 80 countries. About 2,000 were then employed in the Fort Smith area.