Carolina Family Federal Credit Union has its roots in a credit union that for decades served the DuPont Plant in Kinston, NC. In this seven-minute video, we highlight comments from some of the people who were involved with the credit union and its changes over the years. Featured interviewees include the wife of a former DuPont manager, the daughter of a sharecropper, a Vietnam veteran, a local farmer and a former branch manager. We’re grateful that they have remained connected to the credit union as it evolved to Carolina Family and, today, Self-Help.
New Jobs: In 1953, DuPont opened a large plant in Kinston, NC, the first plant in the world devoted to producing polyester fiber. The plant needed workers, and they came from near and far. Local people who had labored in the fields or scrubbing floors suddenly found that they could get a better paying job at DuPont. In a short time, DuPont employed thousands of workers, expanding the population and prosperity of the surrounding area.
A New Credit Union: As time passed, one of the key benefits offered by DuPont was the plant’s own credit union, founded by plant employees. The Dupont Kinston Plant Employees Federal Credit Union opened its doors in 1975 in a small building on the plant’s campus. Though the facility was modest, it was conveniently located for the workers and specifically catered to their needs. The credit union opened at 7:30 in the morning to serve workers who started their shift at 8.
A Move and a New Name: In the 1990s as economic conditions changed, DuPont began laying off large numbers of employees. With deposits declining, leaders of the credit union realized that they needed to expand their services, relocate to a more central location and serve families in the wider Kinston community. The Board had a contest to rename the credit union, and the winning name, “Carolina Family,” was adopted in 1997.
On October 3, 2019, we had a premiere screening of the video at the Kinston-Lenoir County Public Library in downtown Kinston, facilitated by Kinston's Self-Help CU branch manager, Lee Albritton.