JACKSONVILLE, FLORIDA (Jan. 7, 2022) — CSX, a Jacksonville based transportation company, has joined with Habitat for Humanity of Jacksonville (HabiJax) to provide an affordable home for local National Guard veteran Ebony Dobson and her 10-year-old son, Windell. CSX fully funded the construction of Ms. Dobson’s home through their “Pride in Service”, a groundbreaking commitment, extending to national and local heroes – veterans, military, and first responders – connecting them and their families to what they need, when they need it, including affordable housing. HabiJax has partnered with Ms. Dobson throughout the homebuying process and has completed the construction of her new home with volunteer support from CSX employees.
HabiJax and CSX held a Home Dedication Ceremony with Ms. Dobson at her new home on Friday, January 7th at 3pm. The ceremony was emceed by HabiJax Fund Development Manager Kevin
Collison and included remarks from HabiJax President & CEO Monte Walker, CSX Chief of Police and Military BRG Chairman Sean Douris, and Homeowner and Army National Guard Veteran Ebony Dobson.
“We are thrilled to celebrate CSX and Ebony” said Monte Walker, CEO of HabiJax. “Providing affordable housing opportunities for our country’s military heroes is of urgent importance for HabiJax, and it has been a privilege to partner with CSX through Pride in Service to make that happen. It’s been a year in the making, and Ebony has invested more than 200 hours of sweat equity during this process and is very grateful for the new home. Just seeing the smiles and the reaction of the family is just worth its weight in gold.”
“CSX partners with organizations like Habitat for Humanity of Jacksonville as we aim to serve our veterans and their loved ones, when it matters most,” said Chris Bennett, Director of Public Safety Coordination Center at CSX. “At CSX, it is incredibly important to forge strong connections with our veterans in the communities we serve. Through our partnership with HabiJax, our employees took great joy in building the Dobson home and allowed us give back to those families that sacrificed so much to keep us safe.”
Sean Douris, CSX Chief of Police and Military BRG Chairman, presented Ms. Dobson with a Dedication Book highlighting her homebuilding journey and those who helped make it a reality. “Thank you so much for letting us be part of this”, said Sean Douris. “Many of us are veterans. 1 in 5 CSXers are veterans or first responders or are still serving in the military in some capacity. Being partners with the community, the people that work at CSX live in the communiteis that we are all in. It is keenly important for us to be partners like this and we just couldn’t be happier to do it and to be here today to welcome Ebony and Windell home.”
“This is so perfect,” said Homebuyer Ebony Dobson. “Today means stability for me and my son and a beautiful yard to play in and to make many memories with my family. It is a dream I have had for a really long time and I’m happy that I have finally accomplished it.” “It means joy and happiness, and it also means that I can have a lot of friends over here and make new friends,” Windell said.
About Habitat for Humanity of Jacksonville, Inc. (HabiJax):
Habitat for Humanity of Jacksonville, also known as HabiJax, was founded, in 1988 and has become the largest non-profit affordable homeownership provider in Duval County. HabiJax is considered to be one of the most successful Habitat for Humanity affiliates in the United States, having provided homeownership opportunities and other housing services to more than 2,300 families. In addition, HabiJax is an advocate for affordable housing and fair housing policies and provides workshops, trainings, and other services to help families optimize their homeownership experience. For more information, to donate or to volunteer, visit www.habijax.org and follow us on social media.