Local News

Former Wall Street titan joins Dix park effort

Posted July 29, 2009 2:31 p.m. EDT

— Dick Jenrette, the co-founder of Wall Street investment bank Donaldson, Lufkin & Jenrette, has pledged his support for a plan to convert the Dorothea Dix Hospital campus to a destination park.

The Dix Visionaries group wants to create a version of New York's Central Park on the 306-acre campus south of downtown once the state closes the mental hospital there.

“I am proud to pledge my support to a cause deeply tied to the future of my hometown,” Jenrette said in a statement. “It’s important we seize this once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to preserve Raleigh’s history for future generations, keep green and open spaces and provide a place of recreation and tranquility for all North Carolinians. Dix Park would be an incredible benefit to all North Carolinians and a lasting and fitting monument to Dorothea Dix.”

Jenrette left the investment banking business in the mid-1990s, and he now restores historic homes as founder of the non-profit organization Classical American Homes Preservation Trust.

“Dick Jenrette’s support underscores the importance of our cause, as he is a national figure and ardent conservationist,” Gregory Poole Jr., president of the Dix Visionaries board of directors, said in a statement. “He is highly respected for his incredible foresight in both business and community ventures. We are honored to have his support.”