Rowan, Cannon Memorial YMCAs to merge Jan. 1

Published 11:55 am Friday, October 4, 2019

SALISBURY — The YMCA of Rowan County and Cannon Memorial YMCA in Cabarrus County will merge effective Jan. 1, the organizations announced Friday.

The new entity will become the Rowan-Cabarrus YMCA. Jamie Morgan, CEO of the Rowan County YMCA, will become president and CEO of the combined group.

“We are excited about expanding our footprint,” Morgan said. “But we remain committed to responding to the specific needs and honoring the special qualities of each unique community within our reach and to elevate our Christian mission.”

The combined YMCA won’t close any branches of the Cannon Memorial and Rowan entities, including facilities in China Grove, Salisbury, Rockwell, Concord, Harrisburg and Kannapolis. And users of the combined organization’s branches should not see any difference in services, Morgan said.

“We don’t really expect the member or the participant at the branch level to see any difference,” Morgan told the Post. “We’re trying to be more effective and more efficient from an administrative standpoint.”

As examples, Morgan said there will be one CEO instead of two and one annual audit instead of two and that national dues would decrease.

The merger, which was approved unanimously by the boards of both YMCAs, will occur in tandem with the retirement of Ron Davis, the longtime CEO of the Cannon Memorial YMCA.

A news release said the merger also follows “successful shared services between the organizations that have been ongoing since 2013.”

“Blending the efforts of our YMCAs makes great sense,” Davis said. “We began working together six years ago to maximize our resources. Our teams are already working together, and the direction of proven leader Jamie Morgan will ensure a smooth transition for members, participants and volunteers.”

A news release said the combined agencies will serve more than 53,000 adults and children, employ more than 670 people and have an operating budget of $12 million.

“This merger is the coming together of two equals,” said Shane Wolford, chairman of the board of the YMCA of Rowan County. “Combining these successful YMCAs in this growing region creates opportunities for us to deepen our impact and become better together as one.”

Morgan told the Post the YMCA “will continue to serve as it always has” in the communities where it has branches in Rowan and Cabarrus counties. The organizations have been studying the merger for a long time and volunteers spent months conducting its “due diligence,” he said.