Lowe's Kicks Off Tough Tools for Cool Schools Program to 515 SkillsUSA Chapters at Kobalt Tools 500 Race in Atlanta

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Lowe's and Kobalt Tools in partnership with SkillsUSA are helping the next generation of skilled trade professionals through their new Tough Tools for Cool Schools program. Lowe's is donating approximately $300,000 worth of Kobalt tools to more than 500 SkillsUSA building and construction trades programs across the country for use in their classrooms.

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With Kobalt tools in their toolbox and the education and knowledge from SkillsUSA and their schools, we believe students will be ready to succeed when they enter the workforce.

Lowe's and Kobalt Tools in partnership with SkillsUSA are helping the next generation of skilled trade professionals through their new Tough Tools for Cool Schools program. Lowe's is donating approximately $300,000 worth of Kobalt tools to more than 500 SkillsUSA building and construction trades programs across the country for use in their classrooms.

The program kicked off Friday, March 6 at Lovejoy High School in Hampton, Georgia, where the first set of tools was personally delivered by the Kobalt team and three-time NASCAR champion, Jimmie Johnson. He made the visit to the school just prior to the March 8 Kobalt Tools 500 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series race. Johnson's No. 48 Impala SS will also showcase a Tough Tools for Cool Schools paint scheme when he races on April 5 at the Samsung 500 at Texas Motor Speedway.

The No. 48 team knows how important it is to have the right tools to be successful," said Johnson. "This program is great because we are literally putting those tools in the hands of students who need them and can use them to further their education. I hope it gives all the students involved with SkillsUSA some pride in knowing that we will be racing a car for them in Texas and hoping to put it in victory lane."

SkillsUSA advisor and construction trades instructor Price Jacobs, a 20-year instructor at Lovejoy High School, was selected to receive the first tool kit in the nation. "This was the greatest day of my teaching career," said Jacobs following the event. "SkillsUSA has had a huge part in the transformation of my students because it provides skills and leadership training that they would not have gotten anywhere else. Lowe's support just reinforces what we are teaching in the classroom and shows the value of education industry partnerships."

"Lowe's is proud to work with Kobalt Tools and SkillsUSA to continue to prepare America's future skilled workforce and help students excel in their chosen career paths," said Larry D. Stone, Lowe's president and chairman of Lowe's Charitable and Educational Foundation. "With Kobalt tools in their toolbox and the education and knowledge from SkillsUSA and their schools, we believe students will be ready to succeed when they enter the workforce."

SkillsUSA executive director Timothy Lawrence agrees. "The donation of Kobalt Tools to SkillsUSA's building trades labs nationwide will help prepare the next generation of workers and leaders for the challenging and competitive construction workforce of the 21st Century. The youth who will benefit from this generous donation will build and maintain our homes, schools and commercial structures in the future," said Lawrence. "Through the Tough Tools for Cool Schools program, SkillsUSA, Lowe's and our technical training schools are building something together that will truly make a lasting impact."

ABOUT SkillsUSA
SkillsUSA is a national nonprofit organization of students, teachers and industry, working together to ensure America has a skilled work force. SkillsUSA helps high school and college students enrolled in career and technical education programs to excel by teaching employability skills in conjunction with their trade, technical and service occupations skills. The association's annual membership exceeds 300,000 students and instructors in more than 3,700 schools and colleges in every state, three territories and the District of Columbia. For more information, visit http://www.skillsusa.org.

ABOUT LOWE'S
Lowe's is a proud supporter of Habitat for Humanity International, American Red Cross, United Way of America, and the Home Safety Council, in addition to numerous non-profit organizations and programs that help communities across the country. In 2007, Lowe's and the Lowe's Charitable and Educational Foundation together contributed more than $27.5 million to support community and education projects in the United States and Canada. Lowe's also encourages volunteerism through the Lowe's Heroes program, a company-wide employee volunteer initiative. Lowe's is a FORTUNE® 50 company with fiscal year 2008 sales of $48.2 billion and has more than 1,650 stores in the United States and Canada. For more information, visit http://www.Lowes.com/community.

Contacts:                            
Abby Buford
Public Relations
Lowe's Companies, Inc.
(704) 758-349

Tom Holdsworth
(703) 737-0607

Jane DeShong Short
(703) 737-0612
SkillsUSA

Additional event photos available upon request. Contact Jane Short at 703-737-0612.

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Thomas W. Holdsworth

Jane DeShong Short
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