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FIRST FIDELITY CONTRIBUTES $250,000 TO NEW JERSEY STATE AQUARIUM

 FIRST FIDELITY CONTRIBUTES $250,000 TO NEW JERSEY STATE AQUARIUM
 CAMDEN, N.J., Oct. 21 /PRNewswire/ -- First Fidelity Bancorporation (NYSE: FFB) announced today its support of the Thomas H. Kean New Jersey State Aquarium at Camden with a major corporate contribution of $250,000.
 The gift, to be paid over five years, was made jointly by First Fidelity, the largest banking company in New Jersey, and Fidelity Bank, its Philadelphia subsidiary. To date, this donation represents the most generous gift to the aquarium from the banking industry.
 To mark the occasion, a symbolic check was presented to Dr. Judith L. Wellington, the aquarium's president and chief executive officer, by Roland K. Bullard II, Fidelity Bank's president and chief executive officer, during a press conference and reception held at the New Jersey State Aquarium.
 "We view our support of the aquarium as an investment in the future of Camden and the South Jersey area," said Bullard. "We believe the New Jersey State Aquarium is a catalyst for growth and will serve as a model of what can be accomplished through the cooperative efforts of government, business, non-profit and community groups.
 "Our bank has a commitment to the people and communities we serve, and a stake in their future," Bullard said. "We are very pleased to be working with organizations which enhance the economic and cultural vitality of Camden, groups like the Heart of Camden, the Cooperative Business Assistance Corporation, Jersey Counselling and Housing Development, Inc., Moorestown Ecumenical Neighborhood Development, Inc., and now the aquarium. In partnership with the aquarium, we will seek new opportunities for community-focused programs, such as the summer internship program for Camden high school students which we initiated at the aquarium last summer."
 Fidelity's contribution will become part of the aquarium's Founding Sponsors Endowment Fund. The goal of the fund is to give the aquarium flexibility to design programs, plan activities and build new exhibits through the support of individuals and corporations.
 "It's a great honor to receive this gracious gift," Wellington said. "The aquarium has already attracted close to 1 million visitors. To insure continued success, the aquarium must be devoted to change by securing funding to create new programs that will attract visitors in the years to come."
 In recognition of their commitment and pledge to the New Jersey State Aquarium, First Fidelity Bancorporation and Fidelity Bank will prominently and permanently be named as Founding Sponsors on the "Windows to the Future" donor wall in the aquarium lobby.
 First Fidelity is the largest banking organization headquartered in New Jersey. With more than 550 branches in eastern Pennsylvania, New Jersey and New York, its principal affiliates are the First Fidelity Banks in New Jersey and New York, Fidelity Bank of Philadelphia, Merchants Bank of Allentown, Pa., and Merchants Bank (North) of Wilkes-Barre, Pa.
 The Thomas H. Kean New Jersey State Aquarium at Camden is a private, non-profit organization operated by the New Jersey Academy for Aquatic Sciences, whose foremost mission is to promote the understanding and protection of aquatic life and habitats, especially in and around the state of New Jersey.
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 /CONTACT: Barbara Nate of Fidelity Bank, 215-985-7003, or Marsha Perry of the N.J. State Aquarium, 609-365-3300, ext. 307/ CO: Fidelity Bank; Thomas H. Kean New Jersey State Aquarium at Camden ST: New Jersey, Pennsylvania IN: FIN SU:


CC-MK -- PH022 -- 2872 10/21/92 12:06 EDT
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Publication:PR Newswire
Date:Oct 21, 1992
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