Duke Energy builds local workforce in Ohio, Kentucky with $390,000 in grants to help job seekers prepare for employment

Share This Story

  • 22 workforce development programs receive grants.

  • Grants support access to training and job skills programs for future workforce.

  • More than $755,000 distributed to local organizations for workforce development in past 5 years.

CINCINNATI – Duke Energy is awarding $390,000 in grants to support workforce development and education programs, as well as opportunities for those reentering the job market in Ohio and Kentucky.

The grants will be used to support education and training programs to equip future employees with the skills necessary to reach their full potential.

“There is a critical need for skilled workers in our region as we look toward a vibrant and inclusive future,” said Amy Spiller, president, Duke Energy Ohio and Kentucky. “I am pleased that Duke Energy can help bolster the region’s talent pipeline through our workforce development grants. The organizations receiving these grants support our community with job training, academic support and community services. Together, we will make a lasting impact in our neighborhoods and regional economies for years to come.”

One of this year’s recipients is Easterseals Serving Greater Cincinnati, which is receiving a $15,000 grant for its Career Pathway Initiative.

“Easterseals is so grateful to have Duke Energy’s support of our Career Pathway Initiative over the last 10 years,” said Debbie Smith, vice president of education for employment at Easterseals. “This is a place where people with and without disabilities who’ve faced barriers to employment can learn, train and practice alongside each other as they prepare for and secure sustainable employment in our community.”

In Kentucky, the Learning Grove, formerly known as Children Inc., is receiving a $30,000 grant to help with its programming.

“Because of Duke Energy’s support, we can positively impact career readiness as well as provide hands-on training for tomorrow’s workforce,” said Shannon Starkey-Taylor, Learning Grove CEO.

Grant recipients, awards

  • Academy for Technologists Extraordinaire - $5,000
    BYOC Camps and Clubs
  • African Professionals Network - $5,000
    Career Development & Entrepreneurship Program
  • Brighton Center - $20,000
    Trades to Success
  • CityLink Center - $10,000
    Cornerstone Construction Training Program
  • Easterseals - $15,000
    Career Pathway Initiative
  • Gateway Community and Technical College - $25,000
    Utility Lineworker Certificate Program Site Expansion
  • Learning Grove - $30,000
    NKY College & Career Connector Program & NaviGo Scholars
  • Middletown Area Chamber Foundation - $10,000
  • Northern Kentucky Community Action Agency Commission - $10,000
    Cultivating the Energy Sector’s Future Workforce
  • Northern Kentucky Area Development District - $35,000
    Grow NKY 2.0
  • Per Scholas - $10,000
    Cincinnati IT Training
  • Samaritan Car Care Clinic - $5,000
    Nonprofit vehicle repair shop and co-op training site
  • Society of St. Vincent de Paul - $10,000
    Working Better Together
  • The University of Cincinnati Foundation – UC Clermont - $10,000
    Multidisciplinary Design Thinking STEM Internship Team
  • Warren County Educational Service Center - $15,000
    2022 Transitions - Workforce Development Program

The company is also distributing $25,000 grants to seven organizations that excel in assisting immigrant populations as well as individuals reentring the workforce. Cincinnati Compass is also receiving a grant from Duke Energy to help advance its work in advocating for economic, social and civic inclusion while building capacities and opportunities for new and long-term residents.

“We are elated to receive this support from Duke Energy. With immigrants and refugees contributing to 98% of the region’s population growth, it’s critical that we provide adequate training and industry credentialing that is inclusive and supportive of this diverse and growing population that contribute greatly to the region’s economic growth and cultural vibrancy,” said Bryan Wright, executive director, Cincinnati Compass.

Grants for workforce reentry and immigrant populations


  • Center for Employment Opportunities
  • Cincinnati Compass
  • Cincinnati Works
  • Talbert House


  • Esperanza Center
  • Life Learning Center
  • Kentucky Refugee Ministries

Duke Energy Ohio/Kentucky

Duke Energy Ohio/Kentucky, a subsidiary of Duke Energy, provides electric service to 880,000 residential, commercial and industrial customers in a 3,000-square-mile service area, and natural gas service to 550,000 customers in a 2,650-square-mile service area, in Ohio and Kentucky.

Duke Energy (NYSE: DUK), a Fortune 150 company headquartered in Charlotte, N.C., is one of America’s largest energy holding companies. Its electric utilities serve 8.2 million customers in North Carolina, South Carolina, Florida, Indiana, Ohio and Kentucky, and collectively own 50,000 megawatts of energy capacity. Its natural gas unit serves 1.6 million customers in North Carolina, South Carolina, Tennessee, Ohio and Kentucky. The company employs 28,000 people.

Duke Energy is executing an aggressive clean energy transition to achieve its goals of net-zero methane emissions from its natural gas business and at least a 50% carbon reduction from electric generation by 2030 and net-zero carbon emissions by 2050. The 2050 net-zero goals also include Scope 2 and certain Scope 3 emissions. In addition, the company is investing in major electric grid enhancements and energy storage, and exploring zero-emission power generation technologies such as hydrogen and advanced nuclear.

Duke Energy was named to Fortune’s 2022 “World’s Most Admired Companies” list and Forbes’ “America’s Best Employers” list. More information is available at duke-energy.com. The Duke Energy News Center contains news releases, fact sheets, photos and videos. Duke Energy’s illumination features stories about people, innovations, community topics and environmental issues. Follow Duke Energy on TwitterLinkedInInstagram and Facebook.

Media contact: Sally Thelen
Office: 513.287.2432
Media line: 800.559.3853
Twitter: @DE_SallyT