Duke Energy Foundation awards Florida nonprofits more than $500,000 in grants to enhance access to the arts, promote diversity

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  • Company invests more than $504,000 in 55 arts and culture nonprofit agencies to enhance community vitality

ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. -- Strengthening communities by promoting diversity and increasing access to the arts is among the many ways the Duke Energy Foundation proudly supports Florida. Grants totaling $504,568 have been awarded to 55 nonprofit organizations within the company's service territory.

Duke Energy's support is helping organizations fulfill their missions across the state. Top grant recipients include philanthropic programs that encourage Hispanic business development, access to the arts, filmmaking and community development.

"Research shows communities that embrace diversity and have strong cultural resources are healthier, better educated and safer," said Catherine Stempien, Duke Energy Florida president. "We are proud to support philanthropic programs that expand the accessibility of arts and culture and help strengthen the nonprofit community through professional development programs. These grants will positively impact the communities where our customers live and work and further our diversity and inclusion initiatives."

The largest grant recipients include:

  • United Arts of Central Florida, Diversity Initiative for Lake, Orange, Osceola and Seminole Counties: $60,000
  • Prospera – Hispanic Business Council, Florida Programming: $50,000
  • Florida Holocaust Museum, Annual Education Programs: $23,499
  • Forgotten Coast Cultural Coalition, Forgotten Coast en Plein Air Events: $20,000
  • Marion Cultural Alliance, The Silver Springs Story: $15,000
  • Ruth Eckerd Hall, Artist Residencies: Performing Arts Education and Outreach: $15,000
  • Florida Orchestra, Youth Education Programs: $15,000
  • Dr. Carter G. Woodson African American History Museum, Preserving Jordan Park's Legacy: $10,000
  • Lake Wales Main Street, Downtown Development Strategy Design Plan: $10,000

"Duke Energy's continued funding for United Arts' Diversity Grants and Diversity Initiatives has been hugely impactful in the central Florida cultural sector, making the arts accessible to all in our community," said Flora Maria Garcia, president and CEO of United Arts of Central Florida. "This funding has significantly moved the needle across Lake, Osceola, Orange and Seminole counties by encouraging cultural organizations to create exciting, innovative and culturally diverse programming that appeals to diverse audiences. We are thrilled with the increase in funding this year that allows United Arts to create a new paid internship program for college students from ethnically diverse backgrounds who are interested in entering the field of arts administration."

The Foundation annually funds more than $33 million to communities throughout Duke Energy's seven-state service area. In 2017, the company donated more than $5 million to nonprofit organizations in Florida.

Additionally, Duke Energy's volunteer support solidifies its commitment to the communities it serves. Florida employees have also rolled up their sleeves to help their neighbors. Last year, employees volunteered more than 15,000 hours in their communities.

For additional information on Duke Energy's community giving programs, visit duke-energy.com/foundation.

About Duke Energy Foundation

The Duke Energy Foundation provides philanthropic support to address the needs of communities where its customers live and work. The Foundation contributes more than $33 million annually in charitable gifts.

The Foundation's education focus spans kindergarten to career – particularly science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) – as well as early childhood literacy and workforce development. The Foundation also supports environmental projects and community impact initiatives, including arts and culture.

Duke Energy employees and retirees actively contribute to their communities as volunteers and leaders with a wide variety of nonprofit organizations. Duke Energy is committed to building on its legacy of community service. For more information, visit duke-energy.com/foundation.

The Duke Energy Foundation is part of Duke Energy (NYSE: DUK).

Headquartered in Charlotte, N.C., Duke Energy is one of the largest energy holding companies in the U.S., with approximately 29,000 employees and a generating capacity of 49,500 megawatts. The company is transforming its customers' experience, modernizing its energy grid, generating cleaner energy and expanding its natural gas infrastructure to create a smarter energy future for the people and communities it serves.

A Fortune 125 company, Duke Energy was named to Fortune's 2018 "World's Most Admired Companies" list and Forbes' 2018 "America's Best Employers" list.

More information about the company is available at duke-energy.com. The Duke Energy News Center includes news releases, fact sheets, photos, videos and other materials. Duke Energy's illumination features stories about people, innovations, community topics and environmental issues. Follow Duke Energy on Twitter, LinkedIn, Instagram and Facebook.

Contact: Peveeta Persaud
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