Florida economic and workforce development aided by $500,000 in Duke Energy grants

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  • Company invested more than $500,000 in 10 nonprofit agencies working to spur economic development and equip Florida’s workforce with specialized training

ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. — Ten economic and workforce development organizations in Florida have received more than $500,000 in grants from the Duke Energy Foundation to help attract industries with job-creating potential.

To attract and retain businesses within its service territories, the company funds workforce development initiatives to help create a skilled workforce in key cluster areas.

“Duke Energy Florida’s economic development initiatives are deep-rooted,” said Alex Glenn, state president of Duke Energy – Florida. “Since 2001, we’ve helped attract 240 companies to Florida, bringing more than 34,000 jobs and more than $3 billion in capital investment. These grants further demonstrate our focus on economic and workforce development in our service territories throughout the state.”

Duke Energy Florida’s economic development grants this year total more than $240,000 and include:

  • Economic Development Commission Foundation for Education, Inc., $50,000: To generate jobs for the Orlando region and bring capital investment to directly benefit the population and its economic growth.
  • Enterprise Florida, Inc., $50,000: To help promote Florida as a top location for business expansion and location.
  • Gulf County Economic Development Coalition, $26,500: To fund implementation of a strategic sites inventory program, including commercial and technology/business park uses.
  • North Florida Economic Development Partnership Foundation, Inc., $99,000: To assess and maintain a list of potential high-quality sites that are ready for immediate development, by targeted industry sectors in the Tallahassee region, including light and heavy industrial manufacturing, commercial, warehousing and distribution and technology/business park development.
  • Taylor County Alliance, Inc., $15,600: To support a program that identifies manufacturing companies and market Taylor County for facility expansions.

“Duke Energy continues to be a great partner not only to Enterprise Florida, but for economic development in our state,” said Bill Johnson, Florida Secretary of Commerce and president and CEO of Enterprise Florida. “Their renewal of support for Team Florida allows us to expand our efforts to market the state for business. Partners like Duke Energy send a message to companies everywhere that we are working together to make Florida the premier state for business.”

Duke Energy Florida’s workforce development grants this year total more than $260,000 and include:

  • Foundation for Building Community, Inc., $50,000: To increase the awareness around the importance of hiring individuals with a technical education, specifically as it supports the reintroduction of veterans into the workforce.
  • Homeless Emergency Project, Inc., $20,000: To provide certification training to veterans enrolled in the Pathways to Employment program who reside in HEP’s emergency, transitional and permanent supportive housing.
  • Lake-Sumter State College Foundation, Inc., $85,000: To help close existing utility employment gaps by training highly qualified technicians, through a specialized program that combines  academic coursework and hands-on training to produce work-ready employees.
  • Lake-Sumter State College Foundation, Inc., $25,000: To provide scholarships to unemployed and/or underemployed students to gain basic knowledge and skills for entry level and high-skill, high-wage positions in the electric utility industry.
  • St. Petersburg College Foundation, Inc., $30,000: To provide scholarship support to first generation students who might not otherwise have the opportunity to attend college and earn degrees.
  • CareerSource Pinellas/The Science Center, $50,000: To fund existing soldering and cabling training programs and develop a 3D printing training program helping to close the skill gap within the manufacturing sector.

“The Duke Energy grant to the St. Petersburg College Foundation will help underwrite scholarships for 25 students who are the first in their families to pursue a college degree,” said Frances Neu, foundation executive director of St. Petersburg College. “For many students, this scholarship is their best hope of realizing unmet potential, gaining self-sufficiency and securing the knowledge and skills that will lead to meaningful and productive employment. By supporting the preparedness of our workforce, Duke Energy is also helping to ensure the continued economic prosperity of our region.  We are very grateful for their support.”

Duke Energy Foundation

The Duke Energy Foundation provides philanthropic support to address the needs vital to the health of its communities, with a focus on education, environment, economic and workforce development and community impact. The grants are administered in cycles throughout the year. The environmental grant cycle includes investments in programs that promote environmental education and protect, improve or restore natural resources.

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

Duke Energy Florida

Duke Energy Florida owns coal-fired and natural gas generation providing about 9,100 megawatts of owned electric capacity to approximately 1.7 million customers in a 13,000-square-mile service area.

With its Florida regional headquarters located in St. Petersburg, Fla., Duke Energy is one of the largest electric power holding companies in the United States. Its regulated utility operations serve approximately 7.4 million electric customers located in six states in the Southeast and Midwest, representing a population of approximately 24 million people. Its Commercial Portfolio and International business segments own and operate diverse power generation assets in North America and Latin America, including a growing portfolio of renewable energy assets in the United States.

Headquartered in Charlotte, N.C., Duke Energy is a Fortune 125 company traded on the New York Stock Exchange under the symbol DUK. More information about the company is available at duke-energy.com

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