March, 2021 – For more than 24 years, United Way of North Carolina has recognized companies and organizations who have demonstrated exceptional investment in North Carolina communities through their Spirit of North Carolina Award. This year, Duke Energy will receive three awards for their remarkable community partnership with United Way of North Carolina, United Way of Central Carolinas, and United Way of the Greater Triangle.
United Way of North Carolina is proud to offer the Excellence in Community Spirit Award to Duke Energy for their support of NC 211. Due to the physical, economic, and emotional challenges brought on by COVID-19, many families found themselves dialing 2-1-1 to get connected with health and human services programs.
“This increased need led NC 211 to answer a record 206,000 calls in 2020 – a 54% increase from 2019.” Says Laura Marx, President and CEO of United Way of North Carolina. “Duke Energy immediately stepped in with financial contributions to NC 211, ensuring that capacity kept up with demand.”
In addition to their investment in NC 211, Duke Energy demonstrated exemplary work in local communities through their fundraising and volunteer efforts even when changing to a virtual environment. United Way of Central Carolina is proud to recognize Duke Energy for the 2020 Spirit of North Carolina Award in the “Creative Kickoff/Volunteer Event” category.
“Duke Energy recognized that their employees needed a new way to connect with the work of United Way of Central Carolinas since COVID-19 had changed everyone’s perspective on just about everything,” said Clint Hill, Chief Development Officer at United Way of Central Carolinas. “By asking their top leadership to make a creative cooking video during the company’s employee giving campaign, Duke’s employee engagement team provided a big treat watching their leaders show off their culinary talents. Most importantly, the awareness that the ‘Duke Top Chef’ competition brought to local COVID-related issues, like increased food insecurity, connected Duke employees to the needs that United Way meets in our community every day.”
Additionally, United Way of the Greater Triangle will celebrate Duke Energy’s Spirit of North Carolina Award in the category of “Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion Trailblazer.” This award celebrates those who are dedicated to involving unique individual backgrounds to collectively address community problems.
Eric Guckian, President and CEO of United Way of the Greater Triangle says “As a key partner in making United Way’s work possible, Duke Energy inspires us with their ongoing commitment to supporting the creation of a truly equitable community. Their recent support of United Way’s Racial Equity 21-Day Challenge opened up a unique opportunity for more than 600 North Carolina residents to engage in a self-led racial equity journey and kicked off what will be an important ongoing conversation designed to shift residents’ mindsets around racism and equity. We are proud to do this work alongside their team and leadership.”
United Way of North Carolina will honor Duke Energy, along with all 78 award winners representing 19 local United Ways, at the virtual Spirit of North Carolina Awards event on March 3rd. For more information about the Spirit of North Carolina Award and a complete list of winners, visit unitedwaync.org/spirit-north-carolina-award-winners.