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OG&E awards $175,000 to Urban League in partnership to increase diversity in energy workforce

Partnership will increase job opportunity, diversity in the energy industry

Urban League


As a part of OG&E's mission to give back to the communities it serves, the utility’s foundation, OGE Energy Corp. Foundation, Inc., awarded $175,000 to the Urban League of Greater Oklahoma City to increase access for young adults to enter the energy industry. Those present at the check presentation include (left to right) Andrea Dennis, OG&E vice president of transmission & distribution operations; Nicole Rhodes, OG&E director of construction services; Dr. Valerie Thompson, Urban League of Greater Oklahoma City president and CEO; Donnie Jones, OG&E vice president of utility operations; Scott Briggs, OG&E vice president of human resources; Lonnetta Smith, Urban League of Greater Oklahoma City vice president of programs; and Rose Royal, OG&E director ethics, equity & inclusion.


OKLAHOMA CITY (May 13, 2021) — Oklahoma Gas & Electric (OG&E) is expanding its partnership with the Urban League of Greater Oklahoma City to increase diversity in the energy industry. OG&E’s foundation, the OGE Energy Corp Foundation, Inc., awarded a $175,000 grant to the Urban League, and OG&E will work with the nonprofit to provide energy industry training and create awareness of career opportunities with OG&E and its contractors.

“Expanding this partnership is particularly timely when you consider the growing demand for skilled labor in the energy industry,” said Donnie Jones, OG&E vice president of utility operations. “Energy is considered one of the five wealth-building industries in Oklahoma and there’s an impending major skills and labor gap in the next several years. It’s important we build that talent pipeline now and for the years to come.”

The grant will benefit a diverse group of young adults ages 18-24 in the Oklahoma City-metro area. Program participants will receive the education and workforce assistance needed to enter the energy industry while also building job readiness skills such as financial literacy, cultural and societal awareness, and professional development.

“OG&E and the Urban League have a longstanding partnership and we are thrilled to expand our relationship,” said Valerie Thompson, Urban League president and CEO. “Partnerships with companies that offer employment in high-demand industries are critical to advancing social, economic and employment equity in Oklahoma. Having not only financial support, but also the skills and training support, along with job opportunities, is life-changing for our clients.”

The Urban League’s workforce and career development service specializes in assessing and addressing barriers to employment. By providing access to industry-recognized certification, work readiness training, and connections with employers, the Urban League works to increase sustainable employment opportunities that lead to self-sufficiency for families living in poverty.

“We appreciate the opportunity to grow our workforce with the Urban League,” said Scott Briggs, vice president of human resources at OG&E. “We are committed to developing a skilled workforce that is diverse and looks like the communities we serve. We look forward to the positive impact this effort will have on our company, our communities and the industry.”

Read more about OG&E’s commitment to unleashing potential and maintaining a culture of diversity and inclusion at

About OG&E

Oklahoma Gas and Electric Company, a subsidiary of OGE Energy Corp. (NYSE: OGE), is Oklahoma's largest electric utility. For more than a century, we have provided customers in Oklahoma and western Arkansas the safe, reliable electricity needed to power their businesses and homes with the nation's lowest electric rates, according to S&P Global Market Intelligence. Our employees are committed to generating and delivering electricity, protecting the environment, and providing excellent service to nearly 860,000 customers.  OG&E has 7,081 MW of electric generation capacity fueled by low-sulfur coal, natural gas, wind, and solar. OG&E employees live, work, and volunteer in the communities we serve. For more information about OG&E, visit us at or follow us on Facebook: and Twitter: @OGandE.

About Urban League of Greater Oklahoma City

The Urban League of Greater Oklahoma City was established in 1946 as an affiliate of the National Urban League and is a United Way Partner Agency. Its mission is to assist African Americans, other minorities and the poor to achieve social and economic equality. It works to accomplish its mission through advocacy, research and program services in four major areas: workforce and career development; education and family development; housing and financial literacy; and community convening and social justice. Please visit for more information. Please visit for more information.