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Workforce Innovation Submitted By:
Southwest Ohio Region Workforce Investment Board

Green Jobs Initiative in Ohio

Community Challenge/Problem

Some people simply want to get back into the workforce, but others are looking for something more. For example, some wonder if they could succeed as entrepreneurs. “Some of our dislocated workers were in very stagnant fields and saw no growth. Now, it’s important for them to get into a field that has potential growth,” says Sherry Kelley Marshall, President and CEO of The Southwest Ohio Region Workforce Investment Board (SWORWIB).

Board Solution/Innovation

The SWORWIB’s investment in green jobs began in 2009 when the Department of Labor awarded Cincinnati State almost $500,000 to train WIA-eligible job seekers for green jobs with the SuperJobs Center as the recruitment partner. Meanwhile, the SWORWIB is also partnering with other organizations on grants that will ultimately lead to more jobs in the green energy sector. The biggest grant -- $17 million from the Department of Energy -- was awarded in March 2010 to the Greater Cincinnati Energy Alliance (GCEA), which provides energy audits throughout neighborhoods in Hamilton County and Northern Kentucky over three years.

Outcomes & Results

“This federal funding allows us to leverage private capital to potentially create a local energy efficiency market of up to $50 million per year and 700 direct and indirect jobs. And that means residents and business owners are saving money on their utility bills, moving our country toward energy independence, and creating or retaining a broad range of jobs from auditors, to skilled trade’s people, to engineers, and project managers needed to serve this market," stated Ms. Marshall.

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