Frank Wells, Chief Impact Officer of housd

This is part of a series of articles highlighting OUC’s reputation as a trusted and reliable community partner. In 2020, utility customers nationwide ranked OUC the “2020 Most Trusted Brand” among electric utilities in an independent survey conducted by Cogent Syndicated Brand Trust Index.

Frank Wells, Chief Impact Officer of housd, the Central Florida Regional Housing Trust (CFRHT), recently discussed the valued partnership of the nonprofit and OUC and its impact on residents in affordable housing.

“At housd, we’re concerned about the long-term affordability of housing in Orlando and Central Florida,” he explained. “OUC shares our values and really puts a focus on reliability and long-term sustainability, both environmentally and economically, making it a great partnership. OUC is our trusted partner in delivering solutions that help our residents lower their total cost of housing, and that’s crucially important.

“Our partnership with OUC really started out of a conversation with a number of nonprofits in Parramore. The Paramore Asset Stabilization Fund is a group of nonprofits that acquired 83 total housing units. In many cases, HVAC systems were practically nonexistent, or out of date. In order to make the homes more efficient, a complete retrofit was necessary. OUC’s critically important role was to ensure that these were the most energy-efficient rehabs possible. An investment of $300,000 from OUC made it possible to install insulation in the attic and in the walls, add energy-efficient appliances and LED light bulbs, as well as make other improvements to the units. Having these efficiency upgrades enabled residents to remain in their homes.”

Wells also talked about a new project housd and OUC are working on.

“We’re excited to work with OUC on a new data project that’ll help us inform what kind of housing we need to build over the next 10 to 30 years. Understanding people’s utility costs and how that interplays with housing costs is a really exciting new area for exploration, and having a partner like OUC that we can interact with so directly is going to be really transformative. We think that this is going to establish a best practice for us working all around the state of Florida and for other housing partners across the country,” Wells explained.

According to Wells, it’s no surprise that OUC is the most trusted electric utility in the nation.  “When you see the strong relationship they have with our city government, how they partner with organizations like ours and how much they care about our residents, it’s clear they deserve this recognition.”

The Cogent Syndicated Brand Trust Index – the leading utility customer relationship and engagement study in the nation – is a composite score of a utility’s performance on customer focus, community support, communications effectiveness, reliable quality, environmental dedication and reputation. For 2020, Escalent conducted surveys among more than 70,400 residential electric, natural gas and combination utility customers. OUC earned this national recognition because of its unwavering commitment to all of these areas.

Explore more stories of OUC’s reputation as a trusted and reliable community partner at