Collaborators and Supporters

This is a list of some of our collaborators and supporters over the years. UpGrade Ohio has been joined by various non-profits, businesses, and community groups in our shared effort to promote clean energy. Join the movement to expand energy efficiency and renewable energy solutions throughout southeast Ohio. Ready to get to work? Let’s connect.


OH SUN believes that homeowners should have the right to produce their own power. We mobilize Ohio’s community of solar supporters to fight for fair policies so all Ohio residents can benefit from solar energy. We develop solar co-ops (see the Appalachian Ohio co-op here) that strengthen the Ohio solar market by providing installers with a pool of good customers and empower a broad base of support for solar in communities across Ohio.



The OEC offers pragmatic solutions to achieve results on environmental problems. We work with the OEC on clean energy advocacy under their umbrella of broad coalitions, including the Energy and Natural Resources Working Group (ENRWG). Moving beyond partisanship, OEC works to unify those with a shared interest. They hold polluters accountable in court while working with communities and companies that want to invest in a cleaner, more sustainable direction.



New Resource Solutions (NRS) enables end-user participation in clean energy without capital expenditure, through traditional Power Purchase Agreements (PPA) and non-traditional structures to secure competitive, stable, long term pricing for renewable energy. We work with NRS on our Solar ACCESS project.




Green Energy Ohio (GEO) is a statewide nonprofit organization dedicated to promoting economically and environmentally sustainable energy policies and practices in Ohio. GEO publishes a quarterly magazine and UpGrade Ohio staff regularly write content for the Southeast Ohio section of the publication. Backed by solid community-based support, GEO mobilizes resources across Ohio with dozens of diverse partners in support of green energy!




Members of the Ecumenical Earth Justice Network, which has representatives from a number of Athens County churches, partner to share lessons of sustainability.  Their mission is to provide programs, activities and educational opportunities within the EJ Network for the care of the earth and all of God’s creation.



The Corporation for Ohio Appalachian Development (COAD) is a private, non-profit community-based organization serving rural, mostly Appalachian, counties in eastern and southern Ohio. It is comprised of seventeen Community Action Agencies that serve a 30 county area. COAD has three major program divisions. Within their community development efforts, UpGrade Ohio has partnered with COAD to promote Weatherize Nelsonville (2015-2016) designed to help homeowners improve the comfort of their homes with low-cost weatherization upgrades and improvements.




Clean Fuels Ohio (CFO) is a state-wide, non-profit organization dedicated to improving air quality and health, reducing environmental pollution, strengthening Ohio’s economy, and enhancing our nation’s energy security by promoting and encouraging the use of cleaner, domestic fuels and efficient vehicles. UpGrade Ohio partners with CFO and their Drive Electric Ohio division to promote the use of electric vehicles in our region.



The Athens NEWS is a twice-weekly controlled circulation newspaper serving Athens and Athens County, Ohio. Established in 1977, The Athens NEWS has the largest and fastest growing circulation of any newspaper in Athens County. For nearly 3 years, UpGrade Ohio has contributed to “The Kilowatt Countdown” column and the “Energy Action” column as a way to keep the Athens County community aware of local energy projects.



Athens County Public Libraries (ACPL) is a network of seven library buildings. Administrative offices and central processing facilities are located at the Nelsonville Public Library. The system began in 1935 as an extension service of the Nelsonville school district and now serves many functions across the County. UpGrade Ohio has worked with the ACPL to promote local energy programs and educational opportunities. Our efforts helped secure over $85,000 in prize money for ACPL from AEP Ohio and Columbia Gas of Ohio from a countywide “Community Energy Savers” program.



With over 600 clean energy projects generating more than 11 MW of electricity throughout the country, Third Sun Solar is proud to make progress every day on our mission to accelerate the shift to clean energy. We partner with Third Sun Solar on our REDA Program, where they act as our contractor for free solar site assessments for businesses and farmers, and our Solar ACCESS project as the solar experts and installers for community arrays.



The Ohio University Credit Union (OUCU) officially opened for business in 1955 in the cashier’s office in Ewing Hall of Ohio University. And so began Ohio’s first state-chartered university credit union! OUCU has been a vital partner in the creation of the EV and Hybrid Loan Program and now in the promotion of the Sustainability Specials financing packages.




Appalachian Renewable Power is a small solar installer located in Stewart, Ohio. They serve as the installer for the OH SUN Appalachian Ohio solar co-op and work closely with UpGrade Ohio staff to promote the co-op through storytelling and other creative marketing efforts.




The Kleinpenny Educational Fund, created by Michael Kleinman and Ann Moneypenny, is a resource the couple created to support creativity, critical thinking, sustainability, tolerance and mental health programs. They have supported UpGrade Ohio from the beginning with support to start the Energy Education Fund, our Rental Efficiency initiatives, and now our general outreach and programming around energy efficiency and community solar.



The solar outfit Athena Solar Power comes from Saving The World With Solar/Resilient Power Solutions who are also working on a product called the BioWatt – which produces power and heat for a home using wood pellets and other yard waste. The end product can be used as a soil amendment to improve its carbon-storage abilities, making this a (nearly) carbon-neutral innovation. Athena Solar Power has worked with partners and landowners to improve the region’s energy education and create energy independence.




ACEnet, the Appalachian Center for Economic Networks, is the current home of UpGrade Ohio and SOPEC. The ACEnet campus hosts various facilities for business operations, food manufacturing and processing, and creative financing for local economic growth. ACEnet has worked with UpGrade to promote the connection between local food and local energy movements at events such as the Real Food Real Local conference and in various webinars, summits, and meetups around the region.




Airclaws, Inc. is a heating and cooling service company located in Amesville, Ohio (a community of SOPEC’s community choice aggregation). They serve as the geothermal contractors for the REDA Program and have worked with UpGrade Ohio on various community energy campaigns that encourage long-term energy conservation and home system maintenance. Since 2008 Airclaws has been a Bryant Factory Authorized Dealer.



Inspiring visitors of all ages to explore and discover the world we live in through interactive exhibits and creative experiences. OVMoD integrates the sciences, arts & humanities with interdisciplinary exhibits and programming. OVMoD is a transformative hub for education and discovery-based learning serving Athens, Southeastern Ohio and the the surrounding Appalachian Ohio Valley region.