Director of Corporate Communications
KUA’s Corporate Communications department is responsible for the utility’s internal and external corporate communications, including marketing and advertising, media and public relations, employee communications, special events and corporate philanthropy. The department also serves as internal advisors to KUA’s CEO and Executive Staff on communications, media and marketing issues.
Hired by KUA in May 1993, Chris Gent previously served as Manager of Corporate Communications and Communications Specialist for the utility.
A third-generation Floridian, Chris grew up on Florida’s Space Coast. He earned his bachelor’s degree in communications from the University of Central Florida and master’s degree in strategic public relations from The George Washington University in Washington, DC, where he graduated valedictorian in 2011.
A graduate of Leadership Osceola County and Leadership Central Florida, Chris is the former chairman of the American Public Power Association’s Customer Connections Section and the Florida Municipal Electric Association’s Customer Connections Committee. In addition, Chris is former chairman of Community Vision and currently sits on the boards of Community Vision, Kissimmee/Osceola County Chamber of Commerce, Florida Hospital Community Advisory Board and Kissimmee Main Street. He also chairs the statewide utility communicators group.
Chris received the “Up and Comer’s Award” in 2001 from the Orlando Business Journal and the 2002 Community Service Award from the UCF Alumni Association. In 2003, he was named Osceola County’s Distinguished Leader of the Year. In 2004, he received FPRA’s Bob Davis Award for his contributions to the public relations profession in Central Florida.
In 2005, Chris received the International Distinguished Leadership Award from the Community Leadership Association. That same year he also was named Volunteer of the Decade by Community Vision.
In 2010, Chris was inducted into UCF’s Nicholson School of Communication Hall of Fame and was named Central Florida’s Public Relations Professional of the Year by FPRA. In 2012, he received the Amigo Award from the Hispanic Business Council for his strong support of the Hispanic community in Osceola County.
Chris’ work at KUA has earned nearly 350 local, state, national and international communication awards for public relations programs, events and publications.