Clinton Foundation and Inclusiv present virtual event on the power of CDFIs

on "January 27, 2021 1:30 pm"

Inclusiv and our partner the Clinton Foundation invite you to The Power of CDFIs for Today's Inclusive Economic Recovery, a virtual event featuring President Bill Clinton, policy makers and practitioners celebrating the importance of CDFIs and their role addressing racial and economic disparities in economic recovery efforts.

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Clinton Foundation Hosts: 
The Power of CDFIs for Today's Inclusive Economic Recovery with speakers from the Inclusiv Network
Tuesday, February 2, 6:00 AM-12:15 PM HST

The program features several members of the Inclusiv network:

  • Neda Arabshahi, Director, Inclusiv Center for Resiliency and Clean Energy
  • Luis Pastor, President & CEO, Latino Community Credit Union
  • Richard Romero, President and CEO, Seattle Credit Union

After the main session, the event will transition into the following breakout session:

Event Schedule :

Main Plenary - The Power of CDFIs for Today’s Inclusive Economic Recovery

6:00 AM – 7:15 AM HST

Community Development Financial Institutions (CDFIs) and Minority Depository Institutions (MDIs) often serve as a bridge between low-income communities, economic resources, and access to capital. This is all the more evident and important following the events of 2020 with corporations, philanthropists, and government institutions further recognizing the power of these community lenders to accelerate a much-needed economic recovery. For well over 25 years, CDFIs and MDIs have reached communities who have been historically excluded from the financial mainstream – and today, they are reaching those who are struggling to survive financially during the COVID-19 pandemic. With unprecedented financial support in 2020, including $12 billion in federal aid through the Cares Act, the CDFI industry will be at the forefront of the much-needed work to address the issues of economic equity and inclusion that have stymied community and small business growth especially in Black, Latino, and Native American communities across the US.

There is more work still to be done. In this virtual event, leaders will identify ways to deploy more capital, build innovative products and services, and educate investors and borrowers alike. These actions will support the CDFI industry so that it can continue to make meaningful strides to close America’s longest-standing wealth and opportunity gaps while powering an inclusive economic recovery.


  • President Bill Clinton, Founder and Board Chair, Clinton Foundation and 42nd President of the United States
  • Donna Gambrell, President & CEO, Appalachian Community Capital
  • Governor Michelle Lujan Grisham, New Mexico
  • Dr. Rajiv Shah, President, Rockefeller Foundation
  • Tawney Brunsch, Executive Director, Lakota Funds

Breakout I - Environmental Justice, Financial Recovery, and Rural Communities

7:30 AM – 8:45 AM HST

Community Development Financial Institutions (CDFIs) have emerged as critical partners that can work closely with businesses addressing not only operational and workforce challenges, but environmental challenges as well. With additional investment and financial support, environmentally and socially responsible small businesses and community organizations can contribute to creating a more inclusive economy by building wealth, good jobs, and skill sets that also support an environmentally sustainable future. CDFI’s provide much-needed access to capital for rural and agricultural businesses that might be undercapitalized and lack traditional lines of funding. Through investments in small businesses, CDFIs are able to make a concentrated effort to support environmental justice in communities that are disproportionately affected by climate change. In this session, speakers will discuss how CDFI’s can support combating environmental and climate-related inequities by investing in businesses working to make a positive impact on rural, minority, and low-wealth communities.


  • Libby Schaff, Mayor, City of Oakland
  • Hannah Vargas, Associate Director of Strategic Initiatives, Natural Capital Investment Fund
  • Keith Bisson, President, CEI Capital Management
  • Neda Arabshahi, Director, Inclusiv Center for Resiliency and Clean Energy
  • Nikki Pieratos, Managing Director, NDN Funds
  • Jennifer Curtis, Co-Founder & Co-CEO, Firsthand Foods

Breakout II - Leading Community Development by Building Community Wealth

9:15 AM  - 10:30 AM HST

The economic inequities that exist nationwide are a historic reality and continue to be a modern-day problem. Between 1990 and 2010, income inequality across neighborhoods increased in more than 75 percent of regions, and of the neighborhoods in the lowest 20 percent of median income in 2000, more than 75 percent remained in that position by 2010. CDFIs are playing a role in addressing this problem and increasing long-term community wealth building by providing investments that produce sustainable economic growth, and increased equity in local economies. Community wealth building focuses on upgrading skills, growing entrepreneurs, increasing incomes, and building assets in a community in order to create sustainable economic development. This approach can help to address the widening wealth inequality which is essential to helping underserved communities develop their full potential. In this session, speakers will discuss ways in which CDFIs are playing a greater role in community wealth building efforts in particular and discuss how CDFIs can help neighborhoods access the capital needed to not only build but maintain community wealth.


  • Fagan Harris, CEO, Baltimore Corps
  • Angela Carlberg, Project Manager of Racial Equity and the Democratic Economy, The Democracy Collaborative
  • Maurice Williams, Vice President of Economic Development, Chicago Community Loan Fund
  • Markiea Carter, Economic Development Director, City of Cincinnati
  • Luis Pastor, President & CEO, Latino Community Credit Union
  • Matt Dunne, Founder and Executive Director, Center on Rural Innovation

Breakout III - Providing Financial Services for Underserved Communities

11:00 AM – 12:15 PM HST

The rollout of the Paycheck Protection Program in 2020 highlighted the ongoing challenges that minority-owned businesses face in receiving loans from large banks. Roughly 95 percent of Black-owned businesses, 91 percent of Latino-owned businesses, 91 percent of Native-owned businesses face limited access to these loans. Driving investment to Minority Depository Institutions (MDIs) and Community Development Financial Institutions (CDFIs) in historically marginalized communities allows them to directly address their most pressing needs by providing integral access to capital and support for businesses and individuals. In this session, speakers will discuss the different roles that CDFIs and MDIs play in by providing financial services, access to capital, and small business support by utilizing their ties to and status in underserved communities to address their specific needs.


  • Ellis Carr, President & CEO, Capital Impact Partners
  • Inez Long, CEO, Black Business Investment Fund
  • Ted Archer, Executive Director, Small Business & Philanthropy, JP Morgan Chase
  • Della Clark, President & CEO, The Enterprise Center
  • Marla Blow, Senior Vice President of Social Impact, North America, Mastercard
  • Richard Romero, President and CEO, Seattle Credit Union


We hope you’ll be able to join us for all or part of this important event. If you have any questions, please reach out to us at