Treasury Notes

 Making History: $142.3 Million for 155 Communities Nationwide

By: Sandra Salstrom

In the single largest round of awards in the Community Development Financial Institutions (CDFI) Fund's history, Treasury will distribute a total of $142,302,667 to 155 financial institutions serving economically distressed communities across the United States. CDFI Fund Director Donna Gambrell joined Senator Dick Durbin and Representative Danny Davis in Chicago yesterday to make the historic announcement.

The awards, made through the fiscal year 2011 round of the CDFI Fund’s cornerstone program, the Community Development Financial Institutions Program, were given to organizations headquartered in 40 states and the District of Columbia and touch rural and urban communities alike. They will help specialized community-based financial institutions like the Fulton-Carrol Center, a small business incubator that houses almost 120 entrepreneurs, spur local economic growth and expand access to affordable financial products and services.

CDFI Director Donna Gambrell and Senator Dick Durbin look on as Rep. Danny Davis speaks at the event in Chicago. [Photo credit: Steve Becker,]

This 410,000-square foot small business incubator on the Near West side of Chicago served as the backdrop for yesterday's national award announcement. It's just one of the many examples of how CDFIs can play a critical role in helping small business owners spur job creation and economic growth in economically distressed communities across the country.

CDFI Director Gambrell tours the Fulton-Carrol Center, a small business incubator that houses almost 120 entrepreneurs. [Photo credit: Steve Becker,]

As Deputy Secretary of the Treasury Neal Wolin said, “Every community deserves to have access to basic financial products and services, from bank accounts to affordable home and car loans. The CDFI Program provides access to rural and urban communities across the country by investing in local financial institutions that serve these communities.”

In Chicago, the organizations receiving these awards are doing exactly that. Because of these funds, they will be eligible for larger loans from major banks, which they can then use to make below-market loans to non-profit projects like a charter elementary school, affordable rental housing and a savings and loan association that works with local small businesses.

For more information on the CDFI Program, please visit

Sandra Salstrom is Spokesperson for Tax, Budget, and Economic Policy.

Posted in:  CDFI
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