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CDFI Fund Announces over $250M to Credit Unions Serving Low-Income Communities
Wednesday, September 25, 2013 6:30 AM

The US Treasury's Community Development Financial Institutions Fund (CDFI Fund) awarded Financial and Technical Assistant Awards to 191 organizations totaling over $172 million today.  Thirty-five credit unions were among the CDFIs receiving awards with a share of $25.5 million.  "The fiscal year 2013 round of the CDFI Program provides more awards than any other round in the CDFI Fund's history," said CDFI Fund Director Donna J. Gambrell.  "By expanding the reach and impact of this program to more organizations, the CDFI Fund is supporting more economic development efforts than ever before to bring new life to struggling communities."  The increase in the number of awards and total funds granted to credit unions in 2013 is significant relative to last year when only 24 credit unions received $17.8 million in awards.  Twenty-five of the 35 credit unions granted awards this year are members of the National Federation of Community Development Credit Unions (Federation).

The Federation was instrumental in establishing the CDFI Fund and is a permanent member of the national CDFI Coalition.  Cathie Mahon, Federation President and CEO, notes that the Federation advocates with the CDFI Fund on behalf of all credit unions.  "The increase in credit unions receiving CDFI Fund awards will yield significant returns in connecting underbanked and unbanked Americans to safe and affordable financial products and services."

2013 CDFI Fund Awards to Credit Unions

  • 1st Bergen Federal Credit Union - $300,000
  • Alliance Credit Union - $874,500
  • ASI Federal Credit Union - $1,347,000
  • Cascade Forest Products Credit Union - $86,470
  • Choices Federal Credit Union - $200,000
  • East River Development Alliance Federal Credit Union - $100,000
  • Electro Savings Credit Union - $1,347,000
  • Express Credit Union - $100,000
  • First Light Federal Credit Union - $1,347,000
  • FM Financial Credit Union - $46,272
  • GECU - $1,347,000
  • Greater Abbeville Federal Credit Union - $99,995
  • GTE Federal Credit Union - $1,347,000
  • Guadalupe Credit Union - $597,000
  • Gulf Coast Community Federal Credit Union - $1,003,730
  • Hope Federal Credit Union - $1,347,000
  • Jefferson Financial Credit Union - $1,097,000
  • Joplin Metro Credit Union - $85,000
  • KC Terminal Employees/Guadalupe Center Federal Credit Union - $72,304
  • Latino Community Credit Union - $1,347,000
  • New York University Federal Credit Union - $719,814
  • Newrizons Federal Credit Union - $495,000
  • North Coast Credit Union - $94,951
  • Nueva Esperanza Community Credit Union - $92,680
  • Opportunities Credit Union - $1,347,000
  • Poplar Bluff Federal Credit Union - $589,000
  • Santa Cruz Community Credit Union - $847,000
  • Self-Help Federal Credit Union - $1,347,000
  • Shreveport Federal Credit Union - $1,347,000
  • South Central Missouri Credit Union - $100,000
  • St. Louis Community Credit Union - $847,000
  • Syracuse Cooperative Federal Credit Union - $664,241
  • TMH Federal Credit Union - $71,136
  • Unite Burlington Credit Union - $86,000
  • United Credit Union - $597,000

Crystal Long, CEO of GECU, the largest CDFI certified credit union in the US and a Federation member, says she is "thrilled to have been awarded a grant of $1.34 M through the US Treasury's Community Development Financial Institutions Fund.  We look forward to using the dollars to enrich the lives of those living here in the El Paso area.  This grant greatly enhances GECU's ability to further its commitment to provide comprehensive financial education as well as competitive products and services to El Pasoans."

Paul Woodruff, VP, Community Development for St. Louis Community Credit Union, also a Federation member, is similarly pleased, "we're excited to have the opportunity to connect low-income borrowers with the resources they need to purchase a reliable automobile in order to get to work and better manage their everyday lives.  CDFI funding gives our institution the chance to change the life trajectory of more than 500 individuals over the three-year funding period.  We know from empirics that families with access to a reliable automobile have expanded opportunities to gain employment and the traction they need to become upwardly mobile.  We are thankful for this opportunity and eagerly await the work ahead of us.

Winona Nava, CEO of Guadalupe Credit Union and CUNA Board member adds, "We are thrilled to receive this grant award. The grant funds will increase our capacity to offer affordable loans to the people who need them most, in communities plagued by predatory lenders.  It gives us the flexibility to pursue our active outreach to underserved communities, especially in a difficult economy, while reinforcing the safety and soundness of our members' assets."

The Federation is committed to helping credit unions gain access to the resources necessary to provide safe and affordable financial products and services to underserved communities.  "The Federation specializes in promoting financial security to low-income communities through credit unions," says Pablo DeFilippi, the Federation's Director of Membership.  "Applying for CDFI Financial and Technical Assistance is a big undertaking, but the benefits are worth the effort.  The CDFI Fund represents the largest source of external capital available for community development financing and is a cornerstone of a sustainable development strategy."  Since its inception in 1994, the CDFI Fund has awarded over $1.8 billion to community based lending organizations serving rural and urban low-income people and communities in the US, with over $150 million in funding going to CDFI certified credit unions.


(Source: National Federation of Community Development Credit Unions)