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Women and Minority-owned Business Enterprises across the country are receiving low-interest recovery loans

July 27, 2021, New York, NY—A $1 million grant from Wells Fargo to the National Development Council (NDC) is providing critical COVID-19 recovery and stabilization financing to Women- and Minority-owned Business Enterprises (WMBEs) from New York State to Ohio, Delaware to South Florida—and many places in between.

The grant from Wells Fargo recognized NDC’s 30-year record of success in providing working-capital loans and one-on-one technical assistance to small businesses, with a focus on those located in low-and moderate-income areas. With two Treasury Department certified Community Development Lending Institutions (CDFIs), NDC has extensive experience lending with a mission to increase access to capital for WMBEs and to support the small business economy and jobs in their communities.

The Wells Fargo grant was made to one of those CDFI’s, NDC Community Impact Loan Fund (NDC CILF), launched in 2016 to provide small, flexible loans and hands-on advisory services to WMBEs and businesses. NDC CILF is putting Wells Fargo funds to work in numerous small business lending efforts across the country. Some examples:

Southern Opportunity and Resilience Fund (SOAR), serving 15 Mid-Atlantic and Southern States from Delaware to Texas, administered by Calvert Capital with participation by CRF, LISC and 12 other CDFI lenders

  • The first two months of NDC CILF lending for the Southern Opportunity and Resilience program resulted in 40 loans for a total of more than $2 million in South Florida, Metro Atlanta and Delaware, with 92% of borrowers identifying as BIPOC or women business owners;

New York Forward Loan Fund, a state initiative in which NDC is one of five CDFI lenders

  • One year of New York Forward lending by NDC CILF resulted in 265 loans totaling $17 million, with approximately 80%+ of loans to women or BIPOC business owners;

The Cuyahoga County Stabilization Fund, an NDC CILF initiative serving WMBEs in the Greater Cleveland area

  • In 2021, NDC CILF has made 7 low-interest flexible working capital loans totaling $65,000, with 100% of borrowers identifying as BIPOC or woman entrepreneurs.

As part of its program design and mission impact commitment, NDC and its community partners stay in touch with borrowers, and provide technical assistance to address problems and capture opportunities for growth. Some profiles of NDC CILF borrowers:

Everyone Can Achieve, founded by Earl Cooper (center), is a small business in Wilmington Delaware that hires formerly incarcerated people to staff road construction sites as flaggers to provide traffic safety services. Mr. Cooper is committed to operating a socially responsible business by offering training and paying prevailing wages to his fifty-five employees. “We’ve been able to help returning citizens change their lives,” Mr. Cooper said, who obtained a SOAR loan for his business.

Waverly Willis founded Urban Kutz in Cleveland Ohio. His successful business expanded to two locations, allowing him to train and employ dozens of barbers over the years, some of whom were formerly incarcerated. “As a formerly incarcerated person myself, I’m able to employ people now. You can become a well-paid, tax-paying citizen,” Mr. Willis said, who obtained a Cuyahoga County Stabilization loan for his two barber shops.


NDC is a national nonprofit whose mission is to direct capital and technical assistance to underserved communities, local and state governments, and public agencies. Spanning all aspects of economic development, NDC invests in affordable housing; creates jobs through small business lending; and advances livable communities through social infrastructure and mixed-use development. NDC also builds capacity in both the public and private sectors through hands-on technical assistance and advisory services, as well as professional development training and certification. Founded in 1969, NDC continues to evolve and innovate to meet the needs of today’s challenges with an emphasis on low- and moderate-income communities, including COVID-19 recovery programs and services. Find NDC online at www.ndconline.org



Contact: Allison Kelly akelly@ndconline.org