Inequality in the Pandemic

Entrepreneurs of Color

Session overview

Even before the pandemic, entrepreneurs of color suffered from lack of access to capital. The pandemic has only exacerbated the challenges faced by this large segment of the US small business population. This session focuses on the issues as well as the solutions CDFIs are implementing to help ensure these businesses survive the crisis and share equally in the recovery. 

Speakers

Jessica Fulton

Moderator, Joint Center for Political and Economic Studies

Ron Busby

US Black Chambers

Noel Poyo

National Association for Latino Community Asset Builders (NALCAB)

Yanki Tshering

Business Center for New Americans

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Speaker Information

Jessica Fulton

Moderator, Joint Center for Political and Economic Studies

Jessica Fulton is the Vice President at the Joint Center for Political and Economic Studies. Jessica joined the Joint Center in 2018 as Economic Policy Director, and since then has focused on research and policy analysis, strategic planning, and engagement.

Prior to joining the Joint Center, she served as External Relations Director at the Washington Center for Equitable Growth, where her efforts led to the introduction of Congressional legislation aimed at decreasing economic inequality. She has also held positions at the DC Fiscal Policy Institute, where she promoted fiscal and tax policy in service of low income communities in the District of Columbia, and the Chicago Urban League, where she engaged in research and analysis on issues affecting communities of color in the City of Chicago.

Jessica is a member of Delta Sigma Theta Sorority, Inc., and serves as Board Chair of The Black Swan Academy. Jessica earned a Bachelor’s Degree in Economics from the University of Chicago and a Master’s Degree in Economic Policy Analysis from the Kellstadt Graduate School of Business at Depaul University.

Speaker Information

Ron Busby

US Black Chambers

Ron Busby, Sr. is the President and CEO of the U.S. Black Chambers, Inc. and a native of Oakland, CA. He is also a successful business owner with significant experience in the small business arena. Recognized as one of the country’s best CEOs, he grew his first business, USA Super Clean, from $150,000 annual revenue to over $15 million per year. He has received countless awards including the Western Region SBA Small Business Person of the Year in 1996, the Greater Phoenix Chamber Small Business Person of the Year in 2006, and the Maricopa County Small Business of the Year in 2007, to name a few. Trained by some of the country’s leading executives, Busby developed many of his skills at major corporations (such as Exxon, Xerox, IBM and Coca Cola USA) in various senior management positions. In the course of his corporate America career, President Busby received nationwide recognition from several major corporations as National Sales Person of the Year.

While residing in Houston, Texas, he lead and served on many boards and committees. Most notably, he was co-chair of the XL II Super Bowl Host Committee. Other boards that he served on include the Arizona Governor’s African American Leadership Council, The Greater Phoenix Chamber of Commerce Board of Directors, the Bay Area Chapter of the 100 Black Men (he was president of this chapter), the Urban League and Kappa Alpha Psi Fraternity, Inc.

Busby graduated with honors from both Florida A&M University and Clark Atlanta
University. He is a major advocate and promoter of education; especially, the importance of higher learning. In his spare time, you can catch Ron golfing or spending time with his two sons.

Speaker Information

Noel Poyo

National Association for Latino Community Asset Builders (NALCAB)

Noel Andrés Poyo serves as NALCAB’s Executive Director and CEO of NALCAB’s subsidiary asset management company Escalera Community Investments. Poyo’s twenty-year professional career has focused on integrating low-income people and immigrants into mainstream financial services and real estate sectors of our economy as well as improving the livability and economic resilience of low-income neighborhoods and affordable housing communities.

Speaker Information

Yanki Tshering

Business Center for New Americans

Yanki Tshering is the Executive Director of the Business Center for New Americans (BCNA), a CDFI that provides services in New York City. BCNA has made over $32 million dollars in loans to micro and small businesses, which range from $500 to $250,000, and has provided training for over 10,000 refugee and immigrant businesses. In addition, over 1,700 refugees have graduated from BCNA’s IDA savings program, which has allowed them to invest over $27 million in micro-businesses, career recertification, further education, and home-ownership.

Ms. Tshering has a Master’s degree in International Affairs from Columbia University with a functional specialization in Economic Development and a regional specialization in South Asian Studies. Ms. Tshering is a Board Member of the New York State CDFI Coalition. She also serves on the Advisory Board of the New York City Neighborhood Capital Corporation (NYCNCC) of NYEDC, that utilizes the New Markets Tax Credit (NMTC) program to make low-interest loans to community development projects like schools, health care centers, community facilities and grocery stores in low-income communities in New York City. She is also on the board of the Credit Builders Alliance (CBA) which enables nonprofits to report to credit reporting systems that locks millions of individuals with poor or no credit out of the mainstream financial system; and serves on the National Advisory Committee of IRC’s Center for Economic Opportunity (CEO).

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