More Than Capital

The Heightened Need for Technical Assistance

Session overview

CDFIs around the country are talking to their clients on a daily basis, helping them address problems that can’t be solved with a loan deferment or a Payroll Protection Program (PPP) loan. How to reduce costs. How to transition to a fully digital business model. How to adapt products and services and delivery methods to the realities of a COVID-19 environment. This session looks at the challenges of ramping up technical assistance delivery and expertise, and the impact it is having on small businesses.

Speakers

Jen Sporzynski

Moderator, CEI

Lamont Jackson

BBIF Florida

Inga Mork

Working Solutions

Pete Upton

Native360 Loan Fund

Brenda Weaver

Community Ventures

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Speaker Information

Jen Sporzynski

Moderator, CEI

Jennifer has worked in community economic development since 1993, working with small business owners in the United States, Guatemala (as a Peace Corps Volunteer) and Paraguay. At CEI, she coordinates the delivery of the microloan program and leads two departments, the Business Development Services department, a team of 12 providing business advising to existing and aspiring businesses and Workforce Solutions, a team of 4 who work directly with both growing businesses and the workforce system to hire low income individuals and create quality jobs.

Jennifer serves on the CA$H Coalition of Greater Portland and volunteers as a tax preparer for CA$H, she recently completed two full terms on the board of the Portland Development Corporation (including 2 years as treasurer). She was named co-recipient of the SBA Minority Small Business Champion in Maine. She has a BS in Business Administration, Finance, from the University of Vermont and a master’s degree from Harvard University. She is a Leadership Maine alumna (Upsilon Class), an Aspen Institute Fellow of Emerging Leaders in Microenterprise (ELM2), and completed the CDFI Leadership Learning Network with the Annie E Casey Foundation.

Speaker Information

Lamont Jackson

BBIF Florida

Lamont W. Jackson, Director of Management Consulting, joined the BBIF team in 2016 and manages BBIF efforts to build capacity and sustainability for black and minority businesses throughout the state of Florida.
Lamont is a seasoned professional with 20 plus years of banking, finance, small business consulting, community engagement, branch management, loan review, commercial lending, credit administration, and CRA.
Prior to joining BBIF, he was consultant and business development professional focused on helping small to midsized businesses with strategic planning, plan execution, infrastructure development and access to capital. Lamont has worked with Automotive Finance Corp providing funding and resources to independent car dealerships, and with the Department of Economic Opportunity to implement the State Small Business Credit Initiative (SSBCI) Program.
Lamont was the founding member and past president of the CFL Chapter, National Black MBA Association, currently serves on the Board of directors for the Foundation For Foster Children and is a member of the Winter Park, Florida Alumni chapter of Kappa Alpha Psi Fraternity, Inc.
Lamont has a BS degree in Public Finance and Economics from Indiana University and an MBA in Finance and Marketing from the University of Illinois.

Speaker Information

Inga Mork

Working Solutions

A seasoned executive manager, Inga has more than 15 years of management experience working nationally and internationally with marginalized entrepreneurs. Inga leads Working Solutions in the area of operations; modifying systems to run lean, while deepening our impact. Inga strengthens culture internally to prioritize capital, consulting, and community. She has extensive experience speaking at international conferences on asset protection. She also has community development and expertise in operation strategy and behavioral economics in war-torn Uganda working with women entrepreneurs, Mumbai repatriating lost adolescent children home, to the Greater Bay Area counseling trafficked girls. Inga earned her MBA degree with an emphasis on international non-profit organizations and also holds a license in real estate.

Speaker Information

Pete Upton

Native360 Loan Fund

Pete Upton is the Executive Director of Native360 Loan Fund (N360), focused on entrepreneurship, financial literacy training, consumer lending, and micro- lending, small business lending and community development. Mr. Upton is an enrolled member of the Ponca Tribe of Nebraska; has served as Executive Director of N360 since 2011 and has built the organization from the start up phase into a successful, innovative Native CDFI serving three states of Nebraska, Iowa and Southeast South Dakota.
Mr. Upton understands the challenges of serving both rural and urban areas in various jurisdictions. He values strong networks and cultivates partnerships to deliver technical assistance throughout a vast service area. Mr. Upton is a powerful advocate for equal access to capital. Mr. Upton is a recent graduate of the Neighborworks/Harvard’s, Achieving Excellence Program.
Serving as Chairman of the Board of Directors of the Native CDFI Network (NCN) since 2016, Mr. Upton has been involved with NCN since 2011. He was part of the grassroots development of NCN in the early years serving on the stirring committee of NCN in 2011 and going on to be elected to the the first board of Directors for NCN in 2012. Under his leadership as Chairman, NCN tranistioned through a change in location and relocating the NCN office to Washington D.C in 2019.

Speaker Information

Brenda Weaver

Community Ventures

Prior to joining the Community Ventures team, Brenda was in executive management with Kentucky Housing Corporation and served as regional director of Fannie Mae, covering Kentucky, Tennessee, West Virginia, and Ohio. As the President of Housing & Lending, Brenda brings years of experience and expertise in affordable housing and real estate finance to the team, as well as extensive national relationships. Brenda has written and taught courses on home buyer education, real estate finance, and has conducted financial counseling for individuals. In her free time, Brenda enjoys spending time with family.

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