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CDFI Friendly Fort Worth appoints founding board

Written by Mindia Whittier

Appointees were selected to bring diverse perspectives from Fort Worth’s undercapitalized and underdeveloped communities.

CDFI Friendly Fort Worth has announced nine Fort Worth community leaders to its founding board of directors.

In January, City of Fort Worth officials launched an initiative to increase financing for minority-owned businesses, affordable homeownership, rental housing and commercial real estate locally. Known as CDFI Friendly Fort Worth, the City has committed $3 million towards the effort.

CDFIs are “community development financial institutions.” They offer flexible financial capital in culturally-appropriate ways to address gaps in historically under-served communities. CDFI Friendly Fort Worth will work as a go-between, matching CDFI’s to residents, entreprenuers and nonprofits in Fort Worth.

As CDFI Friendly Fort Worth is in formation, the founding board will guide it through the legal and operational startup steps. The founding board of directors includes:

  • Javier Balderrama, Alband, Lane & Balderrama
  • Joe Cordova, Edward Jones
  • Glenn Forbes, Financial Professional
  • Michelle Green-Ford, Fort Worth Metropolitan Black Chamber of Commerce
  • Jazmin Gutierrez, Fort Worth Hispanic Chamber of Commerce
  • Cristal Hernandez-Galvan, Hernandez Grants & Consulting LLC
  • Grace McDermott, US Pan Asian American Chamber of Commerce
  • Willie Rankin, Childcare Associates
  • Andy Williams, Rehab Warriors

“To govern the new nonprofit that is being set up, this board has the right experience and skills to ensure that it is rooted in the communities it will serve,” said Robert Sturns, director of the City of Fort Worth’s Department of Economic Development. “This is a private-sector board because CDFI Friendly Fort Worth is an independent, nongovernmental effort.”

Sturns’ department is overseeing the city’s contract to develop and establish CDFI Friendly Fort Worth. The CDFI Friendly Fort Worth Board will oversee the next steps in the organization’s strategy – including business planning, hiring an executive director and facilitating more financing by the 18 CDFIs now working in the city.

In 2022, CDFIs from across the nation have invested more than $7.3 million in Fort Worth.

About the author

Mindia Whittier