Federal Reserve Chairman Recognizes FP
Release Date:November 15th, 2006


Joe Rowan Participates in D.C. Event Featuring Keynote Remarks by Fed Chair Bernanke
Fort Collins , CO , November 17, 2006: Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke is praising the role that local organizations such as Funding Partners (FP) play in opening economic opportunities to low-income and low-wealth people. 
In remarks at the Opportunity Finance Conference in Washington , D.C, attended by Funding Partners, Executive Director, Joe Rowan, Bernanke said:  “The Federal Reserve and the CDFI community share a common interest in increasing economic opportunity for all Americans.  CDFIs work with partners in both the public and private sectors to help unlock the economic potential of lower-income and underserved communities.”
Joe Rowan of Funding Partners said, “Federal Reserve Chairman Bernanke affirmed that organizations such as FP are vital to ensuring that we are building an inclusive prosperity based on one economy, not two.  It is an inspiration to those of us at FP to know that the Fed chairman understands that we play an important role in American finance as we help to fill the gaps between lower-income households and other households.”

Bernanke also said in his remarks:  “… I expect that the local knowledge and specialized financial expertise that CDFIs provide will continue to add significant economic value and complement market forces in the support of community economic development. Thus, CDFIs are likely to contribute to our shared goal of expanding economic opportunity for many years to come.”  

Funding Partners is a community development financial institution (CDFI) that finances opportunities in affordable housing throughout the state of Colorado . Since the inception of its loan programs in 1997, FP has accumulated over $9.2 million in loan fund capital and manages an additional $2.6 million on behalf of other organizations dedicated to serving similar markets.   

Through August 2006, FP has originated 1,163 loans with volume in excess of $19 million through its loan funds, representing 2,789 housing units in 26 counties across the state.  Total costs of all housing projects exceed $301 million for a leverage rate of 15.8 to 1.   Contrary to common perception, loans made directly to low and moderate households through the House to Home Ownership (H2O) Down Payment Assistance Program® and organizations that serve that population through the MAHLF program consistently perform much better than traditional loan products.  Cumulative losses since inception equal $208,582, or 1.21% of the combined loan portfolio, despite well-documented foreclosure and bankruptcy activity plaguing the general housing market.   

CDFIs are private financial institutions that have provided more than $20 billion to benefit low-income and low-wealth people and communities in urban, rural, and Native communities. Opportunity Finance Network is the leading industry network. More than 700 urban, rural and Native finance professionals, investment managers, foundation staff, bankers, and community and economic development specialists and others attended the Conference last week.

New results for Opportunity Finance Network through 2005 were also announced at the Conference. Working in urban, rural and Native markets across the United States , the Members of the Opportunity Finance Network delivered innovation and these results: $11.3 billion invested through 2005; 170,693 jobs generated or maintained; 35,441 businesses assisted; 484,943 housing units created or expanded; and, 5,153 community facility projects supported.  

For a photo of Bernanke speaking at the Opportunity Finance Conference, visit http://www.opportunityfinance.net/photos  

For the full text of Bernanke’s speech, visit http://www.federalreserve.gov/BoardDocs/Speeches/2006/20061101/default.htm  

For information about Funding Partners, visit www.fundingpartners.org.  

For information about the conference, visit http://www.opportunityfinance.net/conference  

Contacts:  Laura Jarvis, for Funding Partners, at (970) 494-2021 and [email protected]; or Lina Page , for Opportunity Finance Network , at (215) 320-4326 and [email protected]



Contact Information:
Laura Jarvis
Funding Partners for Housing Solutions
214 S. College Ave, Second Floor
Fort Collins, Colorado 80524