Industry Joins Forces to Increase CDFI Certification


New York, NY – (October 16, 2015) – The National Federation of Community Development Credit UnionsCUNA Mutual Group and the California and Nevada Credit Union Leagues have announced a joint effort to increase the number of Community Development Financial Institution (CDFI) certified credit unions in California. Interested credit unions can register for informational roundtables that will outline the benefits of CDFI certification and the application process to be held on December 8, 2015 in Ontario, CA  and on December 10, 2015 in Oakland, CA.
Green pins indicate CDFI credit unions/branches; Yellow pins indicate credit unions/branches with high potential for CDFI certification

The CDFI certified credit union industry is growing, with 261 credit unions currently certified nationwide. They have combined assets of $50 billion and provide services to six million primarily low-income consumers in financially underserved communities.

From the CDFI’s inception in 1994, over $168 million has been awarded to California CDFIs, but California credit unions have only received $14 million, or less than 10% or the dollars awarded. There are 60 low-income credit unions in the state of California. The first step in increasing the number of CDFI awards to California credit unions is to increase the number of credit unions that are CDFI certified, as only certified credit unions are eligible to receive funding. The Federation’s CU Breakthrough consulting group and CUNA Mutual Group will sponsor up to 30 credit unions in the application process.
“We believe in the immense value of CDFI certifiation and how it enables credit unions to create financial security for individuals who need it most,” says Christopher Roe, SVP of Corporate and Legislative Affairs for CUNA Mutual Group. “We gladly commit $75,000 to this worthwhile effort in partnership with the Federation and the California and Nevada Credit Union Leagues.”
Credit unions should note that low-income designation is not a requirement for CDFI certification. All California credit unions interested in serving low-income consumers are invited to attend the October roundtables.
California credit unions are encouraged to contact Pablo DeFilippi, Federation VP of Membership and Business Development, at CUBreakthrough@cdcu.coop to learn more about CDFI certification and the Federation/CUNA Mutual Group grants. Grants will be awarded based on asset size, need and community development profile. The certification process takes approximately six weeks and involves a seven step verification process including target market, legal entity, primary mission, financing entity, accountability, development services and non-government entity.
Credit unions interested in the December 8 roundtable in Ontario, CA can register at http://events.constantcontact.com/register/event?llr=ktshzucab&oeidk=a07ebjhzpqt9eb55035.
Credit unions interested in the December 10 roundtable in Oakland, CA can register at http://events.constantcontact.com/register/event?llr=ktshzucab&oeidk=a07ebji12awbf18be28.
About the Federation
The National Federation of Community Development Credit Unions is a certified CDFI Intermediary representing community development credit unions (CDCUs). The Federation’s member CDCUs provide credit, savings, transaction services and financial education to nearly 5 million residents of low-income urban, rural and reservation-based communities across the US, and hold over $45 billion in community-controlled assets. Founded in 1974, the Federation is headquartered in Lower Manhattan with offices in Madison, WI. We offer a wide range of advocacy, educational, training, investment, marketing, and outreach programs to support and assist CDCUs. For more information about the Federation and its programs, please visit www.cdcu.coop. For more information on the performance of CDFI Credit Unions see CDFI Certification: A Building Block for Credit Union Growth, a white paper prepared by the Federation with CUNA, the Credit Union National Association.
About CUNA Mutual Group
CUNA Mutual Group was founded in 1935 by credit union pioneers and our commitment to their vision continues today. We offer insurance and protection for credit unions, employees and members; lending solutions and marketing programs; TruStage branded consumer insurance products; and investment and retirement services to help our customers succeed.
About California and Nevada Credit Union Leagues
Together, the California and Nevada Credit Union Leagues represent the largest combined state trade association for credit unions in the United States.  The Leagues are committed to helping credit unions change people’s lives.  For more than 82 years, the Leagues have played an important role in sustaining the health of member credit unions.  The Leagues advocate for 375 credit unions in California and Nevada with more than 10 million members and $160 billion in assets.
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Media Contacts:

Clarissa Ritter
Director of Marketing and Communications
critter@cdcu.coop

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