Monday, February 3, 2014

CCLF 2013 Fourth Quarter Newsletter

New CCLF Logo

4th Quarter/2013
A Message from the President
Calvin Holmes (credit: Steve Becker)
Happy New Year! We hope you will enjoy reading this issue of Community Blueprint as it captures CCLF's impact in the fourth quarter of 2013 and celebrates the year overall. 2013 was a WATERSHED year for CCLF! Through our Community Lending and Gateway to Community Development Technical Assistance Programs, we supported the vision of more customers than ever! Our lending and technical assistance teams helped CCLF invest in the creation or retention of nearly 400 affordable residences and 200 jobs and rolled up their sleeves to advance commercial-retail developments that will bring new
merchants, restaurants and healthy foods to long-ignored retail corridors.

Our customers gave us the honor
of helping them make 26 Chicagoland communities from the Austin neighborhood to Aurora, Illinois a little bit healthier, more dynamic and capable of attracting additional commerce. Because we are completely committed to helping create communities where people thrive, with the support of our 76 investors, we extended 37 new loans totaling nearly $19 million. Not only is this a new high watermark for CCLF, but it is more lending in one year than we provided in the five years, combined, leading into the Great Recession.
We have no doubt that our investment in new alliances and partnerships; talented staff and more robust operating systems; and our elevated outreach are paying off! We will not rest. With unemployment in Englewood at 21%; foreclosure filings in Harvey, Illinois at 27%; small businesses struggling in Little Village; property values in many low-wealth Chicagoland communities stuck at 1990s levels; and wages for most Americans stagnant; we are more focused than ever on working to provide our customers with flexible, easy-to-access capital and practical technical assistance that they can use to continue retaining and creating jobs for local residents, commercial spaces for more and better goods and services and high quality, energy efficient housing to empower the lives of lower wealth families and individuals. Moreover, we acknowledge that our loan volume is increasing, in part, because conventional credit markets are tighter in the wake of the recession, as is the case for many CDFIs across the country. Thus, we cannot promise our communities that we will exceed our 2013 loan volume this year, however, with our very strong pipeline of loans, we want our partners to know that we are certainly going to try!

Leroy Holmes
On a personal note, I thank each of you who called, emailed, texted or sent a card to me -- or gave me a hug at a meeting or on the street -- regarding the loss of my father in December. I was very close to him; admired him greatly; and enjoyed his wisdom and company immensely. Please know how much your compassion is carrying me through this very difficult time. I now know that it takes a village to keep a man standing.

Thank you!
Calvin L. Holmes, President
2014 CCLF Workshop Calendar Announced
BFS 2013
Project Readiness Workshops:
March 11, June 10, November 11
Building for Sustainability:
September 11 & 12
Housing Cooperatives:
August, date TBD
Sustainable Builders Working Group:
Every other month, beginning in February
Small Contractor Bridge Workshops:
February 19, more dates TBD
Find more information about each workshop on our website. Please contact the workshop coordinator at (312) 252-0442 or with questions.
CCLF and WHPFCDC Awarded $250,000 for Partners in Progress Project
CCLF and the West Humboldt Park Family and Community Development Council will collectively receive $250,000 in Citi Foundation funding to increase economic progress in West Humboldt Park as part of the Partners in Progress initiative launched on December 3,
2013 in New York City. The initiative, backed by the Citi Foundation and the Low Income Investment Fund, aims to advance the "quarterback" model of community development by building the capacity of trusted organizations that align objectives, resources and efforts among local stakeholders to create strong, resilient neighborhoods and paths to economic opportunity. Read more here.
Veg Head's storefront features its mascot, Broccoli Bob
New Social Enterprise Creates a Circle of Healthy Living and Giving Back
Fast and other processed foods are often chosen because they are convenient; however, these foods can lead to detrimental health effects such as diabetes and a hardening of the arteries. Veg Head, a new business in North Center, raises the question: What if healthy food were just as convenient as a bag of chips and a can of soda? Veg Head is a new CCLF borrower doing just that. Customers can walk in to Veg Head and find a "mini farmer's market" where they can quickly build their own vegetable snack pack or grab a healthy salad, smoothie or yogurt parfait to-go.
Owner Lynn Kardasz stands in front of one of Veg Head's refrigerated display cases
Lynn Kardasz, the owner of Veg Head, has a variety of past experience, including time served in the Navy and work as an urban planner and a business consultant. A few years ago, she found herself searching for a new career. "I wanted to do something that was happy and healthy," she said. Read more here.
CCLF Co-sponsors Workshop on Financing Worker Cooperatives
Written by the Wisconsin Citizens Media Cooperative
CCLF's Mark Fick (image courtesy of Wisconsin Citizens Media Cooperative)
Bank of Chicago sponsored a workshop on financing worker cooperatives on October 28, 2013. Held at the Fed in downtown Chicago, the program featured worker cooperative leaders and coop financing consultants.
Several dozen people attended the program designed to educate bankers, lenders and community development professionals about the unique qualities and characteristics of worker-owned and operated businesses. Read more here.
CCLF Holds Small Contractor Bridge Workshop
Stephanie Stephens from the Illinois Tollway sharing tips for small contractors
On November 20, CCLF and the Illinois Finance Authority (IFA) held a workshop on the Small Contractor Bridge Program (SCBP), targeting emerging construction businesses, including minority, women-owned and disadvantaged business enterprises interested in bidding on public works contracts in Illinois. The goal of the program is to help contractors secure bonding and financing needed so they can be competitive in the bidding process.
Small Contractor Bridge Program workshop participants

Small contractors
frequently have difficulty securing bonding and working capital which can be a prerequisite to obtaining public works contracts. The high financial barriers to public works projects make them inaccessible to a large number of companies, despite their ability to complete the work to high industry standards. Read more here.
The next SCBP workshop will take place from 3:00-5:00 p.m. on February 19 at Prairie State College. Register here.
CCLF Noteworthy
Thank You to Funders and Investors
For their recent grants, CCLF thanks Bank Leumi, Charter One Foundation, Low Income Investment Fund and Citi Foundation, MetLife Foundation and Taproot Foundation.

For their recent investments and renewals, CCLF thanks US Bank, the Jessie Smith Noyes Foundation, the Congregation of the Sisters of Charity, Chris and Korie Stanley, the Congregation of the Sisters of St. Agnes, Woodlands and the Wintrust Financial Corporation community banks, which include: Beverly Bank and Trust, Hinsdale Bank and Trust, North Shore Community Bank and Trust, Old Plank Trail Community Bank and Trust, St Charles Bank and Trust and Village Bank and Trust.
Staff & Board News
CCLF's Board of Directors welcomed three new directors and approved the slate of officers at its annual meeting in December. New members elected were Jody Adler, Director of the Law Project, which provides pro bono legal advice and services to nonprofit entities and to low-income entrepreneurs; Robert G. Byron, Managing Principal and co-founder of Blue Vista Capital Management, LLC, a real estate investment management firm headquartered in Chicago and Eric S. Phillips, Senior Vice President and Chief Credit Officer of Village Bank & Trust, a Wintrust Community Bank.
Officers elected for a one year term include: John Tuohy, Chair; Matthew Reilein, Vice Chair; Charles Walls, Treasurer and Mohammed Elahi, Secretary. Board Members also gave their heartfelt thanks to retiring members Rafael Leon (served 14 years) and Steven Quasny (2 years).
New Board Members, from left: Jody Adler, Robert G. Byron and Eric S. Phillips
CCLF's Kallie Rollenhagen
Congratulations to Technical Assistance Program Officer Kallie Rollenhagen, who was selected as one of 20 Emerging Leaders from across the country into the inaugural class of the Citi Leadership Program for Opportunity Finance.
The program supports professionals who strive to lead transformational change in the community development industry. Read more here.
Rob Rose, Vice President of Lending,
Rob Rose
CCLF's Rob Rose
has been appointed to the Loan
Committee for Illinois Department of Transportation (IDOT) Disadvantaged
Business Revolving Loan Program. This Program authorizes IDOT to make low-interest loans to disadvantaged business enterprises certified by the Illinois Uniform Certification Program (IDOT, METRA, PACE, CTA, and City of Chicago) for participation on IDOT construction and construction-related contracts.

Credit Memos: CCLF lends $5.38 million in 4th Quarter
Veg Head/K Industries received a $50,000 equipment and working capital loan for a healthy foods retail storefront in North Center. This loan is part of the City of Chicago Treasurer's Small Business Development Fund. Thanks to Darwin Conner of Winston & Strawn LLP for serving as CCLF's counsel on this transaction.
Karry Young Development, LLC received an $80,000 permanent loan through our Neighborhood Investor Lending Program for rental housing in the Austin community. Thanks to Sameer Patel of Holland & Knight LLP for serving as CCLF's counsel on this transaction.
ALJ Investments received a $1,200,000 mini-permanent loan through our Neighborhood Investor Lending Program to refinance ten residential rental communities across Chicago. Thanks to Jeff Gray and Trevor Clarke of Edwards Wildman Palmer LLP for serving as CCLF's counsel on this transaction.
POAH NSP Chicago, LLC received a $500,000 mini-permanent loan for a 6-unit rental building in Woodlawn. This loan is part of the Cook County Preservation Compact. Thanks to Kate Mascarenhas of Kirkland & Ellis LLP for serving as CCLF's counsel on this transaction.
7800 S Prairie Inc. received a $315,000 mini-permanent loan to acquire a 13-unit affordable housing building in Greater Grand Crossing. This loan is part of the Cook County Preservation Compact. Thanks to Jessica Simons and Bradley Ritter of Paul Hastings LLP for serving as CCLF's counsel on this transaction.
Pilgrim Development Corporation received a $265,850 mini-permanent loan through our Neighborhood Investor Lending Program to acquire three properties for affordable housing and to lease to a school and healthcare organization in West Garfield Park. Thanks to Bruce Bedwell of Chapman and Cutler LLP for serving as CCLF's counsel on this transaction.
XT Properties, LLC received a $270,000 mini-permanent loan through our Neighborhood Investor Lending Program to refinance two rental properties in Park Manor. Thanks to Alpita Shah of Mayer Brown LLP for serving as CCLF's counsel on this transaction.
The Stony Group LLC received a $2,700,000 construction loan to renovate the vacant Stony Island Trust & Savings Bank building to create a cultural and culinary community center in the South Shore community. This loan is part of our commercial real estate initiative. Thanks to Evan Epstein of Katten Muchin Rosenman LLP for serving as CCLF's counsel on this transaction.

New CCLF Logo
The mission of the Chicago Community Loan Fund is to provide flexible, affordable and responsible financing and technical assistance for community stabilization and development efforts and initiatives that benefit low- to moderate-income neighborhoods, families and individuals throughout metropolitan Chicago.

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