First cohort selected to participate in innovative program to increase number of minority developers in Detroit
Capital Impact Partners, alongside JPMorgan Chase & Co., announced the first cohort of participants for the Equitable Development Initiative. This two-year program will help ensure minority real estate developers in Detroit are able to participate in the city’s revitalization in a way that reflects the city’s diversity. Over the course of a two-year pilot, this initiative will provide participants with real estate training; technical assistance to support participants’ efforts to develop real estate in Detroit; and the potential for one-on-one mentorship and project financing.
After receiving over 130 applications and going through an intensive review process that incorporated expertise from both internal and external review boards, the final participants will follow two tracks.
All participants will follow a training track developed in partnership with the National Development Council, which started in February 2018 and will run through the fall. The training program focuses on the details of mixed-use and multifamily real estate development in Detroit, using case studies, group work and deep dive sessions to further participants’ expertise in this arena. Topics of focus include assembling a real estate development team, developing project pro formas, establishing site control, accessing financing, working with the City of Detroit, and choosing and working with a property manager. Just under 30 individuals are participating in the program.
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Additionally, seven participants with multifamily/mixed-use projects that align with Capital Impact’s approach to supporting inclusive growth through mixed-income neighborhood development will receive one-on-one support throughout the program with an established local developer mentor, a real estate development finance expert, and one or more community-based organizations. Capital Impact will also work to match program participants who have qualifying projects with project financing.
Those seven individuals include: Sauda Ahmad-Green; Ron Bartell; Chase Cantrell, Damion Ellis, James Feagin IV, Jeanine Hatcher and Alisha Moss.
“As a mission-driven organization, we constantly strive to ensure our body of work creates a foundation of equity, inclusiveness and cooperation,” Elizabeth Luther, Detroit program manager, Capital Impact Partners. “The Equitable Development Initiative is demonstrative of our commitment to supporting inclusive growth in Detroit neighborhoods through catalytic financing paired with programming, research, and policy interventions.”
Participants in the training track include: Keisha Bell; Audrey Childress; Asia Denson; Gregoire Eugene-Louis; Ezekiel Harris; Deba Harper; Antoine Hayes I; Sterling Howard; LeChell Hudson-Battiste; Herman Jenkins; Jelani Karamoko; Cecily King; Hayward Little; Katrina Lockhart; Laura Shi; Marcus Sims; Michael Steele; Sean Tidwell; Andre Watson; Robert Williams; and Rebecca “Bucky” Willis.
There are approximately 50,000 minority-owned small businesses in Detroit, making it the fourth largest city for minority entrepreneurship in the United States. As the city’s recovery continues, more real estate developers are needed for the rehabilitation and construction of housing, commercial and community space in Detroit’s neighborhoods. The Equitable Development Initiative is designed to kick-start the development of small- and mid-sized mixed-use, multifamily residential projects in the city’s mixed-use corridors and is aligned with Capital Impact’s mission to help people to build communities of opportunity.
“This initiative will go a long way to help minority developers share in Detroit’s economic comeback while deepening the pool of talent available to help the city rebuild,” said Tosha Tabron, Vice President for Global Philanthropy, JPMorgan Chase & Co. “JPMorgan Chase invests in smart ideas like this to incentivize small business owners to grow their companies, create more employment opportunities for Detroiters and drive sustainable growth in neighborhoods.”
As part of the firm’s $150 million investment in Detroit’s economic recovery – and a dedicated effort to support minority small business owners through initiatives like the recently expanded Entrepreneurs of Color Fund – JPMorgan Chase has committed $500,000 over two years to the Equitable Development Initiative.
Together with Capital Impact and JPMorgan Chase, several other organizations are critical to the introduction of the Equitable Development Initiative, including technical assistance providers, funders, the City of Detroit, and CDFI Partners. Organization providing technical assistance as part of the program include Woodborn Partners, Hosey Development, the Roxbury Group, Ethos Development Partners, the National Development Council, Cinnaire, Invest Detroit, and Development Detroit.
Through capital and commitment, strategic research and inclusive growth initiatives, Capital Impact envisions a nation of communities of opportunity built on a foundation of equity, inclusiveness, and cooperation, and provides access to high-quality services that foster good health, economic opportunity and interconnectedness. Since 2006, the organization has deployed more than $185 million in mission-driven lending in Detroit, served more than 25,000 residents, and provided housing for more than 800 individuals and families.