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Impact Matters: Building Financial Empowerment through Innovative Policies & Programs

California Asset Building Coalition, Bay Area Asset Funders Network, Federal Reserve Bank of San Francisco

Wednesday, December 4, 2013 from 8:00 AM to 5:00 PM (PST)

Impact Matters: Building Financial Empowerment through...

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Impact Matters:
Building Financial Empowerment through Policies and Programs

Income and wealth inequality are at historic highs. To tackle the crippling financial challenges faced by a growing majority of U.S. households, diverse stakeholders are coming together to share wealth-building strategies aimed at ending poverty and building inroads into the middle class. Join the California Asset Building Coalition (CABC) at our 4th Annual Conference for a day of learning and sharing best practices – from innovative new models to proven strategies – that help Californians become financially empowered. Diverse organizations will discuss the power of asset building. 

7:30 am – CHECK-IN

  • Olivia Calderon, California Asset Building Coalition
  • Hon. John Chiang, California State Controller

9:45 am – BREAK


Research, Policy, Practice: Immigrant Integration into the Financial Mainstream 

Financial inclusion is a fundamental first step to creating greater financial security for low-income families - particularly immigrant families. This panel will share new research findings on Latino and immigrant access to financial services and the policy implications of Comprehensive Immigration Reform. Panelists will also share innovative programs that help cross-border families build financial assets and achieve upward economic mobility.

Presented by:  Moderator, Andrea Luqueta (California Reinvestment Coalition), Andy Carey (US-Mexico Border Philanthropy Partnership), Marisabel Torres (National Council of La Raza), Maggie Cervantes (New Economics for Women), Martha Najarro (Mexican American Opportunity Foundation)

Program Development: Wheels to Work

This panel discussion will introduce the concept of transportation as an asset, particularly in the form of auto-financing to acquire a reliable vehicle to travel to work, access quality health care, and as a pathway to rebuild credit worthiness.  Panelists will discuss the need for responsible auto-financing to serve low to moderate-income families and alternative financing models that leverage public-private investments to lower the cost of auto-financing.

Presented by:  Moderator, Melody Winter Head (Federal Reserve Bank of San Francisco), Linda Brost (Ways to Work, Inc.),Victor Ramirez (Citi Community Development), Shaina Gross (United Way of San Diego), Joel Craddock (Jewish Family Services of San Diego) 

Collaboration & Technology: Meet You Online – The Future of Financial Counseling

Virtual counseling is a cost effective solution for nonprofits to leverage resources and offer a “one stop” cadre of services from the convenience of their desktop computers. This panel will explore approaches nonprofit agencies can develop productive partnerships, connect to funding sources, and utilize virtual technology to provide financial counseling services to clients.

Presented by:  Moderator, Myrna Pascual (US Department of Housing and Urban Development), Chi K. Elder (Citi Community Development), Ali Tarzi (Community HousingWorks), Vino Pajanor (Housing Opportunities Collaborative)

Research, Technology & Practice:  Scalable Strategies to Incentivize and Maintain Positive Financial Behaviors 

Developing good financial habits takes time, knowledge and sacrifice. But even strongly set habits can be upset when times get tough or the initial urgency for change fades. Learn about the latest research, products, curricula, and technologies helping people build and preserve positive financial behaviors. This panel will feature innovative products and educational tools that include: Start2Save, Vault Mobile Savings, Savvy Consumer Toolkit.

Presented by:  Moderator, Gwendy Donaker Brown (Opportunity Fund), Sheryl Lane (EARN), Leah Tarran (Brighter Beginnings)

11:30 am – 2013 LEADERSHIP AWARDS

  • Hon. John Chiang, California State Controller (Policymaker of the Year),
  • Amanda Feinstein, Walter and Elise Haas Fund & Assets Funders Network (Philanthropist of the Year),
  • Lorna Hodge, The Financial Planning Association of San Diego (Volunteer of the Year),
  • Teresa Smith, San Diego Family Asset Building Coalition (Practitioner of the Year),
  • Steve Baehrens, Union Bank (Financial Institution of the Year),
  • Gustavo Bidart, Citi (Partner of the Year)


  • Stephen Maduli-Williams, Vice President of Social Enterprise, Jacobs Center for Neighborhood Innovation


Best Practice: Promoting Asset Building in California’s Promise Neighborhoods 

This panel will showcase the innovative work of Promise Neighborhoods, which is a federal placed-based education initiative that has funded 51 communities throughout the U.S.– including 8 in California, serving 50,000 children – with up to $30 million to coordinate education, health and community support. Panelists will share how they are integrating asset-building support within a comprehensive continuum of solutions serving children and families in California’s most distressed communities.  These programs include educational savings accounts, financial education and counseling, workforce development, public benefits, and entrepreneurship.    

Presented by:  Moderator, Solana Rice (PolicyLink), Samuel Sinyangwe (PolicyLink), Victor Corral (Mission Economic Development Agency), Karina Fevela-Barreras (Youth Policy Institute), Rashi Kallur (Citi Community Development)

Public-Private Sector Collaboration: Government as a Partner in Improving Household Financial Stability.

Fifty years since the War on Poverty, the ability to fully participate in American economic life is predicated on access to financial products and services. To promote economic opportunity, families on public assistance, such as Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF), need entry points into the financial mainstream.  This panel will share research about policy reforms that can boost financial inclusion for TANF participants and introduce a County-led loan guarantee and infrastructure program to connect banks, philanthropy, and financial and social service providers to provide a safe small-dollar loan.

Presented by: Aleta Sprague (New America Foundation), Tram Nguyen (Alameda County Public Health Department), Alex Desautels (Alameda County Public Health Department)Amy Shrago (Alameda County Public Health)

Program Development:  Cash or Credit – Incorporating Affordable Credit into Asset Building Programs at Tax-Time & Beyond

A strong credit score is an essential part of financial success because it allows access to affordable credit and opens doors to employment and housing. For low-income consumers with low or no credit, figuring out how to build and access credit is confusing and risky. Organizations seeking to help their clients build credit face challenges in understanding the credit system, and finding the appropriate products to offer This panel will share two case studies of how nonprofits partnered with financial institutions to develop a credit-building product to better serve low-income consumers and the organization that serve them.

Presented by:  Moderator, Gwendy Brown (Opportunity Fund), Lauren Leimbach (Community Financial Resources), Mattias Kraemer (Mission Economic Development Agency)

Adult & Youth Workforce Development: Advancing Financial Stability through Integrated Service Delivery

Research suggests that workforce development programs can be a powerful setting for financial capability interventions as participants are earning money, receiving skills training, and engaging in case management. This panel will feature Financial Opportunity Centers (FOC) and Mission SF’s Make Your Path (MY Path). Learn how these programs have contributed to the growing body of research, demonstrating the positive impact that financial capability interventions can have on low-income youth and adults when seamlessly integrated into workforce programs, and designed with behavioral research in mind.

Presented by: Moderator, Jessica Bartholow (Western Center on Law and Poverty), Vicky Rodriguez (Local Initiative Support Corporation), Jason Jarvinen (International Rescue Committee), Vishnu Sridharan (Mission SF Community Financial Center)Nicole Heesen (North County Lifeline)

2:30 pm – BREAK


The networking reception is sponsored by U.S.-Mexico Border Philanthropy Partnership.  Here, attendees will have the opportunity to connect with presenters, thought leaders, scholars, advocates, funders, and practitioners committed to the financial success of all Californians.  During the reception, the 2013 Innovation Grant will be awarded to the most promising proposal with the potential to scale at the city and state level.

*Registration fee includes one year CABC membership.

Have questions about Impact Matters: Building Financial Empowerment through Innovative Policies & Programs? Contact California Asset Building Coalition, Bay Area Asset Funders Network, Federal Reserve Bank of San Francisco

When & Where

Jacobs Center for Community Innovation
404 Euclid Avenue
San Diego, CA 92102

Wednesday, December 4, 2013 from 8:00 AM to 5:00 PM (PST)

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California Asset Building Coalition, Bay Area Asset Funders Network, Federal Reserve Bank of San Francisco

California Asset Building Coalition (CABC) is a statewide network of policymakers, practitioners, advocates, and elected officials who advance policies and programs that help Californians save, invest, and build assets. CABC sponsors events on the most important financial issues facing low-wealth families. We envision a California with a large and strong middle-class where all residents have access to the financial tools and incentives they need to achieve their dreams.

Bay Area Asset Funders Network (BA-AFN) is a regional network of private and corporate foundations, public-sector funders and fiinancial institutions supporting opportunities for low-wealth individuals and families in the San Francisco Bay Area to access financial education and services, save, invest, and preserve assets. BA-AFN supports the community of funders invested in asset-building activites in the region, strenghthening the field by fostering connections between grantmakers and their peers in the nonprofit, public and private sectors, and working to increase investment in the field over the long term. 

  Contact the Organizer
Impact Matters: Building Financial Empowerment through Innovative Policies & Programs
San Diego, CA Events Conference

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