Dear Friends and Colleagues,
You might have heard that I’ve left New Orleans so I wanted to take a moment to let you know that I’ve relocated to Asheville, North Carolina – fulfilling a lifelong dream of living in a beautiful place (most likely a direct result of growing up in the barren plains of West Texas) with trees and mountains – and four seasons. And as difficult as it was to leave my beloved city of New Orleans, I am happily settling in and enjoying my first real autumn.
After stepping down as Executive Director of Liberty’s Kitchen two years ago – which continues to thrive – I launched my consultancy Hatch, LLC and have had the pleasure of working with many social entrepreneurs across the country. I’ve met a lot of amazing people doing great work and continue to work with clients implementing innovative projects in locations ranging from Appalachia to New York City.
However, through my work with Liberty’s Kitchen, Hatch, and as a mentor with the W.K. Kellogg Foundation, I’ve seen firsthand the challenges that social entrepreneurs and small businesses face when it comes to access the funding they need to launch or expand their businesses – and create quality jobs. Women, for example, only received 4% of all the capital loaned to small businesses last year.
In order to address this challenge on a significant and meaningful scale, I’ve partnered with Short Enterprises on the development of a cutting-edge financial technology platform that will expedite and streamline access to capital for underserved and non-traditional entrepreneurs, small businesses, and social impact organizations. The platform – SourceFunding.org – will be the nation’s first proprietary common application and matchmaking software connecting small businesses and organizations with the low-cost funding they need in order to thrive and drive true economic growth.
Our goal is to foster financial inclusion, community development, job creation, and pathways to economic stability for historically underserved and marginalized populations. SourceFunding.org is also designed to be the nation’s first responsible and low-cost alternative to the many “predatory” online lenders currently in the marketplace.
SourceFunding.org was showcased by the Clinton Global Initiative, highlighted at the 2016 White House State of Women Summit, featured in “What’s Working: Small Business” by the Huffington Post and Goldman Sachs 10K Small Business Initiative, and recognized as a “FinTech innovation” in the Business & Management Review.
Collaborators on the platform’s development have included the White House, Clinton Foundation, Short Enterprises, Syracuse University, City University of New York, State University of New York, the Global Social Enterprise Institute, & numerous others. We’re also thankful for the support of the Ashoka U Commons.
I believe that by creating financial inclusion, SourceFunding.org will be a tremendous tool for building community and creating pathways to economic stability for historically marginalized populations.
You can help support our efforts to reach our goal of deploying $100MM in capital to non-traditional and underserved entrepreneurs by 2019 by helping us spread the word.
You can also be among the first to use SourceFunding.org by requesting an Invitation.
Best to you and yours – and come see me in Asheville!