Nov. 2019 Newsletter
Reflecting on the Launch of Opportunity Virginia
Pictured: The kickoff offered a unique forum for investors to connect with Opportunity Zone project stakeholders directly. During the proceedings, project leads pitched their proposals followed by a networking session to facilitate deeper conversations.
LOCUS just launched Opportunity Virginia,  a first of its kind initiative connecting Opportunity Zone investors and projects to revitalize underserved Virginia communities. Stakeholders convened at the University of Virginia's Darden School to create energy, share knowledge and explore next steps for the OZ program. Kicked off by an address from VA Governor Ralph Northam, the event generated a lot of buzz and enthusiasm for the future of Opportunity Zones. See our takeaways from the gathering on our blog... READ MORE
Impact Investing through an Equity Lens
The Candide Group has created The Olamina Fund, a $40 million initiative aiming to boost front line lenders in underserved communities. According to the Group, Olamina represents the largest loan fund of its kind as it targets underrepresented groups such as women, people of color, and Native communities. At least 80% of the fund's loans will extend to people of color and women, and it will concentrate efforts in capital-scarce areas, including rural regions, Native nations and the deep South.

LOCUS Impact Investing is proud to provide the Olamina Fund with back-office fund servicing and partnership.
Lifting Rural Voices
Deb Markley, LOCUS' Senior Vice President, along with our partner, Ines Polonius of Communities Unlimited, facilitated a Decision Retreat for the Texas Rural Funders Collaborative (TRFC) on October 10-11 in Austin, TX. This final retreat helped to formalize the collaborative’s organizational structure and ways of working together and identified action areas for 2020 and beyond. TRFC has made great progress in two years, lifting rural voices in the state, engaging rural practitioners and tackling “big issues” like broadband internet access. Look for more updates on their work in the months ahead.
A First Step for Place Focused Foundations
GreenMoney Journal published its November edition focused on community impact investing, and it features an article by Travis Green, LOCUS' Solutions Consultant. " A First Step for Place-Focused Foundations " examines local impact investment funds and how they relate to the vital work performed by philanthropies.
The article also highlights steps foundations can take when tackling impact investing for the first time, whether that involves taking the plunge with an actual investment or actively exploring organizational policies and capacity for local impact investing. To support the exploration process, LOCUS launched the Local Impact Snapshot, a quick assessment tool designed to give foundations a point-in-time look at their readiness for impact investing. Check it out here.
2020 Winter Innovation Summit
The Sorenson Impact Center's Winter Innovation Summit is a cross-industry event focused on social impact, innovation and investing. Last year's event brought together close to 1000 funders, nonprofits, policymakers and social entrepreneurs to examine breakthroughs in social innovation.

In 2020, LOCUS will lead a deep dive session on the Community Investment Guarantee Pool (CIGP) initiative, the first domestic, multi-investor pool of guarantees for lending intermediaries involved in the affordable housing, small business and climate sectors. Interested in connecting at the event? Contact us here.
Opportunity Zone Updates
Virginia Governor Ralph Northam announced the state will receive six grants from the Appalachian Regional Commission's (ARC) Partnership for Opportunity and Workforce and Economic Revitalization (POWER) program. One of the grant projects is a multi-state initiative focused on Opportunity Zone development.

Opportunity Appalachia, a program that attracts investment funding to federally designated Opportunity Zones in Central Appalachia, expects to bring $7.5 million in investment to Appalachian communities by providing technical assistance to develop and structure investable transactions, creating investment prospectuses and leading outreach to potential investors.
News from
the Field
Where You'll Find LOCUS
Nov. 14 | San Diego, CA
The Kresge Foundation's Joe Evans will present CIGP. Kipton Currier will attend.

Nov. 20-22 | Richmond, VA
Adam Northup will speak during a panel on Opportunity Zones.

Dec. 3-4 | Seattle, WA
Kimberlee Cornett and Kipton Currier will represent CIGP at a convening of potential stakeholders. (Private Event)

Dec. 11 | Richmond, VA
Members of the LOCUS team will attend.

Feb. 05-07 | Salt Lake City, UT
LOCUS will lead a conference session on CIGP.

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