Our board is comprised of cooperative development, philanthropy, education, health care, housing and economic development leaders.
President & CEO
Oswaldo Acosta brings his lending, project finance, and entrepreneurial experience to lead the City First Enterprises efforts in advancing the region’s economic development agenda. Prior to CFE, Mr. Acosta launched a food distribution company, was head of the Small Business group at the Latino Economic Development Center, part of the commercial lending group at Self-Help, and served as an economic consultant for Stone & Webster in London, UK, before being assigned to lead projects with The World Bank in Washington, DC. Currently, he is a member of the Impact Investment Committee of the Baltimore Community Foundation and sits on the Board of Directors for Baltimore’s Impact Hub. More recently, he joined Greater Baybrook Alliance’s board. Mr. Acosta holds a BS in Economics from Monterrey Institute of Technology, an MA in Political Economy from the United Kingdom’s University of Essex, and an MSC in Economic Regulation from the London School of Economics and Political Science.
Senior Vice President (Retired)
National SBA Lending, Bank of America
Rick Benito served as a senior vice president and national SBA executive at Bank of America. In this role, he supported the bank’s national Small Business Administration (SBA) sales and support teams. Mr. Benito joined Bank of America in 1995 after 7 years at Wells Fargo, having served in a variety of roles at both banks. Mr. Benito’s previous career experience includes the Xerox Corporation and serving as a Lieutenant in the United States Navy. Mr. Benito is active in Bank of America’s Community Volunteer Network serving as leader of the Military Support and Advisory Group in San Diego. He has served on a number of boards and other civic organizations with a focus on education, veterans’ issues, and economic development. He completed the Consumer Bankers Association Graduate School of Retail Bank Management program at the University of Virginia and is a graduate of LEAD San Diego. He received his Bachelor of Science degree in Business Administration from Valparaiso University in Indiana.
Alaina C. Beverly
Assistant Vice President, Urban Affairs
Office of Federal Relations at the University of Chicago
Alaina Beverly has been the Assistant Vice President for Urban Affairs in the Office of Federal Relations at the University of Chicago since 2017, where she is responsible for sharing the University’s research, scholarship, and models of urban investment with federal policymakers and national partners. At the University of Chicago, Ms. Beverly successfully launched Urban America Forward, an annual convening of national civil rights leaders, scholars, community based practitioners and foundations to examine evidence-based policies to further equity in America’s cities. Ms. Beverly was previously a principal at the Raben Group from 2010 to 2013, where she provided strategic planning, communications, government relations and third-party partnership services to a broad range of non-profit, corporate and philanthropic clients. Ms. Beverly served as Associate Director, Office of Urban Affairs at the White House from 2009-2010. Ms. Beverly earned a B.A. in Political Science and African American Studies from Stanford University, and a J.D. from the University of Michigan Law School.
Director of Data Strategy
The Atlas for Cities
As Chief Sustainability Officer, Erik Caldwell leads the implementation of the City of San Diego’s ambitious efforts to reduce its greenhouse gas emissions. Under his leadership the city’s implementation efforts are focused on increasing the energy and water efficiency of facilities, furthering the use of renewable energy, expanding transit and alternative mobility choices, diverting waste away from our landfill, and preparing the city for the impacts of climate change. San Diego’s sustainability team is recognized nationally and internationally for its work accelerating San Diego’s transition into a post-carbon future. Prior to taking on the CSO role, Mr. Caldwell held several other leadership positions with the city and a long career in public policy. He earned a Bachelor of Arts degree in Political Science from California State University San Marcos, a Master of Business Administration degree from San Diego State University, in addition to completing advanced studies in Real Estate, Data Analytics, and Data Visualization.
SBA Solutions Group, Chase
Cameron is the Executive Director for the SBA Solutions Group at Chase. She has over 38 years of banking experience, the last twenty-four specializing in SBA lending. Ms. Cameron oversees sales and operation teams that provide support for SBA products offered by Chase. She has designed and facilitated access to capital seminars at multiple Chase for Business events to provide valuable insights to small business owners on how to use credit to grow their business and manage cash flow. She has been an instructor for the National Association of Government Guaranteed Lenders (NAGGL) for over nineteen years. Ms. Cameron has also sat on the NAGGL Technical Issues Committee. Ms. Cameron also sits on the Board of Directors for the National Association of Development Companies and is a member of the NAGGL Large Lender Committee. Ms. Cameron graduated Summa Cum Laude from Western International University with a Bachelor’s degree in Finance.
President and CEO
Capital Impact Partners & CDC Small Business Finance
Ellis Carr is the President and CEO of Capital Impact Partners and CDC Small Business Finance. Operating under the Momentus Capital brand, Capital Impact, CDC Small Business, and their affiliates, including Ventures Lending Technologies, came together in 2021 through an innovative business combination under a common mission-driven strategy and management team. Together, these organizations help build inclusive and equitable communities by providing people access to the capital and opportunities they deserve. Momentus Capital-branded companies provide financial, knowledge, and social capital to small businesses, affordable housing developments, and other projects that build wealth and strengthen communities. In 2023, the Momentus Capital brand expanded with the launch of Momentus Securities, a FINRA-member broker/dealer. Currently, Momentus Capital-branded companies manage nearly $3 billion in assets.
Ellis has over 20 years of experience in the for-profit and nonprofit financial sectors. He became President & CEO of CDC Small Business in 2021 and has served as the President & CEO of Capital Impact since 2016, originally joining Capital Impact as CFO in 2012. Prior to Capital Impact, Ellis held various positions in the investments, capital markets, strategy, and corporate finance areas within Freddie Mac, and in fixed-income fund management both domestically and abroad at Deutsche Bank.
The son of two DC public school teachers, Ellis grew up in a household in which community service was a core pillar. In addition to his work leading Momentus Capital, he is an Aspen Institute Finance Leader Fellow and sits on the boards of the Marguerite Casey Foundation (MCF), Expanding Black Business Credit (EBBC) and the Housing Partnership Network, as well as Morgan Stanley’s Community Development Advisory Board.
Ellis has been recognized among the “Most Creative People in Business” by Fast Company, and has received multiple awards from the Washington Business Journal, including “Nonprofit Leader of the Year” in 2022. Under his leadership, Capital Impact and CDC Small Business were both named among the Top Nonprofits to Work For in 2022 by the NonProfit Times. Ellis graduated from Towson University with a bachelor’s degree in Accounting, and from Georgetown University with a master’s degree in Real Estate with a concentration in Finance. Ellis lives in the DC region with his family.
President + CEO Emeritus, CDC Small Business Finance
For over 35 years, Kurt Chilcott has been dedicated to economic development and creating access to responsible and affordable capital for small businesses. Mr. Chilcott served as the president and CEO of CDC Small Business Finance (CDC) from 1998-2021, helping the organization to become the leading small business lender in the country. While there he helped pioneer a variety of new mission-based lending products and advanced strategic initiatives to raise capital. Mr. Chilcott also serves on the boards of the National Association of Development Companies, the California Endowment, and the International Economic Development Council. Prior to leading CDC, Mr. Chilcott worked for the City of San Diego to help reshape its economic development strategy creating one of the first industry cluster-based regional economic development strategies in the nation and leading the revitalization of numerous underserved communities throughout San Diego. Mr. Chilcott received his Bachelor’s degree from Harvard University and a Master of Public Policy degree from University of California, Berkeley.
Public Finance Banking Group, Morgan Stanley
Grace Chionuma is the Co-Head of the Housing and Community Development Finance Group within Public Finance Banking and a member of the Municipal Securities Operating Committee. She leads Morgan Stanley’s capital markets coverage of CDFIs, NonProfit Affordable Housing Developers, and charter schools. Ms. Chionuma served has led several CDFI debt IPOs including for Local Initiatives Support Corporation, Enterprise Community Loan Fund, Low Income Investment Fund, and BlueHub Loan Fund. She has worked with Freddie Mac on affordable housing securitizations and Freddie Mac’s first issuance under its Social Bond Framework which financed affordable housing loans. In addition, she has worked with foundations including the Ford Foundation and the MacArthur Foundation to raise capital from institutional investors to increase grants during the COVID-19 and economic crisis of 2020. Ms. Chionuma earned her B.A. at Dartmouth College, completing majors in both Government and Philosophy; and she earned her M.B.A. at Yale University School of Management.
Former President & CEO, Prosperity Now
Under Gary Cunningham’s leadership, Prosperity Now is focused on moving from just mitigating the effects of a broken racist system to transforming that system by testing, investing, and scaling what works. Mr. Cunningham is a recognized and respected expert on entrepreneurship, job creation, and racial wealth equity and is a sought-after thought leader on issues related to building a more inclusive economy. Prior to joining Prosperity Now, he served as President and CEO of the Metropolitan Economic Development Association in the Twin Cities, where he was recognized as an innovator in minority business development. Earlier, Mr. Cunningham held senior leadership positions in philanthropic, community development, health care, housing, and transportation organizations. Mr. Cunningham earned a Bachelor of Arts degree in Public Policy from Metropolitan State University, and a Master of Public Administration from Harvard University’s Kennedy School of Government. He serves on a number of Boards including the Association for Enterprise Opportunity, First Children’s Finance, and Artspace
Jennifer Smith Dolin
Principal of JenDolin Consulting
Jennifer Dolin has built a career in real estate development with over 20 years of design, finance, and construction experience. She has worked on some of the most complex low-income housing developments in the San Francisco Bay Area. She was a senior officer at Mercy Housing Inc. for nine years, where she focused on organization, strategic and policy issues throughout the State of California. Currently, she is the Principal of JenDolin Consulting, Interim COO of Abode Communities based in Los Angeles, and Vice-Chair of National Cooperative Bank. Ms. Dolin sits on a number of real estate closely-held boards on behalf of Mercy Housing and is a member of the Board of Directors for National Cooperative Bank, N.A. Her commitment to community revitalization began in New York City where she worked in the economic development department of Common Ground. She received her Bachelor of Science degree in Business from Santa Clara University.
Casey P. Fannon
President & Chief Executive Officer
The National Cooperative Bank, N.A.
Casey Fannon joined the National Cooperative Bank, N.A. (NCB) in 1996. He is currently the President and CEO of NCB and leads its Executive Council, a team of senior managers representing business development units and functional areas across the company. During his tenure at NCB, Mr. Fannon has worked in new product and market development, commercial real estate, and capital markets, and has managed NCB’s loan and deposit production across all NCB’s customer segments. In addition to serving on NCB’s Board, Mr. Fannon currently serves on the Board of Directors of The National Grocers Association (NGA), a national trade association representing the retail and wholesale community grocers nationwide. He received a BS in Finance from Bentley University and is a Chartered Financial Analyst charter holder.
Pedro I. Goitia
Mr. Goitia is a retired Partner from KPMG, where he spent his entire career (32 years). After spending 11 years in the audit department serving banking and other financial institutions, he was promoted to Partner in 1995 and moved to the advisory department to specialize in the structured finance and mortgage banking industries. During his 21 years as a Partner, he lead/co-lead the securitization group, served as account representative for several large local and national securitization and mortgage banking clients and was project manager on multi-year engagements involving risk management process, financial reporting processes/controls and compliance testing of credit agreements. Throughout his career, Mr. Goitia was heavily involved in diversity and inclusion initiatives, serving as Partner Champion of the DC Area Hispanic Latino Network and Trustee of the KPMG Foundation. Mr. Goitia earned a B.S.B.A. from Washington University in St. Louis in 1983 and a Master’s Degree in Accountancy from the George Washington University in 1984. He is a Certified Public Accountant.
Capital Markets, Federal Home Loan Bank – Office of Finance
Gail Markulin is the retired Director of Capital Markets for the Federal Home Loan Bank-Office of Finance (FHLBank); Ms. Markulin worked at FHLBank for more than 27 years, serving in various capital markets positions. Ms. Markulin currently serves on the Board of Directors for Aspire! Afterschool Learning and previously volunteered as a tutor and mentor with AHC, Inc. a nonprofit affordable housing developer of low- and moderate-income housing in Virginia, Maryland and Washington, D.C. Ms. Markulin earned an M.B.A. in Finance from George Washington University and a B.A. from Pennsylvania State University.
Outdoor Venture Corporation
Ray Moncrief currently serves as President of Outdoor Venture Corporation and has served on its Board of Directors since 1983. Mr. Moncrief is the President and Chief Executive Officer of Mountain Ventures, Inc., a licensed SBIC, wholly owned by Kentucky Highlands. He is also President and Chief Executive Officer and a board member of Southern Appalachian Management Company, LLC and Eclipse Management, LLC, the General Partner of Meritus Ventures, L.P. President Donald Trump and President George W. Bush appointed Mr. Moncrief to the Community Development Advisory Board. Mr. Moncrief is a founding director and is currently Chairman of the Board of Directors of the Community Development Venture Capital Alliance (CDVCA). He received the NASVF Lifetime Achievement in Seed Investing Award. This award was presented to him by the National Association of Seed and Venture Funds in 2012. Mr. Moncrief is an active Director on six corporate Boards of Directors and has been an advocate for using equity for economic development. Mr. Moncrief earned a B.S. Degree in Accounting from Louisiana Tech University in 1972.
Co-Founder and Officer
Precision Healthcare Ecosystem
Orion is Co-Founder and Officer of Precision Healthcare Ecosystem, a nonprofit pioneering a new model of healthcare focused on patient education and empowerment, primarily through its flagship program, Project Apollo. Ms. Orion has decades of experience in enterprise development and business incubation. She served as interim President and COO of CONNECT, having served as President and Chief Executive Officer of the San Diego Regional Technology Alliance (RTA) until its merger with CONNECT in 2005. CONNECT is a technology business accelerator dedicated to the creation and sustained growth of innovative, science-based companies. She has served on numerous boards for companies and non-profit organizations and has been recognized by San Diego Business Journal and others for her leadership in the regional entrepreneurial ecosystem. Ms. Orion earned her MBA in Health Services Management from Webster University, her Bachelor’s degree from Thomas A. Edison College, and studied Drama/Directing at Carnegie-Mellon University.
Diverse Markets Executive and Community-Based Programs Manager
Frank Robinson has served as the Diverse Markets Executive and Community-Based Programs Manager for MUFG Union Bank since 1996. In this capacity, Mr. Robinson strategically advises the president of Union Bank and partners with Commercial, Business Banking, Small Business Administration, Affluent and High Net Worth lines of business. This enables an diverse client engagement and culture with a focus on Black/African-American, Latinx, Asian, Native Americans, LGBTQ, veterans, and female clients. He is also in charge of Union Bank’s student run branch program, the financial education centers, and Corporate Social Responsibility’s special projects. In 2003, he became a vice president and segment manager of Business Diversity Lending for the bank, in this capacity he oversaw the bank’s Special Purpose Credit Program. Mr. Robinson earned a Bachelor’s degree in business management from California State University, San Bernardino. He is also a graduate of Pacific Coast Banking School at the University of Washington. Mr. Robinson serves on the board of the Educating Young Minds and is the Western Province Chairman of the Kappa 100 for Kappa Alpha Psi Fraternity, Inc.
President & CEO
Thomas Topuzes & Associates, LLC
Topuzes is President and CEO of Thomas Topuzes & Associates, a consultancy that provides a wide range of services to organizations in the public, private, and non-profit sectors. He and his firm advise clients across the United States and Mexico on strategic planning, trans-border commerce, financial institution regulatory relations, and more. His professional experience includes executive roles at multiple banks, government service as the Region XI SBA Administrator and within the Office of the Governor of California, and private legal practice. Mr. Topuzes has been deeply involved in his community, serving as director, trustee, advisor or founder to over a dozen leading organizations in sectors as diverse as banking, education, health, local, state and national agencies, and economic development. He received his Bachelor’s degree from San Diego State University and his JD from the Thomas Jefferson School of Law. He also holds an associate’s degree from San Diego Mesa College. He served in the United States Air Force and is an active member of the State Bar of California.
Chief Executive Officer
Goodwill Industries of Greater Detroit
Dan Varner has been the Chief Executive Officer of Goodwill Industries of Greater Detroit, a non-profit organization focused on employment training, education, support and job placement programs for residents of Greater Detroit, since 2016. Mr. Varner served as Chief Executive Officer at Excellent Schools Detroit from 2011 to 2016, and worked as a Program Officer at the W.K. Kellogg Foundation on both the Michigan and Education & Learning teams from 2010 to 2011. Mr. Varner was the cofounder of Think Detroit; he served as the Chief Operating/Finance Officer from 2000 to 2006, and the Chief Executive Officer of Think Detroit PAL, which was the result of a merger with the Detroit Police Athletic League, from 2006 to 2010. Mr. Varner earned a B.A. from the University of Michigan and a J.D. from the University of Michigan Law School.