Angela Barbash is Principal of Revalue, a registered investment advisory firm founded in 2013, located in Ypsilanti, Michigan. Revalue is a fee-only firm that serves values-driven organizations and investors by providing financial services designed for impact. Our vision is a financial system that is crafted to generate abundance for all. Ms. Barbash has dedicated 14 years in service to the community as a financial advisor in the Metro Detroit region. She studied Cultural Anthropology and History at Eastern Michigan University and began her professional career at the Michigan Small Business Development Center (MI-SBDC) before entering the financial services sector.
Revalue is a founding member of United Way of Washtenaw County Financial Stability Coalition and the National Coalition for Community Capital. Additionally, Ms. Barbash currently volunteers with the following organizations: Planning Committee Member, Pitch Ypsi $5000 business plan competition; Treasurer, UpStart! Adrian business plan competition; and, Committee Member, New West Willow Neighborhood Association Fundraising Committee. Ms. Barbash provides mentorship and guidance to entrepreneurs, apprenticing financial advisors, and youth in her community. She is regarded as a subject matter expert on the topics of community capital, crowdfunding, local investing, impact investing, values-aligned employee benefits packages, and community-based investor education.
Cutting Edge Capital
Brian is an attorney with over twenty-five years of experience working for nonprofits, start-ups, and publicly-traded companies. As a principal of both Cutting Edge Capital and Cutting Edge Counsel, Brian’s work is now focused on direct public offerings, corporate structuring, and strategies for community capital to help build a more equitable economy. Brian has served as General Counsel for RSF Social Finance, Clean Power Finance, and LendZoan; and before that as Corporate Counsel for Sybase and Catellus Development Corporation. He earned his J.D. from the University of the Pacific McGeorge School of Law and started his legal career with the North Bay law firm of Gaw Van Male. Brian is a member of the California Bar and serves on the boards of the Mount Diablo Music Education Foundation, the Neto Community Network, and the National Coalition for Community Capital (NC3).
Deeply Rooted Produce
Dazmonique Carr is passionate about health, exercise and education and loves to share what she knows with her community members. She received a Bachelor’s of Science in Kinesiology: Exercise and Sports Science and a Master’s of Arts in a shared curriclum of Sports Administration and Community Health, both from Wayne State University (Detroit, MI). During her years at WSU she spent a lot of time volunteering and working in the food service industry and founded a student organization on campus called Students Feeding Students(SFS). The goal of SFS was to provide students with free, healthy meals on a monthly basis. She expanded the work of the student organization to develop Deeply Rooted Produce with a goal to increase healthy and local food access to underserved populations in Detroit and educate community members about healthy living.
George Cook is the Co-Founder and CEO of Honeycomb Credit, a Pittsburgh-based technology company that allows locally owned small businesses to borrow expansion loans from their own loyal customers and fans. George is a sixth-generation community banker and his family has been running a community bank in rural Appalachia for more than 130 years. Prior to founding Honeycomb Credit and in addition to his community banking experience, George worked for TransUnion to develop state-of-the-art tools to help lenders use data analytics to more quickly and fairly extend credit. George holds a Bachelor’s degree in Economics and Statistics from George Washington University and an MBA from the Tuck School of Business at Dartmouth College.
Locavesting & Investibule
Amy Cortese is a Brooklyn, NY-based journalist whose work has appeared in publications including the New York Times and Business Week, and author of the book Locavesting, which chronicled the local investing movement. She is editor of Locavesting.com, a media & educational site that covers the emerging community capital field. Most recently, she co-founded investibule.co, an aggregation platform for community-based offerings spanning Kiva loans to JOBS Act crowdfunding, and helped to found NC3. She is also a founding member of the National Coalition for Community Capital (NC3).
Michigan Economic Development Corporation
Katharine Czarnecki is Senior Vice President at the Michigan Economic Development Corporation (MEDC) where she oversees operations and management of the Community Development unit. Throughout her diverse career in economic development, Katharine Czarnecki has sought to bring people together to find the best solution to a common question: How can a community be a thriving place to live, attractive venue to operate a successful business and have a strong identity that shapes communal values at the heart of the promise of a better tomorrow?
Under Katharine’s leadership, the state’s chief business marketing arm and economic development agency has worked closely with community partners to create initiatives to improve main streets, renovate and preserve historical sites, prepare communities so they will be ready and attractive to developers, facilitate crowdfunding campaigns, and promote key development properties to developers outside of Michigan.
Before joining the MEDC, Katharine worked in several Michigan communities, including at the Lansing Regional Chamber of Commerce. She is a graduate of the University of Georgia, where she earned a Bachelor’s degree in Economics. In addition, Katharine has a Master’s degree in Urban Planning from Michigan State University. She lives in East Lansing with her husband and two daughters.
Detroit Community Wealth Fund
As Executive Director of the Detroit Community Wealth Fund, Margo is dedicated to creating a more equitable economy in Detroit and beyond. Raised in Virginia, Margo holds a Bachelors in Liberal Arts from Hampshire College, and an MSW from the University of Michigan. Margo has experience in supporting and growing businesses and non-profits, especially ones that prioritize worker ownership and youth development. She is a founding member of The Tricycle Collective, a non-profit that has raised over $120,000 families facing tax foreclosure in Detroit. She is the founder of the annual Detroit Kite Festival, and is board member of the United Community Housing Coalition.
Cooperative Energy Futures
Timothy is the co-founder and General Manager of Cooperative Energy Futures (CEF), an energy efficiency and community-owned clean energy cooperative based serving members across Minnesota since 2009. CEF has financed and developed 6.9MW (~$16M) of low-income accessible community solar that is cooperatively owned and operated across urban, suburban, and rural Minnesota, offsetting the utility bills of over 700 Minnesota households for the next 25 years. Timothy is also a coconvenor of Minneapolis Energy Options (now Community Power), which has secured the nation’s first city-utility Clean Energy Partnership in Minneapolis, and supports the partnership as a member of its Energy Vision Advisory Committee, helping guide program development, policy, and capacity building for energy and climate solutions across Minneapolis and statewide. Timothy engages in national climate action and energy democracy innovation as Powershift Network member representative and as a participant in the REAMP network. Timothy also helped found Grand Aspirations, which has supported teams of youth innovators in 16 cities nationwide to create green economic opportunity for themselves and their communities through innovative energy efficiency, green industry, sustainable food, transit access, and clean energy solutions. Timothy has also been recognized as a Goldman Sachs Global Leader, a Minneapolis Global Shaper, and was a recipient of the 2009 Mario Savio Award.
Joule Community Power
Steve is Chief Legal Officer and Senior Vice President for Joule Community Power, a leader in Community Choice Aggregation (CCA). Steve has developed of Joule’s CCA model which enables localities to take control of their energy choices by partnering with local organizations, providing revenue to local energy projects; and implementing local energy projects such as Community Solar.
Steve creates key business relationships and negotiates agreements with energy efficiency providers, funders, utilities and municipalities. He successfully petitioned the NY Public Service Commission to implement the first CCA program in New York, and is working on a model to develop local ownership of local energy projects.
Before Joule, Steve practiced law in private practice and in-house with Clean Tech, IT, and start-up companies. He co-founded and serves on the Board of Directors of CSRHub, LLC, a web-based ratings service that evaluates the corporate social responsibility performance of nearly 5,000 companies. He also serves on the Board of Local Farms Fund, a community impact farmland investment fund that invests in local and sustainable farms in New York.
A nonprofit leader and social entrepreneur, Rodney Foxworth is Executive Director of BALLE (Business Alliance for Local Living Economies), a network of entrepreneurial leaders working to advance equitable economic opportunities through entrepreneurship and local business ownership in marginalized communities throughout the U.S. and Canada.
Previously, he was CEO and Founder of Invested Impact, a consulting firm focused on economic development, philanthropy, and social innovation, and co-founder and Strategy Advisor of Impact Hub Baltimore. Prior to founding Invested Impact, Rodney was community manager at BMe, a national network of black male leaders and entrepreneurs. Rodney has also served as program manager at Job Opportunities Task Force, a policy advocacy and workforce development organization. Additionally, he has been a consultant to the Annie E. Casey Foundation, Calvert Impact Capital, and the John S. and James L. Knight Foundation, among others.
Rodney is a BALLE Fellow, Next City Vanguard, and Baltimore Business Journal “40 under 40” honoree. He is featured in the Washington Post bestseller, “Reach: 40 Black Men Speak on Living, Leading, and Succeeding.” Rodney serves on the board of Justice Funders and SOCAP.
Oran Hesterman, PhD.
Fair Food Network
Oran Hesterman, PhD. is the founder and CEO of Fair Food Network (FFN), a national nonprofit advancing programs, partnerships, and policies that improve health, ignite local economies, and open opportunities for all – especially in the most underserved communities. Since 2009, FFN’s signature program, Double Up Food Bucks, has become a national model for healthy food incentives. Through Fair Food Fund, FFN’s impact investing arm, the organization invests in entrepreneurs who are strengthening communities and local economies through food.
Through writing, speaking, and leadership, Oran has helped to grow and shape sustainable agriculture and food systems work in America. His 2011 book, Fair Food: Growing a Healthy, Sustainable Food System for All, heralded by The New York Times as “an important, accessible book on a crucial subject” and is required reading at colleges and universities across the country. He remains a leading voice in the field partnering with policymakers, philanthropy, and diverse practitioners to make healthy food accessible and opportunity possible for all.
Our Crowd Rocks
Bill Huston educates entrepreneurs, nonprofits, and small businesses on how to use crowdfunding strategically to help them attain their financial, marketing, and business goals. Bill has over 15 years of experience in digital marketing, business development, and fundraising for nonprofits, small businesses, and startups. Ranked as one of the top 19 crowdfunding consultants globally by Inc. Magazine and a sought after speaker. Bill works as Business Development Consultant for the innovative and cutting edge New Legacy Reentry Corp and is the primary driver for their Project WE community economic development initiative that utilizes CIFs and Regulation Crowdfunding for capital formation.
Bill co-founded Our Crowd Rocks in 2014, a crowdfunding consulting and digital marketing company based in Louisville, Kentucky. He also serves as a board member of the National Coalition for Community Capital (NC3) and CMO of the Fund for West Louisville.
Jackson Koeppel is Soulardarity‘s Executive Director. He grew up in Manhattan, went to college in Oberlin, OH, and woke up in West Virginia. He has been working on environmental justice issues since seeing the impacts of mountaintop removal coal mining in West Virginia and hydraulic fracturing for natural gas in Ohio. He is working on Soulardarity because he believes that we need concrete alternatives to the fossil fuel economy that work for communities, and that the communities most negatively impacted are going to lead the creation of those alternatives.
He has received numerous accolades and acknowledgements for his work, including the Brower Youth Award 2014, the Vehicle of Change contest in 2017, and the Detroit Innovation Fellowship. In addition to his work with Soulardarity, he is a Wayne State student, member of Resource Generation, and avid collector of Hawaiian shirts.
Lean & Green Michigan
Bali Kumar is Chief Executive Officer of Lean & Green Michigan, where he helps develop and deploy the PACE marketplace across Michigan. He is currently a fellow with the Urban Land Institute, has been a fellow with the New Leaders Council, he serves on the Board of Directors of the Michigan League of Conservation Voters and Brilliant Detroit, and he is an appointee of Governor Whitmer on the Michigan Utility Consumer Participation Board.
Previously, Bali served as the Executive Director of the Wayne County Land Bank Corporation, a public body specializing in restoring blighted properties and returning these properties to productive use. Bali holds a B.A. from Brown University, an M.Sc. from the London School of Economics, and a J.D. from the University of California, Berkeley.
City of Adrian, MI
Chris Miller is the lead economic and downtown developer for the City of Adrian, Michigan. He came to his position with a background in business, a career in education in private and international schools, and non-profit and government leadership work. He worked as a city commissioner and Downtown Development Authority board member, and serves in leadership positions on a number of non-profit boards.
Chris became an advocate for Community Capital through his work on Michigan’s investment crowdfunding law, the MILE Act. He led the work to establish the law after being inspired by Amy Cortese and her book, Locavesting. After passage of Michigan’s law, he was contracted by the Michigan Municipal League to bring the message of investment crowdfunding and community capital to communities all across Michigan, and he continues to work with communities and businesses anxious to activate local capital.
Chris has been a presenter at a number of conferences and workshops. Together with a group of colleagues from across the country, Chris is a founding board member of the National Coalition for Community Capital (NC3), an entity dedicated to the propagation of the aggregation and investment of community capital to create economically sustainable communities of all sizes.
As a local advocate, Chris was part of the first capital raise using Michigan’s investment crowdfunding law in 2014, was involved in the creation of the first public spaces crowdfunding match program in the country, established a local business plan competition, and created an investment accelerator, where local investors meet with local entrepreneurs.
Port Covington Development Team
Alexandra Mills is passionate about the equitable economic development of low-income and black communities. She is an Impact Investment Associate with the Port Covington Development Team and proud former public school educator. Port Covington is one of the largest urban redevelopments in the country, and Alexandra works with her team to ensure this development meaningfully benefits the residents of Baltimore City. In partnership with schools and leaders across nonprofit and business, she develops, implements, and supports initiatives for small women and minority-owned businesses, youth education and development, and community revitalization. After graduating magna cum laude from the University of Maryland, Baltimore County, Alexandra taught in Baltimore City, Washington, D.C., and Malaysia as a Fulbright Scholar.
Michigan Municipal League
Melissa Milton-Pung is a Civic Innovation Labs program coordinator at the Michigan Municipal League. As a Federally-qualified architectural historian, her expertise is in place-based economic development initiatives, historic rehabilitation, and heritage tourism. She holds a BA in Public History from Western Michigan University and a Master of Historic Preservation from the University of Kentucky College of Architecture, where her research created the Commonwealth’s first historic property tax credit. Melissa is also adjunct faculty in Historic Preservation at Eastern Michigan University and a past president of the Michigan Historic Preservation Network (MHPN).
Prior to joining the League in 2017, Melissa spent more than a decade as economic development & historic preservation project manager for Washtenaw County (Ann Arbor), and worked in cultural resource consulting.
Jaffe, Raitt, Heuer & Weiss, PC & Council of Michigan Foundations
Jennifer Miller Oertel is a shareholder in the law firm of Jaffe Raitt Heuer & Weiss, PC where she leads the firm’s Tax-exempt Organizations and Impact Investing Group. With a background in private and public securities regulation, private equity and mergers & acquisitions, Jennifer utilizes her corporate law and governance skills to assist family and corporate foundations, community foundations, public charities, regional associations, trade and labor associations, chambers of commerce, religious organizations and other tax-exempt organizations as well as impact investors, impact funds, and social enterprises, in all aspects of their business.
Jennifer serves as co-chair of the Nonprofit Corporations Committee (Business Law Section) of the State Bar of Michigan, which holds the responsibility of reviewing and updating the state’s laws governing nonprofit corporations in addition to reviewing legislation that regulates the solicitation of charitable contributions. Council of Michigan Foundations recently appointed Jennifer as the first-ever Expert In Residence to lead efforts to further develop and support Michigan’s impact investing ecosystem, and she has also been engaged by national groups to design a framework to advance the impact investing ecosystem across the country. Jennifer was appointed by the Council on Foundations as legal reviewer for the National Standards Board and was the founding Vice Chair of the Michigan chapter of Social Enterprise Alliance. She is one of five judges of “Crain’s Best Managed Nonprofits” and regulary judges social enterprise business plan competitions. Elected as a “Leader in the Law” and to “dBusiness Top Lawyers” and “Superlawyers,” Jennifer serves on the Impact Investing committee of the Council of Michigan Foundations as well as the Impact Investing Advisory Committee of the Case Foundation in DC. In 2015, Jennifer’s impact investing practice was highlighted by National Law Journal in electing Jaffe as one of 20 firms across the country (the only one in Michigan) to its “Mid-Size Hotlist.”
Jennifer is highly proficient in Spanish, has a background in social work and evaluation, and holds a certificate in nonprofit management from Georgetown University. She has spoken and published both locally and nationally on impact investing and philanthropy and has served as a trustee of several for-impact organizations, winning many awards for her volunteerism.
Kwaku Osei is the founder of Cooperative Capital, a community-based private equity fund that enables residents to pool their money together to make promising investments within their community. He was previously an Executive Associate at Rock Ventures where he worked on special projects with Dan Gilbert and served as CEO to Project X LLC, a $1MM+ tech spinout of Rock Ventures. Prior to Rock Ventures he was at Deloitte Consulting in DC, where he focused on technology, business process reengineering, strategic change and communications for various clients.
Honing his entrepreneurial spirit, Kwaku has started 7 businesses since he was 14; he earned his Bachelor of Science in Marketing from Virginia Commonwealth University (VCU) Honor’s College, where he graduated Magna Cum Laude with University Honors. He currently serves on the boards of: The Economic Development Corporation of the City of Detroit, Community Development Advocates for Detroit (CDAD), and Bridging Communities, Inc.
Eve is the founder and CEO of Small Change, a real estate equity crowdfunding platform that raises money for meaningful real estate projects building better cities everywhere. Through Small Change, Eve has created a fluid and compliant platform that brings impact investment opportunities to everyone who cares about cities and wants to make change.
Eve’s past led her directly to Small Change. As the founder of several successful companies she has been able to test theories and bring ideas to life. Using these companies as vehicles, she developed a dozen buildings in blighted neighborhoods, launched a Pittsburgh e-zine called Pop City, and established downtown Pittsburgh’s first co-working space. She founded a non-profit called cityLAB and built Pittsburgh’s first tiny house. She also co-founded Pittsburgh’s wildly successful Open Streets program. All of these experiences have helped Eve become one of the foremost thinkers on urban change. She is recognized and sought after globally for her expertise.
Jonny is originally from the UK, where he started his career in strategy consulting with Oliver Wyman. After working in the firm’s Aviation, Retail and CPG practices, he joined the non-profit Kiva.org in 2011, as the Founder and Director of Kiva Zip, a direct, peer-to-peer lending pilot (later rebranded as Kiva U.S.). After six years leading the growth of Kiva U.S. ($25M in microloans disbursed to 5,000 small business owners in every state in America, crowdfunded by 100,000 lenders), in early 2018 Jonny joined Wefunder, a Public Benefit Corporation crowdfunding equity and debt investments in startups and small businesses up to $1M.
Jonny is Wefunder‘s Director of Business Development, and is responsible for finding great companies that are excited to use crowdfunding to gain customers and capital. Jonny serves on the Board of Directors of the Association for Enterprise Opportunity (AEO), and the Federal Reserve Board’s Community Advisory Council. He has a degree in History from the University of Cambridge, and his proudest accomplishments are to be the husband of Ali and the dad of Felicity and Carlyle.
Y. Elaine Rasmussen
Social Impact Strategies Group & ConnectUP!
Ms. Y. Elaine Rasmussen is Founder and CEO of Social Impact Strategies Group (SISG) a Black/Native-led certified B-corp social enterprise. SISG provides futurism, social impact and economic development consulting, education workshops for investors and womxn entrepreneurs, and produces the annual ConnectUP! MN Summit that promotes and grows inclusive and equitable entrepreneur ecosystems that drive positive, sustainable social impact grounded in economic justice. She currently serves on the boards of MNVest, MDI, Nexus Community Partners, Swift Foundation and the Executive Committee for the Village Financial Cooperative, the first Black-led credit union in north Minneapolis. Rasmussen is a Cordes Fellow and RSF Social Finance Integrated Capital Fellow.
Author & Documentarian
Milk Money VT
Ms. Schibli is an experienced entrepreneur, forward thinker and creative problem solver. She’s used technology as a way to introduce new online communities and markets. Her recent role as co-founder and CEO of Milk Money Vermont, an online equity crowd-funding platform connecting all Vermonters with opportunities to invest in Vermont businesses, included not only creating the platform but also the development and education of a new market. In 2017, Milk Money won Vermont Businesses For Social Responsibility’s (VBSR) Innovation and Inspiration Award. Her recent area of focus has been in the funding ecosystem for Vermont businesses by connecting the players while educating businesses of their funding options in a centralized place.
Ms. Schibli successfully guided Milk Money through its recent acquisition by The Vermont Innovation Commons where she continues to pursue ways to grow the Community Capital movement and ways the Milk Money platform can support this effort.
Initiative for Local Capital
Janice is the founder of the Initiative for Local Capital and co-founder of Milk Money VT, an intrastate investment crowdfunding platform driving investment to local Vermont businesses. She is an entrepreneur and marketing/finance professional with 20 years’ experience in brand management, strategic planning, and financial analysis. Previously, she served as the Founder/CEO of TrueBody Products, a founding board member/Executive Director of Local First Vermont, and the CFO/VP Operations of Mamava, Inc. She currently serves on the board of the National Coalition for Community Capital (NC3) and as the chair of Slow Money Vermont.
Economist, Attorney, Author, & Entrepreneur
Michael H. Shuman is an economist, attorney, author, and entrepreneur, and a leading visionary on community economics. He’s director of Local Economy Programs for Telesis Corporation, a nonprofit affordable housing company, and currently an adjunct instructor at Bard Business School in New York City and at Simon Fraser University in Vancouver. He’s also a Fellow at Cutting Edge Capital and at the Post-Carbon Institute, and a founding board member of the Business Alliance for Local Living Economies (BALLE) and the National Coalition for Community Capital (NC3). He is credited with being one of the architects of the 2012 JOBS Act and dozens of state laws overhauling securities regulation of crowdfunding.
He has authored, coauthored, or edited nine books. His most recent book is The Local Economy Solution: How Innovative, Self-Financing Pollinator Enterprises Can Grow Jobs and Prosperity. One of his previous books, The Small Mart Revolution: How Local Businesses Are Beating the Global Competition (Berrett-Koehler, 2006), received a bronze prize from the Independent Publishers Association for best business book of 2006. A prolific speaker, Shuman has given an average of more than one invited talk per week, mostly to local governments and universities, for the past 30 years in nearly every U.S. state and more than a dozen countries.
National Regulatory Research Institute (NRRI)
Tom Stanton is Principal Researcher, Energy and Environment, at the National Regulatory Research Institute (NRRI), where he has worked since fall 2010. Tom specializes in policy research for distributed energy resources, energy efficiency, renewable energy, grid modernization, and global climate change. A life-long resident of Michigan, Tom worked for Michigan’s state government for over 32 years, with 10 years at the State Energy Office and over 22 years as a member of the Michigan Public Service Commission Staff. In 2006-08, Mr. Stanton was instrumental in helping to launch the energy project financing entity known as “Michigan SavesSM” (www.michigansaves.org), a 501(c)3 non-profit dedicated to making energy improvements easier for all Michigan energy consumers.
Mr. Stanton earned a B.A. in Communications and M.A. in Journalism, both from Michigan State University, and an M.S. in Public Administration from Western Michigan University.