Charley Cummings, Walden Mutual Bank: Sustainable lending for sustainable food. Within the next few weeks, if everything goes according to plan, customers will make their first deposits in New Hampshire-based Walden Mutual Bank, the first mutual bank in the U.S. to be chartered in five decades. As a mutual, the bank’s depositors will also be shareholders, with voting rights on any change of control or corporate structure. About three dozen local leaders serve as “corporators,” who elect the bank’s board of directors. Hundreds of years old, mutual banks “were ripe for reinvention in the modern era,” says Walden's CEO Charley Cummings, who is racing a September 30 deadline for final regulatory approval. “The mutual structure truly offered the opportunity to build an institution for the long term, indefinitely.” Cummings launched Walden to fill a financing gap for farm and food businesses in New England and New York, where the resurgence of local, artisanal, often organic farm-to-table producers has made it the only region of the country where farmers, on average, are getting younger, not older.
The Week’s Dealflow
Deal spotlight: Addressing the nursing shortage. In the early months of the Covid pandemic, cheers would break out every evening in many cities to honor healthcare workers on the front lines. Nonetheless, many of these experienced health workers were soon leaving in droves due to burnout, long hours and insufficient pay. The U.S. could face a shortage of one million nurses by 2024. San Francisco-based Incredible Health raised $80 million this week to help fill the gap. The company’s algorithm-driven platform connects hospitals with nursing talent and helps nurses secure jobs they love and thrive. Incredible Health will use the Series B investment to expand from its California base and provide training, relocation and other services to the more than 10,000 nurses joining its platform each week. Base10 Partners, the lead investor in the round, will work with Incredible Health to provide scholarships to nursing students.
The Week’s Talent
Neo Gim Huay, managing director of the World Economic Forum’s Center for Nature and Climate, will join LGT Bank’s board of directors. En Lee, LGT’s head of sustainable and impact investments in Asia, will also join the board… Jared Blumenfeld, California Secretary for Environmental Protection and an Environmental Protection Agency official in the Obama Administration, is named president of the $3 billion climate organization Waverley Street Foundation.
The Week’s Jobs
Zeal Capital Partners is recruiting for several roles, including a chief of staff, investment analyst, and vice president of operations in Washington, D.C… Global Partnerships seeks an investor relations analyst in Seattle… Connect Humanity seeks a remote investment director or manager… New Markets Support Company is hiring a senior fund accountant and for several other roles in Chicago.
Editor’s note: This article is sponsored by Johnson & Johnson Impact Ventures, which supports ImpactAlpha’s Investing in Health coverage. In partnership with J&J Impact Ventures, ImpactAlpha is exploring the …