Ownership Economy | April 1, 2024

Putting ownership and wealth-building strategies on center stage

David Bank
ImpactAlpha Editor

David Bank

“We are on the cusp of catalyzing an ownership movement,” WES’s Smitha Das and Gary Community Ventures’ Santhosh Ramdoss wrote on ImpactAlpha last year.

This year, that movement ran through February’s Neighborhood Economics conference, next week’s Employee Ownership Ideas Forum at the Aspen Institute, and next month’s Employee Ownership Equity Summit, hosted by Project Equity.

In October, ownership-economy practitioners will gather at SOCAP in San Francisco to share strategies, many of them previewed in ImpactAlpha (and in our database of more than three-dozen ownership economy funds).

Ownership themes run through the more than 400 sessions proposed through SOCAP Open (voting is open through April 14). Among the submissions: 

Building equity through ownership

LocalCode Kansas City’s Ajia Morris, ChicagoTREND’s Lyneir Richardson and John Hains of Community Investment Trust want to share how they are “Investing in commercial real estate in partnership with community stakeholders.” (For background see, “LocalCode adds community ownership to the real estate toolkit” and “Chicago TREND Real Estate Fund raises $10 million to create real estate ownership for Black residents.)

Perpetual purpose trust

The founders of the registered investment advisor Natural Investments sold out to a purpose trust governed by a trust stewardship committee (for background see, “This sustainable investment firm is now governed by a perpetual purpose trust”).

At SOCAP, Natural Investment’s Michael Kramer proposes to present a just and innovative ownership model for impact businesses.

Regional revolving loan fund

“Native community development financial institutions are the economic engines and pillars of their communities, hands down,” Oweesta’s Chrystel Cornelius said on an Agents of Impact call last summer (see, “Mobilizing capital in Indian Country”). The Mountain | Plains Regional Native CDFI Coalition is deploying $25 million to build the balance sheets of nine CDFIs and increase access to capital for Native entrepreneurs.

Tommy Robinson of Four Bands Community Fund, which stewards the revolving loan fund, and Naatosi Fish of Indigenous Impact Co., seek to present Native CDFIs sharing power to build wealth.

Equity and justice

Loren Taylor of Zaru Systems, Ben Wanzo of ESO Ventures and Michael Tubbs, founder of Tubbs Ventures and former mayor of Stockton, Calif., want to discuss “Sustaining reparations through inclusive ownership and participation.”

Native Roots Network’s Miki’ala Catalfano, Incite Focus’ Blair Evans and Kali Akuno of Cooperation Jackson are proposing a session on the People’s Network for Land & Liberation.

Jasmine Rashid, author of “The Financial Activist Playbook” is offering eight strategies for everyday people reclaiming wealth and collective well-being.”

And save a vote for “Equity: Napoleon Wallace and the Reconstruction of Black Wealth,” with Napoleon Wallace and Dorian Burton of Southern Reconstruction Fund, with ImpactAlpha’sDavid Bank.