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All Sessions

Name of Session: Topic: Date: Time: (central time) Host Reserve Bank:
Community Investment 12/10/13 2:00 PM - 3:15 PM

This session will highlight the work that four Federal Reserve Banks have done to create a dialogue for older industrial cities who are working to attract new residents and investments. The Banks have organized a series of four video conference and in-person meetings involving community leaders in Baltimore, Cleveland, Detroit and Philadelphia. This audioconference will focus on what was learned in the second session of the series, the roles of anchor institutions and cultural and art organizations have played and can play in cities.

Speakers will include representatives from the four participating Federal Reserve Banks and others who have participated in this dialogue.

  • Ted Howard, The Democracy Collaborative
  • Ellen Janes, Federal Reserve Bank of Richmond
  • Mary Helen Petrus, Federal Reserve Bank of Cleveland
  • Amy Lempert, Federal Reserve Bank of Philadelphia
  • Robin Newberger, Federal Reserve Bank of Chicago


Community Investment 11/12/13 2:00 PM - 3:00 PM Kansas City

This session will explore ways the Community Reinvestment Act (CRA) can support workforce development outcomes. While the CRA has been an important incentive for support of housing and community development programs, it has not played a significant role in funding of workforce development programs. Insight into how the CRA has been used by workforce investment boards will be discussed based on findings from a new survey of workforce development professionals. An overview of the CRA will then provide the basis for identifying additional options for extending its use to support workforce programs.

The session will consider:

  • The goals, policies and implementation of the CRA,
  • Ways the CRA can be used to support workforce programs, and
  • Strategies for workforce professionals to engage the support of financial institutions.

The presenters are:

  • Ariel Cisneros, senior community development advisor, Federal Reserve Bank of Kansas City
  • Jim Enright, senior examiner, Federal Reserve Bank of Kansas City
  • Clyde McQueen, president and CEO, Full Employment Council
  • Steven Shepelwich, senior community development advisor, Federal Reserve Bank of Kansas City (moderator)
Community Investment 09/10/13 2:00 PM - 3:00 PM

As economic hardship lingers, communities across rural America are looking for solutions to spur revitalization and create opportunities for renewal.   In response, a number of towns and small metros in rural areas are taking ownership of their futures by capitalizing on the assets they already have and establishing entrepreneurship-based economic development models.  The growth and development of entrepreneurs is an important strategy for generating more capital, jobs and overall prosperity for rural residents.  This session will explore the necessary components of an entrepreneurship-based economic development model, explain the underpinnings of this community development approach, and offer several examples of what successful entrepreneurial initiatives look like across rural America.  

Speakers include:

  • Dell Gines, Senior Community Development Advisor, Federal Reserve Bank of Kansas City
  • Don Macke, Co-Director, Center for Rural Entrepreneurship
Community Investment 08/13/13 1:00 PM - 2:00 PM San Francisco

The Robert Wood Johnson Foundation’s Commission to Build a Healthier America successfully brought to the attention of the nation a startling fact: your zip code is more important than your genetic code in determining your health. But as impressive as the Commission’s report was, one thing it did not do was explain how to improve zip codes as a means to improve the overall health of the nation. Fortunately, there is an entire industry—community development—with annual resources in the tens of billions of dollars, that is in the zip code improving business. The time to merge these two approaches—ameliorating the social determinants of health and revitalizing low-income neighborhoods—is now. This session will explore this idea and offer several examples of successful partnerships between the community development and health sectors. It will also discuss how federal policies, such as the Affordable Care Act and the nonprofit hospital Community Benefit obligation, may create opportunities for collaboration in the future.

Economic Development 07/09/13 2:00 PM - 3:00 PM Kansas City

This session will present findings from recent research on how the low- and moderate-income (LMI) population has been affected by the Great Recession and subsequent recovery. The LMI population has fared worse overall than higher-income groups and as well as faced unique, adverse conditions on several fronts. This research is based on a summary of quantitative and qualitative data collected through a quarterly survey of organizations that provide services to LMI clients.

The session will consider:

  • How the LMI population has fared relative to other income segments,
  • Changes and challenges experienced relative to job availability, credit access, affordable housing, and basic needs, and
  • Ways the findings can inform service design and delivery.

The presenters are:

  • Kelly Edmiston, senior economist, Federal Reserve Bank of Kansas City
  • Ona Porter, executive director, Prosperity Works
  • Steven Shepelwich, senior community affairs advisor, Federal Reserve Bank of Kansas City (moderator)
03/20/13 1:00 PM - 2:00 PM

This session will focus on the primary findings of the 2011 FDIC National Survey of Unbanked and Underbanked Households (Household Survey) released in September 2012.  The FDIC sponsored this survey every two years to collect data on the number of U.S. households that are unbanked and underbanked, their demographic characteristics, and their reasons for being unbanked and underbanked.

The Household Survey was conducted in June 2011 by the U.S. Census Bureau as a special supplement to the Current Population Survey (CPS).  Teamed with the rich demographic and geographic data available through the CPS, this survey continues to present a wealth of previously unavailable data on unbanked and underbanked households that are available at the national, state, and large metropolitan statistical area (MSA) levels.

Yazmin Osaki and Susan Burhouse from the FDIC will present.

03/13/13 2:30 PM - 3:30 PM Board of Governors

In January 2013, thirteen of the mortgage servicers subject to the Independent Foreclosure Review reached an agreement with federal regulators to pay more than $9.3 billion in cash payments and other assistance to help borrowers.

As a result of this agreement, the participating servicers have ceased the Independent Foreclosure Review, which involved case-by-case reviews, and replaced it with a broader framework allowing eligible borrowers to receive compensation more quickly.

Presenters Suzanne Killian (Federal Reserve Board of Governors) and Ted Wartell (Office of the Comptroller of the Currency) will provide additional details on the payment agreement.

We want your questions! So please submit your questions before the call, and we'll have time during the call for questions as well.

Consumer Finance 11/07/12 1:00 PM - 2:15 PM St. Louis

In late 2012, the St. Louis Fed developed a new framework around Household Financial Stability -- or HFS -- with a focus on household balance sheets. The project’s three key questions are:

  • What’s the state of the household balance sheets?
  • Why do they matter for family well-being and for economic growth?
  • What can policymakers, researchers, and practitioners and others do to improve them?

Household balance sheets have been relatively under-studied yet increasingly recognized as important to achieving both family economic security and national economic recovery.  Many economists report that, by 2007, balance sheets reached their worst condition since the Great Depression.  And rebuilding them entails significant challenges to both families and policymakers nationwide. 

Many in the Federal Reserve System have been studying family balance sheets for years. What we hope to offer is a broad conceptual framework, a common table where those throughout the System and beyond can learn and work together. This session will:

  • summarize the rationale for focusing on household balance sheets,
  • briefly describe the project's current and planned activities, and
  • discuss new findings about losses in household wealth following the Great Recession. 

Household wealth declined almost $17 trillion in inflation-adjusted terms, or 26 percent, from its peak in mid-2007 to the trough in early 2009.  Economists Ray Boshara, Bill Emmons and Brian Noeth will discuss their finding that wealth losses hit older, wealthier Americans (who had the most to lose) the hardest in terms of absolute dollars, but affected younger, less-educated and minority households the most in terms of percentage.  What are the implications of the research for further research, community practice, and for public policy?

To register, enter your email address in the Join the Call! box to the right.

To ask questions for the speakers to answer during the call, email, and we will cover as many as possible during the Q&A session.

10/16/12 2:00 PM - 3:00 PM Board of Governors

Thousands of current or former homeowners that were in foreclosure in 2009 or 2010 may be eligible for compensation or other remedy due to foreclosure errors.  Join a Connecting Communities® audioconference on Tuesday, October 16 from 3:00-4:00pm EST to learn more about the Independent Foreclosure Review (IFR) process and how to spread the word to potentially eligible borrowers.  

The deadline for the IFR process has been extended to the end of 2012.  Homeowners who were in foreclosure with one of 14 large mortgage services in 2009 or 2010, and believe that they were financially harmed due to errors in the foreclosure process, can request an independent review to determine if they are eligible for compensation.  

This audioconference will provide an overview of the history and terms of the IFR agreement, including who is eligible and how they can request a review.  In addition, the session will provide information to homeowners that think they might be eligible for a review and resources for housing counselors to assist eligible homeowners.  Lastly, the session will provide suggestions as to how community groups can spread the word on IFR and encourage eligible families to request an independent review.

Please submit your questions in advance to, and we will cover as many of them as possible.

To register, enter your email address in the Join the Call! box to the right.

08/29/12 2:00 PM - 3:15 PM

Ask the Speakers Questions  

For questions for the speakers DURING the call, email, and we will cover as many of them as possible during the Q&A session.

To register, enter your email address in the Join the Call! box to the right.

Student loan debt now surpasses the $1 trillion mark, and many students struggle to make their payments.

Join this audioconference to learn about:

  • The drivers of the rising levels of student loan debt
  • The reasons contributing to the increased volume of student loan delinquencies and defaults
  • The segment of student populations that may be especially impacted
  • Initiatives to address the needs of student borrowers 


  • Sandy Baum, Senior Fellow, Graduate School of Education and Human Development, The George Washington University
  • Rohit Chopra, Student Loan Ombudsman, Consumer Financial Protection Bureau
  • Ajita Talwalker, Senior Policy Advisor, Office of the Undersecretary, Department of Education

Ask the Speakers Questions  

For questions for the speakers DURING the call, email, and we will cover as many of them as possible during the Q&A session.

To register, enter your email address in the Join the Call! box to the right.

Housing 08/01/12 2:00 PM - 3:00 PM Minneapolis

Over the past decade, land banks have emerged as flexible housing-stabilization tools that municipalities can use to manage excess residential property. Municipalities have formed and programmed these property-disposition organizations in response to variables in their local housing markets, such as the acquisition costs of excess properties, the ownership status of vacant and abandoned property, and the local demand for housing. As a result, the roles and effectiveness of land banks vary from city to city. Through presentations by academics and practitioners, this Connecting Communities forum will explore how land banks can best operate given their local housing and demographic conditions.

Speakers for this session include:

Frank Alexander, Sam Nunn Professor of Law, Emory University School of Law

Thomas Fitzpatrick, Economist, the Federal Reserve Bank of Cleveland

Chris Norman, Executive Director, Fulton County/City of Atlanta Land Bank Authority

The session has been organized by the Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis. Jacob Wascalus, Community Development Project Manager, Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis, will serve as moderator.

Housing 07/13/12 2:30 PM - 3:30 PM Board of Governors

During the recent financial crisis, banking institutions have experienced a rise in Real Estate Owned (REO) property caused by general weaknesses in the housing market, including increases in delinquencies and defaults, declines in house prices, and deficiencies in the structure of a number of commercial real estate (CRE) financings. 

In light of these extraordinary conditions, the Federal Reserve Board recently reminded banking institutions and examiners (under its supervision) of the regulations and policies associated with the management and disposition of REO property. These policies address the legal, financial, and reputational risks associated with REO management and disposition strategies.

The session will convey the purpose for these policies and discuss implementation issues to ensure that institutional practices do not adversely impact consumers and communities.

Economic Development 05/29/12 2:30 PM - 4:00 PM

This session will highlight research conducted by the Boston, Chicago and Philadelphia Feds on older industrial cities, with a particular focus on smaller cities. The session will consider:

  • What are the key elements or themes that explain why certain cities are doing better than others?
  • What strategies have smaller industrial cities utilized to deal with the decline in manufacturing jobs, demographic changes and economic trends?
  • What has been the role of various sectors (government, private and philanthropic)?
  • How can best practices be transferred from one community to the other?

Presenters will share the findings from various research initiatives and engage the audience in thinking about how to build a network of practitioners and policymakers around smaller industrial cities.  The presenters are:

  • Jeremiah Boyle, Community Development and Policy Studies – Federal Reserve Bank of Chicago
  • Yolanda Kodrzycki, New England Public Policy Center – Federal Reserve Bank of Boston
  • Alan Mallach, Visiting Scholar – Federal Reserve Bank of Philadelphia 


  • Moderator: Prabal Chakrabarti, Regional and Community Outreach  – Federal Reserve Bank of Boston
  • Facilitator: Sol Carbonell, Regional and Community Outreach  – Federal Reserve Bank of Boston
Community Investment 03/21/12 1:00 PM - 2:15 PM

An interactive audioconference offered as part of the Federal Reserve Bank system's "Connecting Communities" series.

Wednesday, March 21, 2:00 - 3:15 p.m. ET

Please join us for an interactive session that will explore creative uses of data and technology to promote public and private investment in transitional communities--those communities with significant, perhaps erstwhile, strengths and assets but also declining housing values and population. 

This audioconference will feature presentations by redevelopment leaders from Baltimore, Cleveland and Philadelphia, where innovative and cost-effective, market-based strategies are being used to inform local decision-making, mobilize support and attract investment. 

  • Ira Goldstein - Director, Policy Solutions, The Reinvestment Fund
  • Justin Fleming - Program Officer, Neighborhood Progress, Inc.
  • Michael Braverman - Deputy Commissioner, Housing and Community Development, City of Baltimore

Participants will have an opportunity to pose questions to the presenters both prior to and during the session. Please send your questions to

Economic Development 10/13/11 1:00 PM - 2:15 PM San Francisco

The impact of foreclosure is felt in many ways, and from a financial management perspective one of the most enduring aspects is the impact on an individual’s credit score. A credit score is vital given its pervasive role as a proxy for evaluating personal risk in more and more areas including employment, rental housing and even insurance. A low credit score can exacerbate a household’s financial instability as additional income is used to pay the rising cost of debt service, yet there are tools that can assist in the credit rebuilding process. While the severity and duration of blemished credit depends on many factors and will be unique for every household, understanding the credit rebuilding process is of key importance for a consumer’s financial future.

This session will provide an overview of the range of issues households and communities may face after foreclosure with an emphasis on tools for rebuilding credit. A panel of subject matter experts will provide an overview of the multifaceted process of foreclosure recovery; discuss the impact of foreclosure and other credit disruptions on one’s credit score; and provide insight into the credit counseling industry and tools available to address credit rebuilding.

The target audience for this session includes community and economic development practitioners; bankers; consumer and community advocates; and state and local government representatives involved in foreclosure recovery issues.

This 75-minute call will consist of a 60-minute slide and audio presentation followed by a 15-minute interactive question-and-answer period.

Speakers for this session include:

  • Lena Robinson, Regional Manager, Community Development, Federal Reserve Bank of San Francisco
  • Frederic Huynh, Principal Scientist, FICO
  • Joy Thormodsgard, President & CEO, SurePath Credit Counseling
  • Jonathan Harrison, CEO, Emerge

The session will be moderated by Melody Nava, Regional Manager, Community Development, Federal Reserve Bank of San Francisco

The session has been organized by the Federal Reserve Bank of San Francisco in partnership with the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis.

Consumer Finance 09/08/11 noon - 1:00 PM Richmond

This call will provide participants with an opportunity to learn about how microfinance can serve as a catalyst to increasing economic opportunity in low- to moderate-income communities in the U.S.

Listeners will hear about the diversity of the microfinance industry and will learn about one model, the Grameen microfinance organization, founded in Bangladesh and replicated in developing countries.

During this session we will examine Grameen America’s rapid and recent growth in the U.S. market, discuss this model’s strengths and limitations, and will leave time to address participant questions.

As part of today's call, a video produced by the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis will be discussed; you can access the video either before or after the call today: "Lessons from Bangladesh: How Microfinance Can Work in America."

Guest Speakers include:

  • Tammie C. Hoy, Federal Reserve Bank of Richmond
  • Molly McGrath, Grameen America
  • Agnes Ubalde and Sarah Bennett, Wells Fargo
  • Tracey Greene-Dorsett, Z. Smith Reynolds Foundation

Session Moderator:

  • Kimberly Zeuli, Federal Reserve Bank of Richmond

The session has been organized by the Federal Reserve Bank of Richmond in partnership with the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis.