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In-Depth: Bankers Invited to Exploring Innovation Conference on Community Development Finance


Faith Weekly
Friday, April 1, 2011

During lean times, problems get magnified, but opportunities can arise—especially if you look at things a little differently. Difficult times can help reveal new paths to community development finance.

You can discover the possibilities at Exploring Innovation: A Conference on Community Development Finance on May 9-11 in St. Louis. This will be the third biennial Exploring Innovation conference sponsored by the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis, along with the Federal Reserve Banks of Atlanta, Dallas and Minneapolis. Organizers want to provide bankers and other conference-goers with real-world examples of innovative models that will address the financing of all aspects of thriving communities—from housing and infrastructure to community engagement and leadership development. Each of those contributes to vibrant, desirable places to live, work and play.

Bankers and CRA officers will learn about the latest in financial product innovations, investment platforms and green strategies being implemented by peer financial institutions, all geared to help enhance their institution’s CRA performance. Top community bankers from across the nation will share the secrets to being a top-notch community bank. Former community banker Governor Elizabeth Duke of the Fed’s Board of Governors will be one of the main speakers.

Sessions of interest for bankers include:

  • The Role of a Healthy Community Bank – Community banking experts from across the country will share their secrets in this panel discussion for meeting CRA requirements by creating products, making investments and delivering services that meet their community’s most pressing needs.
  • Changing Savings Behavior with Workplace Loans & Personal Financial Coaching: A Sustainable, Scalable Solution – Learn sustainable and scalable strategies aimed at changing savings behavior among low-income, underbanked workers to transition them to savings and mainstream bank products.
  • Innovations in Community Investing: Make Your Money Matter – Learn how a bank has leveraged technology to work with unbanked and underbanked individuals and families. Bankers will see how they might implement similar strategies to meet the needs of low- and moderate-income populations in their communities, stabilize neighborhoods and position themselves for favorable CRA consideration for their efforts.

See full details and register at Highlights from the 2009 conference can be found at


Exploring Innovation Speaker Gov. Elizabeth Duke Talks about Her Community Banking Experience