I'm very pleased to release the CDFI Fund's new five-year Strategic Plan: Impact and Excellence. You can read it here.
As you’ll see, the strategic plan is concise - just 12 pages. However, it’s the product of an intensive process of reflection and discussion that has spanned more than 18 months. It reflects ideas we heard in various forms from over 700 members of the general public during our national Listening Tour in the summer of 2015, as well as insights we gained in strategic discussions within the Treasury Department and with our Community Development Advisory Board.
The CDFI Fund has a twenty-two year track record of success, which provides a strong foundation on which to build for the future. And yet, there are still too many people and too many communities that exist on the economic margins. More must be done to create opportunities for those in distressed communities to gain access to the financial tools that are needed to prosper.
The strategic plan will serve as the foundation for the CDFI Fund’s decisions and actions during the next five years. Underlying each of the five goals of the plan is this question: How can the CDFI Fund and our network of awardees generate the greatest impact possible in underserved and distressed communities? Our intent is to help create the conditions that allow the CDFI Fund network to grow and to achieve greater results for more communities.
The plan also articulates our intention to take a data-driven approach to decision-making. We want to direct our scarce resources toward what works. And, we want the industry to have the tools to do the same. Better data and evidence will serve to raise awareness of the industry’s effectiveness and increase its access to new capital from both private and public sources.
We continue to believe that it will take CDFIs of all types and sizes to meet the needs of underserved communities, and that the greatest impact can come when CDFIs work together with other CDFIs and other organizations who share a commitment to creating an inclusive economy. That is why our plan will promote partnerships and commits to building the capacity of the wide variety of organizations that make up the CDFI Fund’s network.
On behalf of the CDFI Fund, I would like to offer our thanks to those of you who provided comments and suggestions to help us develop our strategic plan. We look forward to working with you in the coming years to increase economic opportunity in distressed communities and to create an America where everyone can prosper.