Suncoast Earns CDFI Certification
This means the largest recognized CDFI in the country is now a credit union.
The Tampa, Fla.-based institution has the certification for three years and is now eligible to apply for grants and funding through the CDFI fund to support its community development work.
“As a not-for-profit cooperative, we believe in improving the lives of our members and the communities in which we serve. This certification verifies our ability to attend to the needs of underserved markets and will support our efforts to develop new financial programs moving forward,” Tom Dorety, president/CEO of Suncoast Credit Union said.
The certification allows Suncoast Credit Union to access financial grants from the CDFI Fund, participate in partnership opportunities with banks seeking Bank Enterprise Awards, access New Market Tax Credits and gain the enhanced ability to raise funds from foundations, corporations and state and local governments, the credit union said.
Suncoast Credit Union worked with the National Federation of Community Development Credit Unions’ consulting group, CU Breakthrough, to attain the CDFI certification.
“CDFI certification is a valuable credential that helps credit unions increase their capacity to meet the needs of low-income consumers and to develop strategic partnerships to better connect with the community,” Pablo DeFilippi, VP of Membership and Business Development at the Federation said. “Low income designation combined with CDFI certification are the building blocks for sustainable growth in communities in Southwest Florida.
In March 2014, Suncoast Credit Union received a low-income designation from the National Credit Union Administration. Subsequently, Suncoast Credit Union joined the National Federation of Community Development Credit Unions and applied to the U.S. Department of Treasury for CDFI certification.