National Development Finance Summit 2021

National Summit Speakers

Steve Johnson

Welcome to the CDFA Virtual National Summit
Monday November 1 1:00 - 5:00 PM

Director, Community Development
Colorado Housing and Finance Authority

Steve Johnson leads the Colorado Housing and Finance Authority’s (CHFA) Community Development team which includes Multifamily lending, Low Income Housing Tax Credit  allocation, and Small Business Finance. CHFA’s mission is to increase affordable housing and economic development in Colorado.  Steve began working for CHFA in 1996 as a business finance loan officer and became Director in 2010.  Steve says what drew him to CHFA, and continues to be the most rewarding part of his job, is the opportunity to do “banking with a mission.” Steve is currently Chair of the Council of Development Finance Agencies (CDFA) Board of Directors.  He graduated from Hillsdale College in Michigan with a Bachelor of Arts degree in marketing.

Toby Rittner

Welcome to the CDFA Virtual National Summit
Monday November 1 1:00 - 5:00 PM

President & CEO
Council of Development Finance Agencies

Toby Rittner is the President & CEO of Council of Development Finance Agencies (CDFA), a national association dedicated to the advancement of development finance concerns and interests. CDFA is comprised of the nation’s leading and most knowledgeable members of the development finance community representing hundreds of public, private and non-profit development entities. Members are state, county and municipal development finance agencies and authorities that provide or otherwise support economic development financing programs. Mr. Rittner runs the day-to-day operations of the Council including the organization’s various educational, advocacy, research, resources and networking initiatives.

Rittner is one of the most vocal and recognized leaders of the development finance industry nationwide and has advised state and federal government leaders, including President Biden and President Obama’s Administration Transition Teams, on economic development finance policy. Through his leadership and guidance, CDFA was successful in preserving private activity bonds and other critical development finance tools during the 2017 tax reform deliberations and has had numerous pieces of legislation introduced in the United States Congress. In 2021, Rittner successfully led a national effort to reauthorize and fund the $10B State Small Business Credit Initiative (SSBCI) program as part of the American Rescue Plan Act.

Rittner focuses on sustainable finance with an emphasis on infrastructure, clean energy food systems, small business and innovations in the development finance industry to drive sustainable outcomes. He has written extensively about impact ready initiatives that leverage and engage capital in ways that drive local sustainability in both the environment and economy.

Rittner is a frequent speaker at local, state and national conferences and events focused on economic development finance. He has been featured in The Bond Buyer, Wall Street Journal, Bloomberg, NPR and other national media publications concerning the advancement of development finance tools. He is the author of CDFA's highly acclaimed Practitioner's Guide to Economic Development Finance and co-author of CDFA's Unlocking Capital: A Handbook for Becoming a High Performing Development Finance Agency.

Rittner is an adjunct faculty member at The Ohio State University and Carnegie Mellon University teaching planning and finance for sustainable economic development. He is also a Development Finance Certified Professional (DFCP) and has completed the prestigious Oxford University Sustainable Finance Foundation Course.

Prior to joining CDFA, Mr. Rittner was the Director of Legislative Affairs for the International Economic Development Council (IEDC). Mr. Rittner has also worked for the Franklin County, Ohio Board of Commissioners and the City of Gahanna, Ohio. Mr. Rittner previously served on the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s Environmental Financial Advisory Board and is a member of the Advisory Board for the National Community Fund I. Mr. Rittner holds a Bachelor of Arts in Political Science and a Master's of City and Regional Planning degree from The Ohio State University. Mr. Rittner was awarded the Ohio State University College of Engineering Distinguished Alumnus Award in 2016.