Technical Assistance


Brett Doney

Fund Capitalization
Tuesday June 27 1:00 - 4:00 PM

President & CEO
Great Falls Montana Development Authority

Brett Doney leads the Great Falls Development Authority, a public/private economic development partnership serving the 12-county Great Falls Montana trade area. Doney has over 30 years of experience in urban and rural community economic development. Prior positions include: President/CEO of Enterprise Maine, a family of community economic development organizations dedicated to creating economic opportunity and enhancing the quality of life in rural western Maine; Director of the Ft. Devens Reuse Center, a 9,600 acre army base redevelopment planning effort in Massachusetts; and, President of Doney Associates, a Boston-based consulting firm focused on urban revitalization, public/private real estate development, and innovative economic development.

Doney’s team efforts have won awards from the U.S. Small Business Administration, the American Economic Development Council, the International Economic Development Council, the National Association of Development Organizations, the Finance Authority of Maine, the Montana Economic Developers Association, and the National Brownfield Conference. His professional certifications include Certified Economic Developer (CEcD), Master of Corporate Real Estate (MCR), Senior Leader of Corporate Real Estate (SLCR), American Institute of Certified Planners (AICP), RMA Credit Risk Certification, Federal Grants Management, and Economic Development Finance Professional (EDFP). He is a graduate of the Economic Development Institute of the University of Oklahoma. Doney earned a Bachelor of Arts in Political Science from the University of California at Santa Barbara and a Masters in Public Policy from the Kennedy School of Government at Harvard University.

Doney has taught, given presentations, and served on technical advisory teams for a variety of state, national and international economic development and industry organizations. He currently serves on the boards of the Montana Economic Developers Association, the Great Falls Convention & Visitors Bureau (Chair), the Downtown Development Partnership of Great Falls (Chair), and the Upper Missouri River Heritage Area Planning Corporation. He serves on the International Economic Development Council’s Accreditation and Public Policy Advisory Committees, as the Montana Government Relations Chair for the International Council of Shopping Centers, and on the McLaughlin Research Institute’s National Development Council. He is an active Rotarian and past President of the Great Falls Rotary Club.

Lynn Fernandez

Evaluating Risk
Tuesday May 23 1:00 - 4:00 PM

Chief Credit Officer

Lynn M. Fernandez serves in Lendistry’s Credit Executive Leadership Group. Her duties include overseeing credit policies, operations, products, and serving as Lendistry’s keeper of credit culture and credit risk management. Her past roles include Vice President at California United Bank, Vice President at City National Bank, former Officer of Comptroller of the Currency Safety and Soundness Bank Examiner,  including Credit Officer and Credit Analyst. Ms. Fernandez received her B.S. Business Administration, Finance and Financial Management Services from the University of Denver.

Shelly Gross-Wade

Evaluating Risk
Tuesday May 23 1:00 - 4:00 PM

Principal Consultant
Bay Crossing Consulting

With a 40-year legacy in public-private management, Shelly is a thought leader in economic development, business, and mission-driven finance. Throughout her career as a public servant, advocate, and financial leader, Shelly opened doors to capital for aspiring small businesses, improving access to capital for small, women, minority, and socially-disadvantaged businesses throughout the State of Maryland. At Bay Crossing Consulting Services, Shelly offers her breadth of expertise to clients in the economic development, business, and nonprofit sectors. Shelly was the first African American and the first woman to serve as President and CEO of FSC First, which provides creative financing solutions to small businesses in Maryland. During her 24 years of leadership, FSC First managed more than 10 distinct loan programs to support unbanked and under-banked small, women, minority, and socially-disadvantaged businesses and rapid growth companies. Passionate about entrepreneurship, Shelly led FSC to close over $100 million in loans for small, women, minority, and socially-disadvantaged businesses and attracted over $1.4 billion in public/private funds.

Before joining FSC First, Shelly served as the Incentive Fund Manager and facilitated industrial revenue bond transactions at Anne Arundel Economic Development Corporation for over a decade. In this capacity, she helped local businesses locate, expand, and invest in their local communities. A proud Maryland native, Shelly is a graduate of the University of Maryland University College and Anne Arundel Community College. She is also a graduate of Leadership Anne Arundel and Leadership Maryland. A nationally-certified Economic Development Finance Professional,Shelly continually deepens her skill sets and connects her clients with the tools for prosperity. Rooted in faith, community, and family, Shelly spends down time with her son, daughter-in-law, bonus daughter, grandchildren, and husband of 30-plus years. She loves entertaining, live jazz, crab feasts, and power boating on the Chesapeake Bay.

Siena Kane

Evaluating Risk
Tuesday May 23 1:00 - 4:00 PM

Engagement & Operations Manager
Urban Redevelopment Authority of Pittsburgh

Ariel Miller

Evaluating Risk
Tuesday May 23 1:00 - 4:00 PM

Fund Capitalization
Tuesday June 27 1:00 - 4:00 PM

Senior Director, Research & Technical Assistance
Council of Development Finance Agencies

Ariel Miller is the Senior Director of Research & Technical Assistance with the Council of Development Finance Agencies (CDFA). During her time at CDFA, she has conducted research and data collection, written numerous publications, and developed curriculum on topics including access to capital programs, equitable economic development, infrastructure finance, and food system finance. Ariel also leads technical assistance engagements with development finance agencies for strategic planning, finance program development, and CDFI certification. In this role, she contributes to the organization’s strategic planning, staff development, and day-to-day management needs in addition to leading the Research & Technical Assistance team. Ariel received her Master of City and Regional Planning degree from The Ohio State University, where she also earned a Bachelor of Science in Environmental Science and a Bachelor of Arts in Anthropology.

Joel Moyer

Evaluating Risk
Tuesday May 23 1:00 - 4:00 PM

Portfolio Manager - Fair Food Fund
Fair Food Network

Joel Moyer manages Fair Food Fund, the impact investing arm of the Fair Food Network that provides financing and business assistance to good food enterprises creating health and wealth in communities especially in those that have not traditionally had access to capital and/or healthy food options. As Acting Senior Director of Investments, Joel is responsible for the day-to-day management of the fund’s investment portfolio and leads the due diligence and investment process for potential investment opportunities.
Joel has an MBA in Sustainability from Antioch University New England, where he focused on impact investing, community capital, and leveraging the positive attributes of capitalism for good.
Joel lives with his wife and young children in Contoocook, New Hampshire where he enjoys exploring the region’s trails, mountains, rivers, and lakes. He also plays recreational soccer and practices yoga.

Ken Pearson

Evaluating Risk
Tuesday May 23 1:00 - 4:00 PM

Loan Fund Manager
Northwest Regional Planning Commission

Ken Pearson is the Loan Fund Manager at Northwest Wisconsin Regional Planning Commission in Spooner, WI. Pearson has been involved with small business and economic development since 2013. His ability to help business owners and entrepreneurs map out a road to success though mission focused business planning, marketing strategy and strategic visioning has assisted hundreds of businesses to start up, expand or grow. During his first five years as a loan fund manager, he has closed over 100 loans within 15 different loan programs and helped turn program losses into annual net income’s for each fund. Specifical to EDA, he’s closed over two-dozen EDA loans; helped lead the decommissioning of two legacy EDA RLF programs; capitalized the new CARES ACT EDA RLF; and closed sixteen CARES ACT EDA RLF loans, exceeding the original $1,000,000 in EDA grant awarded funding.

Pearson earned his bachelor’s degree from University of Wisconsin-Superior and a Master of Public Administration degree from Texas A&M University. He brings a vast working knowledge of strategy and development for private and nonprofit organizations. Pearson has held a variety of positions including a volunteer and corporate recruiter, human resources representative, nonprofit board member, and a media advertising and sales representative. Pearson has a strong passion to see small business owners achieve success through strategic goal setting, appropriate fund management, and connecting the right resources to help strengthen the small business economy. He developed this passion at a young age where he learned a lot about small business ownership victories and challenges from his father who was a self-employed logger in the great Wisconsin Northwood’s.

Marie Peters

Evaluating Risk
Tuesday May 23 1:00 - 4:00 PM

Fund Director
B: Side Capital & B: Side Fund

Marie Peters is passionate about implementing inclusive lending practices to address the wealth gap through entrepreneurship and small business ownership. As the Fund Director of B:Side Capital and B:Side Fund, she manages direct lending programs that are designed for under-resourced small businesses.  Through the program’s 11 year history, it has helped hundreds of small businesses start, grow and expand, resulting in over $23 million lent. Previously, Marie served as the Associate State Director of the Colorado Small Business Development Center (SBDC) Network, a division of the Governor’s Office of Economic Development and International Trade (OEDIT). She has also spent time teaching health education in rural Tanzania and working at a research think tank in Washington, DC. Marie currently serves on the Habitat for Humanity Colorado Board of Directors and Rocky Mountain Microfinance Institute’s Growth Loan Review Committee. Originally from New Jersey, Marie attended Villanova University where she earned a Bachelor of Science in Economics and a Bachelor of Administration in International Business. She also has an International MBA from the University of Denver, Daniels College of Business. She is a current member of the Inclusive Capital Collective, Rural Capital Collaborative and the Colorado Entrepreneurship Coalition.

Rosa Rios Valdez

Fund Capitalization
Tuesday June 27 1:00 - 4:00 PM

BCL of Texas

A graduate of the University of Texas at Austin, Rosa came to Texas when her father was hired as a Bracero to work the farm fields of
Uvalde. She attended the University in the 1970s when minority enrollment was less than 4,000 students, and received her degree in
three years, graduating Cum Laude. Rosa has worked for over 30 years in economic development. She began her career at AMEDC (Austin Minority Economic Development Corporation), where she helped to form the Minority Contractors’ Association, which is still in operation today to bring minority contractors together and help them advocate for their needs.Rosa also worked for the Governor’s Office of Economic Development and served 10 years with the Lower Colorado River Authority community and economic development team. During this time, she worked with the City of Austin to create a $67 million plan to redevelop East 6th, 7th, and 11th Streets. During her career in economic development, Rosa has helped to build local economies and bring in jobs by working with businesses across the state in diverse sectors.

Rosa has expanded the scope and size of BCL of Texas from offering only one business loan product
in central Texas to a statewide CDFI (Community Development Finance Institution) whose diverse
product mix now includes business, consumer, mortgage, and community facility loans. BCL of Texas
was recently self-certified as the most loan-product-diverse, statewide minority-led CDFI in Texas.

Under Rosa’s leadership, BCL of Texas has launched innovative programs to address economic
inequalities, including the Community Loan Centers of Dallas and Austin payday alternative programs;
the Texas Small and Diverse Loan Fund for growing minority businesses, and NeighborhoodLIFT down
payment assistance. BCL has added over $600 million to the local tax base and helped over 2,000
businesses with expansion support.

Rosa has grown the BCL of Texas assets 51-fold to over $30.5 Million. She currently serves as president
of BCL’s wholly owned affiliates, Texas Community Builders, and health-focused social enterprise
corporation Salud de Paloma.

Everett Sands

Evaluating Risk
Tuesday May 23 1:00 - 4:00 PM

Chief Executive Officer

Everett K. Sands leverages his 20+ years of experience in banking to change the game for underserved small business owners who need access to responsible capital to reach the next level. Mr. Sands has shared his recommendations before Congressional committees and at conferences hosted by FORTUNE, the National Urban League, and several industry-related events. He has appeared as a subject matter expert on national business media, including CNBC, the Wall Street Journal, and Bloomberg.

With past tenures at national and community banks including MDIs, Mr. Sands has closed more than $10 billion in finance transactions. His experience also includes structured finance transactions like New Markets Tax Credits, Opportunity Zones and secondary market transactions. Mr. Sands is a graduate of the University of Pennsylvania, an Advisory Board member of The Penn Institute for Urban Research (Penn IUR), and a Board member of The Center for Strategic Economic Studies and Institutional Development.

Tunua Thrash-Ntuk

Evaluating Risk
Tuesday May 23 1:00 - 4:00 PM

Fund Capitalization
Tuesday June 27 1:00 - 4:00 PM

President and CEO
The Center by Lendistry

Tunua Thrash-Ntuk is a community development professional whose public service career spans more than two decades leading racial equity initiatives and billion-dollar governmental programs with the goal of building better communities for those in greatest need. As President and CEO for The Center by Lendistry, Tunua centers diverse and ready to be served small businesses to ensure access to the resources, technical assistance, and economic opportunities needed for success. The Center’s work begins with small businesses but also encompasses the communities in which they do business by elevating affordable housing and other community development revitalization efforts

Daniel Wallace

Underwriting Strategies
Tuesday July 25 1:00 - 4:00 PM

Senior Vice President, Lending and Investment
CEI Capital Management LLC

Daniel Wallace is the Chief Investment Officer at Coastal Enterprises, Inc. (CEI), a Maine-based community development financial institution with a mission to build just, vibrant and climate-resilient futures for people and communities in Maine and rural regions by integrating finance, business expertise and policy solutions in ways that make the economy work more equitably. Daniel serves on the Steering Committee for Opportunity Appalachia and as a member of the NeighborWorks Capital Focus Group.
As CEI’s Chief Investment Officer, Daniel leads a team of 12 deploying capital to Maine’s small business community and oversees the management of CEI’s loan and investment portfolio, which has grown to a record $65MM under his leadership. Daniel spearheaded the creation of several new financing products designed to expand access to capital for low-income communities and build wealth for entrepreneurs underserved by traditional financial institutions. Daniel supports capital formation, is a member of CEI’s Senior Leadership Team and is the 2023 Maine Small Business Administration’s Financial Services Champion.
Daniel also serves as Chief Executive Officer of subsidiary company 30 Federal Street Investments, LLC., which delivers state historic tax credits as equity investments to help rehabilitate historic properties, revitalize downtowns and create affordable housing.
Daniel began his career at CEI in 2012 in the Sustainable Agriculture and Food Systems Program, bringing with him experience managing and owning retail food businesses, building green homes and running a nonprofit arts organization. Once a professional baker, Daniel is always on the lookout for an excellent loaf of artisan bread.

CDFA National Sponsors

  • BNY Mellon
  • Bricker Graydon LLP
  • Bryan Cave Leighton Paisner LLP
  • Business Oregon
  • Cirrus Secure
  • CohnReznick
  • Frost Brown Todd LLC
  • Hawkins Delafield & Wood LLP
  • Ice Miller LLP
  • KeyBanc Capital Markets
  • Kutak Rock LLP
  • McGuireWoods
  • MuniCap, Inc.
  • National Development Council
  • NW Financial Group, LLC
  • PGAV Planners, LLC
  • Raza Development Fund
  • SB Friedman Development Advisors
  • Stifel Nicolaus
  • U.S. Bank
  • Wells Fargo Securities
  • Z. The Bond Buyer
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