Press Release: Stronger Nonprofits Initiative Launches in St. Louis, Addressing Barriers Leaders of Color Face in Accessing Resources June 1, 2021

IFF program aims to provide nonprofits led by people of color the resources necessary to empower decision making and navigate barriers to accessing capital and real estate opportunity

ST. LOUIS – June 1, 2021— IFF, a nationally recognized mission-driven lender for Midwest nonprofits, is proud to expand its  Stronger Nonprofits Initiative (SNI)—a free program providing nonprofit leaders of color with greater access to financial management tools and real estate planning resources. 10 St. Louis-based nonprofits will comprise the next cohort of this regional program. The cohort will participate in a 14-month curriculum presented by IFF and BDO FMA (formerly Fiscal Management Associates). The program is sponsored by JPMorgan Chase.

“The goal of SNI is to diminish structural barriers leaders of colors face in accessing capital and real estate resources so they can fulfill their missions for years to come,” said Crystal Coats, IFF Director of Programming and Initiatives. “Now more than ever, it is important for nonprofits led by people of color to remain resilient. St. Louis is in a time of transition, and many of these organizations are embedded in addressing the city’s revitalization efforts. Our goal is to provide the leaders of these organizations with the resources they need to ensure they continue to have an impact in their communities.”

The 10 organizations will partake in a comprehensive curriculum including: virtual training sessions focused on team-based fiscal management, one-on-one financial coaching, customized real estate consulting, expert panel discussions, special networking opportunities and other events.

The St. Louis cohort includes: Beginning Futures, Cornerstone Corporation, Good Journey Development Foundation, The Haven of Grace, North Newstead Association, Northside Community Housing Inc, Refuge and Restoration, Rise Community Development, Tabernacle Community Development Corporation, and Unleashing Potential.

“Collaboration among nonprofits, community partners and business is critical to breaking down barriers of economic mobility and advancing inclusive economic growth,” said Craig Horstmann, Managing Director, Commercial Banking at JPMorgan Chase. “Building the capacity of our nonprofit partners is key to this effort, and through the work of SNI we are investing in the talent of nonprofit leaders of color and helping drive an economy that creates and sustains opportunity for all people.”

IFF first launched SNI in Chicago in 2017, and has since expanded to Detroit, Milwaukee, and St. Louis, with plans to expand to further Midwest cities in the coming years.

For more information on SNI, visit