The Change Company Names Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa Board Chair

The Change Company, America’s Community Development Financial Institution (CDFI), is proud to announce that Antonio Villaraigosa, the 41st Mayor of Los Angeles, has been named the Company’s Board Chair. Mayor Villaraigosa brings his decades of experience as a public servant, educator, and advocate to The Change Company.

“The Change Company’s digital-first platform is disrupting lending and banking by reaching out to those who are underbanked and lack equal access to traditional financial institutions,"
- Antonio Villaraigosa

“It is a great honor to serve as Board Chair for The Change Company and rejoin so many colleagues I had the honor of working with at Banc of California. The Change Company’s digital-first platform is disrupting lending and banking by reaching out to those who are underbanked and lack equal access to traditional financial institutions. I am thrilled to be a part of this mission-driven company that is committed to leveling the playing field for Black, Latino, and low-income Americans,” Mayor Villaraigosa said in a statement.

Founder Steven Sugarman stated, “The Mayor’s passion for ending social and racial inequities and his success expanding access to fair and responsible financial services in underserved communities will serve as a vital asset to The Change Company. I was honored to work with Antonio at Banc of California and am humbled by his ability to create impact for the underbanked. Antonio is a living example of the heights all Americans can reach when they are provided a level playing field and equal access to the American dream. Mayor Villaraigosa will ensure The Change Company continues its focus on making homeownership and access to responsible banking a reality for Black, Latino, low income, and other underbanked Americans.”

Mayor Villaraigosa previously served as Senior Advisor to Mr. Sugarman during Mr. Sugarman’s tenure as Chairman, CEO, and President of Banc of California from 2013 through 2016. During that period, Banc of California grew from $1.6 billion to $12 billion in assets, while annual profitability increased by over $100 million. Banc of California earned two Guinness World Records for the World’s Largest Financial Literacy Event on November 9, 2014 at the Galen Center on the campus of the University of Southern California where Mayor Villaraigosa and Mr. Sugarman served as Keynote Speakers alongside former President Bill Clinton. The Community Reinvestment Coalition and National Diversity Coalition each recognized Banc of California as the “Gold Standard” for corporate social responsibility and community development under Mr. Sugarman’s leadership, and the bank was named one of America’s Top Banks by Forbes Magazine in 2015 and 2016 and one of America’s fastest growing companies by Fortune Magazine.

Villaraigosa continued, “At Banc of California we shocked the world by demonstrating that a bank could do well for shareholders by doing good for the community. In fact, Forbes Magazine found that the returns we generated for our common equity holders ranked us #2 in the country of all banks in 2016. I am excited to apply and improve upon the lessons we learned at the bank as we implement our double bottom line strategy at The Change Company. We are deploying best in class, proprietary financial technology to serve the underbanked fairly and responsibly.”

Thedora Nickel, Executive Director of The Change Company, added, “Mayor Villaraigosa is passionate about the power of partnerships to address social and racial inequities in the financial system. The Change Company is committed to partnerships with those seeking to end systematic economic inequality. Our platform is available for impact investors who seek socially responsibly investments to unlock minority homeownership, to financial institutions seeking products and services that will enable them to serve the underserved, and to community partners who seek a solution they can offer to their own clients.”

The Change Company currently has financial partnerships with over 25 banks and socially responsible companies. The Change Company also offers its proprietary technology and lending products through its 500-plus non-bank lending partners to expand access to capital to underserved homeowners and throughout underbanked communities.

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