Our Stories

12.03.2019 -

Making Room for Manufacturing—and Manufacturing Jobs

In a new white paper from LISC and the Urban Manufacturing Alliance, “All About the Jobs,” we describe eight mission-driven industrial projects and their financing models. All these projects are creating affordable space for small- and medium-sized manufacturers so they can bring benefits—good jobs, especially—to the surrounding community. But every project is unique: each uses a different set of subsidies and has built a distinct capital stack. And each mission-driven developer has a different story to tell about the long-term value of investing in industrial space. LISC is investing in projects like these all across the country. Here, we take a look at why it’s so important, and how it’s getting done, in New York City.

11.26.2019 -

In Praise (and Support) of Small Business

Forget Thanksgiving and Black Friday (jk!): one of our favorite days of the year is Small Business Saturday, a time to shop local and take stock of the imperative role that entrepreneurs play in energizing community economies and cultures, creating jobs and fueling the country's economic engine as a whole. Read on to learn about how we've supported small businesses this year, and to check out some of our favorite small biz stories.

Starbucks Invests in Chicago’s Entrepreneurial Spirit, With Help from LISC

Did you hear what’s brewing in Chicago? Starbucks Coffee Company announced a $10 million investment to drive economic opportunity in the city’s underserved communities. The funds, which are slated to help finance more than 500 loans to support small businesses and create jobs, will be disbursed among four community lenders with expertise in those neighborhoods, and LISC Chicago is one. The investment “will deliver clear benefits to residents, while making our neighborhoods safer and stronger,” said LISC Chicago ED Meghan Harte.

The “Ripple Effect” of Investing in Rural America

We need to look at the impact of investing in rural community development on its own terms, argues Suzanne Anarde, outgoing vice president and director of Rural LISC in an essay for Shelterforce. Projects may not touch the numbers of people or generate the returns of urban investments, but their effects are every bit as important, and ripple far and wide through the small, intricately connected networks of rural life.

10.15.2019 -

“Café, Cultura, Vida”

As Hispanic Heritage Month comes to a close, we checked in with Sandra Flores, owner of Azukar Coffee, a small business percolating on the South Side of Phoenix that shows just how important a local gathering place can be to a neighborhood.