About the Native CDFI Network Policy Committee
Created in 2021 by the Native CDFI Network Board of Directors, the Policy Committee works with NCN regions to ensure a continued national perspective for Native CDFI policy discussions. The board selected each of the nine Policy Committee Delegates to represent their respective regions.
The NCN Policy Committee serves the following purposes:
- It ensures an inclusive national voice by representing all regions in a priority setting
- It strengthens local advocacy by coordinating local response to regional issues
- It increases regional capacity building by facilitating local training and meetings
- It supports fundraising on a local level by coordinating local fundraising initiates with regional philanthropists, social impact investors, and banks
Policy Committee Regions
Ms. Danner is the CEO and Co-Founder of the Homestead Community Development Corporation (HCDC) operating the Homestead Loan Fund, and affordable housing and community facility projects, including a certified kitchen, marketplace, and enterprise center. As a 501c3 incorporated in 2009, the HCDC mission is to create affordable housing, jobs and capacity building on or near Hawaiian Home Lands. Ms. Danner is also a member of the Native CDFI Network board.
Policy Committee – Regional Delegates
Region 1. Alaska: Mary Miner
Ms. Miner serves as Vice President, Community Development at Alaska Growth Capital. Prior to joining AGC in 2017, Miner co-founded Atikus, a financial technology company operating in Rwanda. She was born and raised in Anchorage, Alaska and grew up supporting her family’s commercial fishing business in Bristol Bay.
Region 2. Eastern: Russ Seagle
Mr. Seagle, Sequoyah Fund Executive Director, has been with the Fund since 2009. Prior to joining Sequoyah Fund, he served as Small Business Center Director at Southwestern Community College for twelve years.
Region 3. Great Plains: Tawney Brunsch
Ms. Brunsch is the Executive Director of Lakota Funds, the first-ever Native community development financial institution (CDFI) on a reservation. With a well-versed career in the financial industry, Tawney is committed to revitalizing the Pine Ridge Reservation’s economy by providing access to sound lending products paired with the assistance necessary for private sector development.
Region 4. Midwest: Rob Aitken
An enrolled Leech Lake Band of Ojibwe member, Mr. Aitken is a lawyer licensed to practice in MN and Leech Lake Tribal Court. Serving as Executive Director of Leech Lake Financial Services for the past 7 years, Rob has trains and coaches hundreds of Leech Lake Reservation community members on building credit, home buying, car purchases, and basic finance.
Region 5. Northwest: Shalynn Kellogg
Ms. Kellogg is the Manager of the Shoshone Bannock CDFI and is the liaison for CDFI political activity for Shoshone Bannock Tribes. Shalynn sits on the Homeless and Houseless Coalition for Idaho and is a member of the Northwest Native Lending Network.
Region 6. Pacific: Faisha Solomon
Ms. Solomon is the Deputy Director of Hawaiian Lending & Investments (HLI). She is responsible for NCDFI compliance, access to capital, and sustainable growth of the loan fund, including government affairs related to operating a trust land loan fund.
Region 7. Rocky Mountain: Tonya Plummer
Ms. Plummer is the director of the Island Mountain CDFI of Hays, Montana. She has worked to help implement the Hearth Act and is building a CDFI to assist with mortgage lending to her community.
Region 8. Southern Plains – Stephen Highers
Mr. Highers is an executive with the Cherokee Nation Economic Development Trust Authority. He also serves as chair of the Northeast Oklahoma Regional Alliance’s Regional Leadership committee and is on the Tahlequah City Council.
Region 9. Southwest: Dave Castillo
Mr. Castillo serves as CEO of Native Community Capital with offices in New Mexico and Arizona. Mr. Castillo is active in developing technical assistance services that build the capacity of tribal professionals in the use of debt financing for housing and community development projects and has worked to support business incubators to build capacity of Native entrepreneurs.