The Association for Black Economic Power (ABEP) is a nonprofit organization created to establish a Black-led financial institution to address systemic financial challenges impacting Minneapolis residents, particularly people of color. This vision was birthed from North Minneapolis community members who strongly believe that institutional economic power is the critical ingredient to addressing the inequities that African-Americans experience in our region.
With support from the community, the Arise Community Credit Union, formerly Village Financial Credit Union, can be positioned to provide financial products and services to the unbanked and underbanked residents of the community through a financial cooperative committed to Black leadership and a place focus on economic development in its community of origin. Access to economic resources will provide an opportunity for individuals to manage health, housing, education, and other concerns while breaking the cycle of poverty and economic struggle.
Establishing the only Black-led, cooperative credit union in Minneapolis is an opportunity to effect positive change, empower growth and economic stability while directly addressing the core cause of systemic poverty on a variety of levels.
Arise Board of Directors:
Chair: Francis Odhiambo – Is currently employed by Ramsey County as a Controller. He has previously served as a CEO for two credit unions. Has a bachelor's degree in Business Administration.
Vice Chair: Adam Maier – As Co-Chair of his law firm’s Banking & Financial Services division, Adam applies his expertise in finance and the law to help clients successfully navigate the complexities of the highly regulated banking and financial services industry.
Secretary: Steve Kelley – Served as the MN Commissioner of Commerce with regulatory responsibility for banks and credit unions. Is an attorney who has practice in litigation and issues related to financial institutions. Served in the Minnesota legislature for 14 years and taught at the Humphrey School of Public Affairs.
Treasurer: Benson Webb – Project Manager with Black Farmer Equity Initiative. Mr. Benson is the founder and director at Golden Web Capital and has a strong background in accounting and finance.
Director: Debra Hurston – Exec. Dir. of the Assoc. for Black Economic Power. Brings years of experience in nonprofit management and will serve as a key transition point for industry and funding supporters.
Megan Tarnow – Accounting Professional and current board member and past board chair of the Charities Review Council. She was the Founder and President of the Mobius Group prior to its acquisition by High Rock Accounting.
Robert Belton – General Contractor for commercial and residential real estate properties. Currently serving on ABEP’s Credit Union Steering Committee
Zackery Brown – As an Operations Manager he is responsible for overseeing and managing quality control, inventory audits, supply chain management, distribution and staffing for Shiloh Food Shelf Services which delivers resources to over 6000 residents monthly in North Minneapolis.
Gracie George – Dedicated Risk and Compliance Professional with 9+ years of experience working in the Financial Industry with two Fortune 500 Banks. Skilled at conducting research and analysis to ensure a company’s end-to-end compliance. Experienced testing a company’s products, services, business processes, and activities in order to assess adherence.
Broderick Austin – Owner of Godspeed Moving Service since 2003. Directly responsible for all company logistics, employees, funding and payroll management.
Leo Gabriel – Professor of Business at Bethel University. A former member of the ABEP Credit Union Steering Committee and a Credit Union Organizer.