Beautiful Jamestown, NY, was the site of this year’s fall meeting of the New York State CDFI Coalition’s Board of Directors, hosted by John Felton, CEO of coalition member The Chautauqua Credit Union.
John and the CCU team gave us a welcoming taste of Chautauqua Hospitality, including a kickoff dinner at the Ellicottville Brewing Company and a private tour of the new, state-of-the-art National Comedy Center.
“It was so tremendously rewarding to visit Jamestown and the Comedy Center,” said Aisha Benson Executive Vice President of TruFund Financial Services, one of the CDFIs that has invested funds for the development of the comedy center. “The economic impacts and job creation of this project have been essential to the revitalization and growth of Jamestown and TruFund is thrilled to have been a partner in making this innovative project a reality.”
An informative meeting with Chautauqua County community leaders included Amy Rohler, Executive Director of United Way of Southern Chautauqua; Timonthy Smeal, director of Development at the JCC Foundation; Chautauqua County Executive George M. Borrello; Katie Geise, Executive Director of the Chautauqua Workforce Investment Board; and Terry Johnson and Beth Jermain from The Resource Center.
Each of the six NYSCDFI Coalition Board Members, who represent CDFIs from different areas of New York State, made brief presentations about the services they provide and about opportunities for potential collaborations with the Jamestown-based organizations.
At the end of a very productive Board Meeting and several hours of work and discussion, we headed back to our respective hometowns with a great sense of some of the exciting and inspiring initiatives in Chautauqua County as well as our respective regions.
“I cannot express my appreciation enough to my fellow Board Members for allowing me the opportunity to showcase Chautauqua County and the National Comedy Center,” said John Felton, to which we add: “Thank you, John, for your hospitality and for facilitating such a productive and informative meeting.”