It’s been two years since U.S. Bank launched U.S. Bank Access Commitment™, its long-term approach to help build wealth, help close the racial wealth gap, redefine how it serves diverse communities and provide more opportunities for diverse employees. U.S. Bank started with the Black community, because that is where the persistent racial wealth gap in the United States is the largest (Federal Reserve, 2019). In 2023 and beyond, U.S. Bank will expand its focus to include the Hispanic community in Access Commitment initiatives.
In 2022, U.S. Bank focused on a set of initiatives to help individuals and families build wealth. Progress has been made and U.S. Bank is committed to continue the work.
“As we incorporate Access Commitment across all of our business lines, we continue to listen, learn and evolve our work,” said Andy Cecere, chairman, president and CEO at U.S. Bank. “We remain committed to providing access to financial education, career development and capital to all our communities. The work to create systemic change and equity is and will continue to be one of the top priorities at U.S. Bank.”
Here’s the forward progress U.S. Bank made in 2022:
“Moving forward, we are focused on inclusive growth which comes from innovation,” said Greg Cunningham, chief diversity officer for U.S. Bank. “Every initiative under Access Commitment includes an innovative approach. By focusing more of our efforts on inclusive growth through diverse product, service and experience innovation, we remain committed to our financial goals, while affecting outcomes that make the lives of our employees, customers and communities better.”
UPDATE ON U.S. BANK ACCESS COMMITMENT INITIATIVES
U.S. Bank Access Fund
The U. S. Bank Access Fund was established to break down barriers by providing $20 million in capital and $5 million in grants to support capacity building, technical assistance and expand mentoring and networking opportunities, as well as business seminars and peer-to-peer learning sessions for 30,000 women-of-color microbusiness owners through our partners Grameen American, African American Alliance of CDFI CEOs, and Local Initiatives Support Corporation (LISC). At year-end 2022, it deployed $13 million in capital to 10 CDFIs who will lend directly to business owners. Over three years, U.S. Bank estimates this investment will support more than 30,000 microbusinesses.
U.S. Bank Access Business
U.S. Bank Access Business combines our expertise and that of our external partners to provide small business owners with information, connections and capital to position them for success. In 2022, nine business access advisors were hired, met with hundreds of business owners and held numerous financial seminars.
U.S. Bank Access Home
To help increase representation of Black individuals in the mortgage industry, U.S. Bank made a multi-year commitment to focus on closing the homeownership gap, starting first with the Black community where the disparities are the largest. In 2022, U.S. Bank partnered with 18 community partners in five initial markets: St. Louis, Las Vegas, Little Rock, Milwaukee, and Minneapolis. U.S. Bank hired many new Black mortgage loan officers, all of which are new to the industry. The company also launched a trainee program for residential appraisers to increase Black representation in appraiser roles.
U.S. Bank Access Capital
U.S. Bancorp Impact Finance is partnering with CDFIs to support and grow the number of developers led by people of color and help increase locally-led solutions by collaborating to invest in developers of color. In 2022, grants totaling $300,000 were awarded to five Black-led CDFIs including Community Housing Development Center Corporation, The Harbor Bank of Maryland, NewCorp Inc., Northside Economic Opportunity Network (NEON) and TruFund Financial Services.
U.S. Bank Access Wealth
In 2022, U.S. Bank Access Wealth, rolled out phase two of its mentorship program with eight graduates. The team also launched an eight-part financial education series and presented to Historically Black Colleges and Universities, faith-based organizations, Community Development Financial Institutions, and other Access Commitment partner groups. The company rolled out the Access Wealth Management Team focused on increasing brand awareness and customer inclusion. This team is also proactively working with their local Black communities and centers of influence to build wealth.
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