Spotlight on ACC and Our Members!
ACC Receives Historic Award from EPA’s Greenhouse Gas Reduction Fund 
ACC “Green Team” and Marten Jenkins (Partner Community Capital) with Jahi White
(Senior Advisor to the EPA Administrator).
From left to right: Donna Gambrell (ACC, CCIA awardee), Cathie Mahon (Inclusiv, NCIF awardee), Doug Sims (Justice Climate Fund, CCIA), Eli Hobson (Coalition For Green Capital, NCIF), Pete Upton (Native CDFI Network, CCIA), Harold Pettigrew (OFN, CCIA), and Beth Bafford (Climate United, NCIF). Missing: Tim Mayopoulos (Power Forward Communities, NCIF).
On April 4, Vice President Kamala Harris and EPA Administrator Michael Regan announced that eight organizations were selected for EPA’s National Clean Investment Fund (NCIF) and Clean Community Investment Accelerator (CCIA) grants, part of the agency’s first-of-its-kind Greenhouse Gas Reduction Fund—and ACC was one of the eight! ACC received a historic $500 million award from the CCIA program.

With this award, ACC is launching the Green Bank for Rural America to catalyze green energy investments in low-income rural communities impacted by declines in the fossil fuel industry. This place-based effort will be a hub for the delivery of funding and technical assistance to hundreds of community lenders in underserved rural communities across the U.S., providing an immediate pathway to deploy projects in those communities while building lender capacity to finance projects for years to come. 

ACC is honored and thrilled to be part of this cohort of organizations working to provide accessible, affordable financing for tens of thousands of clean technology projects and build the capacity of the local community lenders that will ensure that low-income and disadvantaged communities are part of the nation’s green energy future. A huge thank you to our Green Team—Pam Porter, Jesse Fripp, and Ray Daffner—who got us to this point! See the White House announcement here and visit ACC’s webpage for updates
Elkins, WV Celebrates a Ribbon Cutting and
 Grand Reopening of the Tygart Hotel!
On March 22, Dave Clark (Executive Director of Woodlands Development and Lending) and his team welcomed residents, business leaders, and public officials to a ribbon cutting and reopening of the Tygart Hotel in downtown Elkins, West Virginia.

The former grand hotel was built in 1906. Woodlands acquired it in 2017 after a series of public meetings and significant community input. The building had declined over the years, deteriorating into substandard housing and driving out neighboring businesses. There was a strong collective interest in changing the trajectory of the downtown historic district and converting the Tygart back to a boutique hotel.

After engaging multiple partners, conducting extensive market research, and working closely with local banks and other investors, Woodlands secured all necessary financing and began construction in mid-2022. The completed hotel now includes 56 rooms, a restored lobby and first floor patio, a lobby bar and full restaurant, and a meeting room for 30 people.

For more information about the ribbon cutting ceremony, click here.  
ACC Visits Sabre Finance and Renaissance Community Loan Fund
In March, ACC CEO Donna Gambrell and Business Development Officer Jerrell “J” Deaver visited Birmingham, Alabama and Tupelo, Mississippi to meet with ACC members Sabre Finance and Renaissance Community Loan Fund (RCLF).

Sabre’s CEO Ray Morris and his team shared their work with veterans and the expansion of their service area, which now covers the entire state of Alabama. The Sabre team is focused on supporting small businesses across the state, including veteran-owned businesses.

RCLF serves Mississippi and Alabama. Donna and J visited with RCLF staff, met with community leaders at a Community Advisory Board dinner, attended a luncheon with local bankers, and participated in a roundtable of small business owners who have partnered with RCLF. They came home with a wealth of instructive feedback and inspirational stories.

Thanks to both CDFIs for their hospitality!
Lunch with the Sabre Finance team at Okinawa Sushi and Steakhouse in Homewood, AL
Community Advisory Board dinner. Zell Long, RCLF Board Member and Executive Director of Boys & Girls Clubs of North MS with John-Michael Marlin, Director of Lending; Jeremy Martin, Community Outreach, Education & Counseling Manager, and Kimberly LaRosa, RCLF President & CEO.
Janie Barrera Retires from LiftFund
Janie Barrera, Founder and former CEO of LiftFund with current
LiftFund CEO Laurie Vignaud
LiftFund celebrated its 30th anniversary on March 20 with a luncheon attended by over 700 supporters, partners, clients, employees, and friends. It was also a time to celebrate LiftFund founder Janie Barrera who has retired from the organization after 30 fulfilling years of service. An ACC member, LiftFund is headquartered in San Antonio, Texas. Despite being located outside Appalachia, Janie wanted LiftFund to play a part in investing in Appalachian small businesses and so, in 2018, LiftFund applied for and became an ACC member. Janie is a wonderful visionary and colleague. We wish her well as she embarks on a new journey!
Funding & Technical
Assistance Opportunities

This program will provide approximately $44 million in grant funds to enable communities in the Appalachian, Lower Mississippi Delta, and Northern Border regions to develop local and regional workforce development solutions aligned with existing economic development strategies and community partnerships to promote new, sustainable job opportunities and long-term economic vitality. Grants will support economic mobility, address historic inequities for marginalized communities of color and other underserved and underrepresented communities, and produce high-quality employment outcomes for workers who live or work in the Appalachian, Delta, and Northern Border regions.  Application deadline: June 13, 2024 APPLY HERE

This program will make approximately $2 billion in Inflation Reduction Act funding available to support community-driven projects that deploy clean energy, strengthen climate resilience, and build capacity for communities to tackle environmental and climate justice challenges. It will also dedicate $200 million to provide technical assistance to applicants and grant recipients. Grants will fund activities that support climate resilience and adaptation; community-led pollution monitoring, prevention, and remediation; investments in low- and zero-emission and resilient technologies and related infrastructure; workforce development that supports the reduction of greenhouse gas emissions; and more. Application deadline: The Notice of Funding Opportunity will be open until November 21, 2024, and EPA will review applications on a rolling basis. APPLY HERE.
Upcoming Events

The Center on Rural Innovation (CORI) will host this inaugural event to bring together changemakers, thought leaders, and others interested in leveraging technology to drive positive change in rural communities.

May 15-17, 2024
Durham, NC

This Summit will convene community and economic leaders from Small and Midsized Cities (SMCs) dedicated to advancing inclusive economies. The event will feature three tracks of sessions: Inclusive Capital, Community Wealth Building, and Reimagining Systems. 
News Articles & Reports
The Survey of Rural Challenges is open for responses from rural and small-town people. SaveYour.Town has been conducting this survey for 10 years, and this year it includes 10 questions. The survey will be open for responses through June 30. Over 1,700 people answered the survey in previous years, and organizations like government agencies, university educators, and regional utilities use the results to better serve rural areas. COMPLETE SURVEY.