Jan 11, 2021
This episode tells the story of LEDC- the Latino Economic Development Corporation-a nonprofit at the epicenter of our nation’s multiple crises, from COVID19 to the loss of businesses, jobs and housing to the assault on Latinos by the outgoing President and his congressional allies. Marla Bilonick, LEDC’s executive director, credits her staff and the indispensable partnerships she has built with municipalities from Washington DC to Baltimore County and Puerto Rico in creating policy solutions to seemingly intractable challenges. As a CDFI-Community Development Financial Institution-an alternative and more flexible provider of capitol to non-traditional borrowers, LEDC has kept Latino small businesses afloat where banks could or would not. Keeping families whole, through counseling, capitol, organizing and advocacy requires 24/7 responsiveness. And Marla expects a next wave of foreclosure and evictions. We were talking about the toll of anti-Latino rhetoric and policies on the community when we learned the terrible news about the storming of our Capital. We were shaken to the core. But Marla is positive and undeterred. That is the leadership we need in Washington DC and nationally. Listen.