Keynote: Building on What’s Good -A New Way to Fight Poverty

L (1)
8:15 AM - 9:30 AM
José Quiñonez, Founder & CEO of Mission Asset Fund (MAF), believes in bringing to light what’s good in people’s lives. When he launched MAF in 2007, he wanted to help low-income families emerge from the financial shadows by building credit histories, a crucial tool for building financial security. But José also had a bigger goal. He sought to change the conventional narrative about poor people by creating a program that recognized the financial savvy of low-income families - many of whom juggle budgets in multiple countries.

This fall, José was awarded a MacArthur Fellowship (often called a “Genius grant”) for his creativity and vision in developing the Lending Circles model, which provides zero-interest social loans to help families build financial security by saving for college, paying down debt, growing businesses - and more. Today, MAF has over 50 nonprofit partners in 17 states and D.C., and has provided over 6,300 loans totaling $6.2 million. Come hear from José about this journey and learn the behind-the-scenes story of how he and his team made this happen.

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