On July 24, 2019 over sixty stakeholders from the philanthropic, non-profit, corporate, government, and financial institution sectors came together to officially launch the Louisiana Asset Funders Network (LA AFN) chapter.

Erika Wright, JPMorgan Chase & Co., kicked off the gathering Financial Health Matters: Innovations and Strategies to Empower Louisianans. The event featured Josh Sledge from the Financial Health Network, who elevated the the impact financial health has on families and children- specifically low- and moderate-income individuals- and offered an insightful look at financial technology products and approaches nationwide and in Louisiana. Sledge challenged attendees to 1) measure and learn what LA households need, 2) collaborate and share to build knowledge and promote strategic investment, and 3) advocate to change policy and systems barriers to Louisianans having better financial health. The event elevated the role philanthropy can play to promote financial health and leverage innovative models while inspiring stakeholders to work collaboratively for equity.

Together, attendees explored the opportunity to nurture the development of consumer-centric, inclusive, and impactful models and tools that foster increased financial stability, savings, and credit building.

A panel of thought-leaders discussed how financial health provides slack for individuals to have:

  • Better ability to absorb economic shocks
  • Increased future orientation and asset-building goals
  • Improved employment and housing options
  • Increased opportunities to get an affordable loan

Panelists included: Jesus Gerena, Family Independence Initiative; Patricia Sullivan, The Financial Clinic; Suzanne Torregano, Kingsley House; Ben Allen, Perk Up Financial Health; and moderator Isabel Barrios, Greater New Orleans Foundation.

Christine Jordan, Entergy, closed the event by reflecting an opportunity for stakeholders to continue to add voice to the conversation and actively explore the case for investments in financial health, budding examples showing promise in our state, and stakeholder roles to increase impact to improve the financial resiliency of Louisianans.

Documents and Resources:

The Agenda and Speaker Bios are available here.

Review the slides in PDF from the presentation.

For questions, contact:

Kara Wilkins (kara@assetfunders.org) or Abby Hughes Holsclaw (abby@assetfunders.org)