The Carolinas AFN is a regional chapter of grantmakers who advance equitable wealth building and economic mobility. Our chapter provides a collaborative infrastructure for grantmakers and financial institutions of all types and sizes to learn, share, and invest in asset-building strategies that support the financial wellbeing of people in the Carolinas. We incorporate a systems-level change approach to our individual and collective philanthropic investments.

We work at the intersection of various asset building strategies including—health, employment, business ownership, housing, education, financial health, racial equity, wealth building, and economic justice. The Carolinas AFN members meet regularly and host events to share ideas. Grantmakers investing in North Carolina or South Carolina should contact Velvet Bryant if interested in joining this chapter.

Regional Focus Areas

  • Racial Equity
  • Community Wealth Building
  • Financial Health and Inclusion
  • Healthcare/Social Determinants of Health
  • Housing Stability/Homeownership
  • Small Business Ownership

Upcoming Events

November 16 @ 1:00 pm - 2:00 pm EST : Employee Ownership In Health Care: Models that Maximize Quality Jobs and Quality Care
How we structure ownership and work in healthcare matters. The global pandemic highlighted that our economy halts without reliable trusted care for our loved ones. … REGISTER

CLICK HERE for more information and resources from our past events.

Chapter Highlights

North Carolina lawmakers pass historic legislation to expand Medicaid

North Carolina has become the 40th state to expand Medicaid. It’s estimated that more than 600,000 people in North Carolina will be eligible for coverage once Medicaid expansion is implemented. North Carolina hospitals will also see a sharp decrease in the amount of uncompensated care they provide, and the Governor has noted that expanding Medicaid will create 40,000 jobs in North Carolina.

Latino Community Credit Union Leads Discussion with Vice President Kamala Harris.

During a regional discussion with Vice President Kamala Harris, AFN member, Latino Community Credit Union was recognized for expanding access to capital and financial coaching to support Latino-led businesses and business owners. The discussion highlighted national and local models to help small business ownership and homeownership as pathways to intergenerational wealth building and economic mobility.

Employee Ownership Strategies for Economic Resilience and Equity

Check out Asset Funders Network’s April 2023 brief and webinar, Employee Ownership Strategies for Economic Resilience and Equity: Pathways for Philanthropy. This resource is especially helpful for funders and practitioners involved in small business, employee ownership, job quality, and racial equity strategies. The webinar features regional insights from one of the Carolinas AFN members, Charlie Gardner, program officer at the Winston-Salem Foundation.

Financial Capability Services in the time of COVID

AFN and the University of Wisconsin-Madison Center for Financial Security (CFS) completed a study to better understand the transition to remote services among financial capability and asset building (FCAB) programs. The study included a Carolinas regional focus group and a nationally distributed survey.

Impact Investing: A Tool to Support Economic Mobility and Community Wealth Building

On May 16, 2023, the Carolinas Asset Funders Network, in partnership with Mission Investors Exchange, continued to activate AFN’s interactive funder primer, On the Road to Racial and Economic Justice: Essential Questions to Address Racial Bias in Asset Building Philanthropy.


How We Work

  • Inform: Highlight promising practices, key issues, and innovations in the field through funder-only dialogues and other community-wide convenings. Members dive into the roots of systems that create wealth disparities and exploring frameworks and transformational solutions. 


  • Connect: Members support peer-to-peer learning and cross-sector collaboration. Members identify and leverage replicable and scalable high-impact strategies and innovative approaches to connect and inform influential funders of actionable investments.
  • Influence: Raise the visibility of asset-building strategies within the broader community of foundations, public-sector funders, and financial institutions. Members seek opportunities to accelerate economic prosperity while also reducing racial, ethnic, and gender wealth gaps.
  • Build: Work to increase the number of grantmakers and resources focused on strategies that help low and moderate income people build and protect assets. Members leverage one another’s interests and investments and actively look for additional funders willing to co-invest in North Carolina or South Carolina.



Are you a funder or financial institution in North Carolina or South Carolina interested in joining this chapter? Contact us to learn more.


Velvet Bryant,

Steering Committee

Lynette Bell

Truist Foundation

Keisha Bolden

Self-Help Credit Union

Crystal Dunham

Brighthouse Financial

Charlie Gardner

The Winston-Salem Foundation

Neill Goslin

Self-Help Credit Union

Curtis Holloman

The Foundation for a Healthy High Point

Alexandria Jones

Z. Smith Reynolds Foundation

Suzie Koonce

Wells Fargo

Sara Manning

Truist Foundation

Eniris Riddick

Z. Smith Reynolds Foundation

Susan Fitzgibbon Shumaker

Cone Health Foundation

Suganthi Simon

JPMorgan Chase & Co.

Gabriel Treves-Kagan

Latino Community Credit Union (LCCU)

Velvet Bryant
Velvet Bryant

The Carolinas Regional Program Officer

AFN Staff