A new program headed for Dallas will tackle two big needs: breaking barriers for real estate developers of color and creating affordable housing.
The Equitable Development Initiative or EDI is led by the nonprofit Capital Impact Partners. It has trained nearly 200 developers of color since 2018 in three major metropolitan areas - Detroit, Michigan; Washington, D.C. and the San Francisco Bay Area. The Dallas region will become the fourth.
"We were invited by the City of Dallas, and we were able to receive some funding from JPMorgan Chase as well as Charles Schwab which allowed us to expand to Dallas where we're gonna offer a free training program, free to developers, a program that's gonna train them to go over every aspect of real estate development so that they are able to have those skills needed," said Aaron Gougis, the Dallas Initiatives manager for Capital Impact Partners.
That support will come in a 16-week program to help developers of color grow their businesses in an industry where they are severely underrepresented.
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"Developers of color often face multiple challenges and obstacles from systematic oppresion, lack of capital, lack of training, lack of knowledge. And with the EDI program, what we are looking to do is support them by providing mentorship, training, technical assistance and most importantly, capital so that they're able to realize the full potential of their projects," Gougis said.
Twenty emerging real estate developers will be selected for the free program that will prepare them to pursue affordable housing projects. They'll get access to broad-based training, mentorship and financing.
"This is all about creating a more inclusive economy in Dallas," said Michelle Thomas, executive director and head of philanthropy for JPMorgan Chase in Dallas/Fort Worth, in a news release. "When we think about closing the gap in financing available to developers of color, this is a huge opportunity. There is an incredible need for new and affordable housing across the country, and we're glad to partner with Capital Impact Partners to support our local developers of color who are working to address this issue in their communities."
The application window closes on Friday, May 6. Candidates are selected based on the following eligibility criteria guidelines:
- Identify as racial or ethnic minorities.
- Be actively working to further careers in real estate development. As this is not an introductory program, candidates are expected to have some real estate development experience.
- Live in or near the primary metropolitan area of the program, and have a strong connection to the city in which they are working.
- Demonstrate a commitment to inclusive growth and actively participate in that effort in the applicant’s city.
- Be able to commit to in-class training sessions on a weekly basis for up to six hours per week during the cohort period.
- Be interested in responding to requests for proposals for real estate development opportunities with or without a development partner in the next 1-2 years.
Head here for the application and more information.