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Recent posts by Brian Depew

It’s Not All About Organic

A growing number of people equate sustainable farming with organic farming. That is a mistake.

At the Center we look beyond labels and focus on our core values of stewardship, community, and ownership. We ask if a farming system protects the land, soil, and water. We ask if it encourages widespread ownership and how it impacts community.

Unapologetically Rural

Reflecting upon the work of the Center for Rural Affairs, I think it’s an exciting time in rural America, with growing opportunities in sustainable farming, clean energy, healthcare, and small business.

As a new Community Development Financial Institute we’re building capacity to meet growing capital needs of small businesses, and exploring needs in the farm sector and in neighboring states.

Unapologetically Rural: A Year of Progress

It’s an exciting time to be in rural America. We are witnessing renewed interest in sustainable farming. New opportunities in clean energy, healthcare, and small business offer opportunity in small towns. And our work is evolving to include a more diverse set of strategies to create welcoming and vibrant communities.

Aligning Capital and Justice

In 2015, the Center for Rural Affairs will reach the $12 million mark in small business loans. Aligning loan capital with our values of widespread ownership, control, and opportunity is a core strategy for our work.

How did we get here?

In 1977, the Center published Where Have All the Bankers Gone?, reporting on changes in the ownership structure of banking. Banks were consolidating. When small-town banks joined a consolidated chain, more of their customers’ cash holdings went to big-city banks in the chain.