Denver, January 16, 2018 – Colorado Enterprise Fund (CEF) is proud to be a recipient of the 2018 Martin Luther King, Jr. Business Awards, which was presented to the organization at the 33rd Annual Awards Presentation Luncheon at the Hilton City Center Hotel on Friday, January 12. The award celebrates “content of character” and is given to individuals, corporations and non-profit organizations for exceptional community service and commitment to the values of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. as evidenced by their exemplary social responsibility. This is the first time CEF has received this award.
“It is an immense and humbling honor to receive this particular award because of the revered place in our culture of its namesake, Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.,” says CEF President and CEO Ceyl Prinster. “We appreciate the highly respected profile of this award since it recognizes our organization’s positive impact on promoting diversity and equity, specifically regarding our support of minority and underserved communities in our state.”
Colorado Enterprise Fund is a non-profit lending source specializing in loans for small businesses and startups in the state of Colorado. Twenty-five percent of CEF’s 2,100+ loans made since its inception in 1976 have served minority business owners. Stan Sena, CEF Board member and the President and CEO of Mountain Plains Minority Supplier Development Council, and Rosy Aburto McDonough, Director of Colorado’s Minority Business Office and a CEF Advisory Board Member, nominated CEF for this prestigious award.
Says Ms. McDonough, “We were proud to nominate CEF for this Award. CEF provides access to capital that impacts rural and urban communities in a unique way since their business customers create products and services that generate employment and economic development. CEF's lending programs touch various industries, business sizes, and locations in the state. Having a partner like CEF is invaluable to our business communities.”
Providing loans to a wide range of business owners and industries across Colorado, more than 82% of all CEF customers are minority, woman or lower-income individuals. CEF supports communities by providing economic opportunity through business ownership to encourage a diverse and equitable economy in Colorado. CEF’s lending guidelines are more flexible than traditional banks and it offers free business consulting services to all loan recipients, providing borrowers with the tools they need to help them succeed. For more information about CEF businesses and their success stories, visit http://www.coloradoenterprisefund.org/meet-our-clients/.
Other 2018 Martin Luther King, Jr. Business Award recipients include Harry Budisidharta, Zee Ferrufino, Jake Gilmore, The Kitchen Community, Ryan Ross, Ph.D., and Reverend Dr. James D. Peters, Jr.
About Martin Luther King, Jr. Business Awards
Every year since 1986, the Denver business community gathers on the Friday before the Martin Luther King, Jr. holiday to present the Martin Luther King, Jr. Business Awards to individuals, corporations and non-profit organizations that demonstrate exemplary social responsibility and commitment to the values and ideals of Dr. King. Fourteen civic organizations and chambers of commerce sponsor the awards luncheon. In 2007, the Trailblazer Award was added to recognize pioneers in the civil rights movement in Colorado. Proceeds from the Martin Luther King, Jr. Business Awards support college scholarships for minority students through the Colorado Scholarship Coalition (CSC). For more information, visit: www.mlkbusinessawards.org.
About Colorado Enterprise Fund
Founded in 1976, Colorado Enterprise Fund (CEF) provides loans up to $500,000 to finance small businesses and startups unable to obtain funding through traditional banks. With a mission to accelerate community prosperity by financing and supporting entrepreneurs and small businesses, CEF has provided over $68 million in loans to more than 2,100 businesses to help create or retain over 18,000 jobs in the state. A nonprofit Community Development Financial Institution (CDFI), CEF is based in Denver with a satellite office in Fort Collins. CEF’s lending and consulting services are available to businesses statewide. Colorado Enterprise Fund does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, religion, gender, marital status, disability, age, national origin or sexual orientation and provides services in Spanish. For more information, visit:
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