Equipping Latinos And Other DC And Baltimore Metro Area Residents With Skills And Financial Tools To Create A Better Future For Their Families And Communities

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Dear Friends,

Yesterday, Attorney General Jeff Sessions announced the president's decision to repeal DACA-the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program. This announcement puts roughly 800,000 young adults at risk of deportation---individuals who were brought to the United States by their parents and without a "say."

Because this decision stands to impact members of the community that the Latino Economic Development Center-LEDC was built to serve; we wanted to share some facts about the impact this decision could have on our country. While LEDC holds paramount the moral imperative behind opposing this decision; there are also economic considerations that bear no political charge and that are worth noting.

  • The median age of DACA recipients is 22. DACA recipients pay taxes out of their paychecks to their local, state, and federal governments and are in the prime of their working lives. According to a study by, 91% of DACA recipients are employed. All have passed criminal background checks.
  • According to the CATO Institute, repealing DACA and deporting DACA recipients would result in a potential $60 billion loss in tax revenue to the federal government.
  • Discontinuing DACA is forecasted to produce a $280 billion hit to economic growth over 10 years.
  • The economic impact would be felt unevenly across the country based on the concentration of DACA participants living in different states. For example, California, with 188,000 DACA workers would suffer a GDP loss of $11.3 billion per year, Texas would lose $6.1 billion in GDP annually and North Carolina would lose $1.9 billion a year.
  • LEDC's regional areas of focus would lose the following in annual GDP:
    • District of Columbia $43 million
    • Maryland $480 million
    • Virginia $676 million

Regardless of where one might stand on immigration issues, this data should not be eliminated from discussions around the role that immigrants play in today's economy.

LEDC stands firmly in our belief that our nation should be one that welcomes diversity and provides refuge to people who are suffering from political, social, and economic injustice in their countries of origin. The clients we support represent all walks of life. Some were born here, others were not. All share the desire to make their dreams a reality. We partner with them to build assets, invest in their communities, and contribute financially to the economy. While the moral imperative to welcome immigrants is not shared by all, the economic arguments point definitively to the positive contributions that immigrants make to our country.

Lunes, 28 Agosto 2017 12:16

LEDC & EWI: A Strategic Alliance

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LEDC & EWI: A Strategic Alliance 

We're excited to announce that long-time partners Latino Economic Development Center (LEDC) and Empowered Women International (EWI) are merging. With complementary target populations, programs, and services, LEDC and EWI have identified an opportunity to build upon respective successes by joining forces to serve more clients with a broader range of programs and support.Following the merger, EWI will become a program under the LEDC umbrella, maintaining its name and high caliber of client service.

Since 1991, LEDC has offered small business development, microlending, homeownership, and affordable housing preservation programs for low to moderate income Latinos and other underserved communities in the Washington, DC metropolitan area. Since 2002, EWI has provided entrepreneurial training, mentoring, and ongoing coaching in the Washington DC area, helping immigrant, refugee and socially and economically challenged women turn their creative or cultural assets, artistic abilities, and skills into successful businesses.

What are the benefits of the merger?

The primary beneficiaries of the merger are the clients that EWI and LEDC serve. They will gain a wider array of services and resources as they work to launch or grow small businesses in the communities we support.

When announcing the merger at EWI's 15th Anniversary celebration last month, LEDC Executive Director Marla Bilonick shared how LEDC's mission of helping individuals build and preserve assets is key to building family wealth and economic stability. EWI's Executive Director, Sarah Bodley added that by combining EWI's entrepreneurial training with LEDC's program pillars, we will have a powerhouse of services to offer residents across the DMV area.

LEDC will gain EWI's unique program that is a woman-focused suite of rooted in entrepreneurial training called Entrepreneur Pathways for Women.  The development of business skills amongst a cohort of women also builds support networks that strengthen the community.  Existing EWI workshops and classes will augment LEDC's current entrepreneurial coaching, training, and lending offerings.

EWI's present clients will be able to seamlessly access LEDC's bilingual one-on-one business coaching and micro-loan financing of up to $50,000 for their business ventures.  As well, EWI will be able to provide their intensive and multi-session training services to LEDC's present customers.

Through this merger, entrepreneurs in the DC Metro region will have access to LEDC and EWI services via physical locations in Washington, D.C.; Montgomery County, Baltimore City, Fairfax County, and Arlington County. By combining forces our physical footprint and community reach expands significantly.

When will the merger happen? 

We are proceeding with the legal and organizational restructuring necessary to effectuate the merger by September 30th, 2017.  During the time leading up to the merger, LEDC and EWI will continue normal programs and services without interruption. We look forward to continuing to deliver even more value to our clients following the merger.

If you have any additional questions or concerns, or for more information, please contact:

Marla Bilonick

Executive Director of LEDC
641 S St. NW, Washington DC 20001


Sarah Bodley

Executive Director of EWI

320 S. Henry St, Alexandria VA 22314


Lunes, 07 Agosto 2017 12:12

Small Business Loans

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Attention Washington, D.C. Entrepreneurs: Do you need help with your small business? Whether you need business advice or help financing, LEDC is here to help! Apply now and see if you qualify for our small business loans.



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