PLATINUM2023

OWEESTA CORPORATION

Redefining Equity. Reclaiming Native Sovereignty. Together.

aka Oweesta   |   Longmont, CO   |  www.oweesta.org
GuideStar Charity Check

OWEESTA CORPORATION

EIN: 54-1970097


Mission

Oweesta's mission is to provide opportunities for Native people to develop financial assets and create wealth by assisting in the establishment of strong, permanent institutions and programs contributing to economic independence and strengthening sovereignty for all Native communities.

Ruling year info

2000

CEO

Chrystel Cornelius

Main address

2432 Main St., 1st Floor

Longmont, CO 80501 USA

Show more contact info

Formerly known as

First Nations Oweesta Corporation

EIN

54-1970097

Subject area info

Voluntarism

Community and economic development

Economic development

Rural development

Financial services

Population served info

Indigenous peoples

NTEE code info

Management & Technical Assistance (S02)

Economic Development (S30)

Nonprofit Management (S50)

What we aim to solve

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

Oweesta Corporation directly provides Native American communities the tools and capital support required for real and sustainable job creation, small business development, commercial real estate development, and affordable housing/home ownership, while also offering basic banking services and financial literacy training to “underbanked” Native American communities who have been historically targeted by predatory lending practices. We believe that when armed with the appropriate resources, Native peoples hold the capacity and ingenuity to ensure the sustainable, economic, spiritual and cultural well-being of their communities.

Our programs

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

What are the organization's current programs, how do they measure success, and who do the programs serve?

Institution Development

Oweesta assists certified and emerging Native CDFIs with individualized training, technical assistance, and systematic, multi-faceted program delivery. Our goal is to help create and sustain healthy and thriving Native CDFI operations.

Population(s) Served
Indigenous peoples

Oweesta’s financial education program assists the development and integration of programs such as financial education, matched savings programs, and credit counseling. Our Building Native Communities: Financial Skills for Families curriculum offers a culturally appropriate training program to help Native organizations establish and sustain financial education programs from certified instructors with deep experience in Native communities.

Population(s) Served
Indigenous peoples

As the only existing Native CDFI intermediary offering financial products and development services, Oweesta understands the crucial need for investment capital in Native CDFIs and seeks to create appropriate loan products that enable reinvestment of capital back into Native communities. Oweesta offers the following loan products to qualifying Native financial institutions:

Capital Loans
Small & Emerging Loans
Native Fresh Food Fund Loans
Start-Up Loans
Agricultural Loans
Working Capital Loans
Lines of Credit

As a lending intermediary, Oweesta is also supported by debt and equity investments which enhances our capitalization base to better serve Native communities across the nation.

Population(s) Served
Indigenous peoples

As a leader in the Native CDFI industry, Oweesta strives to inform potential investors, federal agencies, and the general public on the current industry climate. With our team of enthusiastic and qualified employees, we research and distribute several publications each year. In addition to researching needs, we analyze best practices within established Native CDFIs. By continuously analyzing our industry, we are able to better serve our Native CDFI clients.

Oweesta serves as a voice for Native communities to help inform policy that supports Native community development. By speaking out on relevant issues, we are able to effect change at state and federal levels to further not only our efforts, but the efforts of our clients to create healthy, thriving local economies. We encourage Native communities to join us in our advocacy work. It is within unity that we will find strength in our collective voice.

Population(s) Served
Indigenous peoples

Where we work

Affiliations & memberships

NeighborWorks Member 2020

Our results

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

How does this organization measure their results? It's a hard question but an important one.

Number of training workshops

This metric is no longer tracked.
Totals By Year
Population(s) Served

Economically disadvantaged people

Related Program

Institution Development

Type of Metric

Output - describing our activities and reach

Direction of Success

Increasing

Context Notes

First Nations Oweesta Corporation provides extensive and varied technical assistance and training programs, tailored to the specific needs of our NCDFI clients.

Number of financial literacy courses conducted

This metric is no longer tracked.
Totals By Year
Population(s) Served

Adults, Indigenous peoples, Ethnic and racial groups

Related Program

Financial Education & Asset Building

Type of Metric

Output - describing our activities and reach

Direction of Success

Increasing

Context Notes

Oweesta’s Financial Education and Asset-Building program works with NCDFIs to help them implement financial education programs and provides train the trainers on how to teach our curriculum.

Total dollar amount of loans issued

This metric is no longer tracked.
Totals By Year
Population(s) Served

Indigenous peoples

Related Program

Lending & Capitalization

Type of Metric

Output - describing our activities and reach

Direction of Success

Increasing

Context Notes

As the only existing Native CDFI intermediary offering financial products and development services, Oweesta understands the crucial need for investment capital in Native CDFIs.

Number of loans issued

This metric is no longer tracked.
Totals By Year
Population(s) Served

Indigenous peoples

Related Program

Lending & Capitalization

Type of Metric

Output - describing our activities and reach

Direction of Success

Increasing

Context Notes

Owseeks seeks to create appropriate loan products that enables reinvestment of capital back into Native communities.

Number of participants attending course/session/workshop

This metric is no longer tracked.
Totals By Year
Population(s) Served

Indigenous peoples

Related Program

Financial Education & Asset Building

Type of Metric

Output - describing our activities and reach

Direction of Success

Increasing

Context Notes

Oweesta assists certified and emerging Native CDFIs with individualized training, technical assistance, and systematic, multi-faceted program delivery.

Number of hours of training

This metric is no longer tracked.
Totals By Year
Population(s) Served

Indigenous peoples

Related Program

Financial Education & Asset Building

Type of Metric

Output - describing our activities and reach

Direction of Success

Increasing

Context Notes

Our Building Native Communities: Financial Skills for Families curriculum offers a culturally appropriate training program to help Native organizations establish and sustain financial education.

Hours of expertise provided

This metric is no longer tracked.
Totals By Year
Population(s) Served

Indigenous peoples

Related Program

Institution Development

Type of Metric

Output - describing our activities and reach

Direction of Success

Increasing

Context Notes

Oweesta assists certified and emerging Native CDFIs with individualized training, technical assistance, and systematic, multi-faceted program delivery.

Number of jobs created and maintained

This metric is no longer tracked.
Totals By Year
Population(s) Served

Indigenous peoples, Ethnic and racial groups

Related Program

Lending & Capitalization

Type of Metric

Output - describing our activities and reach

Direction of Success

Increasing

Context Notes

The number of jobs created or retained through our loan program.

Number of households that obtain/retain permanent housing for at least 6 months

This metric is no longer tracked.
Totals By Year
Population(s) Served

Indigenous peoples

Related Program

Lending & Capitalization

Type of Metric

Output - describing our activities and reach

Direction of Success

Increasing

Context Notes

The number of affordable housing units created through our loan program.

Our Sustainable Development Goals

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

Learn more about Sustainable Development Goals.

Goals & Strategy

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

Learn about the organization's key goals, strategies, capabilities, and progress.

Charting impact

Four powerful questions that require reflection about what really matters - results.

As the nations premier intermediary for Native community development financial institutions (CDFI), Oweesta (from the Mohawk word for money) helps build strong Native institutions and programs through professional services designed to build local capacity, provide powerful tools for Native community development and promote economic sovereignty. Oweesta's mission is to provide opportunities for Native people to develop assets and create wealth by assisting in the establishment of strong, permanent institutions and programs, contributing to economic independence and strengthening sovereignty for all Native communities.

Oweesta provides training, technical assistance, investments, research and advocacy to help Native communities develop an integrated range of asset-building products and services including financial education and financial products. Asset-building tools stimulate reservation economies by providing tribal members the opportunity to acquire financial management skills and build and accumulate assets through small business creation, home ownership, education, etc. Through this approach, Native communities across the country are beginning to emerge from the cycle of dependency that has spanned generations, and are building healthy reservation economies with the goal of achieving economic sovereignty.

Oweesta is a well-established, high-performing Native CDFI that maximizes community development impacts in Native communities by engaging in strategic partnerships and by strategically deploying scarce resources in severely distressed and impoverished Tribal communities. Oweesta maximizes leveraging of its equity position with debt capital investments and actively minimizes capital costs to support below-market financing to NCDFIs. While serving the very lowest income communities in the nation and providing high-risk, unsecured loans to NCDFIs, Oweesta has established a strong financial position and has only experienced one loan loss of $10,000 as compared to over $42 million of loans deployed nationwide.

Oweesta has provided 2,372 hours of direct technical assistance (TA) to our clientele in 2022. We have granted 2,108,259 in direct funds to our Native CDFI (NCDFI) industry. Additionally, we have closed 21,135,000 in loans during 2022.

Financials

OWEESTA CORPORATION
Fiscal year: Jul 01 - Jun 30
Financial documents
2022 2021 A-133 Single Audit 2021 2019 2019 Audited Financials 2018 2017 2016 2015
done  Yes, financials were audited by an independent accountant. info

Revenue vs. expenses:  breakdown

SOURCE: IRS Form 990 info
NET GAIN/LOSS:    in 
Note: When component data are not available, the graph displays the total Revenue and/or Expense values.

Liquidity in 2023 info

SOURCE: IRS Form 990

0.48

Average of 0.69 over 10 years

Months of cash in 2023 info

SOURCE: IRS Form 990

41.9

Average of 26.5 over 10 years

Fringe rate in 2023 info

SOURCE: IRS Form 990

15%

Average of 19% over 10 years

Funding sources info

Source: IRS Form 990

Assets & liabilities info

Source: IRS Form 990

Financial data

SOURCE: IRS Form 990

OWEESTA CORPORATION

Revenue & expenses

Fiscal Year: Jul 01 - Jun 30

SOURCE: IRS Form 990 info

Fiscal year ending: cloud_download Download Data

OWEESTA CORPORATION

Balance sheet

Fiscal Year: Jul 01 - Jun 30

SOURCE: IRS Form 990 info

The balance sheet gives a snapshot of the financial health of an organization at a particular point in time. An organization's total assets should generally exceed its total liabilities, or it cannot survive long, but the types of assets and liabilities must also be considered. For instance, an organization's current assets (cash, receivables, securities, etc.) should be sufficient to cover its current liabilities (payables, deferred revenue, current year loan, and note payments). Otherwise, the organization may face solvency problems. On the other hand, an organization whose cash and equivalents greatly exceed its current liabilities might not be putting its money to best use.

Fiscal year ending: cloud_download Download Data

OWEESTA CORPORATION

Financial trends analysis Glossary & formula definitions

Fiscal Year: Jul 01 - Jun 30

SOURCE: IRS Form 990 info

This snapshot of OWEESTA CORPORATION’s financial trends applies Nonprofit Finance Fund® analysis to data hosted by GuideStar. While it highlights the data that matter most, remember that context is key – numbers only tell part of any story.

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Business model indicators

Profitability info 2019 2020 2021 2022 2023
Unrestricted surplus (deficit) before depreciation $2,075,710 $969,746 $7,779,721 $2,934,806 $2,416,097
As % of expenses 44.9% 32.9% 183.0% 42.0% 32.1%
Unrestricted surplus (deficit) after depreciation $2,070,310 $964,345 $7,774,771 $2,934,806 $2,416,097
As % of expenses 44.7% 32.7% 182.7% 42.0% 32.1%
Revenue composition info
Total revenue (unrestricted & restricted) $8,309,019 $4,121,071 $12,724,322 $8,550,611 $11,519,423
Total revenue, % change over prior year 225.6% -50.4% 208.8% -32.8% 34.7%
Program services revenue 8.8% 22.6% 9.5% 12.3% 14.6%
Membership dues 0.0% 0.0% 0.0% 0.0% 0.0%
Investment income 1.1% 2.7% 0.2% 0.3% 1.6%
Government grants 18.6% 6.4% 1.9% 40.7% 34.4%
All other grants and contributions 71.6% 68.3% 88.5% 46.8% 49.3%
Other revenue 0.0% 0.0% 0.0% 0.0% 0.0%
Expense composition info
Total expenses before depreciation $4,623,749 $2,948,061 $4,250,292 $6,993,861 $7,536,427
Total expenses, % change over prior year 156.3% -36.2% 44.2% 64.6% 7.8%
Personnel 22.3% 39.3% 34.5% 28.1% 28.2%
Professional fees 6.5% 6.9% 6.4% 11.4% 33.6%
Occupancy 1.0% 1.6% 0.7% 0.1% 0.1%
Interest 4.3% 7.4% 2.7% 5.7% 6.2%
Pass-through 50.9% 22.0% 50.6% 40.5% 16.2%
All other expenses 14.9% 22.8% 5.1% 14.2% 15.8%
Full cost components (estimated) info 2019 2020 2021 2022 2023
Total expenses (after depreciation) $4,629,149 $2,953,462 $4,255,242 $6,993,861 $7,536,427
One month of savings $385,312 $245,672 $354,191 $582,822 $628,036
Debt principal payment $0 $0 $0 $0 $0
Fixed asset additions $0 $0 $0 $0 $0
Total full costs (estimated) $5,014,461 $3,199,134 $4,609,433 $7,576,683 $8,164,463

Capital structure indicators

Liquidity info 2019 2020 2021 2022 2023
Months of cash 18.3 40.0 33.7 30.7 41.9
Months of cash and investments 24.7 42.9 50.5 37.3 43.4
Months of estimated liquid unrestricted net assets 15.6 28.5 41.7 30.4 32.0
Balance sheet composition info 2019 2020 2021 2022 2023
Cash $7,053,640 $9,820,943 $11,935,582 $17,887,719 $26,315,740
Investments $2,471,099 $728,025 $5,937,338 $3,837,816 $928,559
Receivables $14,811,879 $18,930,610 $28,806,908 $41,684,655 $54,052,611
Gross land, buildings, equipment (LBE) $97,625 $97,625 $97,625 $97,625 $97,625
Accumulated depreciation (as a % of LBE) 89.4% 94.9% 100.0% 100.0% 100.0%
Liabilities (as a % of assets) 64.1% 66.4% 60.7% 68.6% 70.6%
Unrestricted net assets $6,032,246 $6,996,591 $14,771,362 $17,706,168 $20,122,265
Temporarily restricted net assets $2,721,393 N/A N/A N/A N/A
Permanently restricted net assets $0 N/A N/A N/A N/A
Total restricted net assets $2,721,393 $2,907,780 $3,595,643 $2,196,283 $3,781,069
Total net assets $8,753,639 $9,904,371 $18,367,005 $19,902,451 $23,903,334

Key data checks

Key data checks info 2019 2020 2021 2022 2023
Material data errors No No No No No

Operations

The people, governance practices, and partners that make the organization tick.

Documents
Form 1023/1024 is not available for this organization

CEO

Chrystel Cornelius

Chrystel Cornelius is the President & CEO of the Oweesta Corporation, a national Native CDFI intermediary. Ms. Cornelius has worked with Native communities the entirety of her professional career, with more than 26 years of direct experience working within the Native economic development field. She is an enrolled member of the Oneida Nation of Wisconsin and a member of the Turtle Mountain Band of Chippewa Indians located in North Dakota. Chrystel Cornelius is a founding steering committee member for the Native CDFI Network (NCN). Ms. Cornelius is also a former board member of Opportunity Finance Network (OFN), is a current board member of the Community Reinvestment Fund (CRF) and holds the position of Board Chair for the Red Feather Development Group. She is a BALLE Fellow and Skoll Fellow and recipient of the 27th Heinz Award for the Economy. Ms. Chrystel Cornelius attained a bachelor’s degree in Business Management from the University of Mary in Bismarck, North Dakota.

Number of employees

Source: IRS Form 990

OWEESTA CORPORATION

Officers, directors, trustees, and key employees

SOURCE: IRS Form 990

Compensation
Other
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Compensation data
Download up to 5 most recent years of officer and director compensation data for this organization

OWEESTA CORPORATION

Highest paid employees

SOURCE: IRS Form 990

Compensation
Other
Related
Show data for fiscal year
Compensation data
Download up to 5 most recent years of highest paid employee data for this organization

OWEESTA CORPORATION

Board of directors
as of 03/10/2023
SOURCE: Self-reported by organization
Board of directors data
Download the most recent year of board of directors data for this organization
Board co-chair

Jeff Bowman

Bay Bank


Board co-chair

Robin Danner

Homestead CDC

Robin Danner

Homestead CDC

Susan Hammond

Four Directions Development Corporation

Derek Valdo

AMERIND Risk

Board leadership practices

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

GuideStar worked with BoardSource, the national leader in nonprofit board leadership and governance, to create this section.

  • Board orientation and education
    Does the board conduct a formal orientation for new board members and require all board members to sign a written agreement regarding their roles, responsibilities, and expectations? Yes
  • CEO oversight
    Has the board conducted a formal, written assessment of the chief executive within the past year ? Yes
  • Ethics and transparency
    Have the board and senior staff reviewed the conflict-of-interest policy and completed and signed disclosure statements in the past year? Yes
  • Board composition
    Does the board ensure an inclusive board member recruitment process that results in diversity of thought and leadership? Yes
  • Board performance
    Has the board conducted a formal, written self-assessment of its performance within the past three years? Yes

Organizational demographics

SOURCE: Self-reported; last updated 3/10/2023

Who works and leads organizations that serve our diverse communities? Candid partnered with CHANGE Philanthropy on this demographic section.

Leadership

The organization's leader identifies as:

Race & ethnicity
Native American/American Indian/Alaska Native/Indigenous
Gender identity
Female
Sexual orientation
Heterosexual or Straight
Disability status
Decline to state

Race & ethnicity

Gender identity

Transgender Identity

Sexual orientation

No data

Disability

No data

Equity strategies

Last updated: 03/08/2023

GuideStar partnered with Equity in the Center - an organization that works to shift mindsets, practices, and systems to increase racial equity - to create this section. Learn more

Data
  • We review compensation data across the organization (and by staff levels) to identify disparities by race.
  • We ask team members to identify racial disparities in their programs and / or portfolios.
  • We analyze disaggregated data and root causes of race disparities that impact the organization's programs, portfolios, and the populations served.
  • We disaggregate data to adjust programming goals to keep pace with changing needs of the communities we support.
  • We employ non-traditional ways of gathering feedback on programs and trainings, which may include interviews, roundtables, and external reviews with/by community stakeholders.
  • We disaggregate data by demographics, including race, in every policy and program measured.
  • We have long-term strategic plans and measurable goals for creating a culture such that one’s race identity has no influence on how they fare within the organization.
Policies and processes
  • We have community representation at the board level, either on the board itself or through a community advisory board.