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OneCalifornia Foundation » Banking

Posts Tagged ‘Banking’


Wednesday, September 7th, 2011

Free Financial Education Classes are offered at:

OnePacific Coast Foundation

1438 Webster St., Ste. 101

Oakland, CA  94612

Classes for individuals:  Tuesdays 9:30-11:30am, 12:30-2:30pm, 4:30-6:30pm

OneCAL SAFE (Checking and Lifetime Savings Accounts with Financial Education) is an initiative of OneCalifornia Foundation, which in partnership with Bay Area non-profit organizations, works to provide low-income individuals and emerging small businesses with access to financial education and fair banking services.  Call 510.663.2253 x301 to register for a class.

San Francisco Financial Planning Day

Wednesday, September 7th, 2011

Saturday, October 22, 2011 from 9:00-4:00pm

UC Hastings College of the Law,

Snodgrass Hall, 198 McAllister St.

San Francisco, CA

Don’t miss this opportunity for a free, private consultation on financial issues that matter to you with experts from the Financial Planning Association and highly qualified certified financial planner professionals. There will also be workshops on a variety of financial topics throughout the day.  Stay as little or as long as you’d like.  It’s all free!  Register for free at: or 1.877.861.7826.

Nonprofit Builder & Business Builder Loans

Friday, August 26th, 2011

New Loan Program to grow Nonprofit Organizations and Small Businesses

One PacificCoast Bank is now offering loans for nonprofits and businesses to help grow small enterprises. Business and Nonprofit Builder loans are from $5,000 to $25,000 and can be used to refinance business debt, purchase equipment, finance inventory and accounts receivable, tenant improvements, or other working capital needs. Loans cannot be used to repay personal debt.

Existing nonprofits or businesses with over three years of operations and profitability in the past year can apply. Loan terms range from two to four years and payments are made in monthly principal & interest installments. Collateral is required and there is a $100 application fee. For more information, please contact Cara Wick at 510.550.8431 or email

We are excited to be one of the few banks that provide loans to nonprofit organizations in the Bay Area!

Free Credit Reviews - When is the last time you checked your credit score?

Friday, August 26th, 2011

People’s Federal Credit Union is currently offering free credit report reviews. Make an appointment to receive a copy of your credit report and meet one-on-one with a trained credit coach. Credit coaches can answer questions and help you to make a plan to rebuild your credit. For more information, contact the People’s Federal Credit Union at 510.267.0450 x305, para espanol x307 or stop by at 1432 7th St. Oakland, CA 94607 across from the West Oakland Bart Station.

OneCalifornia Gives More SBA Loans to Small Biz than Most Big Banks in the Bay Area

Thursday, August 5th, 2010

onecal-bank-logo-fdic-cdfiWe at OneCalifornia Bank are excited to announce that we are leaders in providing SBA loans to Bay Area small businesses, according to the U.S. Small Business Administration.  Thanks to our SBA team, led by Robert Gebauer, the amount of lending for our small size and young age is amazing.

 In the first nine months of the fiscal year 2010, out of the 80 banks in the San Francisco SBA District Office, OneCalifornia Bank was 6th in terms of number of loans and 10th in number of dollars lent for the nine month period between October 1, 2009 and June 30, 2010*. We generated a total of $5.75 million in loans during this time. In fact, we lent more dollars than Citibank, Bank of America, Bank of the West, and JPMorgan Chase in this district.  Pretty impressive considering we’ve only been around for 3 years and their assets are on substantially larger than ours!  We look forward to having them join us in increasing the amount of loans being made to our local small businesses.

We are proud to be able to help many businesses in stay in operation (and grow!) during hard times, and in turn help retain and create jobs in our local community.  This is what our work is all about - strengthening our local economy to benefit community members of all income levels, races and walks of life.  You support our clients every day without knowing it, from a Hispanic bakery in San Pablo to a recycling retail business in Oakland, to a restaurant in San Francisco.  Thank you for supporting us in this work!

For enlightening facts about how small banks across the country are helping our communities, see this article in last month’s newsletter.

*for 7a loans

Summer Internship Reflections

Monday, August 3rd, 2009

This year we held the first Summer Internship Program at OneCalifornia Foundation, of which I was lucky enough to be a part. I came to the Foundation last March as an intern to assist with the marketing of our Oakland Unwrapped! Online Marketplace. I graduated from UC Berkeley in May and decided to stick around for the summer to assist with the internship program, and participate as an intern as well.

I haven’t got enough space here to go address everything that I’ve taken away from the program. The most unique part of this internship was the focus on the enrichment of the interns, specifically the inclusion of a curriculum on banking and socially responsible business. Over the course of six weeks we heard lectures on everything from retail banking to investing to B corporations. We pulled presenters from OneCalifornia Bank and other socially responsible organizations like RSF Social Finance, Give Something Back, Renewable Funding, Green Retirement Plans, and more. With each of the interns in the program working on separate projects, the courses on banking were a great way to acquaint everyone with how a bank is run and the different jobs that need to be done. The socially responsible business component was what really struck me, as there was no class I took as an undergrad to show me that I could, and more importantly, that I should look for a career where I can do good just by showing up to work every day. The bottom line—the business world is changing; there will be more and more companies with socially responsible missions that give more back to the environment and the community. You don’t need to volunteer or work at a non-profit to make a difference, and you can still make a living doing it.

We were lucky enough to have six awesome interns, all Economics majors, from UC Berkeley, Stanford, and Northwestern, and while I could wax on about what made this internship so great, I think I will leave some room for you to hear from everyone else… (more…)

Barack Obama’s Consumer Financial Protection Agency

Friday, July 24th, 2009

Barack Obama’s Presidential campaign made many promises about change. Now, he is attempting to deliver on some of these campaign promises by proposing legislation that will create a Consumer Financial Protection Agency (CFPA). In early July, Obama introduced legislation to create the CFPA in the hopes of regulating the financial services industry to protect consumers from predatory and sneaky practices. The CFPA would be in charge of “writing and enforcing consumer protection rules, continuously monitoring the market for risks to consumers and publishing significant findings at least once a year, and streamlining regulatory requirements and making sure financial product disclosures are understandable and helpful.” This organization is being created not only to increase consumer protection in the financial industry, but also to centralize the responsibility in the wake of many regulatory lapses. Obama hopes that the CFPA “will have the power to set standards so that companies compete by offering innovative products that consumers actually want — and actually understand. Those ridiculous contracts with pages of fine print that no one can figure out — those things will be a thing of the past. And enforcement will be the rule, not the exception.” To read more about Obama’s CFPA proposal, click here.

Despite the good intentions of Obama’s CFPA, many claim that it would only make the regulatory process more difficult and thus hurt consumers in the long run. The CFPA could end up harming consumers by suppressing innovation, increasing operating costs, and damaging the integrity of various institutions. In order to ease the concerns of critics, House Financial Services Representative Barney Frank has delayed action on the agency until September to give consumer advocates and the financial industry more time to offer input and respond. To read more about opposition to the CFPA, click here.

Financial Crisis 101

Wednesday, July 15th, 2009

Everyone understands that the economy is in a bad place right now. We all know that unemployment and foreclosures are at highs not seen in the past 25 years. But, the media, government, and financial industry rarely address the situation in terms the general public can understand. NPR’s This American Life gets it. In an episode available for free here, Alex Blumberg and Adam Davidson explain why taxpayers have no viable alternative to bailing out banks and how insolvency became an issue in the first place. Blumberg and Davidson simplify bank balance sheets and address three realistic solutions to the current crisis. This episode even mentions ways that some individuals are making an effort to reduce the amount of toxic assets out there. This is truly a great way to learn about what’s going on not only in your own neighborhood, but also in the world economy today. After listening to Blumberg and Davidson, you will have an opinion on what’s happening in the economy, and you may even know what financial experts are talking about when they’re interviewed on the news! 

If you like this, also check out other programs from these guys, including Giant Pool of Money (May 2008) about the mortgage crisis and relationship between housing and the economy, and their daily blog and podcast.

How community banks save people money and create jobs in the neighborhood

Wednesday, July 15th, 2009

OneCalifornia Staff

OneCalifornia Staff

How is a community bank different, anyway?

America’s largest banks can fulfill financial needs for their customers. However, many of these large banks — those deemed “too big to fail” — are often also too big to truly care about the welfare of their customers and the communities in which they sit. Community banks offer a community-conscious alternative.

Ever get charged $80 in fees when you are $5 short on a check?  That’s just one of the hidden ways in which traditional banks often make their money – they process your biggest payment first so that all of your subsequent payments will cause overdrafts and incur fees.  Community banks usually work to avoid these fees for their customers by processing as many payments as they can before you overdraft, and often calling you to let you know you’re about to overdraft before you even do it!  When was the last time a big bank called you to help you save money (especially at their own expense)?  They are also much more transparent about their fees – they tell you what they are instead of hiding them and claiming to have free accounts. Learn more about the fee practices of banks from the California Reinvestment Coalition:

Want to make sure that there are jobs in your community?  Everyone knows that it’s hard for businesses to get loans right now, and it’s especially hard for smaller businesses.  Loans are the lifeblood of many small businesses, and when these dry up, businesses have to start laying off their employees.  Luckily, community banks work hard to make those more difficult loans to smaller businesses, and – by their charter – they make those loans right in the neighborhood. So when you deposit money in a local community bank, you are also contributing to the economic health of your neighborhood.

Community banks do a lot for their clients and communities; but OneCalifornia Bank goes one step further. Because OneCalifornia Foundation, a 501c3 nonprofit organization, holds the financial shares of OneCalifornia Bank, all bank profits will be re-invested in local community activities and community development. OneCalifornia Foundation invests in individual and family projects such as financial literacy classes, foreclosure prevention, Acorns to Oaks (a savings matching program for young children),and in small business services such as Oakland Unwrapped, Oakland Business Assistance Center, and the Indie Awards.

Each customer at OneCalifornia not only gets fair and transparent banking services and fees, but also helps to make Oakland and the Bay Area a better place. America’s economic outlook may continue to look bleak, but even in these tough times, community banks throughout the nation are proliferating. According to this article, community banks are “where people come first.” To learn more about the differences between community banks and larger banks, follow this link.

OneCalifornia Bank and Foundation Celebrate Second Anniversary

Wednesday, July 15th, 2009

OneCalifornia Staff

OneCalifornia Staff

OneCalifornia Bank and Foundation opened their doors in Oakland two years ago on June 27! On Thursday June 25, 2009, OneCalifornia Foundation joined the Bank in celebrating their second anniversary with a mixer catered by Seison, a local restaurant in Oakland’s Washington Inn Hotel. When OneCalifornia’s founders, Tom Steyer and Kat Taylor, and their team opened the Bank and Foundation two years ago they were hoping to create an effective and sustainable community development organization. In these two years, many residents, businesses, and nonprofit organizations in Oakland and the Bay Area have been supported by OneCalifornia Bank’s financial services and OneCalifornia Foundation’s charitable giving.

Most of the Foundation’s activities over the past two years have focused on developing projects that address the financial and money management needs of local individuals and families, and the training, technology, and marketing needs of small businesses.  Over 100 people have attended OneCAL SAFE (Checking and Lifetime Savings Accounts with Financial Education) financial literacy courses since the Foundation’s inception. The Foundation also has over 150 local businesses on its Oakland Unwrapped! website and partners with several local nonprofits in various community development missions. Says Erin Kilmer Neel, OneCalifornia Foundation’s Program Officer, “The Foundation is an exciting place to be, and I think a real benefit to my home of Oakland and the Bay Area as a whole. We are helping families save their money, helping businesses start and grow every day.  We are always working to improve our existing programs as well as solve new problems in innovative ways.  On top of all of this work, it’s amazing and powerful to be able to offer people bank accounts and loans.” 

Meanwhile, the Bank has helped the Bay Area community by providing bank accounts to the underbanked, making loans to local medium and small businesses, and promoting the financial development of various nonprofit organizations. According to Russ Haycock, OneCalifornia Bank’s Executive Vice President and Chief Credit Officer, “The past two years have been exciting and humbling for the banking industry.  What a great time to start a community development bank.  We can hold our heads high as a management team and founders for the strong and healthy performance of OneCalifornia Bank. This is the beginning of a very meaningful journey, and we are poised to make a significant difference for the future of the industry.” OneCalifornia Bank has not fallen prey to the financial crisis that many other banks have succumbed to and thus has been able to truly help the Bay Area community these past two years.

In the two years OneCalifornia has been open, not only has it gained certification as a Community Development Financial Institution, it has also helped many small businesses survive in this difficult economic climate, furnished SBA loans, provided financial literacy classes, aided various nonprofits, and is even in the process of gaining green certification from the Bay Area Green Business Program. OneCalifornia is growing every day and helping facilitate economic opportunity in Oakland and throughout the Bay Area. The Foundation is also currently in the process of starting a program in the Mission District in San Francisco to assist individuals in managing their money with innovative financial products. Every day, OneCalifornia helps more people by providing them with a place to bank that doesn’t funnel money out of their community and a place where everyone has an opportunity to improve their financial situation.

Thanks to all of you for your continued support!