The Chief Lending Officer (CLO) at Oweesta plays a pivotal role in strategic planning and lending operations, aiming to expand impact and meet market needs. Leading the Lending Team, the CLO is responsible for enhancing loan underwriting, negotiation, and closing processes. This executive oversees the Director of Lending and ensures collaboration between lending, finance, and program teams to support growth and new product development, aligning efforts with Oweesta’s mission and impact goals.


Position Summary


The Chief Lending Officer (CLO) is the newest member of the Executive Team and will participate in strategic and organizational planning to meet mission and impact goals. The CLO will lead the Lending Team and is responsible for continued process improvements to support ongoing scale and new product development in response to continued market needs. The Lending Team underwrites, negotiates, and coordinates the closing of loans and comprises a Director of Lending, who will report to the CLO, and the Lending Officers and Associates who report to the Director of Lending. All OC teams work collaboratively, and as such, the Lending Team works closely with other teams, including Finance (Accounting, Operations, Portfolio Management), Programs (Technical Assistance and Training), and Capitalization (Communications, Development, and Investments).


Required Knowledge, Skills & Abilities (“Must-Haves”)


  • Minimum 10 years of experience in commercial lending, credit, or banking, focusing on Native lending or Indian country, including at least 5 years in senior leadership, strategic financial planning, and understanding the funding structure necessary to meet the expansive needs of Native communities


  • Proven track record of success in senior non-profit leadership roles, with a deep understanding of community and economic development in Native American contexts, including a nuanced grasp of the CDFI sector, its regulatory environment, and innovative approaches to support growth in Native communities


  • Demonstrated ability to develop and implement strategic lending programs that align with Oweesta’s mission and the unique needs of Native communities, including evaluating and enhancing lending policies focusing on compliance and Native lending practices


  • Exceptional communication skills, with a strong emphasis on relationship-building, including the capacity to effectively engage with funders and stakeholders and direct involvement in developing narratives that align lending activities with funder expectations and community impact goals


  • A commitment to fostering a culture of excellence and accountability within the lending department, emphasizing cultural competency, and aligning lending practices with the economic landscapes of Native communities; A demonstrated ability to lead, motivate, and develop a high-performance remote lending team


Who We Are


Oweesta is the longest-standing Native CDFI intermediary offering financial products and development services exclusively to Native CDFIs and Native communities.

Specifically, Oweesta provides training, technical assistance, investments, research, and policy 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, homeownership, education, and much more.


What We Do


Oweesta provides training, technical assistance, investments, research and policy, and advocacy to help Native Communities develop an integrated range of asset-building products and services, including financial education and financial products.


Programs & Services


Training: Tribes throughout North America, Alaska, and Hawaii have been practicing resource management skills for generations, ensuring the survival of our people. Oweesta’s training seeks to connect people’s ancestral experience with acquiring new skills in financial management, budgeting, credit building, etc.


Lending & Capitalization: Oweesta Corporation understands how crucial investment capital is to a Native community development financial institution; therefore, investing in the communities we serve is a priority. We make every effort to provide loans to qualifying organizations, enabling them to reinvest the capital into their communities or use it as leverage to attract other capital.


Technical Assistance: Creating Native community development financial institutions is becoming an increasingly popular way for Native people to build stronger, more self-sufficient communities and nations. Oweesta Corporation’s training and technical assistance department offers expert training and customized follow-up assistance to not only help Native communities assess the demand for starting a Native community development financial institution but also take them, step-by-step, through the process of establishing one of these proven and innovative financial institutions.


Research & Publications: Oweesta Corporation serves as a voice for Native communities to help inform policy that supports Native community development. By speaking out on relevant issues, we can affect change at the state and federal levels to further our efforts and 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 voices.

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