Event details

Wednesday, 06:00 PM EDT
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The webinar will feature a panel discussion led by Brian Christie, a startup executive, adviser, and entrepreneur. He is passionate about building innovative companies, cultures, and new business concepts. His functional focus includes new product development, strategy, and deal-making, with a personal bias toward execution and achieving results. Brian also serves on the Board of the Crowdfunding Professional Association.

Our panelists include:

Jen Risley

Jen played a pivotal role in organizing her local food co-op in 2007. Apart from her co-op involvement, she serves as the program manager of The Local Crowd Monadnock—a community-based crowdfunding program for independently owned businesses. Additionally, Jen holds the position of director of operations at the American Independent Business Alliance, a nonprofit dedicated to nurturing a strong local economy movement. She holds a Master’s in Education from Antioch University New England and resides in Keene, NH.

Stephanie Geller

Stephanie Geller is the Founder and Director of Community Wealth Builders, dedicated to supporting local, minority, and cooperative businesses in Baltimore. She's also the Co-Founder and Director of the Maryland Neighborhood Exchange, the first local grassroots crowdfunding platform. Stephanie has a background in promoting community wealth building strategies and holds a specialization in Social and Community Development from the University of Maryland School of Social Work. She co-taught a pioneering graduate-level class analyzing business opportunities based on anchor institution procurement. With vast nonprofit experience, Stephanie is committed to fostering a resilient local economy.

Benjamin Lozano

Benjamin Lozano is the Co-Founder and CEO of SMBX—the world's first Small Business Bond marketplace connecting qualified small businesses with investors in their communities. He previously served as a finance professor at UC Santa Cruz and San Francisco State from 2009 to 2020. In response to the 2008 financial crisis, Benjamin established a fintech research program at UC Santa Cruz. He also held the position of Chief Product Officer for Robin Hood Minor Asset Management. Benjamin co-founded SMBX in February 2020.


Local Investing and Its Impact in Communities