The JP UP Date: JP Participates in FDIC Roundtable

Andrew BarnesThe JP UP date

Number 245                        October 20, 2023                                   St. Louis

JP Chief Partnerships Officer Participates in FDIC & COO Roundtable

Justine PETERSEN’s Chief Partnerships Officer, Shawna Collier, joined esteemed peers this Wednesday, October 18th for a Community Reinvestment Act (CRA) roundtable. The roundtable was sponsored by the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency (OCC) and the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation (FDIC) and was held at Southern Illinois University Edwardsville’s East St. Louis campus. The event’s discussion was focused on “Increasing Access to Credit for Small Businesses in East St. Louis.” A particular emphasis of the conversation was on the CRA, and how it can incentivize banks to provide credit to small business entrepreneurs, and financing options available to them. With the CRA being a large part of JP’s origin story, Shawna was able to provide firsthand experiences of partnering with banks to invest through our Community Development Financial Institution’s (CDFI) lending fund, and in turn working with small business clients to access those funds. Joining Shawna was the FDIC’s Alicia Chestnut, members from the Illinois Office of Minority Economic Empowerment, bankers, community-based organizations, and local economic development agencies. To learn more about how JP works with banks in regards to the CRA, reach out to Shawna or JP COO Sheri Flanigan-Vazquez.


JP Welcomes Viveca Bryant!

Justine PETESEN is happy to welcome Viveca (Neecy) Bryant! Neecy joins the organization as a proud Compliance Associate. Neecy is currently absorbing all the knowledge and responsibilities that come with the role, which includes preparing loan package documents for new and existing loans, and regularly auditing for accuracy to ensure loans comply with local, state, and other policies. Prior to JP, Neecy worked in fashion retail management, and then became Office Administrator for a straw company where she honed in on her communication and negotiation skills working with vendors across the globe. Neecy decided to take this role at JP after growing up around it – Neecy’s mother is beloved Small Business Associate, Fredrica Graham, who’s been with the organization for 24 years. “Seeing the bonds staff build with clients and the support everyone gives each other here, especially from Rob and Sheri, I am more than grateful to officially be part of the team JP team,” says Neecy. With Halloween around the corner, Neecy is also looking forward to taking her kids out trick-or-treating when they’ll be dressed up as characters from their favorite cartoon show – Bluey!


JP Client Featured in The St. Louis American

Long time Justine PETERSEN client, Marvin Thomas, was recently featured in The St. Louis American for his work as both an entrepreneur and inventor. Marvin started BFT Products back in 2014, first as primarily a services company, and now to sell his products that he patented – a toilet tank support and hands-free leveler. Marvin’s story is one of perseverance and loyalty, to himself and his family. JP Chief Partnerships Officer, Shawna Collier, would also say it’s one of enthusiasm. “Marvin is one of the most intelligent and enthusiastic people I’ve known. He’s always looking to achieve more each day, and is excited to share his talents with others.” To read more about Marvin’s story, checkout The St. Louis American article here.

Join JP at the Reimagine St. Louis Expo Tomorrow, Saturday 10/21


JP Wears Purple for Domestic Violence Awareness Month

At Justine PETERSEN we wear purple this October because we believe that together, we can break the cycle of domestic violence and build a safer world for everyone. Raising awareness is crucial, and we at JP ask you to stand against domestic violence with us!


Consumers Council Annual Fundraiser: October 29th

Come out and support the Consumers Council of Missouri on Sunday, October 29th at the Ethical Society of St. Louis from 4pm – 6pm. This year’s fundraiser will be honoring Joyce Armstrong for her contributions as a co-founder of Consumers Council and long-time board member, as well as Ollie Stewart, Executive Director of Southside Wellness Center. The program will be moderated by Ray Hartmann, and include beer, wine, soft drinks and light hors d’oeuvres. All proceeds go to supporting advocacy for consumers’ interests locally, regionally, and statewide. Tickets can be purchased here.


Grants Available for North St. Louis Small Business and Non-Profits

Applications are now open for the North St. Louis Small Business and Non-Profit Grant Program. The program, through St. Louis Development Corporation (SLDC) intends to reverse the impact of disinvestment in this particular geographic area by disbursing $37 million of Coronavirus State and Local Recovery Funds (SLFRF). Interested applicants should visit this website.


Resources Available for Missouri Tenants


Mortgage Assistance for Illinois Homeowners

As a HUD certified counseling agency, Justine PETERSEN is here to support. We encourage anyone interested in learning more about mortgage assistance and the application process to contact us by emailing All applications must be in by October 31st. More information can also be found here.




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Justine Petersen Housing and Reinvestment Corporation · 1023 N Grand Blvd · Saint Louis, MO 63106-1641 · USA