Seed to the Sower – The Leviticus Fund Celebrates 40 Years
The Leviticus 25:23 Alternative Fund is rooted in faith and the call for economic justice. The Fund provides flexible capital, expertise, and advocacy to propel the growth of more equitable communities. Leviticus creates opportunities for vulnerable, low-income people – especially those harmed by systemic racial and ethnic discrimination – to thrive and live with dignity.
In December 1981, a group of religious leaders from the Tri-State Coalition for Responsible Investment met to discuss a new model for addressing the needs of the disadvantaged. They saw that, if they pooled and invested their resources together, they could do more to reflect and advance the faith-driven values they shared: ensuring that the economically poor could live with dignity and self-determination; using their shared resources for the benefit of those with less; and protecting and sharing the earth’s resources.
This vision of social and economic justice has endured as our driving force for over 39 years. It guided our first two loans in 1984, which supported a tenant-owned cooperative in New York City and a workplace and training center for mentally-challenged adults in Nyack, NY. It led us to become one of the nation’s first certified Community Development Financial Institutions (CDFIs) in 1994, to expand our investments into early care and education in 1997, and to more recently launch new programs for real estate entrepreneurs of color, community health centers, charter public schools, and healthy food-access. And it has inspired the numerous loans we have made in recent years to foster decent homes, schools, jobs, and health and social services for thousands of low-income families across five states.
Our impact has grown steadily over time, from $1.5 million invested in our first 10 years to over $208.5 million as of today. We now have 51 member investors and 115 individual and institutional associate investors, each of whom ensure we can continue to fulfill the vision of our founders: to share the gift of economic resources in order to advance a more just and equitable society—one in which all people can meet their basic needs and access opportunities.
In May 1983, 27 of the religious congregations pooled $360,000 in capital to form the Leviticus 25:23 Alternative Fund.
Board of Directors
Sr. Rosemary Jeffries, RSM
All-Africa Conference: Sister to Sister
Board Vice President
Vice President, Commercial Community Development Lending
Chief Executive Officer
Community Housing Innovations
Sr. EllenritaPurcaro, OP
Empowerment Center at Harmony Farm
CRA Officer & First Vice President
Apple Bank for Savings
Managing Director, Risk Management
Deutsche Bank AG
Senior Relationship Manager & Team Leader
HSBC Bank USA, N.A.
Managing Director and CDFI Lending & Investing Executive
Bank of America
Joseph F. Reilly
President & CEO
Community Development Trust, Inc.
Sr. PeggyScarano, OP
Assistant Director of Finance
Union for Reform Judaism
First Vice President, CRA Officer
[email protected] 914-909-4498 Greg joined the Leviticus Fund as Executive Director in 2013, and is responsible for leading and managing all aspects of our operations and for formulating new initiatives to address the needs of the low-income people and communities that we serve. Previously, he spent 23 years at the Local Initiatives Support Corporation (LISC), the last seven as Senior Vice President for Lending. While a member of LISC’s Loan Committee he reviewed and helped shape over 2,500 loan requests totaling over $1.1 billion to a wide variety of projects. Greg is a graduate of the College of the Holy Cross and St. John’s University School of Law.
[email protected] 914-909-5644 Alex joined Leviticus in 2023 as an Investment Officer and is responsible for project underwriting, relationship management, and business development. Previously, he was an Associate at Bowery Valuations, where he assisted with creating long-form real estate appraisal reports for clients. Before that, he served as an equity trader at Avatar Securities in New York, helping to manage a $5 million portfolio. Alex holds a BA in Government from Cornell University. He also is completing a master's degree in Real Estate at Fordham University.
[email protected] 914-909-4560 Helen is our Loan Manager and provides direct support to the lending staff throughout the lending process from origination through closing, disbursement and payoff, including monitoring and reporting. Prior to joining Leviticus, she worked for a commercial real estate management company and has held several jobs in the banking sector that involved internal auditing, and reporting design and implementation. A lawyer, Helen also worked with legal services in Westchester County. She has volunteered with Girl Scouts and her school district’s Special Education PTA. She holds a BBA in Finance from Pace University and a law degree from Fordham University School of Law.
Senior Investment Officer
[email protected] 914-909-4583 Soham joined Leviticus in 2022 as a Senior Investment Officer. She is involved in business development, relationship management and project underwriting. Previously, she was a Senior Project Manager at Strada Ventures, a consulting company that specializes in affordable housing. Prior to that she served as Assistant Vice President at Union Bank Community Development Finance where she originated, underwrote, and monitored over $300MM in affordable housing loans and over $82MM in equity investments. Soham has a master’s degree in Urban and Regional Planning from UCLA with a certificate in Design and Development. She also holds a BS in Architectural Studies from University of Southern California.
Senior Investment Officer
[email protected] 914-909-4568 Kayla is our Senior Investment Officer and works closely with our Executive Director and Director of Lending in business development and customer relations, as well as supporting the development of new lending programs and products, and completing initial loan feasibility assessments. Prior to Leviticus, she worked as a Development Assistant and Leasing Specialist with Regan Development Corp, which specializes in affordable housing and special needs housing. Kayla earned a Master of Science degree in Sustainable Urbanism from the University College in London and holds a B.A. in Urban Studies and a Planning degree from The University at Albany.
[email protected] 914-729-5800 Marlene Larrow joined Leviticus in 2023 to assist with the implementation and customization of Salesforce. Marlene trains users to increase Leviticus’ Salesforce skills and adoption, and provides IT support and facilitates onboarding new employees with other software applications. Previously, she was an Employability Specialist at America Works of New York, a for-profit company that lifts people out of poverty using intensive, personalized employment services. She served as a Program Manager leading the Youth Pathways program, helping young adults, homeless individuals and others return to the workforce. Marlene has a B.A. in marketing from Johnson & Wales University.
Impact Measurement & Compliance Associate
[email protected] Jane joined the Leviticus Fund in 2023 as an Impact Measurement and Compliance Associate. She uses her experience in compliance and communications to assess compliance requirements and create reports for investors and donors. Prior to Leviticus, she worked in financial compliance consulting for broker-dealers and on political and issue campaigns advocating for fair local economic policies. She holds a BA and MA from New York University.
Loan Management & Office Associate
[email protected] 914-729-5532 Denise joined Leviticus in 2022 as a Loan Management & Office Associate. She works closely with our Loan Manager and provides direct support to the lending team throughout the lending process, in addition to general administrative support for staff. Prior to joining Leviticus, she worked as a residential/commercial real estate paralegal and has spent most of her career in the real estate banking and title industry. In her spare time, she volunteers at a local organization raising funds for Autism awareness and events supporting women and minority-owned businesses.
Director of Lending
[email protected] 914-909-4482 Kevin joined the Leviticus Fund as Director of Lending in 2020. He is responsible for all facets of our lending programs, ensuring that we achieve our strategic goals and maintain flexibility and responsiveness in meeting the needs of the organizations we serve. Prior to joining Leviticus, he was a partner at BWB Solutions LLC, a consulting firm specializing in strategy development for organizations committed to social impact. Kevin is also an Adjunct Instructor at The Milano School of Policy, Management and Environment, where he teaches community development finance. Kevin graduated from Brown University and is completing a graduate degree in Economics at The New School for Social Research.
[email protected] 914-909-4553 Jose is our Finance Director and oversees all facets of bookkeeping, accounting, treasury functions and loan servicing. He also provides support to the Executive Director for securing new debt and existing debt renewals and increases. Jose has extensive financial management experience in the nonprofit sector, having worked for social service agencies, a charter public school and a supportive services provider. Jose is active in community-based programs that serve disabled and emotionally fragile youth and has served as a facilitator in racial and social-economic oppression workshops. He holds a B.B.A. Accounting degree from Iona College.
[email protected] 914-729-5531 As a consultant, Colleen develops the stories that illustrate the Leviticus Fund’s impact, and shares them with our members, investors and supporters. She staffs the Legacy Fund Advisory Committee and coordinates the production of the annual report, media relations and events. Colleen is principal of CMR Communications, a consulting firm certified as a Women’s Business Enterprise by NYS, which provides association management, grantwriting, and communications support for nonprofits serving vulnerable populations. She is a graduate of the College of St. Rose in Albany.
[email protected] 914-909-9181 Griffin is our Lending Associate, whose job touches all aspects of our lending activities, from the pre-loan application process to providing support for loan portfolio management, business development, and relationship management with our borrowers. He joined Leviticus in 2023 after completing a BA in Economics and Philosophy with a minor in Religious Studies from Fordham University, where he was a member of the sailing team. Griffin previously worked as a summer intern with an asset management firm specializing in municipal securities and public purpose investing.
[email protected] 914-729-5642 Sabine worked full-time in the Leviticus lending group and transitioned to consulting in 2018. She uses her expertise and passion for community development finance and familiarity with Leviticus’ mission, values and programs to write our grant applications and newsletters. Prior to Leviticus, Sabine worked in community development lending and investing at Community Capital New York and Citibank. She received her B.A. in English Literature from Cornell University and her Master’s in International Finance and Economic Policy from Columbia University.
Impact Measurement & Compliance Officer
[email protected] 914-909-4422 As our Impact Measurement & Compliance Officer, Maryann handles all compliance reporting to our investors, funders and federal agencies and manages our impact tracking database. Before Leviticus, Maryann worked in fundraising for an international nonprofit and lived in Brazil for nine years involved in housing and land access issues. She holds a BA in Journalism from New York University and an MBA from Mercy College.
Staff not pictured: Michael Bourne-Accounting Manager
Commitment to Diversity
The Leviticus Fund is committed to diversity, equity and inclusion on its Board of Directors and among its staff. In all aspects of its operations and at all levels of the organization, Leviticus Fund works to ensure that there is no discrimination on the basis of, but not limited to, ethnicity, race, age, sexual or gender identity, sexual orientation, national origin, physical ability, religious belief, culture or geographic background. Our vision of diversity also encompasses differences in skills and experience among Board and staff members, and we seek to maximize the potential of all employees and to attract staff of diverse backgrounds.
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Leviticus Fund 220 White Plains Road, Suite 125 Tarrytown, New York 10591 (P) 914-909-4381 | (F) 914-606-9006