Southern Bancorp, Inc. is one of America’s largest rural development banks with approximately $1.1 billion in assets, serving over 80,000 customers at 39 branches in both Arkansas and Mississippi. Southern was founded in 1986 by then Governor Bill Clinton, Wal-Mart Chair Rob Walton, the Winthrop Rockefeller Foundation and others who were concerned about the economic decline of rural Arkansas. Southern invests in people and businesses in rural communities, empowers them to improve their lives and helps them transform their communities.
Darrin Williams thinks it was probably a Fox News interview he did in early April that caught the eye of the White House and got him invited later that month to a videoconference with President Trump, his daughter Ivanka, and other top advisers. Williams is one of only a handful of Black CEOs at financial institutions with more than $1 billion in assets. At $1.6 billion, Southern Bancorp is a minnow next to the trillion-dollar-size whales that more commonly have access to Trump. But in this conversation, just four days after the federal government rolled out the Paycheck Protection Program to provide $350 billion in loans to keep small businesses alive, the little bank in Arkansas emerged as the most relevant.
U.S. Bancorp Community Development Corporation (USBCDC) today announced $1.15 million in grants to more than a dozen Black-led Community Development Financial Institution (CDFI) partners and – in partnership with the U.S. Bank Foundation – a grant to the African American Alliance of CDFI CEOs. This is part of U.S. Bank's overall $116 million commitment to addressing social and economic inequities. A total of 15 CDFIs will receive grants ranging from $50,000 to $100,000. Among the banks receiving grants are CDBA members Carver State Bank, City First Bank of DC, The Harbor Bank of Maryland, and Southern Bancorp
The U.S. Department of the Treasury's Community Development Financial Institutions (CDFI) Fund has awarded $265 million to five CDFI banks and their affiliated entities, all of which are CDBA members. The CDFI bank awards are as follows: $50 million to Carver Financial Corporation, affiliated with Carver State Bank of Savannah, GA; $50 million to Harbor Bankshares Corporation, affiliated with The Harbor Bank of Maryland in Baltimore, MD; $50 million to SB New Markets CDE, LLC, affiliated with Sunrise Banks of Saint Paul, MN; $50 million to Southern Bancorp of Arkadelphia, AK; $65 million to UB Community Development LLC, affiliated with United Bank of Atmore, AL