2020 Town Hall Series

In 2020, Chicago City Treasurer Melissa Conyears-Ervin hosted the first-ever Annual Town Hall Meeting series on the West, South and North Sides of the city to educate residents about how the office helps taxpayers, make the office more accessible to residents and highlight new initiatives. In addition, a downtown Town Hall Meeting for financial services firms highlighted efforts to increase diversity and inclusion.

At each Town Hall, Treasurer Conyears-Ervin highlighted her holistic approach to protect taxpayer dollars and bring in a higher return from the city’s investments, as well as jumpstart conversations about economic development and financial capability initiatives for communities across the city. Participants were asked to complete a Financial Capabilities Survey to help identify the types of services that would best serve Chicagoans’ financial health needs. See below to view the preliminary results of this survey.

Initial findings based on data collected from the Town Hall surveys suggest that Chicagoans would benefit from the following services:

  • Increased financial education resources related to the value of improving credit scores, saving for retirement and expanding investment portfolios
  • Tools and resources that help small businesses leverage a bank account, build credit and access capital
  • Small business development centers that make valuable services easily accessible to business owners

Data collected from the Annual Town Hall Meeting series will serve as a valuable tool to help the Office of the Treasurer form new initiatives to meet the financial health needs of all Chicagoans.

At the Annual Town Meetings, Treasurer Conyears-Ervin also discussed the implementation of her office’s new Diversity Score Card. By applying an equitable lens to the selection process, the Score Card increased the minority, women-owned and veteran-owned financial firms the office does business with from 37% to 42%.

Treasurer Conyears-Ervin invited banks and community lenders to the Town Hall Meetings to discuss how they support small business owners and outline the necessary steps to access capital, both through non-traditional lending and community bank offerings. The Small Business Administration, Accion, LISC, SomerCor, JPMorgan Chase, Fifth Third Bank, Seaway Credit Union, Albany Bank and US Bank were all engaged and available to network with residents.

Stay tuned for information about the 2021 Town Hall Meetings!

Download and view the presentation (PDF)

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