February 13, 2014
By Edward Rice, III
LAWT Contributing Writer
When it comes to servicing the financial needs of underserved clients in Southern California, Broadway Federal Bank is the premiere banking institution in the west. Established in 1946 as Broadway Savings and Loan, originally the bank was founded according to current CEO, Wayne Kent-Bradshaw to address the needs of the underserved black community. “We are still committed to that same purpose today,” says Bradshaw. “We see ourselves as a leading community bank serving the lower to moderate income community in Southern California.”
“Broadway was founded because the black community at the time was unable to get financing to move west of Western,” explains Bradshaw. “There was no way that they could live wherever they wanted to so Broadway along with Family Savings was founded to provide financing for that community and Broadway has steadfastly held to that tradition and still does.”
Today Broadway’s primary focus is still providing housing for the Southern California community with one major difference: small multi family lending. “We focus primarily on small multi family lending and the reason that we focus on that is because in the greater LA area the affordability index is very low. I don’t think 20% of the population can afford a home at these prices,” states Bradshaw. “So providing multi family housing for people is critical and we’ve decided to focus on that area and be the best in class. Thus, small units in the Los Angeles area are our #1 market. We do single family financing but again our focus is on the multi-family. In terms of deposit products we think we’re providing what 95% of the market needs, which is checking, savings, and IRAs. Ours is a very simple, straight-forward, no bells and whistles banking addressing the needs of the community we serve.”
When asked about what makes Broadway different and its competitive advantage Bradshaw had one quick, clear, reply: Responsiveness. “When you’re dealing with a Broadway Federal you can get to me or any other senior manager in the bank to address your problems,” insists Bradshaw. “You’re also dealing with people who live and work in and are from in great part (not every last one obviously) the community. They understand that someone doesn’t have to have a pristine image to be a good person…it can depend on the circumstances.” He added, “Being able to deal with people who know the business is important as well; this is the third of our institutions that I’ve turned around. I’ve turned around Founders; I’ve turned around Family and now Broadway. I’m somebody that knows exactly what we need to do.”
Declaring that he knows what we need to do is an understatement with respect to Bradshaw’s expertise. He recently completed a recapitalization of Broadway Federal Bank that took three years to complete, included the federal government and was described by one investment banker as “one of the most complex transactions I’ve ever dealt with.” “The current state is in very good shape,” says Bradshaw confidently. “The capitalization concluded, we’re poised for growth and serving the community as well as we possibly can. We have basically recapitalized the bank and gotten rid of five layers of debt that was problematic for the bank and turned the capital structure into a pure equity structure. We started making money 7 or 8 of the last 12 months,” not a lot he cautions. “But we were able to solve many of the significant problems that we had, you know with non-performing assets, unclassified assets and delinquencies. We addressed all of the issues and now we’re ready and poised to move the bank forward.”
As Bradshaw discusses the bank’s future the excitement and optimism in his voice is undeniable. “We’re positioned for growth. We’ve simplified our balance sheet, we’re raising capital to address the debt the parent company has and bring in capital for growth. We’ve also got really solid fundamentals here,” he stresses. “The things that caused us problems have been substantially corrected. We have an extremely experienced management team and a team that knows how to rebuild banks. We’ve picked out a really profitable niche that we’re going to focus on: multi-family first, then residential, then owner-occupied retail and some sba loans.”
It’s clear that anybody that walks through Broadway Federal’s door can expect to be at home. Bradshaw confirms that “we would embrace them, we’d be happy to see them and we would assist them in anyway we can. We’ve been doing that for 60 + years and we are focused on being the best in class.”
For Broadway Federal Bank it’s definitely not business as usual. While changes were necessary and recapitalization ushered in a new era of banking for the trailblazing institution, the values the bank was founded on are still very much intact. “The business is the business. It’s banking. Everybody does it, the money is the same,” claims Bradshaw. “So the discerning factor is the service you can provide and we feel we can serve our particular community better than anybody else.”
February 06, 2014
LAWT News Service
Members of the African American Board Leadership Institute said they are proud to announce that Robert Shives, associate general counsel at Fujitsu America Inc. and an AABLI alum, was elected to serve on the board of San Jose Jazz.
“San Jose Jazz is an innovative educational organization whose commitment to education and the community goes back over fifteen years and is at the very core of the organization’s mission,” officials said.
Mayor Garcetti and community partners gathered at John C. Fremont High School recently to launch the “Investing in Working Families” Campaign, which aims to promote state and federal programs that are under-utilized by Los Angeles working families. This event will kick-off the tax and financial aid filing season. Over 60 sites throughout Los Angeles opened their doors February 1 to help Angelenos collect the Earned Income Tax Credit, file tax returns for free, apply for student financial aid, help undocumented students apply for Deferred Action, connect unbanked individuals to low-cost checking and savings accounts, and help people enroll in health care.
“In tough economic times we need to make sure hardworking Angelenos are getting all the help they need,” said Mayor Garcetti. “We want to ensure that all qualifying low and moderate-income households reap the benefits of the Earned Income Tax Credit, apply for financial aid, gain access to free tax assistance, and learn about other available resources.”
During tax season, each of the 21 FamilySource centers throughout the city are designated Volunteer Income Tax Assistance — or VITA — sites. Supported by the (Earned Income Tax Credit) EITC partnership, VITA sites provide families with free tax assistance and help them apply for tax credits. These sites also offer asset-building programs that include financial education and resources to help families open low-cost bank accounts.
For 2014 (the 2013 tax year), the EITC can offer refunds up to $6,143 for low and moderate-income families with three or more children - a figure equal to nearly two months of income for many hardworking but needy households.
To qualify for EITC services and tax credits, claimants must be qualified working U.S. citizens and legal residents with Social Security number who have lived in the US for more than half the year.
For more information and to find one of the sites, individuals and working families can call 2-1-1 or visit the EITC Partnership’s web site at www.FreeTaxHelpLA.com.
Board of Equalization Chairman Jerome E. Horton, reported that 1.2 Billion Dollars in federal tax refunds and $180 million in state income taxes go unclaimed by California taxpayers every year. Fremont High School welcomed Horton, Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti, State Controller John Chiang, City Councilmember Curren Price Jr., Los Angeles Chamber of Commerce President and CEO, Gary Toebben and other business leaders in declaring a united front against poverty in Los Angeles County, which now afflicts 2.6 million residents or 27% of the county’s population. “Over 350 tax experts have been trained and certified to help California taxpayers file their tax returns for free,” Horton said, “with a goal of helping taxpayers increase their refunds.”
Board of Equalization employees helped over 60 residents file their tax returns for free. Qualified taxpayers who earn less than $51,000 a year applied for up to $6,044 in earned income tax credits; significantly increasing their state and federal income tax refund. Joined by the Franchise Tax Board, Internal Revenue, and several state agencies, a broad range of family services were also made available, including financial literacy training, job preparation assistance, food and nutrition services, low-cost and free medical services, and health screenings, to name only a few.
“Under any other circumstances I would not be as excited about being in a room with the IRS but in this case I’m getting money from them,” said Alex Martinez one of the residents benefiting from the free services.
The Board of Equalization’s 4th District, which includes most of Los Angeles County, will conduct several more free tax preparation assistance workshops and offer family programs (until the end of the tax filing season.)
For more information, visit the Board of Equalization website, boe.ca.gov.
January 30, 2014
Are you tired of seeing vehicles illegally parked on front lawns in your neighborhood? Frustrated by graffiti on public buildings, in local parks and at other landmarks? The County of Los Angeles has a solution for you. Today, the Department of Public Works launched an update to ‘The Works’ iPhone app to provide more solutions and expand functionality to three other County departments.
Initially launched in 2012, ‘The Works’ app enables constituents to connect with the County to request services and report possible violations. Residents can now interact with the Departments of Parks and Recreation, Public Health, and Regional Planning by:
• Requesting facility and trail maintenance at County parks, as well as reporting potential health and safety concerns
• Reporting potential public health violations at hotels, motels and apartments – such as unclear or cloudy pool water, broken pool gates or fences, and missing pool lights or drain covers
• Reporting possible property violations, including excessive vegetation, junk or trash; illegal parking; inoperable vehicles; occupied RVs; and improper signs or banners
Users can submit a detailed description of an issue and attach related site photos. While not required, users may provide contact information for additional follow-up. They are also able to see status updates to their request in real time when they subsequently access the app.
The app targets users in the County unincorporated areas, as well as incorporated cities that contract with the County. The app is able to determine the appropriate agency based on the address or GPS coordinates. If a user requests a service that is handled by a local city they will be provided with a phone number at that city for further investigation.
For more information and to download the app, visit: http://dpw.lacounty.gov/theworks/
Page 2 of 18