This fall, we will welcome back community economist Michael Shuman for a virtual visit to our region. In 2016, Michael spoke about pollinator enterprises — self-financing businesses committed to boosting other local businesses. This time, he’s back to help us invest more of our savings into locally owned businesses and community.
“When the pandemic recedes, we all will be called upon to take extraordinary steps to revive the local businesses that serve as the foundation of our communities,” shared Michael. “One critically important step will be for you and other members of your community to move your investment capital from Wall Street to Main Street.”
The Local Crowd (TLC) Monadnock will host an online introductory webinar with Michael called “Rebooting Your Community After COVID – How to Invest Locally Using Self-Directed IRAs and Solo 401ks” on October 15, 2020, from 6:30 to 7:30 p.m. This event is free, but registration is required.
“There are real alternatives [to Wall Street], but few know about or consider them,” said Michael. “In fact, you can invest in everything that matters to you. You can put your money into that neighborhood grocery store you love, your little sister’s first house, or your nephew who needs to pay off high-interest student loans.”
Michael will offer us a way to make our community more resilient — to prepare for future global crises — and help us move more of our dollars into the businesses we don’t want to live without. While this workshop targets community members with tax-deferred retirement accounts (401k or IRA), we encourage others to attend such as local business owners looking for new sources of capital and individuals looking for new ways to solve our local economic challenges.
“If you’re smart about local investing, you can do this in a way that provides substantial, stable financial returns and lowers the risk of Wall Street investments,” continued Michael. “Plus, these commonsense local investments wind up strengthening your community, your local resilience, and your tax base.”
If there’s enough interest generated at our introductory workshop, we’ll work with Michael to offer a full workshop on this topic in our region (hopefully live!). The workshop would cover the twelve types of local investment opportunities available in almost everyone’s backyard (some that are likely to beat the returns from Wall Street). It would also highlight what next steps we can take to shift millions of dollars of capital into local businesses struggling to survive the COVID-19 pandemic.
“Workshop participants will learn a fundamentally new way of thinking about their world, their community, and their money,” stated Michael. “And a fundamentally new way of acting.”
Michael Shuman, a leading visionary on community economics, serves as Director of Local Economy Programs for Neighborhood Associates Corporation and Adjunct Professor at Bard Business School in New York City. He is also a Senior Researcher for Council Fire and Local Analytics, where he performed economic-development analyses for states, local governments, and businesses around North America. His three most recent books include “Put Your Money Where Your Life Is: How to Invest Locally Using Solo 401ks and Self-Directed IRAs”; “The Local Economy Solution: How Innovative, Self-Financing Pollinator Enterprises Can Grow Jobs and Prosperity”; and “Local Dollars, Local Sense: How to Shift Your Money from Wall Street to Main Street.”
Thank you to our event partners: Green Energy Options, Greater Keene Chamber of Commerce, Monadnock Food Co-op, The Local Crowd, Vital Communities and Hannah Grimes Center for Entrepreneurship. We hope you’ll join us!
Before we close, we wanted to share a few TLC Monadnock updates. First, a really big thank you to everyone who contributed to our TLC 4WARD crowdfunding campaign that wraps up on August 31. All six of our participating businesses surpassed their goals. Collectively, we raised over $14,000 from 253 supporters for Archway Farm, CC&D’s Kitchen Market, Monadnock Food Co-op, Orchard Hill Breadworks, Prime Roast Coffee Roasters and Village Roots Permaculture Farm: tlcmonadnock.com/4ward.
Two full crowdfunding campaigns ran on TLC Monadnock during the pandemic. The Keene Sentinel raised $46,986 to help local journalism thrive and Sharing Housing collected $10,203 to support the development of an online course that will teach people how to create healthy, happy shared homes (a great way to boost affordable housing options in our region). View all our past campaigns at tlcmonadnock.com/tlc.
Please check out our latest live TLC Monadnock crowdfunding campaign from Friends of Public Art: http://c-fund.us/qb9. They’re working to transform a negative space at the Keene Airport into a welcoming sculpture park. They hope to raise enough funds to purchase their first sculpture, created by local artist Adam Schepker with reused materials from the airport. They will place this sculpture next to the newly formed Mt. Monadnock Labyrinth by Katie Schwerin.
Finally, thank you all again for your support for these campaign teams and TLC Monadnock as a whole. Together, we collected $212,584 for twenty-four crowdfunding campaigns — campaigns that build a more local, green and fair Monadnock Region.