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    $2.2 Million Loan Fund Supporting Creative Small Businesses

    The fund will prioritize creative businesses located in low-income communities, those owned by Black, Indigenous and people of color (BIPOC) or serving a diverse market, and those located in small towns and rural communities. Under the program’s definition, creative businesses include craft manufacturers, arts schools, architecture, design and fabrication firms, media companies, and visual and performing arts production agencies.

    “Economic impact research persuasively demonstrates how creative businesses are important drivers of employment and economic vibrancy,” said Blischke. “These businesses invaluably contribute to the livability, employment, and vitality of our commonwealth. Across Pennsylvania alone, arts and cultural economic activity contributed $25.8 billion to the state’s economy and 176,000 jobs, in 2017. Creative for-profit businesses, such as those eligible for the loan fund, add to this economic activity and, if supported, are positioned to play a critical role in helping the commonwealth’s cities and towns recover from the devastating effects of the pandemic.”

    Eligible loan uses will include working capital; equipment purchases; renovations to retail, production, or office space; and, in limited cases, building acquisitions. Loan amounts will vary, ranging from a few thousand dollars to an average loan size of $75,000, though Bridgeway and Community First will consider requests up to $250,000.

    “With the PA Council on the Arts’ investment, Bridgeway’s Creative Business Accelerator will channel more flexible and patient capital into the arts and cultural ecosystem to help it maximize a recovery economy,” says T.J. Bogdewic, President and CEO, Bridgeway Capital.

    “We greatly appreciate the efforts of the Pennsylvania Council on the Arts and their support of creative businesses. Community First Fund has served many arts-focused businesses that play important roles in enhancing our communities, said Daniel Betancourt, President and CEO of Community First Fund. “This partnership will increase our capacity to provide these clients with loans and technical assistance.”
    The fund will be supported with small business technical assistance provided by Bridgeway and Community First, each holding responsibility for deploying 50 percent of the total available loan capital. Both Bridgeway Capital and the Community First Fund are nonprofit community development financial institutions (CDFIs) with track records of making investments that benefit low-income individuals and communities in Pennsylvania. CDFIs are community institutions certified by the U.S. Treasury that provide financial products and services to their communities. CDFIs provide services beyond those typically offered by conventional lenders, including community outreach programs, business resources, and financial counseling.

    The mission of Bridgeway Capital is to make western Pennsylvania a thriving region for all by promoting economic opportunity and community revitalization. Bridgeway assists underserved populations by providing capital and education to ignite business and job growth, to develop communities, to support entrepreneurs, and to expand vital services that strengthen their region. Bridgeway serves the western Pennsylvania population from its headquarters in Pittsburgh and satellite offices in Erie and Uniontown.

    The mission of the Community First Fund is to create sustainable prosperity for low wealth communities and individuals, especially people of color and women, by aligning capital, knowledge, and advocacy to advance business ownership, housing, and community development. Community First serves the eastern Pennsylvania population with its headquarters in Lancaster and satellite offices in York, Harrisburg, Reading, Allentown, and Philadelphia.

    The Pennsylvania Council on the Arts is a state agency under the Office of the Governor. Governed by a council of 15 citizen members appointed by the governor, and four legislative members, the mission of the PCA is to strengthen the cultural, educational, and economic vitality of Pennsylvania’s communities through the arts. By leveraging the immense potential of Pennsylvania’s arts and cultural sector, the PCA supports jobs, builds community, motivates learning, promotes the commonwealth nationally and internationally, and sparks innovation.

  • Sat, 31 Oct 2020 07:00:00 -0400

    Indiana optometrist acquires office in Blairsville

    BLAIRSVILLE — A distinct change in the medical field has quietly come to downtown Blairsville, where Anthony Mancuso has concluded 32 years of service as an optometrist and transitioned his East Market Street practice to veteran Indiana eye doctor Rebecca…
  • Fri, 30 Oct 2020 09:50:00 -0400

    Pancakes, Coal Country, farmers' market, etc.

    To whom it may concern —
  • Fri, 30 Oct 2020 09:30:00 -0400

    Commissioners issue proclamations

  • Thu, 29 Oct 2020 10:26:00 -0400


    THE Zemlock family, of Camp Faith Road in Penn Run, went all out decorating their home for Halloween.
  • Thu, 29 Oct 2020 09:45:00 -0400

    Shields promoted to chief county detective

    Indiana County Det. Bradley Shields was promoted Tuesday to serve as the chief county detective in the district attorney’s office. He succeeds David Rostis, who recently retired after more than 16 years in the position. Shields’ appointment, and the $27.75…
  • Thu, 29 Oct 2020 09:42:00 -0400

    Drug trafficking arrest made in Homer City

    Indiana County District Attorney Robert Manzi Jr. said this morning that a joint operation has stopped a drug trafficking operation in Homer City, resulting in one arrest and the seizure of various drugs, weapons and cash.
  • Wed, 28 Oct 2020 09:59:00 -0400

    Directors agree to teachers' contract

    The Blairsville-Saltsburg school board approved a five-year contract with the Blairsville-Saltsburg Education Association at a virtual meeting Tuesday, bringing an end to a negotiation process that took years.
  • Wed, 28 Oct 2020 10:00:00 -0400

    Directors laud student FBLA state officer

    The Marion Center school board on Monday celebrated and acknowledged Allison Semetkoskey, who has been named to a state officer position in Future Business Leaders of America.
  • Wed, 28 Oct 2020 09:55:00 -0400

    Artful Chair fundraiser makes $5,600 for ICCAP, arts council

    The Artful Chair fundraiser made $3,500 for the Indiana County Community Action Program and $2,100 for the Indiana Arts Council. Cathy Paterson, a retired art teacher who taught in the Marion Center Area School District, started the project in the…
  • Wed, 28 Oct 2020 09:49:00 -0400

    County jobless rate drops to 7.6% in September

    Indiana County’s seasonally adjusted unemployment rate dropped to 7.6 percent in September, down 2.1 percentage points from 9.7 percent reported in August, according to the Pennsylvania Department of Labor & Industry.
  • Fri, 30 Oct 2020 13:30:00 +0000

    Women Making a Difference 2020

    For the past nine years, Women in Business has been proud to recognize those women in central Pennsylvania whose intelligence, drive, determination and dedication have led to business success and community involvement through our Women Making a Difference recognition program. The 39 women showcased this year were selected from the many nominations sent in by local business executives, community leaders […]
  • Fri, 30 Oct 2020 13:30:00 +0000


    DR. TRICIA MCFADDEN Dr. Kelly Rhodes holds a Bachelor of Arts in English Literature from Saint Francis University and a Master’s Degree in English Literature from Villanova University. Her doctoral degree is from the University of Phoenix in Management and Organizational Leadership. Her dissertation titled Corporate Social Responsibility Decision Making in Major League Baseball: A Case Study won dissertation of […]
  • Fri, 30 Oct 2020 13:30:00 +0000

    Ciara J. Semack

    Owner Blonde Bistro Ciara was born and raised in the Bellefonte area and is a dual major Graduate from Lock Haven University class of 2006. Ciara has owned and operated The Blonde Bistro since January 2014. Just recently in July 2020, The Blonde Bistro joined forces with the Axemann Brewery and open at Titan Energy Park at 2042 Axemann Road […]
  • Fri, 30 Oct 2020 13:30:00 +0000

    Bethany Williams

    Director of Community Development – Beaver Falls Executive Director – Beaver County Regional Council of Governments Bethany Williams serves as the Director of Community Development for the City of Beaver Falls and Executive Director of the Beaver County Regional Council of Governments. Williams has a passion for drawing reinvestment into the communities of Beaver County. She has been implementing change […]
  • Fri, 30 Oct 2020 13:30:00 +0000

    Blanca Jimenez

    Founder/CEO Plum Pristine Clean LLC Blanca Jimenez is the founder and CEO of Plum Pristine Clean LLC. She is committed to building a company whose main priority is the employees. She believes in providing an entry level job with good pay and flexibility to all employees so they can maintain a healthy worklife balance. Her company does residential and commercial […]
  • Fri, 30 Oct 2020 13:30:00 +0000

    Melissa Wasson

    Vice President Wasson Insurance Agency, Inc. Melissa Wasson currently is the Vice-President, Secretary and a fulltime agent at Wasson Insurance Agency, Inc in State College. She obtained both Bachelors and Masters Degrees from Penn State University in Counseling. She spent many years working in the local school districts doing mental health and drug and alcohol counseling with students grades K-12 […]
  • Fri, 30 Oct 2020 13:30:00 +0000

    Brandy McAulay

    Owner/ Licensed Title Agent Universal Settlement Services of PA, LLC. Brandy McAulay brings over 19 years of professional real estate experience to her clients. Headquartered in State College, PA, Universal is a full-service title settlement company, with additional offices in Altoona, Lewistown, and Williamsport. McAulay is currently an authorized licensed title agent for the Montgomery County Transportation Authority and the […]
  • Fri, 30 Oct 2020 13:30:00 +0000

    Kelli Prucnal

    Vice President Carol Harris Staffing, LLC Kelli Prucnal is Vice President of Carol Harris Staffing, LLC and has served as an integral member for over 30 years. CHS matches clerical, industrial, and technical employees with clients from small businesses to Fortune 500 organizations. Kelli maintains professional affiliations with the American Staffing Association and local Chambers of Commerce. She cites her […]
  • Fri, 30 Oct 2020 13:30:00 +0000

    Jayne Korenoski

    Director of Advertising and Sales Johnstown Convention and Visitors Bureau Jayne Korenoski serves as Director of Advertising and Sales for the Greater Johnstown/Cambria County Convention and Visitors Bureau (CVB), Cambria County’s designated tourism promotion agency. Early in her career, she worked as a sales representative for the newly launched KEY 95 Radio Station. Within two years, she became the top […]
  • Fri, 30 Oct 2020 13:30:00 +0000

    Amy Farkas

    Township Manager Harris Township Amy Farkas is the Township Manager in Harris Township, Centre County. Harris Township is a community of 5,400 residents situated in the heart of the Centre Region. As Township Manager, she is responsible for overseeing the day to day activities of the Township, including the construction of a $3.7 million maintenance facility. Amy holds a master’s […]
  • Fri, 30 Oct 2020 19:13:10 +0000

    Here's why Steptoe & Johnson opened a downtown Pittsburgh office, its second in the region

    Less than 20 miles from the Southpointe office that ranks among the region's largest law offices, firm has ambitious growth plans for newest site.
  • Fri, 30 Oct 2020 19:11:20 +0000

    Penn State New Kensington unveils innovation and manufacturing lab space for Westmoreland County

    Penn State New Kensington and the Economic Growth Connection of Westmoreland unveiled plans to build a 15,044 square-foot digital innovation and manufacturing lab space along Fifth Avenue in downtown New Kensington. Dubbed the Digital Foundry, the new space will be accessible to local manufactures, K-12 school districts, college students, entrepreneurs and others. “This is so much bigger than an unveiling of a new building in town,” Kevin Snider, chancellor of Penn State New Kensington, said…
  • Fri, 30 Oct 2020 18:54:21 +0000

    Locomation uses multi-state demonstration as "exploratory initiative"

    The pilot program ran the autonomous trucking convoy through multiple state turnpikes.
  • Fri, 30 Oct 2020 17:14:35 +0000

    Pittsburgh-based Gridwise expands nationwide

    The company's platform, which until now operated in 41 major U.S. cities, is now available across the country.
  • Fri, 30 Oct 2020 17:13:15 +0000

    Number of Pittsburghers without bank accounts drops again

    FDIC study shows major shift in how people access their accounts.
  • Fri, 30 Oct 2020 17:12:49 +0000

    Citizens' index shows 3Q economic improvement, but nation and Pennsylvania outpacing Pittsburgh

    Rising Covid-19 cases may impact 4Q.
  • Fri, 30 Oct 2020 16:13:10 +0000

    U.S. Steel talks future of Mon Valley Works upgrades

    "We have to see how Covid-19 moves forward and how the permitting process works.”
  • Fri, 30 Oct 2020 15:20:03 +0000

    Federated Hermes 3Q earnings rise, beat estimates

    CEO talks ETFs, acquisitions and why he looks forward to returning to the office in 2021.
  • Fri, 30 Oct 2020 12:24:17 +0000

    Games N' At, a popular South Side arcade, announces permanent closure date

    Games N' At, a popular arcade venue located alone Josephine Street in Pittsburgh's South Side neighborhood, announced that its last day of operations will be on Nov. 8. "We will be going out of business," the arcade said in a Facebook post. "We'd like to thank everyone who has come in to have good time over the past 17 years." The arcade claimed to be the only one in Pittsburgh that permitted BYOB and unlimited game play. Games it featured included air hockey, basketball, Pac-Man, Donkey Kong,…
  • Fri, 30 Oct 2020 12:06:45 +0000

    New Goodwill store coming to Penn Hills, sets grand opening date

    A new 15,000-square-foot Goodwill store is slated to open in the Penn Hills area with a grand opening date set for Nov. 5. The store, located at the Penn Hills Shopping Center along Keleket Drive, is expected to create 30 new jobs. “We are so pleased to move to into this new community. We’ve had many of our shoppers tell us it would be a good location for a Goodwill Store,” Andrew Marano, vice president of donated goods retail at Goodwill SWPA, said in a statement. “We also know there are…
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