Just in time for the launch of findCRA.com, the 2014 National Interagency Community Reinvestment Conference was held in Chicago from March 31st to April 2nd. For those involved with CRA and community development, this is THE event to attend. Participants not only have the opportunity to network with the most advanced practitioners and agency professionals in the field, but also receive top-notch training in all things CRA-related—from the basics of CRA exam procedures to the latest in cutting-edge topics and innovations in community development.
As soon as I received my first email about the conference back in January, I knew I had to go. The only questions in my mind were “Where do I sign-up?” and “What do I have to sell on eBay to get there?”. As a relative newcomer to CRA regulations and programs, I can think of no better way to jump-start my education about the industry than diving right into its most renowned event. As a compliance analyst and website founder who spends most of his days in front of a computer, this type of rich interactive experience doesn’t come along often.
Just to get an idea of the breadth of the conference, it is being hosted by the federal bank regulatory agencies including the the FDIC and the OCC. Other hosts include the Federal Reserve Banks of San Francisco and Chicago and the Community Development Financial Institutions Fund. Keynote speakers include Federal Reserve Chair Janet Yellen, FDIC Chairman Martin Gruenberg and Comptroller of the Currency Thomas Curry. Reuters has listed it as one of the “Top Economic Events” in the world for next week. To be sure, the event has important implications, not only for the individual CRA professional, but our nation as a whole.
For an inside look at this year’s conference, as told by a CRA rookie, be sure to check out my next post for observations and updates.