Croatan Institute

Croatan Institute is an independent, nonprofit research and action institute whose mission is to build social equity and ecological resilience by leveraging finance to create pathways to a just economy.

The Racial Equity, Economics, Finance, and Sustainability (REEFS) program is designed to encourage stakeholders in finance to think holistically about integrating racial equity across their investment portfolios, to advance opportunities for greater representation of Black, Indigenous, and other people of color (BIPOC) in the field, and to support frameworks and approaches that support wealth-building in these communities. This multi-faceted approach seeks to acknowledge and address the persistent structural race-based discrimination in the US, which underpins the significant gaps in access to career and financial opportunities.

Funding purpose: Supports REEFS’ capacity to develop investment-readiness tools and services for BIPOC-led regenerative farms and food-system enterprises. Funding supports the three pillars of REEFS – 1) redirecting finance to tackle structural racism by providing tools for investors to incorporate racial equity across asset classes; 2) readying students of color to make finance careers more accessible; and 3) engaging with farmers, small businesses, and other stakeholders of color to build greater financial health and resilience – and will support our Diverse Leaders in Climate and Agriculture Summit to bring together BIPOC leaders in climate, agriculture and finance; and our RE-Allocate Campaign to encourage investors and capital allocators to pursue racial equity investing within their investment portfolios and ensure that BIPOC communities receive an equitable share of the capital investment resulting from the Inflation Reduction Act and other investments aimed at transitioning the nation to a greener economy.