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Innovative Banker Gives Poor People a Hand Up to Rebuild Inner Cities
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In the early 1970s, Mary Houghton and her team of bankers proposed an audacious plan for a start-up bank: it would provide capital to low-income minorities in South Side Chicago who had been denied loans by other banks. These budding entrepreneurs would use the money to renovate rental housing.

The concept proved successful for the bank, which has invested nearly $3 billion in these projects, and for the people of South Side Chicago whose neighborhood gained 52,000 affordable housing units.

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