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Funds are part of $1.7B in awards to 603 Community Development Financial Institutions across the country through the CDFI Equitable Recovery Program

LITTLE ROCK, ARK. – The U.S. Treasury Department’s Community Development Financial Institutions (CDFI) Fund has awarded more than $1.73 billion in grants to 603 CDFIs through the CDFI Equitable Recovery Program. Southern Bancorp, Inc., a bank holding company, and Southern Bancorp Community Partners, a nonprofit loan fund that works alongside Southern Bancorp, Inc., today announced that each has been awarded $4.9 million, which will be put to work in its Arkansas and Mississippi markets.

“We are grateful to the U.S. Treasury for appropriating this pandemic recovery funding and distributing it to CDFIs like Southern Bancorp, Inc. and Southern Bancorp Community Partners, who can put it to work supporting the people and places who are hurting most in this economic climate,” said Darrin Williams, CEO of Southern Bancorp, Inc. “Southern Bancorp has a proven track record of putting such resources to work in communities that need it, and this funding will allow us to increase access to financial opportunities in and around our markets, while supporting small businesses and working families.”

The CDFI Equitable Recovery Program was created to help low- and moderate-income (LMI) communities recover from the COVID-19 pandemic, navigate this “post-pandemic” economy, and invest in long-term prosperity. By distributing this funding through mission-driven CDFIs like Southern Bancorp, institutions that primarily serve historically under-resourced and LMI communities, the U.S. Treasury is investing directly into areas where the need is greatest.

This funding, a product of the Consolidated Appropriations Act of 2021, was created with the purpose of expanding lending, grant making, and investment activities to LMI communities and borrowers, particularly minorities, who otherwise may not have access to capital or financial services, and who were disproportionately impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic.

According to the U.S. Treasury, eligibility was determined by being a certified CDFI, displaying a proven track record of serving eligible communities, and meeting certain financial criteria.

About Southern Bancorp
Founded in 1986 by some of the nation’s leading political, business, and philanthropic leaders with an initial investment of $10 million, Southern Bancorp, Inc., along with its development partners – Southern Bancorp Bank and Southern Bancorp Community Partners – has grown into a $2.6 billion asset organization with 56 locations serving 65,000 customers across two states. Southern Bancorp has a unique array of financial products and services designed to help individuals at all stages of life’s financial journey – from teaching kids how to save to helping entrepreneurs and families realize the American Dream. Southern Bancorp is a certified Community Development Financial Institution, certified B-Corp, and proud member of the Global Alliance for Banking on Values. Learn more at and