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Put Your Money Where Your Life Is

Reclaiming Our Local Economy SERIES

An event series focusing on local investment as a tool for rebuilding our region’s economy

“When the pandemic recedes, we all will be called upon to take extraordinary steps to revive the local businesses that serve as the foundation of our communities. One critically important step will be for you and other members of your community to move your investment capital from Wall Street to Main Street.”                                       

– Michael Shuman, Community Economist  

After a year of COVID-19 shutdowns, bankruptcies, deaths and economic despair, how can we, as individuals, help rebuild our economy and community?

A series of events and workshops hosted by Vital Communities and TLC Monadnock over the next several months aims to provide information and resources about local investment AND opportunities for action. Yes, opportunities! 

In addition to economic disruption and heartache, the pandemic has surfaced opportunities for relocalizing our economy, catalyzing innovation and shifting capital to where we live to fuel the entrepreneurs, businesses, and projects our communities need to be more sustainable, vibrant, and resilient.

Both the Monadnock Region Indie Impact Study and Upper Valley Indie Impact Study reported that businesses rooted in the region keep up to 4 times more money circulating in  our local economies compared to national chain stores, and that remote online retailers suck hundreds of millions of dollars from our economy each year. Local businesses create stable jobs, enhance community character, and support our communities with donations of time and money, and have proven to be critical resources during the pandemic emergency.

Increasing the development and success of more locally based businesses and innovations will make our region more resilient and strengthen our economy so that we can better handle future disruptions and challenges. Investment in these enterprises is critical to their success.

Reclaiming our economy will require that we all “invest” in our future -- whether by committing to shop locally more or by actually investing some retirement savings in the sectors, businesses or projects that will make our communities a better place to live, work, and play for generations. 

The goal of this series is to build awareness of the ways we can currently invest in reclaiming our economy as we recover from economic disruption, and to find new and creative tools and networks to move money from Wall Street to Main Street.

Investing for Home Creation

Thursday, April 8, 5:30 pm

Your savings can help create more lower-cost homes. Learn how even small amounts can bring financial, social, and environmental rewards.

Register today!


Put Your Money to Work Locally: Investment Clubs 101

Thursday, April 15, 5:30 pm

Increase your power to do good by investing as a group.

Register today!


Put Your Money to Work Locally: Community Loan Funds 101

Tuesday, April 27, 5:30 pm

Community loan funds are a homegrown solution for investing in our communities, energy independence, and working lands. Join us for a deep dive into impact investing with Vermont and New Hampshire community loan funds.

Register today!

Past Events

Local Investment 101: How to Reboot the Region’s Economy After COVID-19

March 4, 11, 18, 25, 2021

A four-session virtual workshop designed to help grassroots investors and community groups develop practical, local investment strategies, to fuel innovation and resilience in the community.  

Presenter: Michael Shuman, Community Economist and Author of Put Your Money Where Your Life Is

Small businesses throughout Vermont and New Hampshire have been devastated by the COVID-19 pandemic and related shutdowns, as have the local economies that depend on them. One readily available solution—one that does not depend on government bureaucracies—is to mobilize grassroots investment. Americans now have $56 trillion in stocks, bonds, mutual funds, pension funds, and insurance funds—nearly all of it invested in global corporations. Here in the Upper Valley, one conservative estimate is that there are $5-6 billion in locally managed investments; this figure does not include the untold billions invested by local residents but managed out of state.

Recent changes in the law (around investment crowdfunding, for example) make it cheaper and easier for nonaccredited investors to put money into local businesses. However, most of us believe we have no choice but to continue to invest our money in the stocks and bonds of the world’s biggest companies, even if we barely understand them. There are real alternatives, but few of us know about or consider them. In fact, you can invest in everything that matters to you. You can put your money into that neighborhood grocery store you love, your little sister’s first house, or your nephew repayment of high-interest student loans. If you’re smart about local investing, you can do this in a way that provides substantial, stable financial returns and lower risk than for Wall Street investments. Plus, local investments come with social returns on investment and wind up strengthening your community, local resilience, and the tax base.

Local Investment 101 aims to help participants answer three essential questions:

  • How can I rebuild my community and the local economy after the ravages of COVID-19?
  • How can I make my community more resilient to better prepare for future global crises?
  • How can I move my money into the businesses, projects, places, and people I know and love?

About the presenter:

Michael Shuman is an author and leading visionary on community economics, serving as Director of Local Economy Programs for Neighborhood Associates Corporation and Adjunct Professor at Bard Business School in New York City. He is also a Senior Researcher for Council Fire and Local Analytics, where he performs economic-development analyses for states, local governments, and businesses around North America. His three most recent books are:

  • Put Your Money Where Your Life Is: How to Invest Locally Using Solo 401ks and Self-Directed IRAs
  • The Local Economy Solution: How Innovative, Self-Financing Pollinator Enterprises Can Grow Jobs and Prosperity
  • Local Dollars, Local Sense: How to Shift Your Money from Wall Street to Main Street

Register for Local Investment 101 Workshop Series




Webinar Recording: Rebooting Your Community After COVID - How to Invest Locally Using Self-Directed IRAs and Solo 401ks

The Local Crowd (TLC) Monadnock hosted an online introductory webinar with community economist and author Michael H. Shuman called "Rebooting Your Community After COVID - How to Invest Locally Using Self-Directed IRAs and Solo 401ks" on Thursday, October 15, 2020.

Watch recording here!

Event partners included Green Energy Options, Greater Keene Chamber of Commerce, Monadnock Food Co-op, The Local Crowd, Vital Communities and Hannah Grimes Center for Entrepreneurship.

Questions?  Please contact Jen Risley at jen@thelocalcrowd.com or 603-283-5401.

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Series Sponsors


Savings Bank of Walpole

For more than 145 years now, Savings Bank of Walpole takes very seriously the responsibility that comes with being our community’s truly local bank. We’re here to provide financial products that are in our customers’ best interest, not ours. It is and always has been the very foundation of our existence. More importantly, as the only bank headquartered right here in our community, we know that we are in business because of our community and for our community. This is our only home – and we know we cannot continue to thrive or survive without a strong local economy.


Mascoma Bank

Mascoma Bank is a Certified B Corporation┬« which means we use “business as a force for good.” Practically speaking, being a B Corp™ inspires us to consider the impact of our business decisions on our communities, our customers, our employees, and our environment. It is helping us to discover new ways we can deliver positive change in the cities and towns where we work and live. For 120 years, Mascoma Bank has put community first. Our status as a B Corp™ is just the latest example of our commitment to the communities we serve.


King Arthur Baking Company

King Arthur Baking Company is an employee-owned company, every one a bakers at heart. There mission is to be the ultimate resource and inspiration in the kitchen, to inspire connections and community through baking, and to use our business as a force for good.


Monadnock Food Co-op

The Monadnock Food Co-op is a community-owned food store offering a diverse selection of local, organic, and natural foods to the Monadnock Region. The Co-op is located at 34 Cypress Street in Keene, NH.

Hanover Co-op Foods Stores

The Hanover Co-op Food Stores‘ vision is a well-nourished community cultivated through cooperation. With locations in Vermont and New Hampshire, the Co-op Food Stores is owned by more than 20,000 families, and is one of the oldest and most successful co-ops in the United States. Serving the good folks of the Upper Valley since 1936! Anyone can shop, member or not.


Green Energy Options

Green Energy Options is a mission based certified B Corporation that supports the use of cleaner, more efficient, and renewable sources of energy.  Specializing in residential solar, home heating and cooling, our team of energy experts provides friendly advice, quality products, and excellent installations to homeowners in the Monadnock Region and beyond.  We listen carefully to our customers so that we can offer the best products for their needs.  Our goal is 100% customer satisfaction. Please stop in, meet the team, take a tour of our showroom and talk about our shared vision for a healthy local economy and environment.

Norwich Solar

The leader is commercial, municipal & institutional solar solutions. Norwich Solar Technologies‘ mission is to continue to advance the integration and deployment of affordable solar power for regional organizations – enabling them to improve their bottom line while reducing their carbon footprint. Our clients include municipalities, community services institutions, schools, businesses large and small, and community solar residential clients.


Valley News

The Valley News is the Upper Valley’s source for news, sports, and more serving 22 western New Hampshire communities and 24 communities in eastern Vermont.

The Keene Sentinel

LaValley Building Supply
 

View October 2020 Introductory Webinar with Michael Shuman

The Local Crowd Monadnock - Mailing Address: 63 Emerald St. #114, Keene, NH 03431

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