Rural businesses get $4.35 million boostEight financial institutions invest additional funds to help provide access to capital for businesses throughout rural Tennessee

In partnership with the State of Tennessee and member banks of the Tennessee Bankers Association, Pathway Lending provides loans to small businesses in rural and distressed areas of the state through the Tennessee Rural Opportunity Fund.

Two dozen partner banks invested an initial $10 million in private capital, and since its launch in 2007, the Tennessee Rural Opportunity Fund has provided more than 117 loans to 75 rural Tennessee companies. Totaling $21.5 million, these loans have made more possible for underserved small businesses owners, thanks to investments from partner banks.

We’d like to take this opportunity to thank both new bank partners and those renewing their commitments to investing in the Tennessee Rural Opportunity Fund, including the following banks as of December 31, 2017:

  • CB&S Bank
  • Centennial Bank (Farmers and Merchants Trezevant, TN)
  • Citizen’s Bank (Elizabethton)
  • Commercial Bank & Trust
  • Community Bank & Trust (Ashland City, TN)
  • Decatur County Bank
  • F&M Bank (Clarksville)
  • Franklin Synergy

“As a CDFI (Community Development Financial Institution), we focus on entrepreneurs who would not otherwise qualify for traditional bank loans,” says Pathway Lending President Clint Gwin. “Capital from our bank partners allows us to fund and support more small business owners, thus strengthening the local economy.”

Why Should Your Bank Partner in the TNROF?

  • Banks receive Franchise & Excise Tax Credits based on amount of their investment
  • Banks receive Investment or Loan CRA Test Credit*
  • Banks receive an additional interest payment from Pathway Lending
  • TBA and its Member Banks take a national lead in rural small business development

Is your bank ready to invest in the Tennessee Rural Opportunity Fund?

To invest in the Tennessee Rural Opportunity Fund, please email Clint Gwin or Hank Helton. You can find more information about the fund’s impacts in our recent economic impact study.


*CRA-qualified investment through the TN ROF eligible in all TN counties except Shelby, Davidson, and Knox Counties.