ONABENOregon Native American Business and Entrepreneurial Network
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Veronica Hix is executive director of ONABEN, a national nonprofit dedicated to growing the economies of Indigenous peoples.
The ultimate goal of ONABEN is to strengthen tribal economies and to build ways to make private enterprise work for Indians in their communities.
The other end of ONABEN's responsibility is to soften the path to the doors of conventional lenders.
ONABEN -- which was set up and funded by a consortium of tribes with help from the SBA and a Portland law firm, Perkins Coie -- teaches both borrower and lender to approach one another with more understanding of their respective systems.
Most subscribe to the idea embraced by ONABEN: Tribal enterprises should encourage and assist tribal members in starting their own businesses.