click here for the Institute's Board of Directors
Inna Kinney, Founder and CEO
Inna Kinney is Founder and CEO of the Economic and Community Development Institute, a Central Ohio based community development non-profit, established in 2004 with offices in Columbus, Ohio. Ms. Kinney’s experience with fundraising and management provided the foundation for the development of the Institute as an organization that impacts the community.
The Economic and Community Development Institute's work in Ohio focuses on small business development, home ownership, post secondary education and access to capital for all. Through its micro-loan certification from the U.S. Small Business Administration and a status as a Community Development Financial Institution through the U.S. Department of Treasury the Institute is a leader in micro-lending with a portfolio of over $10 million. The Institute is funded by over 30 local, state and national governmental and private sources.
As CEO of the Economic and Community Development Institute, her responsibilities center around supporting the long-term sustainability of the organization. Specific responsibilities include: setting the vision and strategic direction, fundraising, fiscal oversight and education of policy makers.
In addition to her duties as CEO of the Institute, Ms. Kinney serves the community as part of many local and national boards. Her board experience has been with the following organizations; Association for Enterprise Opportunity (a national membership organization supporting microenterprise development) and Microenterprise National Advisory Council, the United Way and Columbus Foundation Immigrant and Refugee Capacity Building Initiative Steering Committee; United Way Women Leadership Council, the Governor’s Office of Faith-Based and Community Initiatives Advisory Council; Huntington Bank Advisory Council; Ohio Refugee and Immigrant Advisory Committee.
Inna’s passion for economic development began in 1974 as she and her family became the first family resettled in Columbus from the former Soviet Union. Despite being new to the country and having limited English proficiency, Ms. Kinney’s family was able to achieve the American dream by starting a family business. She continues to teach these values through her work at the Economic and Community Development Institute and through her 3 children.
Her education at Ohio State University focused on international business, finance and economics. Inna is fluent in 3 languages. Both Inna and the Institute have been recognized on a national level as leaders in micro-enterprise development.
Steve Fireman, President
As an accomplished entrepreneur, Mr. Fireman has taken his experience and success as a business founder and owner to the non-profit world, where he currently serves as the President and General Counsel of the Economic and Community Development Institute. Additionally, Mr. Fireman focuses his practice on representing and counseling small business clients.
Mr. Fireman has used his success in risk management and strategic planning to form his own company, Supreme Title Agency. His expertise took the company from infancy to profitability in six months, increasing the bottom line by 40% in just three years. He was also able to build MidAmerican Finance & Home Equity from $600,000 in mortgages per month to $6 million monthly during his tenure as CEO. His management experience includes oversight of retail and wholesale operations, strategic planning, marketing, secondary marketing, sales, investor relations, vendor relationships, loan processing, underwriting, closing and funding. In addition, he managed six Division Managers.
Mr. Fireman served on the Institute's Board of Directors for the past five years as Board Chair, and most recently, as a Director. He has been able to apply his success in the business world to help the organization better serve current entrepreneurs through the Institute's lending department. Additionally, Mr. Fireman has helped to direct the Economic and Community Development Institute's vision, overseeing its development and ensuring that its programs continue to meet the needs of the community.
Mr. Fireman is a member of the Ohio and Columbus Bar Associations, American Corporate Counsel Association (ACCA), Mortgage Bankers Association and served on the Board of Directors for Big Brothers Big Sisters and Directions for Youth.
Pat Peakes, Director of Asset Development
Pat brings to the Economic and Community Development Institute more than 25 years as an administrative professional, with substantial experience in project coordination and management. Most recently, she served as Project Coordinator for JP Morgan Chase, contracting in Infrastructure & Operations and coordinating problems through resolution on a national project installing new technology. Furthermore, Pat acted as a liaison between users, and technical team leads to mitigate risks and ensure corporate standards were being met.