Banking on Diversity

Minority Business Fund

Three banks have collectively committed up to $1 million in interest-free loans to aid both startup and existing minority-owned small businesses within the sponsoring community bank markets.

The Banking on Diversity program was created through a partnership of community banks in the Northern Virginia / Shenandoah Valley of Virginia and Eastern Panhandle of West Virginia area that understand the importance and benefit of having a diverse business community.


It has been designed to aid both start-up and existing minority owned small businesses within the sponsoring organizations' markets. Annually, up to $1,000,000 in interest free loans will be made available to businesses that meet certain qualification standards. There are two categories of loan programs, one for start-ups and one for existing businesses.


Program Sponsors:

  • First Bank
  • Bank of Clarke County
  • BCT - Bank of Charles Town


Program Guidelines

  • Only available to for-profit businesses
  • Must qualify as a minority-owned business using one of the following two certifications:
  •            Signed Attestation Form (Example: Banking On Diversity Attestation Form)
  • MBE Certification (Learn how: Minority Business Enterprise)
  • SBA 8(a) Certification (Learn how: Small Business Administration 8(a))
  • Annual revenues cannot exceed $1MM (business) or $500k (farms)
  • Business must be located in counties of Frederick (VA), Loudoun (VA), Fauquier (VA), Clarke (VA), Winchester (VA), Warren (VA), Shenandoah (VA), Prince William (VA), Jefferson (WV), Berkeley (WV), Frederick (MD) or Washington (MD)
  • Loan amounts up to $50,000 (existing business) or $10,000 (new business)
  • New business must have been in existence for at least 3 months
  • Existing business must have been in existence for more than 2 years
  • Ability to provide documentation as described below


Required Documentation:

  • Loan Application
  • Complete Minority Owned Business Certification
  • Full description of business and website (if applicable)
  • Current Certificate of Good Standing for the business with Virginia, West Virginia, or Maryland
  • Prior year tax returns (for existing business)
  • Current year proforma and 3-year projections (existing business)
  • Current year proforma and 5-year projections (new business) and any market research completed to create the business



Apply for a Banking on Diversity Loan today!