We are thrilled to share that Opportunity Fund has hired Luz Urrutia as its new CEO. Luz brings a wealth of experience in community banking, alternative financial services and small dollar lending, working to expand access to financial services in underserved communities throughout the United States for more than thirty years. She joins Eric Weaver and the rest of Opportunity Fund’s leadership team as we scale our reach in California and beyond. Over the next few years, guided by a new strategic plan, Luz will lead the effort to quadruple our impact: Opportunity Fund will invest $500 million to drive economic mobility for 50,000 underserved entrepreneurs, students, and working families by 2020.
Luz has spent her career in banking and financial services, particularly in underserved markets, and has won numerous awards for her leadership. She began her career at Wachovia, where she spent 18 years in various leadership positions and led the bank’s expansion into Mexico and Canada. She was a founding investor and President and Chief Operating Officer of El Banco de Nuestra Comunidad from 2001 to 2013, a financial institution based in Georgia serving the underbanked Latino population with alternative financial services and banking products. As VP of Retail Sales and Services at Oportun from 2013-2016, Luz expanded Oportun’s footprint from 75 to 195 stores across five states. In 2016, Luz joined Dollar Financial Group as CEO for the Americas to help transform the organization into a responsible lender for underserved communities.
Luz has served on the Board of the Center for Financial Services Innovation and the Consumer Advisory Council of the Federal Reserve Bank. In 2006, Luz was awarded “Community Banker of the Year” by American Banker; in 2009, she was recognized as the “Latina Business Woman of the Year” by Latina Style; and, in 2015 was named a “Woman of Influence” by Silicon Valley Business Journal. Ms. Urrutia is originally from Caracas, Venezuela. She received a B.S., magna cum laude, in Business Administration and Finance and an M.B.A., both from Georgia State University.
“I’m passionate about opening doors to the financial system so hard-working individuals can increase their economic opportunities to get ahead. By leveraging the use of data analytics and technology we can offer affordable loans and other financial services to underbanked communities. I’m thrilled to join the team at Opportunity Fund to help build a more inclusive financial system and expand the reach of this highly regarded organization at a time when our services are needed more than ever,” said incoming CEO Luz Urrutia.
Opportunity Fund is at an exciting and important inflection point. Luz brings exceptional talent, experience, and commitment and we are thrilled to bring her on board. The candidates that applied for this position were nothing short of extraordinary, a true reflection of the organization that our Founder, Eric Weaver, and the team have built over the past 24 years. We are grateful to the search committee members for their efforts to ensure Opportunity Fund has nothing but the best in its new CEO; our clients deserve nothing less.
Luz’s first day will be September 1st. I hope many of you get the chance to meet Luz in the coming weeks and months ahead - including on October 25th when we gather in Menlo Park to honor Eric’s legacy, welcome Luz to the team, and celebrate Opportunity Fund’s bold vision to tackle income inequality in California and beyond.
Thank you for your continued support of Opportunity Fund and for investing in the dreams of hard-working people who are building a better future for themselves and their families.