Building Your Business as Artist

ONABEN is partnering with Crow’s Shadow Institute of the Arts and Nixyaawii Community Financial Services to build and enhance the business capacity of local artists while enhancing cultural tourism. Together the team will help you to:

  • develop a brand to market an artist collaborative
  • create a logo
  • develop a website to promote local artists

Participants will receive entrepreneurial development services and may qualify for website design services. The workshop is FREE. Pre-registration is not required.

Join us on Saturday, February 26 at 1pm at:

     Crow’s Shadow Institute of the Arts

     48004 St. Andrews Rd.

     Pendleton, OR

For more information, contact Veronica Maturino at

Hiring Business Services Manager

January 14, 2022

Nixyaawii Community Financial Services is currently hiring a Business Services Manager. This position works with our small business clients and community members interested in starting or expanding their existing businesses and leads frequent classroom and direct client interaction for business aspects along with youth entrepreneurial events. The Business Services Manager is the point person for NCFS marketing and communications including the NCFS website, client software, and social media. Advanced computer skills are highly desirable.

Salary range is $45-$65,000 annually.

Applications are now posted on the Wildhorse Resort & Casino’s Careers page, in the Current Open Positions, under Business Service Center.


U.S. Treasury certifies Nixyáawii Community Financial Services

January 5, 2022

U.S. Treasury certifies Nixyáawii Community Financial Services

Nixyáawii Community Financial Services (NCFS), a non-profit corporation owned by the Confederated Tribes of the Umatilla Indian Reservation (CTUIR), was notified on January 3, 2022 that the U.S. Department of Treasury’s Community Development Financial Institution Fund has certified NCFS as a Community Development Financial Institution (CDFI).

CDFI’s are mission-driven financial institutions that help communities that are traditionally left out of banking and investing options for building assets be that property, homeownership, or small business development.  There are over one thousand CDFI’s nationally and roughly 70 that are Native CDFI’s.

NCFS Board President Kelly George said, “This is truly a milestone for our organization and the Tribal community.  So many people have worked hard and held confidence that an economic development tool such as this could happen.”

The Umatilla Confederated Tribes began evaluating the CDFI opportunity in 2015 with an extensive community assessment followed by a detailed business plan, primarily under the leadership of Wildhorse Resort CEO Gary George and Wildhorse Business Development Services.  That plan detailed consolidation of several programs including Business Development Services, the Housing Department’s Homeownership Program, and the long-standing Tribal Credit Program.  The CTUIR Board of Trustees formally approved the plan in February of 2020.

With COVID and supply chain issues, the various staff of those programs had to continue in their former locations until the new NCFS offices were completed and opened on July 1, 2021, with a ribbon-cutting on August 10.  The dedicated seven-member NCFS Board of Directors have met regularly over the last year, providing direction on all the various aspects of the Tribes’ new financial institution.

“Big congratulations to the Confederated Tribes of the Umatilla Indian Reservation for earning this designation as a formal Community Development Financial Institution and their work to establish this financial mainstay to help tackle historic injustices that have blocked credit for Native communities.” said Senator Ron Wyden, Chair of the U.S. Senate Finance Committee.

Oregon Senator Jeff Merkley added, “CDFI’s like Nixyáawii Community Financial Services are crucial to building equitable economies and opening the doors of opportunity to all, and I am so pleased to see them receive this formal certification from the Treasury.”

Nixyáawii Community Financial Services (NCFS) is a Native Community Development Financial Institution loan fund that will provide loans, homeownership assistance, business development services, youth, and adult financial education to members of the Umatilla Confederated Tribes, Reservation residents, and Tribal employees.

For more information, contact Dave Tovey, Executive Director, NCFS, at or call 541.255.3465.


  • NCFS Offices will be open to the public on Monday, October 25th with the Tribal-wide mask mandate.
  • We are always and will continue to have the option of transactions and loan signings through our drive-through window.
  • We also want to remind our customers that there is an envelope slot at the drive-through for evening paper or payments.
  • Our office hours are Monday through Thursday from 8 a.m. until 5 p.m. and 8 a.m. until 4 p.m. on Fridays.




A house isn’t something you should consider buying unless you have a stable income source that can be verified by the lender for a minimum of two years.  Lenders also like to know the income will continue for at least three years into the future.  In many cases, lenders also consider whether you are employed in a job with consistent income that does not change much month-to-month.  You need to be able to manage your expenses responsibly and make sure you’ve learned to manage any ongoing ‘money problems’ which prevent you from paying your bills on time.


Your credit report says a lot about you. Lenders use it to evaluate your risk potential and to inform themselves on how responsible of a borrower you are.  Make sure you’re
paying all bills on time, don’t open new credit cards if you don’t need them, paying credit card bills in full each month, and keeping credit utilization low.  Lenders want at least two trade lines open for at least two years with no late payment of twelve months.

Make sure to check your credit report early on to determine if there are areas you need to improve, or if you need to dispute incorrect information on your credit report if there is any.


Becoming a homeowner takes money and you need to start saving to cover the costs.  When you purchase a home you’ll need to funds for the down payment (a percentage of the purchase price) and closing costs (the bank fees to complete the transaction.  The amount you need to save will depend on the price of the home, required down payment, and fees charged by the lender.


Homeownership is a long-term commitment and requires long-term thinking.  It’s not for everyone.  If you’re someone who likes to travel all the time, if you’re thinking of going back to school, or if you are considering a job transfer, then buying a home might need to wait.  If you’re not ready to settle down for at least five years, renting might be the best option right now. You don’t want to put all of your money into building a house, only to lose equity in a couple of years when you want to move or relocate.


You don’t have to be Mr. or Ms. Handyman, but it’s important to be able to take on the responsibility of fixing things yourself. You are the one responsible for replacing appliances and fixing any repairs the house might need. You won’t be able to call up the landlord to take care of things. You either have to fix them yourself or pay for them to be replaced or repaired.


If you stop paying your rent, the landlord will eventually evict you. Similarly, a bank will foreclose on your home if you stop paying your mortgage. Unfortunately, a foreclosure can be a devastating hit on your credit report.  A mortgage payment is a long-term commitment.  Make sure you’re ready to prioritize the mortgage payment before all other expenses.

For assistance contact Pam Ranslam

(541) 429-7932

Tribes step in to fill a financial gap in Eastern Oregon

When Confederated Tribes of the Umatilla Indian Reservation leaders realized many members didn’t have bank accounts or lines of credit, they put in place a new plan to improve financial literacy and help members obtain loans.

To do that, they launched Nixyaawii Community Financial Services, a one-stop source for a full range of financial services for the reservation’s nearly 3,000 residents. Nixyaawii Community Financial Services, which formally opened a year ago, is a community development financial institution, a nonprofit that delivers affordable lending.