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Adelphi Bank, a new Black-owned business, is making history in Columbus, Ohio. Adelphi is one of just 21 Black-owned financial institutions across the country.

According to CEO Jordan Miller, the former president of Fifth-Third Central Ohio, the Federal Depository Insurance Corporation (FDIC) gave the green light to Adelphi Bank on January 18. The bank opens in the coming months.

The bank is also rich in history. In the 1920s, Adelphi Loan and Savings Company was central Ohio’s only Black-owned bank. 

However, like many financial institutions during the Great Depression, it folded. Black families lost hundreds of thousands of dollars in generational wealth during the Great Depression.

Today’s Black families “underbank,” according to a 2021 Federal Reserve report, which states only 27% of Black men and women have bank accounts.

Additionally, Black families are less likely to own their own homes, a major source of wealth. Meanwhile, 75% of White families own their own residence. 

New Black-owned bank opens in Ohio

According to Franklin County Commissioner Kevin Boyce, “At traditional institutions, who they are lending money to for mortgages and the underwriting process, generally speaking about 1% are for African-Americans. What that means is that the wealth gap is not growing at the pace that we need it to grow at to keep up with the growth of society.”

But Adelphi plans to change all that. The bank’s board and executive leadership team are 95% Black. 

Adelphi’s goal is to support communities of color across Columbus and the rest of Ohio. The bank’s mission is to help Black families build back generational wealth lost through racist financial policies. 

The bank is located in the King-Lincoln Bronzeville community of Columbus, a traditionally Black area of the state. Adelphi has raised millions of dollars in capital funds to open a location that is convenient for Black families.

Boyce notes that the unofficial motto for Adelphi bank is “‘Not what, but how?’” The bank plans to be the central agency for engaging Black families in home and auto loans, business opportunities, and college planning resources.   

Erika Stone is a graduate student in the Master of Social Work program at the University of Oklahoma, and a graduate assistant at Schusterman Library. A Chess Memorial Scholar, she has a B.A. in Psychology...