Northern Initiatives Prosperity. Money and Know How


MEDC Initiate Cohort

Initiate, Northern Initiatives’ online business resource, is already in use in 33 states. Now we’re blanketing our own backyard, thanks to a partnership with the Michigan Economic Development Corporation.

PPP Stories (Part 3)

Opening a business during a pandemic is tricky. Jeff and Patti Dewes got some grants that helped, but every time they tried to qualify for a PPP loan they were told Tillie’s Tafel hadn’t been in business long enough.

PPP Stories (Part 2)

Running a restaurant is like raising a baby, said Paola Mendivil. “You have to care for it, take care of it.” There have been times during the past year when she did feel like throwing in the towel, but El Granjero is her baby.

PPP Stories (Part 1)

The Paycheck Protection Program has been a lifeline to many during this pandemic, but there have also been disparities. We wanted to fix that, so we reached out to colleagues, friends, and partners to find businesses that had been left behind.

Our Annual Report

While the world seemed to be simultaneously spinning out of control and standing still, Northern Initiatives stuck to our mission of helping underserved businesses survive and succeed.

Initiate Annual Report

At Northern Initiatives, we’ve been building our training, education, and technology systems for years. That’s why Initiate was able to transition, grow, and help more businesses during the pandemic.

A Note from our President

This past year, my first as president of Northern Initiatives, has been full of learning, lending, awe, and gratitude. In 2020, we had a 25% increase in loans closed, making more than 200 loan modifications to support 268 customers.

TCF Mini-Grants

Northern Initiatives along with TCF Bank offered mini-grants to support businesses during the COVID crisis. This was a reimbursement-based grant, offered to select northern Michigan businesses.