Ruben Alonso III is CEO of AltCap, a multi-state, mission-driven and minority-controlled community development financial institution (CDFI) based in Kansas City, Missouri. In this role, he is responsible for the overall administration, management, ongoing growth and development, and strategic direction of the organization. Under Mr. Alonso’s leadership, AltCap has grown from a community development entity specializing in New Markets Tax Credit (NMTC) facilitated financing, to a high performing, CDFI and Small Business Administration (SBA) microloan intermediary and Community Advantage lender providing alternative capital to communities and small businesses in Missouri, Kansas, Colorado, Nebraska, Texas and California.
Since 2008, Mr. Alonso has led AltCap, initially focusing on its participation in the NMTC Program. He assisted the organization secure $213 million in allocation from the CDFI Fund which has resulted in over $250 million in impact investments in Missouri and Kansas since 2010. These investments range from a LEED Platinum manufacturing facility to a repurposed school building which is now home to a co-working space for small businesses. After AltCap became certified as a CDFI in 2016 and SBA microlender in 2017, Mr. Alonso led the development of its small business and microloan products, which have provided over $32 million in financing to entrepreneurs and small businesses underserved and overlooked by traditional financial institutions. From 2020 – 2022, Mr. Alonso led a civic and corporate capital raising effort to create a small business relief and recovery loan fund as well as stood up a Paycheck Protection Program loan operation which combined provided over $13 million in critical financing to small businesses impacted by the economic disruption caused by COVID-19. Currently he is spearheading the launch of a new revenue-based financing product for small businesses (in particular entrepreneurs of color) which is being supported by a $5 million program related investment by the Ewing Marion Kauffman Foundation. Mr. Alonso continues to lead AltCap’s growth and expansion, having reached over $32 million in assets (with an additional $100 million off-balance sheet) in 2022.
In addition to his role at AltCap, Mr. Alonso launched and sits on the board of directors of Community Capital Fund, AltCap’s “sister” 501(c)3 that invests in innovative and measurable community development aligning with and strengthening the financial, human, and social capital of under-resourced neighborhoods in the Greater Kansas City Metropolitan Area, as well as equity2, AltCap’s impact investment affiliate that is initially focused on offering equity financing to job-creating businesses and catalytic real estate development projects in Opportunity Zones in Missouri and Kansas. Mr. Alonso is a Class B member of the Board of Directors of the Federal Reserve Bank of Kansas City and also serves on the Board of Directors, the Community Reinvestment Fund, USA (CRF), a national CDFI that has driven more than $3.5 billion in loans, investments and bonds to change lives and transform economically challenged neighborhoods into thriving communities, and Midtown KC Now. Mr. Alonso is also an adjunct professor at University of Missouri-Kansas City’s Department of Architecture, Urban Planning and Design where he teaches a course in urban redevelopment.
Prior to his time at AltCap, Mr. Alonso was a Development Finance Project Manager for the City of Kansas City, Missouri where he Led the financial analysis and evaluation of over $500 million in publicly subsidized real estate development projects using fiscal impact modeling, risk assessment, financial analysis and tax revenue forecasting. Before relocating to Kansas City, Ruben lived in Los Angeles where he attended graduate school at the University of Southern California and was a Program Manager and Consultant for the Los Angeles Minority Business Enterprise Center where he managed economic development initiatives designed to develop and grow minority-owned small and medium sized enterprises through increased access to capital and contracting opportunities. Mr. Alonso’s additional professional experience includes corporate finance and accounting roles with EMI Recorded Music in Los Angeles and New York City as well as Salomon Smith Barney in New York City.
Mr. Alonso was a U.S. Peace Corps volunteer in Slovakia where he supported a microlending and business development non-governmental organization, taught English at a local secondary school and helped found a local boxing club for Romani youth. He holds a Bachelor of Business Administration in accounting from the University of Miami and a Master of Public Policy from the University of Southern California.
Mr. Alonso attributes his passion for making capital more accessible to small businesses underserved and overlooked by mainstream finance to his family who emigrated from Cuba in the late 1950s and early 1960s – many of whom achieved the American dream through entrepreneurship and the support of their community.