Neighborhood Trust has refined our in-person Trusted Advisor model for over 20 years. We know it works, and we know that it’s a powerful tool for helping low-income people disrupt the cycle of poverty. But we also know that the need for trusted and relevant financial counseling extends far beyond our reach. Nationally, 74% of low-income families are living paycheck to paycheck and without a savings cushion.

To meet this need, we set up an in-house fin-tech shop that will specialize in creating the digital tools for serving more clients, and serving them effectively. We’ve put together a product development team that will work hand-in-glove with our expert financial counselors to create a suite of targeted fin-tech products that not only mirror our core model of trust, but create new opportunities for financial empowerment by helping low-income people access the services that makes sense for them, and on their terms. Neighborhood Trust already does this through our work with our fin-tech partners, which includes WageGoal and our innovative tech-enabled Trusted Advisor model. By bringing these operations in-house, we’ll be able to more nimbly create products that are both relevant and empowering as we respond to clients’ needs. As we develop these tools iteratively, we’ll also build our knowledge about the products and features that work. To support this effort we have also engaged OpenBox, a human centered design firm, to help us design tools to help employees learn about and engage with the tech-enabled service.

Steve Silverstein
Technical Product Manager

Steve Silverstein has worked in software development for over 20 years.  He’s worked at startups, a large multinational company, and small nonprofits, as Product Manager, Director of Technology, QA Engineer, and Software Developer. He’s excited to stay in the nonprofit sector, and to support Neighborhood Trust’s mission of financial empowerment.  Steve’s role ranges from big-picture technology strategy to ensuring that individual projects are released on schedule and within budget. When he’s not at work, Steve records, mixes, and masters music for friends at his studio in Brooklyn.

“There’s not a lot of non-profits doing this kind of product development work so aggressively, and it’s really exciting to help shape the future of what it’s going to be.”

Mary Coker
Full Stack Engineer

Mary is an accomplished Java developer, bringing over 15 years of professional experience with the full software development life cycle spanning a variety of industry settings, including fin-tech leaders such as Paychex and Dovetail Systems. As a full-stack engineer, Mary will be working on every layer of Neighborhood Trust’s digital tools, with a specific focus on WageGoal and the tech-enabled Trusted Advisor Service.

My main thing is the work environment and the people I work with, and the people here

[at Neighborhood Trust] come across to me as very genuine and honest. Also, I get to be involved in the day-to-day decision-making and seeing the overall picture, and that’s important to me.”