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Charles Tansey

Co-founder, Sakonnet River Company
Carsey Senior Fellow

Charles Tansey, a former career Senior Executive Service official, was elected Fellow of the National Academy of Public Administration in 2013, and appointed Senior Fellow at the MIT Golub Center for Finance and Policy in 2015. He had served as Senior Vice President of the Small Business Group at the Export Import Bank of the US (2010-2013) and Senior Advisor to the CEO of the Congressionally-chartered NeighborWorks America (2001-2010). In 2008 he was elected Secretary, and in 2009, Vice Chairman, of The Appraisal Foundation Advisory Council.  Mr. Tansey was appointed by President Clinton as Associate Deputy Administrator of Capital Access at the SBA (1999-2001) where he was responsible for all of the SBA’s debt, guarantee and equity programs. In that capacity, he also served on the Department of Treasury’s Community Development Financial Institution (CDFI) Fund Advisory Board.  Since 1993 Mr. Tansey has participated as a consultant and as a reviewer for programs at HUD, the USDA, HHS, and the CDFI Fund. Prior to government, he spent 25 years in corporate banking and finance at the Chase Manhattan Bank, The Bank of New York and Commonwealth Capital Partners.

Beginning in 2018, Mr. Tansey worked with the Carsey School to develop a blueprint that showed non-profit CDFIs how to access the public equity markets. The project was funded by JPMorgan Chase and the Rockefeller Foundation. The report, A Path to Conventional Equity: The CDFI Equity Project Report, was published in June of 2023. Mr. Tansey and the Carsey team are now discussing the implementation phase with investors and CDFIs.  In 2016, Mr. Tansey developed the SMSST program for stress-testing non-depository CDFIs. The program has been used for the USDA’s Community Facilities Relending program for assessing higher risk applicants. In 2015 he helped develop the MIT GCFP course Mission and Metrics: Finance Training for Federal Credit Program Managers.  The course covered the technical and practical steps in designing and managing federal credit programs, and included tools that improve transparency, as well as solve for optimal credit risk, administrative cost, unit cost, and allocation of financial benefits.  At NeighborWorks, Mr. Tansey wrote Capital Markets, CDFIs, and Organizational Credit Risk, a seminal work on organizational assessment and capital market strategies for CDFIs (2009). He also co-developed the course and the software for the NeighborWorks America course: Advanced Financial Analysis for a Sustainable Mission: Pricing, Funding and Management of Development Assets (2004). At the SBA, Mr. Tansey was responsible for establishing the Office of Lender Oversight (now the Office of Credit Risk Management) and initiating the first edition of its predictive modelling of risk in the portfolios of participating lenders. Following his role in helping set up and manage the bailout agency for the private insurer of Rhode Island’s banks and credit unions in 1991, he developed the Quad software for stress testing small banks and credit unions. During the 1990’s he also served as Interim Executive Director of the Minority Investment Development Corporation (RI) and the Rhode Island Coalition for Minority Investment. Mr. Tansey is an investor and an executive in a consumer products company and an internet start-up. He is a 1974 graduate of Brown University, and a 1969 graduate of Phillips Academy, Andover. He is a former President of the Brown Rowing Association.