Aya Beckles Swanson
Vice President / Community Lending
Aya has spent more than ten years working in the field of Economic & Community Development. She was born and raised in Barbados, but came to the United States to attend the University of Hartford’s Hartt School of Music where she majored in music business and foreign languages. After college, she worked in the fields of music publishing, event planning, and financial aid, including a one-year stint working in New York City for Bob Dylan’s music publishing company. It was years later, while working for the New Haven Jazz Festival and reaching out to area businesses to encourage their involvement in the festival, that she recognized her interest in economic and business development. From there it was on to municipal economic development roles and now her community lending position with CIC which gives her the opportunity to do her favorite thing: work hands-on with small businesses and entrepreneurs.
Aya sings with the band JambalAya, a jazz/R&B/funk group of seven musicians who perform in the Hartford area.
Aya is an entrepreneur herself and runs a one-woman tutoring and college admissions coaching business in her “spare” time.
Aya grew up helping her mother in the kitchen and loves to cook. She now has her mother’s top-secret macaroni and cheese recipe that she makes for special occasions.
CIC is an economic development lender contributing financial expertise and practical guidance to small business entrepreneurs in Connecticut and Rhode Island who have powerful ideas and need more power to grow them.