Ben Jacobs, his family and Ben's family friend Matthew Chandra opened Tocabe, an American Indian eatery, in Denver, Colorado in 2006. (Courtesy

NCAIED Recognizes Keybank and Tocabe With American Corporate & Entrepreneur of the Year Awards


The National Center for American Indian Enterprise Development (NCAIED) has honored KeyBank with its Corporate Leadership Award, and the organization named Ben Jacobs and Matt Chandra, co-owners of Tocabe: An American Indian Eatery, its Enterpreneur of the Year Award winners.

The NCAIED will present the awards at the 37th Annual Indian Progress in Business Awards Gala (INPRO), a featured event of the Reservation Economic Summit (RES) Oklahoma, taking place November 14-15 at the Hard Rock Hotel & Casino in Tulsa, Oklahoma.

"We are proud to acknowledge Key Bank for their dedication in advancing Indian Country within the financial services sector and Tocabe for the great success, dedication and entrepreneurial spirit they have demonstrated in successfully operating their longstanding Native American owned and operated business," Gary Davis, NCAIED president and CEO, said in a press release.

Mike Lettig, national executive for KeyBank's Native American Financial Services

KeyBank offers Native American Financial Services, a program that provides financing for vital economic, energy or social services initiatives to Native entrepreneurs and Native-owned companies that are often denied financing by traditional lenders who don't understand the unique cultural priorities and laws in Indian country. KeyBank was one of the first major U.S. lenders to serve Native American businesses, communities and individuals. KeyBank's areas of expertise include helping tribal nations finance or expand essential infrastructure needs (such as schools, roads, and water treatment systems). In addition, the KeyBank team can also structure innovative financing tools for economic development, energy, gaming and hotel projects, states the NCAIED release. For more information about KeyBank, visit:

Tocabe: An American Indian Eatery, located in northwest Denver, Colorado, is owned by the Jacobs family. Tom and Jan Jacobs opened Grayhourse, a small Native American eatery, in the late 1980s. Twenty years later, with help and input from their youngest son, Ben, and family friend Matthew Chandra, the family opened Tocabe in 2006.

Tocabe, derived from the Osage word for “blue,” stays true to its roots, featuring Indian tacos, stuffed frybread, and medicine wheel nachos. Other popular menu items include blueberry barbecue with sage-rubbed bison ribs, corn salsa with cranberries, the hominy salsa, and the marinated, grilled chicken.

Ben Jacobs, his family and Ben's family friend Matthew Chandra opened Tocabe, an American Indian eatery, in Denver, Colorado in 2006. (Courtesy

Guy Fieri, the face of the Food Network’s “Diners, Drive-Ins and Dives," praised the local restaurant in an episode that aired September 12—the program's first time to feature Native food. (Watch Fieri make an Indian taco at Tocabe.)

For more information about Tocabe, visit:

"Key Bank and Tocabe are true embodiments of the NCAIED's mission in 'Putting Indian Country to Work!'" NCAIED Chairwoman Margo Gray Proctor said in the organization's press release. "We are proud to recognize them for the contributions to American Indian economic development and for demonstrating outstanding leadership within the American Indian community. Key Bank has been a long time partner with NCAIED and has supported our business growth. On behalf of the Board of Directors we congratulate both Key Bank and Tocabe."

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