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Dennis Alvord

Federal Recovery Resources from the EDA
Friday May 22 1:00 - 3:00 PM

Deputy Assistant Secretary for Regional Affairs
U.S. Economic Development Administration

Dennis Alvord serves as Deputy Assistant Secretary for Regional Affairs, directing and supervising the activities of the Economic Development Administration's (EDA) Office of Regional Affairs (ORA), which includes all six EDA Regional Offices, the Performance and National Programs Division, the Integrated Economic Development team, and the Regional Innovation Strategies program. Earlier in his career, Mr. Alvord served in EDA in various positions, including Acting Deputy Assistant Secretaries for ORA and External Affairs. He also led the bureau’s work with the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development where he served as Vice-Chair of the Working Party on Territorial Policy in Urban Areas.

Previously, Mr. Alvord served as Senior Advisor to the Deputy Secretary of the U.S. Department of Commerce. In this role, he worked on a broad portfolio of department-wide management, operations, program and policy issues. As Senior Advisor, he served as Co-Chair of the Department of Commerce's 2016-17 Presidential Transition, coordinating efforts across the Department and with the White House and President Elect's Transition Team. He has also served as Executive Director of BusinessUSA, a multiagency customer service initiative that promoted and improved access to business assistance resources, and as Executive Director of the Department of Commerce’s CommerceConnect initiative, which simplified access to the department’s business solutions.

Before joining the federal government, Mr. Alvord was a Project Manager in the Infrastructure Finance Group of the Bethesda, Maryland-based environmental and transportation consulting firm Apogee Research, Inc.

Mr. Alvord has a Master of Public Administration degree from George Washington University, and a Bachelor of Arts degree in political science from the State University of New York College at Cortland. He is a recipient of the 2015 President’s Award for Customer Service.


Ashley Badesch

Federal Recovery Resources from the EDA
Friday May 22 1:00 - 3:00 PM

Principal
Sustainable Strategies DC

Ashley Badesch serves as a Principal at Sustainable Strategies DC. A Colorado native, Ashley leads Sustainable Strategies DC's Mountain West practice. Her other practice areas focus on community health and wellness, as well as deploying Opportunity Zones to benefit communities. Prior to joining Sustainable Strategies DC, Ashley worked at the Center for International Policy. Ashley earned her J.D., Magna Cum Laude, at Georgetown University Law Center. She received her Master of Public Policy with a focus in Environmental Policy and a Bachelor of Arts in Spanish and Minor in Philosophy from the University of Virginia.


Joseph Baietti

Federal Recovery Resources from HUD
Friday June 5 1:00 - 3:00 PM

Community Development Specialist
U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development

Joey has been working for HUD for 5 years. He initially started as a climate resilience specialist writing climate policy and the Environmental Justice Strategy for the Department. Presently, Joey works in the Financial Management Division as a loan finance officer for HUD’s Section 108 Loan Guarantee Program, which provides financing to states and local governments for community and economic development projects. Before coming to HUD, Joey was a Peace Corps Volunteer in the Kingdom of Tonga and he is currently attending school part-time at NYU’s Wagner Graduate School of Public Service where he pursuing a Master of Urban Planning.


Joshua Barnes

Federal Recovery Resources from the SBA
Friday July 31 1:00 - 3:00 PM

Senior Planner
U.S. Small Business Administration

Joshua Barnes leads the disaster resilience and recovery planning at the U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA). In this role he coordinates with internal and external partners to ensure the services the SBA provides to the 20 million US small businesses is effectively delivered through enterprise risk management, continuity, and regulatory compliance. He also leads the agency’s coordination efforts for issues related to disaster planning and policy. Prior to his service at the SBA, he led the Recovery Division in the Department of Health and Human Services, ASPR. There he led federal recovery activities to improve the short and long-term outcomes for over forty major disasters and countless communities. He spearheaded the policy development, preparedness, and post-disaster implementation of disaster recovery operations for HHS nationwide.

Prior to joining HHS, Mr. Barnes served on the White House National Security Council Staff as the Director for Preparedness Policy. He led, planned, and coordinated development and implementation of preparedness policies and associated grant programs. Included in those efforts was the implementation of the National Preparedness policies for the federal government. In addition, he led interagency efforts to better integrate federal community resilience policies, and national-level actions in building long-term resilience resulting in a Presidential Memorandum and associated National Action Plan.

Previously Mr. Barnes served as the EDA Disaster Recovery Coordinator led interagency efforts to coordinate information sharing, technical assistance, and the leverage of resources to support major and catastrophic disasters nationwide.


Roger Bohnert

Resources for Resilient Infrastructure from the DOT
Friday August 28 1:00 - 3:00 PM

Director, Outreach and Project Development
U.S. Department of Transportation

Roger is the Director of Outreach and Project Development in the new Build America Bureau in the Office of the Secretary of Transportation. The Bureau’s mission is to improve transportation infrastructure investment through increased assistance to project sponsors, expanded access to DOT credit programs and enhanced utilization of private capital in public-private partnerships.
Roger’s team serves as the single point of contact for states, municipalities and project sponsors seeking to modernize or build transportation infrastructure. The Bureau helps sponsors utilize federal transportation expertise, provides long-term, low interest and flexible loans and helps sponsors explore ways to secure private capital in public private partnerships.

Prior to his appointment to the Bureau, Roger served as the Deputy Associate Administrator of the Maritime Administration’s Office of Intermodal System Development. A former career U. S. Coast Guard officer, Roger spent over thirteen years aboard Cutters, including serving as Commanding Officer of two ships. His last Coast Guard assignment was as the Military Assistant to the Secretary of Transportation when the Coast Guard was an agency within The Department of Transportation.


Mark Brodziski

Federal Recovery Resources from the USDA
Friday June 19 1:00 - 3:00 PM

Deputy Administrator
U.S. Department of Agriculture

Mark Brodziski is the Director of the Specialty Programs Division, Rural Business and Cooperative Programs, USDA. Mark administers loan and grant programs for the purposes of business and economic development in rural communities. His role also includes leading special projects such as expanding the utilization of Rural Business programs in low income communities. Mark previously served as the Program Director for Business and Community Programs in the WI Rural Development State Office for and has served with USDA since 1983.


Jim Brooks

Federal Recovery Resources from HUD
Friday June 5 1:00 - 3:00 PM

Director, Housing & Community Development
National League of Cities

Mr. James A. Brooks is the Director for Housing and Community Development at the National League of Cities (NLC). Mr. Brooks joined the staff at NLC in November 1988 and has held previous positions in membership services, public affairs, international programs, and policy development.

The portfolio managed by Mr. Brooks includes the policy and practice fields of housing, homelessness, neighborhoods, community development, aging, public health, and veterans services. Mr. Brooks also continues to maintain NLC's relationships with a network of global allies and partners toward the goal of helping city leaders respond to global change.

A frequent speaker on U.S. municipal government and federalism issues before both domestic and international audiences, Mr. Brooks regularly provides commentary and opinion for national and local media outlets. He is author and editor of books, research reports, issue papers, blogs and feature news articles.


Mirielle Burgoyne

Federal Recovery Resources from the EDA
Friday May 22 1:00 - 3:00 PM

Director of Government Relations and Legislative Affairs
National Association of Development Organizations

Mirielle Burgoyne serves as NADO’s Director of Government Relations and Legislative Affairs. In this role, she facilitates outreach to policymakers and advocates for NADO’s legislative priorities. Before joining NADO, Mirielle was a Senior Associate with the Pew Charitable Trusts, where she conducted research on economic development programs across the country and advocated for policy solutions to make those programs more effective and impactful. Prior to that, Mirielle served as a Policy Advisor with the Delta Regional Authority, where she created partnerships with federal agencies and facilitated joint collaborations with the White House Rural Council and National Economic Council. She also developed programs and initiatives designed to spur economic diversification, disaster resilience, workforce development, and improved health outcomes in the rural Delta region. Mirielle holds a BA in Government and Politics from the University of Maryland College Park.


James Carras

Federal Recovery Resources from HUD
Friday June 5 1:00 - 3:00 PM

Principal
Carras Community Investment, Inc.

James Carras is a member of the faculty at Harvard University’s John F. Kennedy School of Government and Graduate School of Design as well as Tufts University’s Department of Urban Policy and Planning. He has been consulting with mission-driven organizations and government agencies as well as financial institutions and developers for the past 30 years. James and his consulting firm, Carras Community Investment, Inc., has facilitated the creation and capitalizationof over fifty community development corporations (CDCs), development financial institutions (CDFIs) and public private partnership initiatives. He is the author of numerous affordable housing and equity studies and revitalization plans and has served as the Founding Executive Director of the National Association of Affordable Housing Lenders, the Founding President of the Broward Housing Partnership and the South Florida Community Land Trust. Prior to establishing his consulting business, he served as a Community Development Advisor to the Mayor of Boston and was the Executive Director of the Massachusetts Urban Reinvestment Advisory Group where he was awarded the John Hay Whitney Fellowship. Mr. Carras is recognized as a national development finance expert with a particular focus on New Markets Tax Credits, Opportunity Zones, the Community Development Financial Institution Fund and the Community Reinvestment Act.

Mr. Carras was awarded a Bachelor of Arts Degree in Urban Sociology from Suffolk University in Boston, completed graduate work at Tufts University’s Department of Urban and Environmental Policy and received a Master’s Degree from Harvard University’s John F. Kennedy School of Government in Public Administration. He is certified by the National Development Council (NDC) as an Economic Development Finance Professional and completed NDC”s Rental Housing Finance course. He is also certified as a Leadership Facilitator by the Lincoln Land Institute.

Mr. Carras has published various articles and publications including ones focusing on New Markets Tax Credits for the American Planners Association and the Federal Reserve Bank of Boston, the Community Reinvestment Act for the American Planners Association, the Federal Home Loan Bank of Boston, National League of Cities and the National Community Reinvestment Coalition and Affordable Housing Loan Consortia for the National Association for Affordable Housing Lenders.

He served as Chair for the Broward Housing Council and the Broward County Minority Economic Development Board and also as Vice Chair of the City of Fort Lauderdale’s Economic Development Advisory Board. He served as Vice Chairman of the Harvard Kennedy School Alumni Board of Directors, and is currently a Coordinator the South Florida Harvard Kennedy School Network Coordinating Committee, and Vice Chair for the Broward Schools Committee for Harvard College. Mr. Carras has also served on the Board of Directors for St. Demetrios Greek Orthodox Church, the Broward Alliance for Neighborhood Development, Haymarket Bank and advisory boards for the United Way of Broward County, Neighborhood Lending Partners and Paradise Bank. For eight years, he served as the Chairman for the Fort Lauderdale Greek Festival as well as the President of the Himmarshee Village Association. 


Kirk Claussen

Resources for Resilient Infrastructure from the DOT
Friday August 28 1:00 - 3:00 PM

Port Finance Agent
U.S. Department of Transportation




Alejandro Contreras

Federal Recovery Resources from the SBA
Friday July 31 1:00 - 3:00 PM

Director of Preparedness, Communication and Coordination
U.S. Small Business Administration

Alejandro is the Director of Preparedness, Communication and Coordination for U.S. Small Business Administration’s Office of Disaster Assistance. In his current role, Alejandro coordinates the SBA’s efforts to promote disaster preparedness, recovery and mitigation. Alejandro is also responsible for strengthening the SBA’s role in disaster recovery by building interagency coordination and leveraging private-public partnerships.

Alejandro joined the SBA in 2005, and has worked in various roles responding to many of the country’s most devasting and costly natural disasters, including: Hurricanes Katrina, Rita and Wilma (2005); Greensburg, Kansas Tornado (2007); Iowa Floods and Hurricanes Gustav and Ike (2008); BP Oil Spill (2010); Joplin, Missouri Tornado (2011); Hurricane Sandy (2012); Louisiana Floods (2016); Hurricanes Harvey, Irma and Maria (2017); and Hurricanes Michael and Florence, and the California Wildfires (2018). Most recently, Alejandro has helped to coordinate SBA’s Economic Injury Disaster Loan (EIDL) program in response to the Coronavirus (COVID-19).

Alejandro earned a bachelor’s degree in government from California State University of Sacramento and has a master’s degree in strategic public relations from George Washington University.


Kevin Daehnke

Resources for Resilient Infrastructure from the DOE
Friday September 11 1:00 - 3:00 PM

President
Center for Strategic Policy Innovation

Kevin Daehnke is the Founder and President of the Center for Strategic Policy Innovation (www.centerforstrategicpolicy.org). He is also an environmental lawyer, first at large law firms in the Los Angeles area, and then for more than 25 years at Daehnke Cruz Law Group, a law firm he founded.

In law school at the University of Southern California (USC), Kevin co-founded the USC Journal of Law and the Environment, served as the Journal’s first Editor-in-Chief, and wrote a law school dissertation on “The Legal Implications of Ocean Energy Farms”. After law school, Mr. Daehnke became one of the pioneers in the “Brownfields” movement that began in the 1990s, including the creation of, and passage of California Senate Bill 989, legislation that created the Bona Fide Ground Tenant tool to revitalize landfills and other contaminated Brownfield sites for renewable energy and other productive uses. Kevin also served in an informal advisory capacity to the U.S. EPA and the California Department of Toxic Substances Control in their efforts to develop policies to encourage the siting of renewable energy facilities at old landfills and other contaminated sites.

In 2018, Mr. Daehnke founded the Center for Strategic Policy Innovation and created the Renewable Energy/Smart Grid Buildout Initiative. This Initiative resulted in the creation of the Clean Growth Incubator, a collaborative nationwide effort designed to kick-start significant economic development by helping to infuse capital for renewable energy and smart grid projects into mid-size cities and impacted communities across America. The backbone of the Clean Growth Incubator is an advanced-level, 100-page, step-by-step urban planning guide - the Clean Growth Incubator Template, as well as a targeted 8-month webinar-based training Platform, which begins early in 2021.

The Clean Growth Incubator Template and training Platform utilizes sophisticated urban planning business incubation techniques, and is designed to serve as a roadmap for local government planners to create renewable energy-based distributed energy, smart grid-oriented local economies. A key objective of the Clean Growth Incubator is to provide local leaders with important tools and strategies for how to retain, locally, the wealth generated from the ownership of these new clean energy production assets. Emphasis on local entrepreneurial opportunities, especially for Black communities, Indigenous communities, and for women, are key components of the Template and the 8-month webinar-enhanced training Platform.

As an adjunct to the buildout of shovel-ready renewable energy and smart grid infrastructure through the Clean Growth Incubator, Kevin, the Center, and its strategic partners are involved presently with the direct buildout of clean, renewable energy “microgrids,” designed to operate independently of the regional energy grids in the event of a power outage. This model for
resilient renewable energy microgrids combines the vision of clean renewable energy with the urgent need to protect critical local infrastructure facilities - like hospitals and chemical plants - from the threat of long-term electric power outages due to catastrophic storms, floods, wildfires, earthquakes, electromagnetic pulse (EMP) events, and cyber attacks.

The private sector, social-impact business model Kevin has developed for building out renewable energy microgrids and other clean energy/resilient infrastructure projects is supported by the national Council of Development Finance Agencies (CDFA), the California Association for Local Economic Development (CALED) and leaders of the environmental justice community. Kevin has showcased this social impact clean growth resiliency finance model at CDFA’s 2019 Federal Policy Conference in Washington D.C., at the Brownfields 2019 EPA conference in Los Angeles, at the Milken Institute’s annual California Policy Summit 2020, and at the Milken Institute’s June 15, 2020 Leveraging Capital to Build Resilient Local Economies webinar.


Matthew Dalbey

Federal Recovery Resources from the EPA
Friday July 17 1:00 - 3:00 PM

Director, Office of Community Revitalization
U.S. Environmental Protection Agency

Matthew Dalbey is a proven thought leader in developing community-driven economic revitalization strategies at the local, state, and federal level. These strategies focus on identifying economic drivers, build on existing assets, and supports economic growth that improves environmental and human health outcomes. His recent efforts at EPA have focused on supporting economic revitalization and environmental protection in economically distressed communities, including those with Opportunity Zones. Upon joining EPA in 2004, he focused on collaborating with private sector developers interested in meeting growing market demand, and providing technical assistance to help cities and towns, particularly rural ones, leverage new development to support better health, clean air, and clean water outcomes.  In 2010, he joined the leadership team in what was then the Office of Sustainable Communities, where he led a series of partnership efforts with other federal agencies and states to support a cleaner environment, more efficient public investments in communities, and economic revitalization. In 2012 and 2013 as the deputy director of a White House initiative, he oversaw much of the day-to-day work supporting multi-agency, coordinated technical assistance in several metropolitan areas, including Fresno, Detroit, Cleveland, New Orleans, and Memphis. Since 2014 he has led the office that is now called the Office of Community Revitalization. Prior to joining EPA, Matthew was an assistant professor at Jackson State University in Jackson, Mississippi.  He has a Ph.D. in Urban and Regional Planning from Columbia University, Masters degrees in City Planning and Architectural History from the University of Virginia, and a Bachelor of Arts in Government from the College of William & Mary. He is a career civil servant and part of the Senior Executive Service (SES).


Karen DeBlasio

Federal Recovery Resources from HUD
Friday June 5 1:00 - 3:00 PM

Director, Program Coordination and Analysis Division
U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development

Karen M. DeBlasio. M.P.A., is the Director of the Program Coordination and Analysis Division in the Office of Special Needs Assistance Programs (SNAPS) at HUD. Ms. DeBlasio’s division is responsible for SNAPS national data policy and data collection efforts including the Annual Homeless Assessment Report (AHAR) and the Homeless Management Information Systems (HMIS) Data Standards. Ms. DeBlasio manages the Emergency Solutions Grant (ESG) Program and the ESG CV program recently appropriated through the CARES Act. She has over 20+ years of experience in data collection, system performance, and collecting data on vulnerable populations.

Prior to working at HUD, Ms. DeBlasio worked as a national technical assistance provider focusing on HMIS and Continuum of Care planning issues. Ms. DeBlasio also served as a Program Administrator for Baltimore Homeless Services where she was responsible for administering over $1.2 million in state and Federal homeless funds, assisting with implementing the City’s HMIS, and developing a city-wide performance measurement system.


Anthony Diaz

Federal Recovery Resources from NIST and MEP
Friday August 14 1:00 - 3:00 PM

Manager, Strategic Partnerships
National Institute of Standards and Technology




Rosemarie A. Drake

Federal Recovery Resources from the SBA
Friday July 31 1:00 - 3:00 PM

Chief, 7(a) Loan Division
U.S. Small Business Administration

Rosemarie A. Drake is the 7(a) Program Division Chief at the U S Small Business Administration in the Office of Capital Access. Her tenure at SBA dates back to 2013 with a short break in service.

She has served as the State of Georgia Deputy District, Supervisory Lender Relations Specialist and Lender Relations Specialist in the Philadelphia District Office.

Prior to rejoining SBA in October 2019, she was the Senior Vice President, Senior Business Development Officer at Bank of America Merrill Lynch covering five markets in the Southeast.

Rosemarie has over 25 years’ experience in commercial lending, complex credit, and financial analysis, entrepreneurship and serving on advisory boards for non profit entities focused on lending to under served markets.

She is a graduate of Temple University’s school of Business and attended Kentucky State University in the Whitney Young Honors Program. Rosemarie is an active member of the Beulah Missionary Baptist Church in Decatur, Georgia. She is a native of Philadelphia, PA. She is a die-hard “Philadelphia Eagles Fan.”


Karen Fligger

Federal Recovery Resources from the EPA
Friday July 17 1:00 - 3:00 PM

Senior Project Manager, WIFIA Program
U.S. Environmental Protection Agency

Karen Fligger is a Senior Project Manager with EPA’s WIFIA program. In this role, she leads outreach, communication, and project selection. Over her 14- year EPA career, she built her water infrastructure expertise through her work with the Drinking Water State Revolving Fund, Clean Watersheds Needs Survey, Urban Waters, and WaterSense programs. Prior to joining EPA, she served as a Peace Corps volunteer in Nicaragua. Karen has a B.S. in Biology and Environmental Studies from George Washington University and a M.S. in Natural Resource Planning from University of Vermont.


Malcolm Guy

Federal Recovery Resources from HUD
Friday June 5 1:00 - 3:00 PM

Federal Recovery Resources from the USDA
Friday June 19 1:00 - 3:00 PM

Federal Recovery Resources from the EPA
Friday July 17 1:00 - 3:00 PM

Federal Recovery Resources from the SBA
Friday July 31 1:00 - 3:00 PM

Federal Recovery Resources from NIST and MEP
Friday August 14 1:00 - 3:00 PM

Resources for Resilient Infrastructure from the DOT
Friday August 28 1:00 - 3:00 PM

Resources for Resilient Infrastructure from the DOE
Friday September 11 1:00 - 3:00 PM

Coordinator, Government & External Affairs
Council of Development Finance Agencies

As a Coordinator of Government & External Affairs at the Council of Development Finance Agencies (CDFA), Malcolm Guy is primarily responsible for the organization’s government affairs and legislative activities. Mr. Guy manages relationships with federal agencies and coordinates advocacy efforts with CDFA’s legislative partners. His areas of focus chiefly include bond financing, federal financing programs, opportunity zones, and tracking economic development legislation.

In addition to his aforementioned principal duties, Mr. Guy manages several webinar series’ for CDFA and organizes several major projects. These have included the redesign of CDFA’s Resource Centers, Federal Financing Clearinghouse, the Online Resource Database, the production of a Rural Infrastructure Financing Guidebook, and various other internal projects. Mr. Guy has also been charged with updating CDFA's Bond Guide as well as managing the CDFA Federal Financing Clearinghouse.

Prior to joining CDFA, Mr. Guy was an Intern in the United States Senate. Mr. Guy also worked with a non-profit climate action group and various other political entities involved in grassroots campaign organizing. Mr. Guy is a graduate of The Ohio State University. He is the proud holder of a Bachelor’s Degree in Political Science, with Minors in City & Regional Planning, as well as in International Relations.


Mitchell Harrison

Federal Recovery Resources from the EDA
Friday May 22 1:00 - 3:00 PM

Program Analyst, RLF Coordinator
U.S. Economic Development Administration

Mitchell Harrison serves as the Revolving Loan Fund Coordinator for the Economic Development Administration. In this role, Mitchell focuses on strengthening the $850 million RLF portfolio by working with RLF Administrators across EDA’s regional offices. Before this, he managed projects along the U.S.-Mexico border with EDA’s Austin Regional Office in addition to RLF grants throughout the region. Mitchell joined EDA in Austin as a Presidential Management Fellow upon completing his master’s degree in Regional Planning at Cornell University. 
 
Mitchell served as a Peace Corps Volunteer in Honduras with the municipal development program after graduating from Gustavus Adolphus College.


Thomas Kimsey

Federal Recovery Resources from the USDA
Friday June 19 1:00 - 3:00 PM

Chairman
National Rural Lenders Roundtable

Thomas Kimsey, President & CEO of Thomas USAF Group’s Loan Origination & Underwriting Division, manages and oversees more than $100 Million in loan origination and underwriting annually. With over 29 years in SBA and USDA lending, Thomas has established a nationwide industry footprint and is recognized by associates for his leadership skills, involvement in the community and passion and determination to best serve clients’ needs. Thomas excels by working directly with business owners, partner banks and USDA/SBA, giving him firsthand insight to facilitate deals.

Prior to rejoining Thomas USAF in 2009, Thomas served as Vice President of a community bank, specializing in Small Business Lending. As Vice President, he established successful SBA Departments and developed a $20+ Million portfolio in less than one year. As a prior small business owner himself, Thomas understands the challenges small businesses face on a daily basis and can use his previous experience to help companies overcome financial and operational obstacles.

Thomas attended Georgia State University, where he completed his BBA in Accounting. Thomas is very active in the lending community and serves on numerous committees, which allows him to stay current on new developments within the Government Guaranteed Loan Programs. Thomas is the President of the National Rural Lenders’ Roundtable, serves on the Loan Committee and Board of Directors of Capital Partners Certified Development Corporation is a member of Leadership Hall County, Chairman of Riverbend Church’s Finance Committee, Former Treasurer of Lanier Canoe & Kayak Club, Former Chairperson of North Hall Middle School Council and is a member of the North Hall Community Education Foundation.


Jessie Kome

Federal Recovery Resources from HUD
Friday June 5 1:00 - 3:00 PM

Director
U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development

Ms. Kome has been deputy director of the Office of Block Grant Assistance since 2009. This office sets policy for the $3 billion annual budget for CDBG and related programs, including CDBG disaster recovery grants. In her more than 25 years at HUD, Ms. Kome has been an innovator in policy design for national community development programs and a strong advocate for transparent information technology to report on and analyze such programs.

Most recently, she managed the National Disaster Resilience Competition (NDRC) from program framework to ultimate award decisions.

From late 2001 through 2009, Ms. Kome held three different HUD positions from which she helped design, launch, and oversee disaster recovery programs and teams, including those in New York after 9/11 and the Gulf Coast after Hurricane Katrina.


Katie Kramer

Federal Recovery Resources from the EDA
Friday May 22 1:00 - 3:00 PM

Vice President
Council of Development Finance Agencies

Katie Kramer is a Vice President at the Council of Development Finance Agencies and has been with CDFA since 2005. She is an accomplished non-profit executive with expertise in fundraising, grant writing, operations, and building organizational capacity. In her role at CDFA, she leads Government & External Affairs, provides technical assistance to communities, and builds strategic partnerships with foundations, federal agencies, and other industry non-profits to grow the professional acumen of CDFA members and the development finance industry at-large.

Ms. Kramer interacts with thousands of development finance practitioners each year, guiding them through their professional development and understanding of the diversity of development finance programs. She has developed numerous courses in the CDFA Training Institute, edited several CDFA publications, and designed marketing and communications collateral for the association. Her writing has been featured in publications and reports on development finance, including those commissioned by The Kresge Foundation, W.K. Kellogg Foundation, World Bank, U.S. Economic Development Administration, U.S. Department of Energy, and U.S. Department of Agriculture. She regularly speaks about development finance at national and local conferences and is a guest lecturer at The Ohio State University.

Previously, Ms. Kramer served as CDFA’s Director of Education & Programs and Development Director. Before joining CDFA, Ms. Kramer worked in the Assessment Division at Ballard & Tighe, Publishers as Project Coordinator where she managed projects involved with the development of standardized language tests. Prior to Ballard & Tighe, Ms. Kramer was employed by Scripps College as Assistant Director of the Annual Fund where she organized fundraising campaigns for alumnae, parents, and students.

She studied art history at Scripps College and holds a BA in English with honors from Cleveland State University. Ms. Kramer is a board member for the Ohio Statewide Development Corporation and serves on the advisory board for St. Agatha School.


Robert C. Marcum

Resources for Resilient Infrastructure from the DOE
Friday September 11 1:00 - 3:00 PM

Chief Operating Officer
U.S. Department of Energy

Bob Marcum is the Chief Operating Officer of the Department of Energy’s Loan Programs Office. Prior to holding the COO position, Mr. Marcum served as the Director of the Portfolio Management Division in LPO.

Mr. Marcum has over 25 years of experience in project and corporate finance directing nearly $40 billion in capital investments supporting over $70 billion of projects. Before joining LPO, he was Finance Manager at Saudi Aramco and led the financing of the Yanbu Aramco Sinopec Refining Company. Prior to that, Mr. Marcum served as Senior Project Officer with the Export-Import Bank of the United States and led project teams in the closing of international debt financings including four Deal of the Year projects in the power, energy and transportation sectors. Before joining Ex-Im Bank, he managed development and financing of independent power projects in Latin America and the Caribbean for Wärtsilä Development and Financial Services.

Mr. Marcum earned an MBA from Georgetown University and has a Bachelor of Science in Mechanical Engineering from the University of Maryland.


James Metz

Federal Recovery Resources from the EPA
Friday July 17 1:00 - 3:00 PM

Coordinator, Research and Technical Assistance
Council of Development Finance Agencies

James Metz is a Coordinator on the Research and Technical Assistance team at the Council of Development Finance Agencies (CDFA). James’ area of focus includes brownfield redevelopment, tax increment finance, special assessments, and water finance. This includes providing technical assistance to CDFA members, producing newsletters and webinars, and assisting on research projects.

Currently, James manages the brownfields program that provides technical assistance and resources on brownfield redevelopment financing to communities throughout the country. He is also a Development Finance Certified Professional (DFCP).

Before joining CDFA, James earned his degree in City and Regional Planning from The Ohio State University and served in the U.S. Army with the 1-501st Airborne Unit.


Max Moncaster

Federal Recovery Resources from the USDA
Friday June 19 1:00 - 3:00 PM

Associate Director, Public Policy
NASDA - National Association of State Departments of Agriculture

Max Moncaster is an Associate Director of Public Policy at NASDA. In this role, he works with NASDA members and affiliates to advance the organization’s international trade and natural resources policy priorities. A native of Seattle, Washington, Max has served in policy advocacy roles in the public and private sector since 2014.


Chad Parker

Federal Recovery Resources from the USDA
Friday June 19 1:00 - 3:00 PM

Deputy Administrator, Community Programs
U.S. Department of Agriculture

Chad Parker has worked with USDA Rural Development for 28 years and serves as the Deputy Administrator, Community Programs. He is presently responsible for the Community Facilities Direct Loans, Guaranteed Loans, and Grants; Economic Impact Initiative Grants, Tribal College Grants, and the Rural Community Development Initiative. Chad has previously administered USDA Rural Development’s Telecommunication Programs; Cooperative Programs; Business Programs; and Single Family Housing Programs.

Chad has also worked as pig farmer, bag boy, bell hop, printer’s assistant, welder, assistant mechanic, tree trimmer, and gravel pit water truck driver.

Chad holds a M.B.A. and a B.S. from the Pamplin School of Business at Virginia Tech. Chad has a wife and two sons, both presently students at Virginia Tech.


Lizana Pierce

Resources for Resilient Infrastructure from the DOE
Friday September 11 1:00 - 3:00 PM

Deployment Supervisor
U.S. Department of Energy

Lizana Pierce is duty-stationed in Colorado and serves as the principal engineering expert for the Director and Deputy Director of the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) Office of Indian Energy Policy and Programs on deployment programs. Ms. Pierce is responsible for implementing the Office’s Deployment Programs: Technical Assistance; Financial Assistance; and Education and Capacity Building.

Lizana has more than 25 years of experience in energy technologies, project development, and management, and has dedicated 20 of those years to assisting Indian tribes in developing their energy resources and building their human capacity to realize their energy visions. Prior to joining the Office of Indian Energy in 2015, Ms. Pierce was the project manager for the Tribal Energy Program under DOE’s Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy, a position she held since the program’s inception in 2002. In that capacity, she solicited tribal clean energy projects and administered the resulting grants and agreements as well as implemented the program’s technical assistance and education and outreach efforts. Prior to overseeing the EERE Tribal Energy Program, Ms. Pierce worked in several of the research and development programs at DOE, including the solar, wind, and biomass programs.

Before joining DOE, she held a number of engineering positions in the defense and aerospace industries and was fortunate to have been involved in the integrated science payload flown on the Tethered Satellite Shuttle Mission (STS-46). Ms. Pierce holds a Bachelor of Science degree in mechanical engineering from Colorado State University, and she pursued a Master’s in Business Administration through the University of Northern Colorado.


Chris Purdy

Federal Recovery Resources from the USDA
Friday June 19 1:00 - 3:00 PM

Associate Deputy Administrator
U.S. Department of Agriculture

Christopher Purdy is an Associate Deputy Administrator for the Commodity Procurement Program (CPP) at the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s (USDA) Agricultural Marketing Service (AMS) in Washington, DC. CPP purchases over $4.0 billion worth of U.S. produced agricultural products on an annual basis for distribution to domestic and international food assistance programs.

Chris has been with AMS for over 12 years and joined CPP about two years ago to assist in the management of the program. He is also responsible for developing and maintaining relationships with industry groups with an interest in Section 32, trade and other purchases. One of the favorite parts of his job is assisting industry groups as they seek to increase their exposure to USDA, schools and foodbanks.

Chris got his start in Washington, DC as a legislative assistant for a US Congressman, handling agriculture, trade and small business issues. He is a graduate of Lehigh University in Bethlehem, PA with a Bachelor of Arts Degree in Government. He has earned a Certificate of Business Administration from Georgetown University and attended the Harvard Kennedy School’s Senior Executive Fellowship Program.

Chris lives with wife Suzanne outside of Washington, D.C. and has three daughters.


Megan Quinn

Federal Recovery Resources from the EPA
Friday July 17 1:00 - 3:00 PM

Program Analyst
U.S. Environmental Protection Agency

Megan Quinn has worked at the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency for eleven years and has been with the Brownfields and Land Revitalization Office for seven years. She currently manages the National Revolving Loan Fund Program, the National Multi-Purpose Pilot Program and the Assessment and Cleanup Grant Programs. She is also the Project Officer on the newly awarded Technical Assistance grant to CDFA.  In 2010, Megan was a Brookings Institute Fellow on the U.S. House Appropriations Subcommittee on Interior and the Environment. She graduated from Indiana University with a B.A. in Political Science and holds a Master’s Degree in Public Administration from American University in Washington, DC.


Linda Reilly

Federal Recovery Resources from the SBA
Friday July 31 1:00 - 3:00 PM

Chief, 504 Loan Division
U.S. Small Business Administration

Linda Reilly has been with SBA since 2010 and has served as 504 Chief since June 2012. Linda has more than 35 years experience in economic development finance at the federal, state and local levels and has worked with loan programs, grant programs, infrastructure projects, economic impact studies, small business incubators, bond issues, historic revitalization projects, and environmental reviews. She has worked Certified Development Companies, lenders and economic development offices and lenders across the U.S. She represents SBA at interagency meetings with other Federal agencies and national trade associations.


Andrew Seth

Federal Recovery Resources from the EDA
Friday May 22 1:00 - 3:00 PM

President
Sustainable Strategies DC

Andrew Seth is the President of Sustainable Strategies DC, where he works with local governments across America in identifying and securing resources for their priority needs. He is a national expert on community revitalization, smart growth, brownfields redevelopment, infrastructure investment, and environmental sustainability. Andrew has established and managed multiple coalitions of cities and counties, including Climate Communities, First & Main, the National Association of Local Government Environmental Professionals, and the American Waterfront Revitalization Coalition. He was previously a partner at The Ferguson Group, providing federal advocacy for localities across America. Andrew also served as a project manager on environmental issues at the International City/County Management Association, where he directed the Local Government Environmental Assistance Network. Prior to joining ICMA, he was a member of the government affairs team at Spiegel & McDiarmid. Andrew began his career at the conservation non-profit American Rivers. He earned his Bachelor of Science in Biology from Salisbury State University and a Master of Science in Resource Administration and Management from the University of New Hampshire.


Ranae Stewart

Federal Recovery Resources from NIST and MEP
Friday August 14 1:00 - 3:00 PM

Senior Associate Director
Purdue University Manufacturing Extension Partnership

Ranae is responsible for the development and management of Purdue MEP's partnerships, as well as all outreach efforts to engage and educate organizations throughout the state. She holds responsibility for overseeing the Center's workforce development initiatives, peer group and ExporTech services, marketing efforts, sales support, events, and open enrollment. Ranae also handles legislative relations for Purdue MEP.

Ranae has over 15 years of experience in the area of marketing and business development, previously serving as a Business Development Director for a large regional law firm. In that role, she was responsible for directing and executing marketing activities to connect the firm to businesses in Indiana and the surrounding region. In addition, Ranae worked closely with firm leadership to create and implement annual strategic plans that focused on client expansion and development through marketing efforts and client intelligence.

Prior to the law firm, Ranae gained traditional marketing experience at a full-service marketing agency focused on promotion, lead development, branding and communications for small to medium-sized manufacturers.

Ranae is a graduate of Purdue University, earning a Bachelor of Science degree with distinction in Management in 2001. She has completed the NIST MEP Emerging Leaders program, as well as Leadership Indianapolis' Opportunity Indianapolis.


Mark Sullivan

Resources for Resilient Infrastructure from the DOT
Friday August 28 1:00 - 3:00 PM

Director, Center for Innovative Finance Support
Federal Highway Administration

Mark Sullivan directs the Center for Innovative Finance Support (CIF$), one of four component centers in the Office of Innovative Program Delivery of the Federal Highway Administration (FHWA). In this role, he oversees capacity building programs to help state and local transportation agencies develop financing solutions for challenging projects.

A 25-year veteran of the US Department of Transportation (DOT), Mark previously led the Transportation Infrastructure Finance and Innovation Act (TIFIA) credit program, which in his tenure provided $8 billion in Federal credit assistance to 21 projects worth $29 billion.

Mark has also worked for public port agencies in Seattle and New York City. He is an awesomely loyal graduate of the University of Washington, where he graduated Phi Beta Kappa with degrees in journalism and history. He holds a Master of Public Policy degree from the Harvard Kennedy School of Government.


Mark Troppe

Federal Recovery Resources from NIST and MEP
Friday August 14 1:00 - 3:00 PM

Senior Fellow
CREC

Mark Troppe is Senior Research Fellow at the Center for Regional Economic Competitiveness (CREC), where he serves on the executive management team in guiding the organization’s future. He leads key projects; collaborates with other senior team members to develop and implement a research, technical assistance, and training strategy; provides senior leadership to association clients; and helps develop resources and new business in support of the organization’s mission.

Specifically, Mr. Troppe leads three projects: providing technical support to OEA and grantees under the Office of Economic Adjustment’s Industry Resilience program, supporting the NIST MEP state relations program and its Manufacturing Policy Academy, and facilitating activities under the State Economic Development Executives (SEDE) network funded by the Pew Charitable Trusts.

Over the last two years, Mark also led the EDA project on “International Engagement Ready Communities” to research regional strategies to attract foreign direct assistance and promote exports and launched a toolkit to assist regions and economic development professionals and staffed two workforce information-related associations (the Labor Market Information Institute and Projections Managing Partnership).


Daniel Upham

Federal Recovery Resources from the SBA
Friday July 31 1:00 - 3:00 PM

Chief, Microenterprise Development Division
U.S. Small Business Administration




David Valenstein

Resources for Resilient Infrastructure from the DOT
Friday August 28 1:00 - 3:00 PM

Senior Advisor
U.S. Department of Transportation

David Valenstein is the Senior Advisor for Major Projects with Federal Railroad Administration’s (FRA) Office of Infrastructure Investment. In this capacity, he serves as the modal representative to the Build America Bureau and guides major project planning and development. David has held several positions with the FRA over the past 20 years including Chief of the Environmental Corridor Planning Division and has focused on advancing high speed passenger rail investments across the nation. He previously practiced Urban Design for the City of New York and with the private sector, is a registered architect, and has a Master of Public Administration from Harvard’s Kennedy School of Government.


Vicki Watson

Federal Recovery Resources from HUD
Friday June 5 1:00 - 3:00 PM

Executive Director
National Community Development Association

Vicki Watson is the Executive Director and has overall management responsibility for the operation of the organization, to include fiscal, staffing, and operational. Vicki is also responsible for the Association’s policy and legislative work. She also serves as the lead for the CDBG Coalition. Vicki has been with the Association since 1998, having served as Assistant Director and Legislative Director.

She holds a Masters degree in Public Administration from George Mason University. A native of Virginia, Vicki resides in Fredericksburg, VA.



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