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Elizabeth Bellis Wolfe

Investing in Resiliency with Green and Blue Bonds
Tuesday April 19 2:00 - 3:00 PM

Senior Advisor, Loan Programs Office (LPO)
U.S. Department of Energy

Elizabeth Bellis Wolfe is a senior advisor to the Loan Programs Office (LPO) at the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE), where her work focuses on innovative energy efficiency and renewable energy transactions, including virtual power plants. Prior to joining LPO, Elizabeth provided technical assistance on energy bonds on behalf of DOE through Lawrence Berkeley Laboratory, the National Association of State Energy Officials (NASEO) and Oak Ridge National Laboratory (ORNL)/Cadmus. Elizabeth was previously an attorney in the Energy & Infrastructure Finance group at Wilson Sonsini Goodrich & Rosati, a large California law firm, where she advised tax equity investors, sponsors and developers on utility-scale wind, solar and battery project acquisitions and financings. Prior to that, she served as Vice President at the New York Green Bank, a division of the New York State Energy Research & Development Authority (NYSERDA). As Counsel & Director of Finance Programs for nonprofit Energy Programs Consortium, Elizabeth helped develop and implement the Warehouse for Energy Efficiency Loans (WHEEL), a multi-state public-private partnership that securitized state-supported unsecured residential efficiency loans in an asset backed securitization (ABS) bond issuance. She has spoken at a Senate Energy & Natural Resources Committee staff briefing on energy bonds and consulted for the World Bank; her work on qualified energy conservation bonds (QECBs) was featured in an article in the New York Times. She began her career as an attorney in the tax group at Debevoise & Plimpton LLP, a large New York law firm. Elizabeth holds degrees from the University of Chicago and Harvard Law School.


Laura Brunner

Racial Equity in the Bond Markets
Tuesday June 21 2:00 - 3:00 PM

President & Chief Executive Officer
The Port - Cincinnati, Ohio

Laura Brunner was appointed President and Chief Executive Officer of the Port of Greater Cincinnati Development Authority in December 2011. As its leader, Laura sets strategic direction for the regional economic development agency. She is primarily responsible for leadership of the Port Authority’s county-wide redevelopment and revitalization activities, working in partnership with the City of Cincinnati and Hamilton County, and with other economic development and community organizations, to create lasting regional momentum.

Laura is a seasoned real estate development executive, responsible for complex urban redevelopment projects that have increased jobs and opportunities in neighborhoods such as Clifton Heights, Madisonville, Green Township, and Avondale. As a senior executive for a regional development firm, she directed all aspects of business development functions which led to a variety of enterprise- expanding projects for clients such as Medpace, University of Cincinnati, The Christ Hospital, and Cincinnati Children’s Hospital Medical Center. Laura’s expertise in inclusion increased participation by disadvantaged companies on construction projects. Through her determination for improving social equity in the real estate industry, Laura created avenues that led to majority ownership of The Offices at Vernon Manor by African American investors. Laura also served as the first female managing principal of Cassidy Turley’s Cincinnati and Dayton operations.

Laura is the recipient of numerous awards for business leadership, community development and her support of economic inclusion initiatives. She received the President’s Award from the NAACP, and won the Merlin G. Pope, Jr. Diversity Leadership award in 2011 for her contributions in this area.  She is a member of the XIV Class of Leadership Cincinnati.

Laura’s past and present board participation includes Cincinnati Playhouse in the Park, The Christ College School of Nursing, Dan Beard Council Boy Scouts of America, Mercantile Library, and Cincinnati Metropolitan Housing Authority (CMHA). She graduated from Indiana University with honors with a degree in accounting, and spent 15 years in the public accounting industry.


Oreste Casciaro

Analyzing the Impact of COVID-19 Emergency Loan Funds
Tuesday February 22 2:00 - 3:00 PM

What Development Finance Needs to Know about Web3
Tuesday May 17 2:00 - 3:00 PM

Vice President
The Bank of New York Mellon

Oreste has over 20 years’ experience in the financial services industry. He is a senior relationship manager at BNY Mellon’s Corporate Trust Public Finance group, covering the North East region, primarily supporting the largest municipal issuers in New York City and New York State. Oreste began his career at a New York Stock Exchange specialist-trading firm during which he obtained his BBA and MBA in Finance.


Seth Crone

Forecasting the Bond Market’s Response to Federal Infrastructure Investments
Tuesday January 18 2:00 - 3:00 PM

Vice President, Relationship Management
The Bank of New York Mellon

A senior relationship manager with BNY Mellon in Houston covering municipal and nonprofit clients, Seth started in corporate trust in 2003 at JPMorgan, following careers in public finance (healthcare and higher education) from 1987 to 2003 and public accounting (audit, tax, and management consulting) from 1978 to 1987. His experience with municipal bond and project finance began in 1982 as a feasibility consultant at Peat Marwick. A holder of the CFA charter and a CPA license, Seth is a Fellow with the HFMA and has been a Diplomate in the ACHE. Appointed to the board of the Teacher Retirement System of Texas, Seth received his MBA from New York University and his BA from Amherst College.


Lisa Dargis

Analyzing the Impact of COVID-19 Emergency Loan Funds
Tuesday February 22 2:00 - 3:00 PM

Manager, State Small Business Credit Initiative Unit
Minnesota Department of Employment and Economic Development




Darla Garrett

Analyzing the Impact of COVID-19 Emergency Loan Funds
Tuesday February 22 2:00 - 3:00 PM

Director
Maryland Department of Commerce

Darla Garrett is a Program Manager with the Maryland Department of Commerce and oversees the Office of Finance Programs Accounting and Administration Unit. Additionally, she administers Maryland’s Small, Minority, and Women-Owned Businesses Account-Video Lottery Terminal Fund, and the State’s Small Business Credit Initiative. Darla has over 20 years of combined professional experience in finance, banking and economic development. Prior to joining Commerce in 2001, Darla worked with First National Bank of Maryland in the Small Business Lending Center. She has a Bachelor of Arts in Government and Public Policy, a Master’s degree in Public Administration, and is Maryland’s first to obtain CDFA’s Development Finance Certified Professional designation.


Lourdes Germán

Racial Equity in the Bond Markets
Tuesday June 21 2:00 - 3:00 PM

Executive Director
Public Finance Initiative

Lourdes Germán, J.D., began her career after graduating from Boston College and the Boston University School of Law as a public finance attorney at the law firm Palmer & Dodge LLP (now Locke Lord LLP) and then led investment banking efforts in the Northeast and New York Tri-State region as Vice President of Municipal Finance at Fidelity Investments. She then served as Vice President and General Counsel at Breckinridge Capital Advisors, founded a small financial services start-up, and then served as a Director at the Lincoln Institute of Land Policy where she helped launch and lead a global program of work on municipal fiscal health, which included activities in partnership with the United Nations, the Organization for Economic Cooperation & Development, and engagement with members of congress via the first Congressional Briefing focused on the fiscal health of cities. At Lincoln, Lourdes served on the team of expert advisors for the municipal finance policy unit who developed the frameworks in support of the UN Sustainable Development Goals.

Lourdes has also worked with several higher education institutions including, Boston College, where she served as co-director of the Managing for Social Impact Program and Assistant Professor of Practice, Boston University, and the Northeastern University School of Law. Outside of her role leading the Public Finance Initiative, Lourdes serves on the faculty of the Harvard University Graduate School of Design where she teaches Public Finance.

In addition, Lourdes serves as a senior advisor to several foundations and non-profits, including the Kresge Foundation's Social Investment Practice, Hyphen Partnerships, and others. She also serves as the appointed chair of the Massachusetts State Finance and Governance Board, and serves on the boards of the Rappaport Center for Law & Policy at BC Law, the board of the Lincoln Institute of Land Policy, and on the board of trustees of Claremont Lincoln University.


Jonathan Glover

Investing in Resiliency with Green and Blue Bonds
Tuesday April 19 2:00 - 3:00 PM

Vice President
The Bank of New York Mellon

Jonathan Glover is a Vice President in the Public Not for Profit sector of BNY Mellon’s US Corporate Trust group covering the Midwest region. He has more than 10 years of Corporate Trust experience covering transactions in Structured Finance, Corporate Finance, and Alternative Investments. He has worked on complex transactions including affordable housing, public private partnership arrangements, cross border project finance, Tax Increment Financing, Special Service Area and Special Assessment Area structures for clients ranging from state-level issuers to local municipalities.

Jonathan earned his Bachelor of Science degree in Finance from Babson College, and his Juris Doctor degree from New England Law School. He has completed Executive Education coursework at the University of Chicago’s Booth School of Business as a Chicago Urban League IMPACT Fellow. Jonathan is admitted to the New York State Bar.


Kurt Krummenacker

Forecasting the Bond Market’s Response to Federal Infrastructure Investments
Tuesday January 18 2:00 - 3:00 PM

Associate Managing Director
Moody's Investors Service

Kurt is an Associate Managing Director for Moody’s Investors Service’s Project Finance and Infrastructure team. He manages a team of ratings analysts that cover a range of infrastructure entities including public-private partnership projects, airports, public power, seaports and toll roads.  He has authored Moody’s methodologies for public airport ratings and public port ratings. Kurt is also a former member of the Airports Council International Associates Board.  Before joining Moody’s, Kurt was an Aviation Project Manager for the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey. 
 
Kurt is a retired United States Army aviation officer and pilot who holds commercial ratings in both airplanes and helicopters.  He commanded several aviation and administrative units in the 101st Airborne Division and the Army’s Soldier Support Institute.  Kurt has a Bachelor of Science in Economics from the United States Military Academy, a Master of Aeronautical Science from Embry-Riddle University, and a Master of Business Administration from Columbia University Business School.


Caitlin A Langfitt

Capitalization Strategies & Funding from the American Rescue Plan
Tuesday March 15 2:00 - 3:00 PM

Associate
Bricker & Eckler LLP

Caitlin Langfitt is a public finance attorney who helps her clients manage and take advantage of innovative financing options, including tax increment financing (TIF), community reinvestment area (CRA) abatements, joint economic development districts (JEDDs) and special assessment financing. Caitlin specifically partners with political subdivisions, financial institutions and special purpose districts, including energy special improvement districts, to help them negotiate and execute their participation in various economic development programs. Caitlin is highly involved in property assessed clean energy (PACE) financing transactions, helping property owners access innovative financing for energy saving and renewable energy improvements.


Shannon Martin

Capitalization Strategies & Funding from the American Rescue Plan
Tuesday March 15 2:00 - 3:00 PM

Partner
Bricker & Eckler LLP

Shannon Martin focuses on the general counsel, finance and real estate development, and property management needs of health care and public sector clients, banks and other lending institutions, developers, and non-profit and for-profit corporations. She advises clients on a full range of general governance, compliance and operational matters, and has diverse transaction experience including serving as borrower’s counsel, bond counsel and bank counsel on financing transactions, and as counsel to buyers, sellers, developers, utility companies and public entities on acquisition and development projects.

Shannon’s health care practice includes representing hospitals and other health care organizations including nursing, assisted living and long-term care facilities, with respect to general counsel matters such as corporate compliance and governance for non-profits and public sector requirements for public hospitals. She also advises health care clients with financing and real estate matters including bond and other financing facilities, medical practice acquisitions and physician leasing, equipment leases and the purchase, sale and development of health care facilities.

Shannon also serves as general counsel and special counsel to port authorities, counties, municipal corporations and other political subdivisions in connection with a variety of operational and legislative matters, Public Records Act and Open Meeting Act compliance, land-use issues, public improvement projects, public-private partnerships, procurement processes and disputes, conflicts of interest, charter review and amendment processes, annexations and appropriations. Shannon also advises clients on Ohio’s economic development laws, programs and resources, including use of tax increment financing, creation and operation of special improvement districts, joint economic development zones, community reinvestment areas, state and federal loan and grant programs and the like.

Shannon’s real estate experience also includes work with procurement and sale of real estate, zoning, leasing, condominium creation and operation, ground leases, management contracts and the like for a wide range of developments, including office and medical office, ancillary health care facilities, industrial and commercial space, student housing, long-term care facilities and multi-use projects.


Chelsea McDaniel

Racial Equity in the Bond Markets
Tuesday June 21 2:00 - 3:00 PM

Senior Fellow
Activest

Chelsea McDaniel is a Senior Fellow with Activest. She has experience in corporate ESG policy and economic development in the US and the Middle East. She has an MBA from Duke University.


Beth Mullen

Forecasting the Bond Market’s Response to Federal Infrastructure Investments
Tuesday January 18 2:00 - 3:00 PM

Partner, National Director - Affordable Housing Industry
CohnReznick LLP

Beth Mullen, CPA, is the National Director of the Firm’s Affordable Housing Industry Practice and a member of the Firm’s Tax Practice Executive Committee and Project Finance and Consulting team. She has more than 30 years of experience providing consulting, tax, and accounting services to real estate owners, developers and investors. A significant portion of Beth’s time is devoted to helping clients to facilitate transactions by structuring public/private partnerships that are financed in part by Low-Income Housing Tax Credit, the federal and state historic tax credit programs, the federal New Markets Tax Credit Program, energy tax credits, and historic rehabilitation tax credits.

Beth teaches internal and external courses on these tax credits and has published articles in affordable housing and not-for-profit trade magazines. Her extensive knowledge of partnership tax law has been invaluable in resolving allocation, at-risk, exit tax, residual value, and other common partnership problems.

Beth is an industry spokesperson and is a frequently invited speaker at national and local industry trade conferences. She teaches internal and external courses on low-income, New Markets, and historic tax credits and has published articles in several trade magazines.


Mark Ritacco

Capitalization Strategies & Funding from the American Rescue Plan
Tuesday March 15 2:00 - 3:00 PM

Chief Government Affairs Officer
National Association of Counties

Mark Ritacco serves as the Chief Government Affairs Officer at the National Association of Counties. Mark leads NACo’s legislative and executive branch outreach, coalition building and advocacy on behalf of NACo’s members and America’s 3,069 counties.

Before joining NACo, Mark spent over a decade on Capitol Hill working in both the U.S. House and Senate. Most recently, Mark served as Director of Strategic Initiatives for Senator Chris Murphy from Connecticut, where he directed the Senate Appropriations and HELP Committee portfolios, cultivated diverse bipartisan relationships, and built coalitions to pass economic policy, influence agency rulemaking, and shape regulatory policy.

A Connecticut native, Mark lives in Washington, DC with his wife and two sons, and is a graduate of the University of Maryland, College Park.


Eric Shrago

Investing in Resiliency with Green and Blue Bonds
Tuesday April 19 2:00 - 3:00 PM

Vice President of Operations
Connecticut Green Bank

Eric is responsible for the general management of the operations of the Green Bank. This includes the organization’s strategic planning, impact assessment, marketing, communications, and evaluation, measurement, & verification as well as the administration, human resources, and technology functions.
Prior to joining the Connecticut Green Bank, Eric worked in management consulting, advising clients in the financial services and energy sectors on operations, regulation, and strategy. Eric started his career and spent 9 years working at Goldman Sachs in the US and Asia.
Eric holds a Bachelor of Arts degree in International Relations from Tufts University and a Master of Public Administration degree with a concentration in Global Energy Markets and Policy from Columbia University’s School of International and Public Affairs. He is a member of the Sustainability Committee for the town of Weston, Connecticut.


Sean Stein Smith

What Development Finance Needs to Know about Web3
Tuesday May 17 2:00 - 3:00 PM

Professor
City University of New York – Lehman College

Sean is a professor at the City University of New York – Lehman College. He serves on the Advisory Board of the Wall Street Blockchain Alliance, where he chairs the Accounting Work Group. Sean sits on the Advisory Board of Gilded, a cryptoasset payment firm, and serves as a Strategic Advisor to the Central Bank Digital Currency Think Tank. He has a weekly column with Forbes, in the Crypto & Blockchain vertical. Sean is also the immediate past chairperson of the NJCPA's Emerging Technologies Interest Group (#NJCPATech), where he hosts the NJCPA TechTalk Podcast, and is the President-Elect of the NYSSCPA Manhattan-Bronx Chapter.  Sean has guest lectured at over a dozen universities in the United States, including multiple institutions ranked in Top #25 overall, and has delivered lectures and training to Top 10 accounting firms, the PCAOB, and the FDIC. He is a Visiting Research Fellow at the American Institute for Economic Research, with a book due out in 2022. Sean is a sought after speaker on the topic of crypto and blockchain, and is an award winning researcher.


Stuart Weiss

Capitalization Strategies & Funding from the American Rescue Plan
Tuesday March 15 2:00 - 3:00 PM

Racial Equity in the Bond Markets
Tuesday June 21 2:00 - 3:00 PM

Vice President, Sales
The Bank of New York Mellon

Stuart has over 30 years of corporate trust sales experience and is responsible for new business development and client relationship management of municipal trust and agency appointments in California, Arizona, Colorado, Oregon and Hawai’i. He began his corporate trust career in 1990 as a business development officer at Security Pacific Bank in Los Angeles. Stuart continued at Security Pacific during their acquisition by Bank of America, N.A. through 1995 while covering a Southern California sales/client territory. Subsequently, Stuart represented U.S. Trust Company, N.A. in their western U.S. territory from 1995 – 2000 and Wells Fargo Corporate Trust covering a similar territory from 2000 – 2017. Stuart is a graduate of the University of California, Berkeley and resides in Los Angeles.


Jennifer Wilhelm

Analyzing the Impact of COVID-19 Emergency Loan Funds
Tuesday February 22 2:00 - 3:00 PM

Director of Commercial Lending
Urban Redevelopment Authority of Pittsburgh

Jennifer Wilhelm directs the Urban Redevelopment Authority of Pittsburgh’s (URA) Commercial Lending and Investment division. Deploying more than $7M in direct lending a year, the division provides critical capital for emerging and growing businesses across the City of Pittsburgh, focusing particularly on entrepreneurs from underserved populations. Under Jennifer’s management, the URA has grown lending across all segments, including tripling technology-based investing over a two year period and launching a micro enterprise lending program that in the last two years has deployed more than $2M to emerging women and minority led companies.

Jennifer has more than 13 years of experience in program development and execution, partnership building, strategy development, project management, and policy analysis across nonprofit, for-profit, and government sectors. Prior to the Urban Redevelopment Authority, Jennifer worked in government and healthcare strategy consulting executing large scale technology transformations for state governments.

Jennifer serves as Chairperson of the Board of Directors for Invest PGH, the URA’s emerging CDFI, and as a member of the advisory council for Kiva Pittsburgh and the Sister Cities Association of Pittsburgh. Jennifer holds a Master of Science degree in Public Policy and Management from Carnegie Mellon University and a Bachelor of Arts degree in International Studies from Baldwin-Wallace University.


Gwen Yamamoto Lau

Investing in Resiliency with Green and Blue Bonds
Tuesday April 19 2:00 - 3:00 PM

Executive Director
Hawaii Green Infrastructure Authority

Gwen Yamamoto Lau is the Executive Director of the Hawaii Green Infrastructure Authority (“Authority”), an agency attached to the State’s Department of Business, Economic Development and Tourism. The Authority was constituted in November 2014 to administer a green infrastructure loan program to make clean energy investments accessible and affordable to Hawaii’s underserved ratepayers, stimulate private investments, and leverage innovative tools to mitigate risks and reach new markets.

Drawing from over twenty-five years of experience in conventional commercial financing, Gwen continues to find new ways to facilitate non-traditional financing tools to fill market gaps and promote economic development for the State of Hawaii. Seeing the positive impact is what she finds the most rewarding.

Active in her community, Gwen is currently President of the Rotary Club of Honolulu and Director and Executive Committee member for Goodwill Industries of Hawaii. She has also served in a variety of leadership roles for a number of other nonprofit organizations, including former Board Chair for Sacred Hearts Academy, former Treasurer and Executive Committee member for the Hawaii Alliance of Nonprofit Organization, and former Director and Finance Committee member for the YWCA of Oahu, to name a few.



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