Washington, DC is home to many important institutions with an international focus, including NGOs, embassies, think tanks, governmental agencies and relief organizations. Their mission is to effect change in a variety of areas such as environmental sustainability, economic development, human rights, public health, diplomacy and more. During this panel, we heard from the individuals from a few of these institutions as they discuss past successes, current initiatives and future plans. We also explored how different kinds of institutions share strategies or have unique approaches to their work.
Tamaro Kane is Special Assistant to the Chief Economist of the Climate Change Group at the World Bank. In this capacity, she contributes to the team’s work on green growth and decision making under uncertainty and coordinates the World Bank’s contribution to the Green Growth Knowledge Platform. Prior to her current role, Tamaro served as a Research Assistant in the Early Recovery, Livelihoods, Poverty Reduction and MDGs unit of UNDP’s office in Haiti providing technical assistance to conditional cash transfer programs, impact evaluations, and the elaboration of a national social protection strategy. She has also worked at the African Development Bank, Clinton Foundation, and International Rescue Committee. She holds a Masters in International Economic Policy from Sciences Po Paris and a Masters in International Finance from Columbia University.
Victoria Kiechel has 20 years of professional experience in architecture, education, and sustainable design. A practicing architect, she works for the Cadmus Group, Inc., an environmental consultancy, and is an adjunct faculty member of the Global Environmental Politics Program, the School of International Service, American University (AU), in Washington, DC. In 2010, she was the inaugural recipient of AU’s Most Innovative Green Teacher of the Year award. At Cadmus, Vicky has worked for the US Green Building Council to develop and support the Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) Rating Systems; advises the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA’s) ENERGY STAR commercial and industrial branch; leads consulting and review teams for buildings seeking LEED certification; and manages sustainability initiatives for clients as diverse as the Smithsonian Institution and state and local governments.
Vicky was project manager and technical lead for the 2012 redevelopment of ENERGY STAR for Buildings training resources. Her Cadmus research work includes her roles as primary author of Planning and Financing Energy Efficient Infrastructure in Appalachia, for the Appalachian Regional Commission (released March, 2012), and co-Principal Investigator of Cadmus’ Water Management and Green Building Rating Systems 2009-2010 study for the Electric Power Research Institute. Her architectural design work focuses on small-to-medium scale residential and institutional projects. For the Washington, DC Capitol Hill School Libraries Project, she designed the library for Maury Elementary School. Victoria Kiechel, AIA and LEED AP ND, BD+C, O+M, ID+C, Homes
Sean Maloney serves as the Chief of Staff for the Bureau for Africa at the U.S. Agency for International Development. In his capacity, Sean oversees operations of the Bureau’s $6.5 billion portfolio with 23 bilateral missions, 3 regional missions, and projects in 44 countries. Sean makes policy recommendations to the Assistant Administrator and USAID leadership team, with a focus on aligning U.S. government assistance programs in Africa with Obama Administration priorities.
Previously, Sean served as Advisor in the Office of the Deputy Coordinator for Feed the Future at USAID. In this role he served as a management and policy advisor for President Obama’s signature initiative with Feed the Future, which is a $3.5 billion effort to fight the root causes of hunger, poverty and under-nutrition in the developing world.
Sean has also worked as Manager for Operation at New York University and graduated from NYU Wagner with a Masters Degree in Non-Profit Management with a focus on Internal Policy in 2008.
Dr. Ephraim Nkonya is a senior research fellow at the International Food Policy Research Institute (IFPRI) in Washington D.C. Ephraim leads an IFPRI program on land resources for poverty reduction. Ephraim earned his masters and Ph.D. degrees in agricultural economics at Kansas State university from 1992 – 1999. He has published widely in referred journals on issues related to natural resource management, poverty reduction and climate change.
Ephraim is a true east African, with Tanzanian citizenship and ancestral heritage from Machakos Kenya and Mbarara Uganda. Ephraim grew up in rural areas around Lake Victoria in Tanzania, an environment that inspired him to study even more how natural resources that surrounded him during his childhood could be used to reduce poverty. In collaboration with scientists from around the world, Ephraim is currently leading a global study on the economics of land degradation, which aims to measure the cost of inaction against land degradation and the benefit of taking against land degradation.