Nov. 18, 2022


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CIDC Development Conference Wrap-Up

In the words of PSC President and CEO David Berteau, it is hard to believe this was our tenth annual Development conference!!! Thanks to more than 200 of you who came in person to the Georgetown Marriott – as well as to all of you who participated virtually. Our venue was blanketed with CIDC From the Field storyboards from 2022 that helped tell the incredible work our members accomplish around the globe on behalf of the U.S. government and the American people.


As I said, NONE of this would have been possible without the support of all our sponsors, who deserve another shout-out:

While all the photos – as well as our lengthiest Thought Leadership ever! – can be found , below is a recap of the sessions.

For those of you who couldn't make it and would like to purchase a video recording of the event, please click .


See all photos from the conference .


Sponsor Highlights

Click below to view a short video provided by Tetra Tech. You can check out all our Premier Sponsor video ads on our 

 to view all the expert information provided by our sponsors in our 2022 Development Conference Thought Leadership Compendium.


Session Recaps

Following opening remarks by Berteau and a warm welcome by CIDC Chair and the President of Creative Associates Leland Kruvant, our members were treated to a balanced agenda of keynotes and panels touching on crucial issues for our community and the Biden/Harris administration.

Following an introduction from DAI’s Tine Knott, USAID’s Deputy Administrator for Policy and Programming Isobel Coleman started us off with an update on the Biden/Harris Administration efforts related to a variety of pressing issues, but perhaps none more than the ongoing UN climate conference in Egypt (COP27) and the current and future development efforts needed to help Ukraine recover from Russia’s illegal invasion. Questions from the audience touched on Contracting Officer staffing, budgetary issues, and localization challenges.


Deloitte’s Nell Todd welcomed the Deputy Secretary of State for Management and Resources Brian McKeon to the state for a one-on-one chat. DepSec McKeon went into great detail on the department’s effort to rebuild its Foreign and Civil Service workforce and re-create a needed “training float” to allow for sufficient staffing – as in the U.S. armed forces – whereby some billets are specifically allotted for continuing educational or exchange opportunities with educational, private sector or other government agencies. He also noted the beneficial results already realized as part of the Department’s paid internship program which also covers housing and plane fare, thereby dramatically increasing the opportunities for the program – regardless of financial need.


David Snelbecker, CEO of International Development Group, led a panel on efforts by the U.S. government to address the growing efforts on the part of Beijing to erode many of the economic and democratic gains the U.S. has fostered in the last sixty years as China seeks to use its economic might and centralized decision-making process to offer what seem like easy terms, but in reality, often saddle recipients with crushing debt. Samantha Custer – the director of Policy Analysis from AIDdata – reminded the audience that even though the E.U. and U.S. offer loans far below China’s 4.5%, their lack of institutional reform requirements and oversight make them more tempting for many nations. The Department of State Senior Advisor in the Office of Foreign Assistance – Kristen Cordell – and USAID’s Deputy PRC Advisor – Nikolas Foster – provide their agencies perspectives on newly authorized programs and funding available to help nations resist China. Questions about Section 889 requirements and how the west can best counter Chinese misinformation and propaganda.


The three co-chairs of the CIDC DEIA Working Group lent their expertise to a panel of practitioners from the Department of State and Millennium Challenge Corporation. Social Impact CEO Shiro Gnanaselvam introduced our speakers and laid out the challenges confronting both industry and federal agencies in terms of social and structural challenges. Indira Ahluwalia presented both the industry’s perspective from her position at Palladium, as well as her work as the founder of the Coalition for Racial & Ethnic Equity in Development (CREED). DAI’s Bobby Jefferson deftly kept the questions rolling as we heard from MCC’s Chief Diversity Officer Tracey France and the State Department’s Deputy Chief Diversity and Inclusion Officer Conny Meyer as they related the continuing evolution of their departments’ work, including how to push the envelope between what the more-cautious in their organizations have deemed “not illegal, but perhaps ill-advisable” in terms of needed hiring data collection to establish benchmarks needed to assess future progress in terms of current workforce, promotion and retention.


Palladium’s Katy Vickland moderated our final panel, addressing an issue crucial to the AID Administrator Power’s vision for the agency – increasing local voices in development and significant funding benchmarks for local implementors. We heard from two of USAID’s leading experts - Deputy Assistant Administrator for Latin America and the Caribbean, Mileydi Guilarte, and the Director of the Local, Faith Based and Transformative Partnerships Hub, Adam Phillips. In addition to discussing the pilot program CentroAmerica Local, they related some of the challenges encountered, including an initial lack of Mission webpages in Spanish and the need to help local implementors address USG oversight and accountability requirements. Providing a voice from the field was Camilo Pinzon – beaming in from Ecuador – who currently serves as the Chairman of Ecuador’s Alliance for Entrepreneurship and Innovation, who worked extensively in prior years with some of CIDC’s own members in earlier, successful iterations of local engagement.


CIDC’s Vice Chair and CEO of Nathan Associates, Sue Chodakewitz, welcomed the Deputy CEO of the Millennium Challenge Corporation, Mahmoud Bah, who joined us virtually from the annual MCC Directors meeting. His timely remarks on the MCC’s work and funding, along with relevant questions from the audience on the possibility of extending MCC compact timelines and how their work meshes with the Biden/Harris administration's efforts to counter China with other agencies’ efforts, helped draw our conference to a fitting close.

Up Next

Save the date for the next CIDC meeting on Jan.12, 2023. Details and registration link will be posted on the PSC Calendar of Events soon.


Wishing you a wonderful Thanksgiving holiday season!

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