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May 5

Localization in Foreign Assistance and the Role of US Small Businesses

May 5 @ 9:00 am - 10:30 am EDT

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Event Information

To watch the summary of the event discussion, view the video below.

On May 5, 2022, the Small Business Association for International Companies (SBAIC) hosted a roundtable that addressed how localization, local capacity development, local engagement, and utilization of local organizations fits into the paradigm of how foreign assistance achieves impactful development. In addition, the roundtable discussed the role of US small businesses in localization. 

The event specifically focused on the role that US small businesses are playing in advancing the objectives of local capacity building, local engagement, and utilization of local personnel and organizations.

The event kicked off with Kimberly Ball, Director at U.S. Agency for International Development’s (USAID) Office of Small and Disadvantaged Business Utilization (OSDBU). Michele Sumilas, USAID Assistant to the Administrator of the Bureau for Policy, Planning, and Learning (PPL) also provided remarks. David Snelbecker, SBAIC Procurement Committee Co-Chair, and CEO, International Development Group LLC discussed localization in the paradigm of how foreign assistance achieves impact.

Speakers not only included US-based colleagues but also a number of local partners with whom SBAIC member firms collaborate on development work, which provided a well-rounded set of perspectives on how localization is being implemented.

For further information about localization, view the case studies, localization stories, resources, and videos from the event in the Event Materials section.

To watch the full event discussion, view the video below.


Speaker Bios

Kimberly Ball

Kimberly Ball

Director of the U.S. Agency for International Development’s (USAID) Office of Small and Disadvantaged Business Utilization (OSDBU)

Kimberly Ball serves as the Director of the U.S. Agency for International Development’s (USAID) Office of Small and Disadvantaged Business Utilization (OSDBU).  USAID/OSDBU coordinates the Small Business Program and is the initial point of contact at USAID for all categories of U.S. small businesses.   

Prior to joining OSDBU in 2008, Ms. Ball served as a Contract Specialist in USAID’s Management/Office of Acquisition and Assistance (M/OAA).   During her ten year stint in M/OAA, she supported the Global Health (GH), Europe and Eurasia (E&E), Economic Growth and Trade (EGAT), Democracy, Conflict and Humanitarian Assistance (DCHA) Bureaus and M/OAA’s Policy Division.  She ended her M/OAA career as a Contracting Officer and Team Leader supporting various divisions in the DCHA Bureau. 

Prior to joining USAID, Ms. Ball worked as a contract negotiator with the United States Air Force.  As a civilian employee of the U. S. Air Force, Ms. Ball served at Nellis Air Force Base, Gunter Annex and Bolling Air Force Base.  She began her career with the U.S. Air Force as a Palace Acquire Intern. 

Ms. Ball holds a Bachelor of Arts degree in Political Science from Hampton University. 

Michele Sumilas

Michele Sumilas

Assistant to the Administrator of the Bureau for Policy, Planning, and Learning (PPL)

Michele Sumilas is currently the Assistant to the Administrator of the Bureau for Policy, Planning, and Learning (PPL). PPL shapes USAID’s development policy and programming guidance to ensure the Agency’s work is grounded in evidence and reflects the most advanced thinking in international development. 

Most recently she served as Executive Director of Bread for the World, an anti-hunger Christian advocacy organization. Her government experience includes serving as USAID Chief of Staff and Deputy Chief of Staff during the Obama administration, and on the House Subcommittee on State and Foreign Operations. Prior to serving in government, Sumilas worked at the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation and  the Global Health Council. 

Sumilas attended Mount Holyoke College and received her Master’s Degree in public health from John Hopkins University’s Bloomberg School of Public Health. 


Event Agenda

Presentations

9:00-9:40am

Kimberly Ball, USAID/OSDBU, Director – Welcome and Introduction

Michele Sumilas, USAID Assistant to the Administrator of the Bureau for Policy, Planning, and Learning (PPL) – Localization and the Role of Implementing Partners

David Snelbecker, SBAIC Procurement Committee Co-Chair, and CEO, International Development Group LLC – Implementing Partner Observations on How Localization Achieves Foreign Assistance Impact

US Small Businesses and Local Partners – Round Robin Introductions

  • Connexus | Diama Tech, USAID Feed the Future Senegal Nafoore Warsaaji Activity 
  • ECODIT | Compost Baladi,  USAID Diverting Waste by Encouraging Reuse and Recycling (DAWERR) Activity (Lebanon)
  • International Development Group LLC | Active Albania, USAID Economic Development, Governance, and Enterprise (EDGE) Growth Project (Albania/North Macedonia)
  • JE Austin | Startup Vietnam Foundation (SVF), USAID Vietnam Strengthening Provincial Capacity (SPC)
  • Panagora Group | Maternal, Adolescent, and Child Health Institute, Technical Support Services (TSS) for USAID/South Africa
  • WI-HER | Moroto District Local Government, USAID Act to End Neglected Tropical Diseases- East Project (Uganda)

Q&A

9:40-9:50am

Coffee Break Discussions

9:50-10:30am

 (Short small-group presentations at 9:50 and 10:20, each including an informal discussion)

  • Table 1: Connexus | Diama Tech
  • Table 2: ECODIT | Compost Baladi
  • Table 3: International Development Group LLC | Active Albania
  • Table 4: JE Austin | Startup Vietnam Foundation (SVF)
  • Table 5: Panagora Group | Maternal, Adolescent, and Child Health Institute
  • Table 6: WI-HER | Moroto District Local Government

Event Materials