Connecting, Innovating, and Sustaining
with 21st Century Infrastructure
Chicago, IL • November 1-3, 2016
Europe: Energy Efficiency
Europe: Design & Constrn
Ebe Raso is currently Senior Commercial Specialist at U.S. Consulate in Sao Paulo, SP, Brazil. She began her career with the U.S. Commercial Service in June 1998. Ebe’s main responsibility is to assist U.S. E-Commerce, Transportation, and Telecommunications companies to establish and increase their sales of U.S. products and services to the Brazilian market. Before joining the U.S. Commercial Service, Ebe worked for U.S. Companies Johnson & Johnson and Eaton Corporation as assistant to the Marketing VP. Ebe Raso is a native the city of Sao Paulo, SP is graduated in Portuguese-English at the Catholic University of Sao Paulo.
Romi Jaszczynski is a Commercial Specialist at the U.S. Commercial Service in Toronto. He started his journey with the U.S. Commercial Service in 2014 at the U.S. Embassy in Warsaw, working on a number of high profile visits and events. Currently, he covers the Architecture, Construction, and Engineering, Information and Communication Technology, and Healthcare sectors in Toronto. Romi was born in Montreal and studied Public Management during his undergraduate studies at the University of Guelph, and attended Jagiellonian University in Krakow, Poland for his Master’s studies. Romi enjoys sailing, playing basketball, and producing music in his spare time.
Mary Lathrop studied Fine Arts and Civil Engineering at Universidad Católica de Chile (Catholic University of Chile). She has worked for the U.S. Commercial Service since 1987 serving as Regional Automation Coordinator and Commercial Specialist. Ms. Lathrop actively participated in the creation of the Western Hemisphere Team, and is part of the Design & Construction and Agribusiness teams within the Commercial Service. Ms. Lathrop has represented CS Santiago at several regional events in the United States, presenting Chile as an export destination, including several “GM Discover the World” conventions/seminars, and other export promotion events organized by the Commercial Service partners.
Scott Shaw is the Counselor for Commercial Affairs at the U.S. Embassy in Beijing, China. As Counselor for Commercial Affairs, Scott has day-to-day management responsibilities for the Commerce Department's largest overseas presence, including Commerce offices in Beijing, Shanghai, Guangzhou, Chengdu, Shenyang, and Wuhan. Scott most recently served as Chief Commercial Consul for the U.S. Department of Commerce in Hong Kong. Previously, Scott was the Deputy Senior Commercial Officer for the U.S. Department of Commerce in Brazil. In Brazil, Mr. Shaw had responsibility for day-to-day operations of CS Brazil’s 5 offices. Prior to Brazil, Mr. Shaw was the Commercial Attaché at the U.S. Embassy in Thailand. He also served as the Director of the U.S. Commercial Center in Shanghai, China and at the U.S. Consulate in Guangzhou, China, where he received the Commerce Department’s Gold Medal Award, the highest award granted by the Secretary of Commerce for excellence in federal service. Mr. Shaw began his career with the Commerce Department in positions in Washington D.C., Chicago and Manila, Philippines. He is a graduate of Cornell University and a past participant of the Cornell Public Policy program in Washington, D.C.
Martin Claessens recently began his assignment in Bogota, where he manages an office of 11 trade professionals who assist U.S. companies with market access and trade promotion in Colombia and in the Andean region. For three years prior to Colombia, Martin managed a team of 12 in Mumbai, India, attracting major investments to the United States and helping U.S. companies land multi-billion dollar export contracts. Prior to India, Martin helped Chicago-area companies with their export strategies. Before joining the Commercial Service, Martin worked at the World Trade Organization as an Economic Affairs Officer, training developing countries on the WTO agreements. Martin also taught trade policy courses in Spanish and helped national governments revise their trade legislation in Colombia, Ecuador, Jordan, Mongolia, Peru and Zambia.
Stanislava Dimitrova has served as the ICT Lead of the U.S. Embassy Commercial Service in Sofia, Bulgaria for more than 12 years. She is the Cybersecurity Lead of the U.S. Department of Commerce Commercial Service in Europe and thus, coordinates the cybersecurity activities of 18+ U.S. Embassy representatives in Europe. As part of the U.S. Commercial Service, Stanislava Dimitrova has worked with leading U.S. ICT vendors, service providers and governments. She has led numerous government and corporate delegations to the U.S. and Europe to showcase e-government and cybersecurity best practices.
Felix Happe, Commercial Specialist at the U.S. Consulate General in Frankfurt/Germany, joined the U.S. Commercial Service in 2011. Felix is responsible for the Automotive and Transportation portfolio in Germany and works closely with U.S. exporters and industry stakeholders on developing market opportunities in Germany and the region. He advises on market access strategies and compliance and maintains close relations with local stakeholders. Felix has a keen interest in innovation in the mobility & transportation sectors and closely tracks trends and developments across the region and how those translate into opportunities for U.S. clients. Together with a team of dedicated specialists from across Europe, Felix initiated an EU-wide US Commercial Service working group that focusses on advancements and opportunities in related sectors (including topics such as: eMobility, ITS, shared & multi-modal transport, connectivity & automation, etc.). Prior to joining the US Commercial Service, Felix worked in the Financial Industry as well as Market Research. He studied North American Studies/Political Science, Business Administration, and Economics in Bonn and Evanston, IL (Northwestern University) and holds a M.A. from the University of Bonn.
Tuula Ahlström is a commercial specialist and advisor with the U.S. Commercial Service in Sweden, responsible for supporting U.S. companies within advanced manufacturing and engineering sectors, such as cleantech (power production, renewables, smart grids, and energy efficiency, environmental technologies), built environment and industrial raw materials. Ms. Ahlström is the High Performance Building sector coordinator for Commercial Service Europe. Her responsibilities include business development & advocacy, export promotion & counseling, inward investment promotion & counseling, defining market entry strategies, conducting matchmaking programs, and more. In addition to her industry sector responsibilities, Ms. Ahlström coordinates activities for Stockholm’s partnership post, Latvia, including training, business service provision and other trade related issues. She also handles all export control related activities and Swedish inquiries for USDOC/Bureau of Industry and Security. Prior to joining the U.S. Commercial Service in June 1993, Ms. Ahlström worked for the Foreign Agricultural Service (1991-1993) as a Marketing Assistant, and for AAC Global (1983-1990) as a teacher of business English, providing tailor-made language courses for both public and private sectors.
Fanny Chau, Commercial Specialist in Hong Kong, has been with the Commercial Service since 1997. Fanny covers Information & Communication Technology, Electronics, and the Film sector. Before joining the Commercial Service, Fanny was the director for a trading unit of a major local construction company, managing a team of 12. She holds a bachelor degree in Marketing.
Dillon Banerjee is currently serving as the U.S. Commercial Service’s (CS) Chief Operating Officer in India, supporting a team of 70 people in seven offices representing four U.S. government agencies. The CS office in India is the Department of Commerce’s second largest overseas post worldwide. In his current capacity, Mr, Banerjee serves as the U.S. government’s interagency coordinator on the U.S.-India Smart City program. He arrived in New Delhi in August, 2014 and will remain there through 2017. Prior to his current assignment, he was the Principal Commercial Officer at the U.S. Embassy in Mexico, where he managed a team of 15 Officers and Specialists to promote increased bilateral trade and investment and had direct supervision over the defense, aviation, and security sectors. Prior to that, Mr. Banerjee was the Senior Commercial Officer for the U.S. Embassy in Lisbon (2007 to 2011), where he managed five Commercial Specialists and directed the U.S. government’s trade promotion programs in Portugal. Mr. Banerjee served as Commercial Officer to the U.S. Embassy in Russia from 2004 through 2006. Before his assignment to Moscow, Mr. Banerjee completed two years with CS Nigeria in Lagos. While in Nigeria, he directly managed the Embassy’s strategic business advocacy cases and coordinated trade finance activities with the U.S. EXIM Bank and the Overseas Private Investment Corporation (OPIC). Prior to joining the U.S. & Foreign Commercial Service, Mr. Banerjee worked as a Program Officer for the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID) in Washington, D.C. and Pretoria, South Africa
Tamarind Murrietta is the Commercial Attaché at the U.S. Embassy Nairobi. Ms. Murrietta specializes in U.S. – Africa business and economic relations and has worked and lived in Nigeria, Kenya, and South Africa. Prior to this role, Ms. Murrietta lived in Lagos, Nigeria and owned and operated a management consulting firm which assisted small U.S. businesses entering the West African market. Prior to this, Ms. Murrietta was a Team Lead in the Foreign Commercial Service (FCS). During her time with FCS, she managed the international portfolio for the Director General, as well as, led special initiatives for headquarters, African and Middle East posts. She was also appointed as the FCS global lead for a special-Congressional project on anti-corruption. Before her work with FCS, Ms. Murrietta worked at the U.S. Department of State, Federation of Indian Chambers of Commerce and Industry, and the World Bank & International Monetary Fund. Ms. Murrietta received her Master’s in International Relations specializing in International Economics from the King’s College London, University of London.
Mitch Larsen began his tour as the Deputy Senior Commercial Officer at the U.S. Embassy in Seoul in August 2012. His previous assignments include: Senior Commercial Officer, U.S. Embassy Santiago, Chile (2007-12); Deputy Senior Commercial Officer, U.S. Embassy Baghdad (2006-07); Senior Commercial Officer for Guatemala and Honduras, U.S. Embassy Guatemala City (2003-06); Principal Commercial Officer, U.S. Consulate General Melbourne, Australia (1998-2002); and Deputy Senior Commercial Officer, U.S. Embassy Kiev, Ukraine (1996-98). Prior to joining the Foreign Service, Mr. Larsen served as manager of the U.S. Export Assistance Center in Northern Illinois (1994-95) and as an International Trade Specialist in the U.S. Export Assistance Center of San Francisco (1989-94). He worked in the U.S. apparel sector prior to joining the U.S. Department of Commerce in 1989.
Teresa Verthein joined the U.S. Commercial Service-Mexico City in October 2011. She advises U.S. ICT exporters on issues ranging from market entry strategies and policy and regulatory issues to the local stakeholder and partnership ecosystem. Teresa also provides hands-on support to companies’ business development efforts through trade promotion events, B2B matchmaking services, introductions to key stakeholders, etc. She is a member of the U.S. Embassy in Mexico’s Cyber Working Group and Gender Working Group. In the latter, she focuses on supporting actions to promote inclusion in the technology field. Prior to her work at the U.S. Commercial Service, Teresa was an independent business facilitator for small and medium U.S. companies seeking to enter the Mexican market. Before this, she worked for Aon Consulting in Chicago, Illinois, where she coordinated communications with the company’s Latin American branches. Teresa attended the University of Wisconsin – Madison and the National Autonomous University of Mexico.
John Coronado is Senior Commercial Officer for the U.S. Commercial Service in Panama. Previously, he was Senior International Trade Specialist in Chicago and Commercial Attaché at the U.S. Embassy in London. As Commercial Attaché in Tel Aviv (2004–7), he focused on resolving non-tariff trade barriers and raising U.S. exporters’ interest in the highly sophisticated Israeli market. He has also served with the U.S. Commercial Service in Buenos Aires; during Argentina’s debt crisis (1998–2002), his team updated U.S. exporters on changes in the Argentine government’s foreign currency regulations. Mr. Coronado holds degrees from the University of the Pacific in California and the University of Granada in Spain; he also studied at the Universidad del Salvador, in Buenos Aires. He speaks Spanish and French.
Yna Capatayan-Quiambao is the Commercial Specialist in U.S. Commercial Service Philippines handling major industry sectors such information communications technology (ICT), transportation (aviation, rail, maritime), and defense and security. She is responsible for trade promotion activities, matchmaking U.S. companies with potential Philippine partners and end-users, market research, industry counseling, and advocating for U.S. companies in Philippine government tenders. She joined the Commercial Service in 2007. Yna works with small, medium and large U.S. companies pursuing opportunities in the Philippines. She has counseled and advocated for U.S. companies in large and complex government procurement projects that required extensive promotion, persistent coordination, and trade diplomacy. Yna coordinates closely with other U.S. Government agencies involved in the sectors she covers in order to provide a holistic approach to issues and opportunities she encounters. She is also active in the Commercial Service-ASEAN industry teams for ICT and Aviation/Defense critical in promoting U.S. business interests in the ASEAN region.
Rhonda Sinkfield is a Commercial Officer with the U.S. Consulate in Johannesburg and has over fifteen years of experience in international trade, consulting and public policy. She joined the Foreign Commercial Service (FCS) in April 2013 and was posted to Shanghai in July 2014. Prior to joining the FCS, Rhonda was a Policy Analyst with the White House Office of Management and Budget (OMB). In that role she formulated the President’s Budget for international affairs agencies with oversight of more than $5 billion in federal funds and coordinated the Administration's economic development and international trade policy among multiple federal agencies. She served as the OMB representative for Committee on Foreign Investment in the U.S. (CFIUS), the Trade Policy Staff Committee and Trade Promotion Coordinating Committee. She was a Senior Associate at Deloitte Consulting and Financial Advisory Service where she advised corporate and public sector clients on business transformation and policy analysis. She was a Policy Analyst at the U.S. Senate Finance Committee working on international tax and trade issues. She has also worked with General Dynamics, the Western Cape Department of Economic Affairs in South Africa and Japan External Trade Relations Organization as a consultant on international trade and business development issues.
Ryan El Zein joined the Foreign Commercial Service in Doha as a Commercial Specialist in December 2013. He provides a full range of commercial services including International Partner Search, International Market Insight, International Sector Analysis, Gold and Platinum Key Service, and Single Company Promotion, and International Corporate Profile. His sector portfolio in Qatar includes Aviation, Defense, Construction & Infrastructure, Financial Services, and Select USA (FDI promotion for the United States). Before joining the government, Ryan held the position of business partner at McKinsey-BEAM, a management and engineering consultancy firm where he worked on the strategic development of several companies and key projects in the GCC region across a variety of industries such as investment management, contracting, project management, alternative energy, waste management, and retail. He also co-founded a health IT start-up company in 2012 after successfully competing with the company business plan during Intel and UNIDO’s global entrepreneurship challenge in 2011.
Swee Hoon Chia is Senior Commercial Specialist with the U.S. Commercial Service at the U.S. Embassy in Singapore, where she serves as principal advisor and assistant to the U.S. commercial officers in planning, organizing, and administering reporting, trade facilitation, and trade promotion programs. Ms. Chia is responsible for monitoring sectors including information technology, telecommunications and services, broadcasting, franchising and other business services, audio video equipment, film and content, and consumer electronics. She holds an M.B.A. from the State University of New York at Buffalo and a B.A. in economics and sociology from the University of Singapore.
Jim Curtis is a Commercial Officer with the US Commercial Service (USCS). Currently based in Taipei, Taiwan, Jim’s portfolio includes the franchising, finance, education, publishing, transportation/automotive, semiconductors, general manufacturing and travel & tourism sectors. He also leads Taiwan’s smart city initiative and heads Commerce’s smart city sub-team for Asia. Jim is an experienced executive on strategic international business and has counseled over 500 firms, governments, NGO’s and educational institutions on international market entry development. At the DGM conference, Jim wants to identify companies in all sectors for Taiwan’s smart city opportunities, but is particularly interested in recruiting companies in smart buildings, smart transportation and fintech to participate in an April 2017 trade mission to Taiwan and Hong Kong. Jim worked and lived in Shanghai China from 2003-2013, and prior to that he was a Buyer at a U.S. Fortune 500 retail department store company.
Triet Huynh joined the Foreign Commercial Section of the U.S. Consulate General in HCMC in 2007. He covers the four key sectors of Aviation, Energy, Healthcare and Smart Cities, and assists U.S. suppliers with their business development strategies and activities for Vietnam. Triet has a Bachelor degree in International Trade and a Bachelor degree in English Literature.
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