Lorraine Hartman is an international development consultant with more than 20 years’ private sector business experience. She specializes in program development, implementation and management, market and brand development for agri-food products, agricultural production, manufacturing and processing, export development and market linkages.
After starting and managing several successful food companies in the United States, Ms Hartman worked as a private sector consultant for almost a decade, providing product development, market entry, sales, marketing and distribution solutions to international and domestic clients before moving into the field of international development.
Working in Afghanistan since 2008, she managed and implemented multi-million dollar agri-food projects, from cultivation and manufacturing to marketing, import substitution and export, on behalf of donors such as the World Bank, USAID and Afghanistan’s Ministry of Agriculture, Irrigation and Livestock, as well as for private sector clients.
Ms Hartman has a Bachelor of Business in Management, a Graduate Certificate in International Marketing and is currently pursuing a Masters degree in International Development.
Quintin Gray is an agribusiness specialist and a Senior Associate of the Catalyst Group, based in Washington D.C. As a former United States Embassy Agriculture Counselor with the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA), Mr Gray has worked on food safety issues/projects for more than 30 years in Africa, the Middle East and South Asia.
Mr Gray has also served as a member of the USDA’s East Africa Food Safety Assessment Team. In 2013, he was charged with developing a strategy to strengthen East African governments’ food safety programs, including strengthening food testing laboratories.
From 2009 to 2012, Mr Gray was a senior member of the USDA’s Afghanistan/Pakistan group, helping develop USDA’s agriculture programs in both countries. He worked on Afghan food safety issues as the Senior Agriculture Advisor for Ambassadors Richard Holbrooke and Marc Grossman at the U.S. Department of State and also served as the Agriculture Minister Counselor in Afghanistan, helping lead U.S. Government agricultural programs in Afghanistan.
Mr Gray has specialist knowledge in import/export market analysis, agricultural land market analysis, as well as the United States’ Food Safety Modernization Act (FSMA) and Foreign Supplier Verification Program (FSVP).
Dr Sophia Wilcox
Dr Sophia Wilcox is an extremely well-qualified agricultural development professional with more than 25 years’ experience analyzing and improving agricultural production and value chains. With a PhD in International Agricultural Development, she is passionate about drawing on sustainable agricultural methods to foster independence and improve the well-being of small-scale farmers, their communities and the environment.
Dr Wilcox is skilled at designing, leading and evaluating multi-sector agricultural development programs and has advised on the cultivation and marketing of numerous agribusiness products, from sustainable aloe produced by women in Somalia to coffee in Costa Rica. She has also led multi-sector agricultural development programs in Afghanistan, Haiti, Kenya, Tunisia and Kenya and been recognized by two awards for directing inclusive projects.
Clients include universities, government ministries and foreign agencies such as USAID, the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) and the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations.
Dr Wilcox also has a Master’s in International Farming Systems, a PhD in Animal Sciences, a Certificate in Permaculture Design and manages her own permaculture farm in Costa Rica.
Marc Sellies is a professional project manager with more than 30 years’ experience, specializing in energy-related international development projects. With a Master’s in Mechanical Engineering, he has worked alongside government ministries, energy utilities, the private sector and other stakeholders to improve the performance and operations of energy industries in the Middle East, Africa, Latin America and Asia.
Mr Sellies was Chief of Party for a USAID-funded project aimed at advancing the Palestinian energy sector to support affordable and sustainable energy independence in the West Bank and has held similarly senior roles in other countries, including for a DFID-funded renewable energy programme in Somaliland, a USAID-funded electricity sector project in Haiti and a World Bank-funded reconstruction project in Afghanistan.
Mr Sellies is skilled and experienced in overseeing energy sector reform, advising on and promoting clean energy (including solar), designing energy systems, resolving technical challenges, estimating future energy needs, leading multicultural teams, monitoring and evaluation, budget control, scheduling, planning and contractual procurement.
He has also worked on energy-related projects in the Cocos (Keeling) Islands, Dubai, Fiji, Ghana, Haiti, Hong Kong, Iran, Iraq, Papua New Guinea, Qatar and the Solomon Islands.