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Career Opportunities at USAID’s Office of U.S. Foreign Disaster Assistance (OFDA)

Who: Featuring Aimee Lauer, Division Chief for Program Support, USAID OFDA

When: October 4, 2016, 5:30-7:30 PM

OFDA leads and coordinates the U.S. Government’s response to disasters overseas. On average, OFDA responds to about 70 disasters in 56 countries each year to ensure aid reaches people affected by earthquakes, volcanic eruptions, floods, complex emergencies and other natural and manmade disasters. OFDA is currently responding to humanitarian crises in Ethiopia, the Middle East (Syria and Iraq) and South Sudan.

This information session will discuss the work of OFDA, including the distinction between long-term development and short-term humanitarian assistance and OFDA’s place within the broader USAID landscape. The presentation will outline the multiple pathways for students to pursue careers with OFDA. This includes civil and foreign service, personal services contractors, and other relevant contractor opportunities. Potential career entry points and paths both in Washington and overseas will be highlighted.

About the Speakers:

Aimee Lauer is a member of OFDA's Senior Management Team (SMT) and serves as the Division Chief for Program Support. In this capacity, she manages OFDA's budget portfolio ($2.2B in FY15), information management, contracts, human resources, and information technology functions. She oversees annual spending, provides financial reporting to Agency and Congress, oversees all contracting requirements and grants management policies and processes, and manages all staffing and recruitment requirements. As a member of OFDA's SMT she helps steer the strategic direction of the office. She has led the DC-based components of OFDA's responses to the Haiti earthquake, the Haiti cholera outbreak, and Typhoon Haiyan in the Philippines. She began her 15-year career with USAID as a Presidential Management Fellow. During her time at USAID, she has had the opportunity to work in various countries around the world including Haiti, Egypt, South Africa, Eritrea, Kenya, Namibia, Ethiopia, Madagascar, Thailand, and Nepal. Prior to joining USAID, Ms. Lauer worked for Accenture where she gained extensive experience in IT and financial management consulting. Ms. Lauer received both her Bachelors of Science degree in Foreign Service and her Masters of Science degree in International Development from Georgetown University.

Amy Shatsoff currently serves as the Information Support Unit (ISU) Manager, in support of USAID’s Office of U.S. Foreign Disaster Assistance (OFDA). In this capacity, she manages more than 25 Information Officers who deploy worldwide to provide information support during U.S. Government responses to both natural disasters and complex emergencies. Prior to this role, Ms. Shatsoff served as an Information Officer for nearly three years, during which time she deployed overseas to work on humanitarian response activities in Ethiopia, Fiji, Haiti, Kenya, Pakistan, Tunisia, and Vanuatu. She also worked in Haiti for nearly two years after the 2010 earthquake, supporting USAID’s reconstruction and development programming. Prior to her work with USAID, Ms. Shatsoff worked for the Council for International Exchange of Scholars, where she facilitated Fulbright scholarship exchanges for scholars from throughout Europe and Eurasia. She also served as a Peace Corps Volunteer in Romania, where she taught English to children at local middle schools and volunteered at an orphanage. Ms. Shatsoff holds a M.A. in International Relations from the Johns Hopkins School of Advanced International Studies (SAIS), and a B.A. in History from the University of Rochester.