UAA Committees

Guidance on UAA Committees

Address communications for any of the Committee Co-Chairs to: to their attention. 

UAA’s activities are carried out by UAA Committees.  Click here for Committee Guidance.

Annual General Meeting

Co-Chair:   Steve Wingert
Co-Chair:  Terry Brown

The AGM Committee is responsible for planning and scheduling the UAA Annual General Meeting (AGM). The UAA Articles of Association and By-laws do not prescribe the functions and activities of the Annual General Meeting other than to state that it will be held. The AGM Committee meets monthly prior to the AGM to decide on the agenda, venue, and required support services for the Meeting, and to obtain commitments from participants in panels and other individuals and officials according to the requirements of the Meeting’s agenda. The Committee Co-chairs will also negotiate contracts for the venue and services required for the meeting, which will be forwarded to the UAA Treasurer for signature. 


Chair:  Betty Cook

The Awards Committee’s purpose is to manage the annual UAA Awards Program. The signature award, Alumni of the Year, is granted to UAA contributing members to recognize and celebrate new paths taken by USAID alumni to provide service to their communities and to make lasting contributions to others at home and abroad.  Additional Board-approved awards, such as Lifetime Achievement Recognition, are supported by the Committee.  The Awards Committee was created in 2014 as a subcommittee of the Membership Committee.  Its members are considered members of the Membership Committee but are recruited separately, and its work is conducted independently and in confidence pending announcement of the award winners at the Annual General Meeting. You can email this committee at:

Development Issues

Co-Chair:   Stephen Haykin
Co-Chair:  Gail Spence, Dottie Rayburn

This Committee tracks and keeps the UAA membership advised on key development issues, new development challenges and the changing foreign assistance environment. The Committee’s goal is to ensure that the UAA membership is kept abreast of development innovations through UAA’s membership in the Modernizing Foreign Assistance Network (MFAN) and through monitoring the work of development-oriented think tanks and journals as well as the publications of UAA members.  This Committee is responsible for organizing the Development Dialogue luncheon series hosted by DACOR. 

Finance and Administration

Co-Chair:  Carol Dabbs
Co-Chair:  Rob Sonenthal

The Finance and Administration Committee provides for the oversight of UAA finances and audits, the UAA website, and staffing issues.


Co-Chair: Tom Nicastro
Co-Chair: Barbara Bennett

This Committee serves as the central operational unit to grow the membership and support Board-approved UAA activities by mobilizing UAA member- volunteer work and by facilitating Board fund-raising and membership contributions. The Committee builds and maintains: 1) a regularly updated Directory of former USAID employees and an e-mail system to reach retirees regularly with UAA notices; and 2) a low-cost website. The Committee encourages greater membership engagement through newsletters, regional gatherings and other member-identified activities.  You can email this committee at:

Mentoring Program

Co-Chair: Denise Rollins
Co-Chair: Sharon Paulilng

The UAA/USAID Mentoring Program is ten years old. Now in Cohort 12, the program matches field-based Foreign Service Officers (FSOs) as mentees with USAID alumni (retiree volunteers) mentors. This mentee-driven program allows mentees to establish the parameters of the mentoring, such as frequency of calls (often every 3-4 weeks, for an hour) and subject matter.  Conversations are confidential.  The prime purpose of the program is to provide USAID career FSOs with professional and career guidance from experienced former USAID employees. At the outset of their participation in the Mentoring Program, mentors and mentees receive orientation training organized by UAA.  Please see a full description of this committee’s work by clicking here.  You can email this committee at:

Public Outreach

Co-Chair:  Beth Hogan
Co-Chair:  Christine Sheckler

The purpose of the Public Outreach Committee is to sponsor activities that will inform the American public and the professional development community on successful and sustainable development by drawing upon the wisdom, lessons and collective on-the-ground experience of UAA’s membership. The Public Outreach Committee has established a Speakers Bureau to facilitate outreach to US organizations and communities. You can email this committee at:

Social Events

Co-Chair:  Karen Freeman
Co-Chair:  Margot Ellis

The Social Committee, independently or in conjunction with other UAA Committees, sponsors or coordinates events to bring members together to create opportunities for renewal of friendships and professional networks.


Co-Chair:  Alex Shakow
Co-Chair:  Carol Peasley

The History Committee was formed several years ago to raise funds for, select the author of, and support the compilation, publication and distribution of an independent history of 60 years of AID’s development experience.   The Enduring Struggle was published in 2021 and has been well-received both inside AID and by outside readers.  The Committee continues to seek ways it can be made available more broadly, including in universities for use in their teaching, to increase understanding of AID’s rich history.  The Committee has established a close working relationship with the American University Library Archives as a place where historical AID alumni materials can be collected and catalogued, making them easily accessed by students and scholars for years to come. The Committee also collaborates with the Association of Diplomatic Studies and Training to expand the number of AID oral history interviews in the ADST collection.