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Connected DMV Welcomes Matt Erskine and Sarah Bauder to its Executive Team

Cross-Sector regional non-profit highlights year of progress in working toward creating a more economically vibrant and equitable future for all in Greater Washington


April 23, 2021 (Washington, D.C.) - Connected DMV, a cross-sector regional non-profit committed to solving complex economic and social challenges in Greater Washington, today announced two new members to its executive team. Former Obama Administration Commerce Department official Matt Erskine has been named Chief Strategy Officer and former Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation officer Sarah Bauder has been named Vice President of Development and Workforce Initiatives. The organization also announced key milestones reached over the past year.

“Collectively, Mr. Erskine and Ms. Bauder bring to our organization more than 40 years of enacting transformational change,” said Stu Solomon, President & CEO, Connected DMV. “Their impressive relationship and coalition building abilities are exactly what we need to help Connected DMV fulfill its singular mission of delivering on regional initiatives that build an economically stronger and more inclusive future for all through the removal of economic, educational and social barriers.”

As Chief Strategy Officer, Mr. Erskine is responsible for driving a consistent strategy and operating model for advancing the organization’s key initiatives. He has served in a number of economic development leadership roles at the federal, state, and regional level. This includes as Acting Assistant Secretary at the US Department of Commerce, where he led the operations of the U.S. Economic Development Administration (EDA). While at Commerce, he was awarded special recognition from the International Economic Development Council (IEDC) for leadership in the economic development profession. He also served as Virginia Deputy Secretary for Commerce and Trade. Prior to joining Connected DMV, Erskine was at Booz Allen Hamilton, where he served as Principal in the firm’s Citizen Services and Economic Advancement practice.

“I’m really excited to be joining such an experienced and dynamic team at Connected DMV, not only because of its bold mission, but because the organization is forward thinking, transparent, collaborative, inclusive and results driven by design,” said Matt Erskine, Chief Strategy Officer, Connected DMV. “We’ve got our sleeves rolled-up and are laser focused on tapping our region’s great minds and collective resources to create limitless new opportunities for people.”

In her role, Ms. Bauder is responsible for engaging with philanthropic organizations to grow awareness and cultivate interest in Connected DMV’s cross-sector initiatives as well as to support education to workforce regional talent pipeline development. Ms. Bauder has served on the Executive Board for the National Association of Federal Student Aid Administrators, testified before Congress on three occasions advocating for higher education reform, presented to Ben Bernanke and the Federal Reserve Board of Governors, served as a representative for four-year public institutions on both President Bush and President Obama’s Higher Education task force for redundant and burdensome regulations, and was elected to serve on the Negotiated Rulemaking team. She has also worked at the University of Maryland where her career focused on supporting vulnerable and marginalized populations through the development of unique and impactful programs. She took that experience to the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation where she funded backbone partners to effect change.

“What attracted me to Connected DMV is their focus on ensuring that our underserved communities, in particular, are better served by expanded access to opportunities and resources that will enable them to thrive,” said Sarah Bauder, Vice President of Development and Workforce Initiatives, Connected DMV. “This will be particularly important as our region continues to emerge economically from COVID-19, a pandemic which has and continues to acutely impact vulnerable populations.”

Connected DMV works with regional organizations across Washington D.C., Maryland and Virginia -- the DMV -- to deliver initiatives that provide a stronger and more equitable future for all who live, learn, work, and prosper in Greater Washington. Last year, Connected DMV created the organization’s COVID-19 Strategic Renewal Task Force that brought the region together with a mission of improving the long-term social, physical, and digital infrastructures for inclusive economic growth and renewal across the entire DMV region. The Task Force convened monthly to approve 13 region-wide key initiatives that address economic renewal and social equity in response to the pandemic as well as represent billions of dollars in new opportunities and jobs for our region.

In the past year, Connected DMV has achieved other key milestones:

  • Connected DMV’s COVID-19 Strategic Renewal Task Force: The Task Force released a report outlining ambitious, critical initiatives to increase regional resiliency and enable equitable economic growth in the region post-COVID.

  • Global Pandemic Prevention & Biodefense Center: Connected DMV has a vision to create the world’s only comprehensive center to coordinate a global pandemic prevention and response program. The flagship lead initiative of the Global Pandemic Prevention & Biodefense Center will be AHEAD100, which aims to develop human monoclonal antibodies (mAbs) to treat the world's top 100 pathogens across 25 pathogen families most likely to cause pandemics. This will help mitigate the risks and impact of future outbreaks by closing the gap between infections and cures.

  • Accelerating a Hydrogen Market: Connected DMV’s COVID-19 Strategic Renewal Task Force adopted a recommendation to proactively address climate change by establishing a state-of-the art Hydrogen Center that affirms Greater Washington as a national leader in the hydrogen economy and recognizes that without intervention, the future economic costs of climate change will be borne most significantly by already disadvantaged communities. Called the National Capital Hydrogen Center, the goal is to develop a comprehensive strategy and demonstration project that accelerates the market for and adoption of hydrogen-based solutions in the DMV.

  • Potomac Quantum Innovation Center: Connected DMV’s COVID-19 Strategic Renewal Task Force adopted a recommendation to accelerate the formation of a regional network and key partnerships to launch the Potomac Quantum Innovation Center (PQIC). This Center will position the region as a leader in the next generation of quantum technology to solve complex problems in areas such as drug discovery, grid optimization, personalized medicine, AI and more.

  • Regional Resilience Exercises: Connected DMV conducted a food resilience exercise focused on optimizing food distribution to the region’s most vulnerable communities during pandemic conditions. The event was hosted by the Capital Area Food Bank.

  • Fostering Economic Growth and Social Equity: Connected DMV established the first ever cross-sector set of goals and guiding principles for a Regional Economic Development Strategy to help the DMV grow economically and equitably for the long-term. These principles were developed in collaboration with 23 steering committee members from across government, industry, academia, philanthropy, and community organizations.

About Connected DMV

Connected DMV is an initiatives-based, charitable 501(c)(3) organization that works with regional organizations across Washington D.C., Maryland, and Virginia – the DMV – to help drive ongoing improvements to social, digital, and physical infrastructure. Connected DMV focuses on initiatives that span local jurisdictions and require public-private-academia-community collaboration to best achieve the dual objectives of enduring economic health and social equity.

Contact: Toni DeLancey or (703) 980-5935


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