Our Specialists .

Director, Latin America and the Caribbean Heather Joffe Reyes

Currently the director of the Colombia Rural Finance Initiative, Heather Joffe Reyes is an international development practitioner with more than 15 years of experience in agricultural value chains, small business development, and rural development. In addition, Ms. Reyes has worked on contracts and grants management with an emphasis on designing grant programs to avoid market distortions. She previously served as the deputy chief of party and grants manager for the USAID Bolivia Rural Competitiveness Activity. Ms. Reyes is fluent in Spanish and holds a B.A. in Hispanic studies from Brown University and an M.B.A from James Madison University.

by Heather Joffe Reyes

Building a Financial Services Market Where There Wasn’t One

Emerging economies such as Colombia, Philippines, and South Africa offer sophisticated financial sectors that historically failed to reach marginalized groups. In Colombia specifically, this left rural areas largely unbanked and excluded from the broader economy, after decades of war. In four years, USAID/Colombia’s Rural Finance Initiative (RFI) — implemented by Chemonics — has linked more…