Chairman and CEO of Experience International, Inc.  Don Mickelwait founded Development Alternatives, Inc. (DAI) and was its CEO for 30 years.  He is a rural sector economist who has had extensive experience designing projects for USAID.  24 of these have been funded for a total of more than $750 million, including four economic growth projects (January-March 2008) for USAID/Pakistan and three projects in that country’s agriculture sector (January-March 2009).  The Pakistan projects have dealt with employment, enterprise development, trade, microenterprise promotion, horticulture exports, food security, field crops, and livestock and dairy development.  Mr. Mickelwait provides management oversight through regular visits to EI’s ongoing USAID and USDA-funded contracts and private sector initiatives.  He holds advanced degrees in economics from the University of Oregon, the Kennedy School of Government at Harvard University, and the George Washington University.  He has completed advanced management courses from, and is an alumnus of, the Harvard Business School.  He has lived in Bangkok for 20 years and travels extensively throughout Asia.


Donald R. Mickelwait

Rural Sector Program Economist/Designer

The 10 staff listed below provide the core of EI’s development experience.  EI builds teams around these people and others we know can deliver.  We have worked together in many different circumstances and countries for more than 30 years. 

EI’s President. Tony Babb began as a career foreign service officer in USAID-Laos, serving as a rural development advisor in Savannakhet for 4 years.  He was then an agricultural project team leader in Afghanistan, Lebanon, and Jordan for the FAO and served as Deputy Assistant Administrator for Agriculture and Rural Development at USAID.  As the Director of Agriculture at DAI, he led development teams in the Philippines, Cambodia, and Pakistan.  When Mr. Babb retired from DAI after nearly 20 years, he purchased EI, then a DAI subsidiary under his management.  With EI, he was Team Leader on the ADB Uzbekistan Grain Improvement project and a senior technical advisor to Iraq’s agricultural sector, designing and proving the efficiency of minimum tillage technologies for dryland wheat production in northern Iraq.  He was the director of EI’s highly successful agriculture sector development component of the Livelihood Development Program for FATA in NWFP, Pakistan.  Mr. Babb holds a BS degree in Agriculture with a major in Animal Husbandry and a minor in Agricultural Economics from California Polytechnic State University.  He also has a Master’s in Public Administration with an emphasis on Development Economics from the Maxwell School, Syracuse University.  He has done short course studies in rice production at IRRI, farmer cooperatives in Taiwan, and agriculture economics at Cornell University.  He lives in the Sonoma Valley.

Eugene (Tony) Babb

Agricultural Development

Richard Smith is a development professional with technical and management skills in agricultural, natural resources, and rural development project design and implementation.  He has served as COP on seven long-term technical assistance projects for USAID.  He led one of the first area development projects funded by USAID in Pakistan’s North West Frontier Province (now Khyber-Pakhtunkwa), and later directed a Peshawar-centered, cross-border agricultural sector support and training program for Afghanistan.  Formerly, as an officer with UNEP, he managed major natural resource programs for USAID in Kenya and Botswana.  In Cambodia, under ADB funding, he was senior advisor for implementation of a community based development program around Cambodia’s Tonle Sap lake.  In 2002-2003 he led the design survey and overall study for the ADB-funded FATA Rural Development Project in Pakistan, and as Program Director (2008) initiated the USAID/Pakistan Capacity Building Program for FATA.  From May 2009 to June 2011 he was Country Representative for the Asia Foundation’s $40 million annual program in Afghanistan, where he oversaw and guided surveys and created the framework for financial and monitoring assistance to local government.  He has lived and worked in Latin America, Africa, South and South East Asia, holds a Ph.D. in Economic Anthropology from the University of Oregon, and presently resides in Tasmania, Australia.

Richard L. Smith

Development Management

Resident in Asia for more than 20 years, Mr. Harmon has also had long-term assignments in Grenada (W.I.), Indonesia, and Sri Lanka. In addition, he has had extensive experience in Egypt, the Caucasus, and Central Asia. His specialty is the identification of marketing opportunities for high-value horticulture and agribusiness products, and the assembly of the private and public sector resources necessary to exploit those opportunities, frequently involving SMEs with small farmer producers. For Winrock, Mr. Harmon executed the Indonesia Cold Chain Project and, using a small loan fund of $1.5 million, generated more than $18 million in documented new loans and equity investments. This experience served as the basis for a successful proposal awarded to Winrock and EI for the replication of that project in Pakistan to develop private sector investment in high-value horticulture, the cold chain, and agribusiness in Balochistan. Mr. Harmon was the horticulture specialist on EI’s Pakistan Horticulture Development Project Design in February-March 2009, and the strategic planner with multiple trips to support the Horticulture Development Project in Balochistan.  He has also designed private sector investments in Asia and the Middle East for Castle and Cooke Foods, and for FMC.  Mr. Harmon is the founder of Caswell’s Coffee in Indonesia, which has five outlets selling premium fresh-roasted coffees, and an active and growing wholesale business. He holds a degree in economics from the University of Pennsylvania’s Wharton School and a master’s degree in business administration from the Haas School, University of California at Berkeley. He lives in Bali, Indonesia, and travels extensively in Asia.

Henry C. Harmon

Public-Private Investment in Horticulture Value Chains

Geoff Bastin is an Oxford-educated professional economist with international management experience in investment and development projects, commodity markets and trade, agribusiness and food, and competitiveness and innovation.  He has worked as a project manager for Cargill, the world's largest diversified food business, and as an expert advisor in 34 countries.  These were mostly in Asia, including the Commonwealth of Independent States, and in Africa and the Middle East.  He specializes in financial and economic analysis, the identification and design of large-scale agribusiness and rural development projects, competitiveness, and economic policy.  Mr. Bastin was Senior Advisor (2007-09) to the Competitiveness Support Fund, sponsored by USAID and the Ministry of Finance in Pakistan.  He has since undertaken assignments in Eastern Europe, Iraq, Afghanistan, and East Africa.  He resides in Bangkok, Thailand.

Geoffrey Quartermaine Bastin 

Agricultural and Agroenterprise Economist

Bob Resseguie is a manager of agricultural development programs who has had USAID direct-hire experience in Vietnam, Laos, Zaire, Thailand, the Philippines, and Egypt. After retiring from USAID, he led teams as Chief of Party in Laos, Cambodia, and Afghanistan; was a USAID contractor CTO in Macedonia; and has accepted consultancy assignments in the Sudan, Grenada, and Kosovo.  Mr. Resseguie provided agricultural development management services to EI’s Livelihood Development Program for FATA/Pakistan, and made regularly scheduled visits to support the local agriculture implementation teams.  He has completed several assignments as a consultant in Afghanistan.  Mr. Resseguie holds bachelor and advanced degrees in agricultural economics from Cornell University and the University of Vermont, and speaks Thai, Lao, Vietnamese, and French.  He lives in New York State.

Robert W. Resseguie

Development Program Manager

EI’s Information Technology Specialist.  Marcelo Suarez is presently assigned full-time to the Independent Monitoring and Evaluation Project, Pakistan, overseeing the extensive IT components of this $70 million USAID project.  He also supports the EI corporate servers.  Mr. Suarez installs and manages Microsoft Sharepoint solutions, related database systems, and GIS technologies.  Between 2003 and 2007 he was the IT Manager for the $105 million ARDI project in Iraq, supporting the main offices and five remote locations with the full range of wireless LAN/WAN and VSAT technologies.  In the period 2000-2003, he served as systems administrator on DAI projects in Afghanistan, Bolivia, South Africa, Armenia, Honduras, El Salvador, Peru, Ukraine, Ecuador, Lebanon, and Jordan.

Marcelo Suarez

Information Technology

EI’s Director and VP.  Kathy Wei provides HR and operational oversight at headquarters and project administration to EI’s field teams.  She is responsible for EI’s global human resource functions, including benefits, compensation, employee relations, recruitment, and training and development.  She has managed USAID, USDA, and other donors’ projects in conflict zones and has an in-depth understanding of project procedures and management.  She speaks English, Chinese, and Thai, and lives in Bangkok.

Kathy Wei

Development Administration

EI’s Financial Manager.  Having come from many years’ employment with DAI, Emma Durst has handled the special accounting requirements of development projects in the Philippines, Pakistan, Thailand, and the USA.  She has worked with donors that have included USAID, the Asian Development Bank, the World Bank, and various United Nations agencies, as well as independent NGOs.  She has a Business Administration degree in Accounting, is a Certified Public Accountant in the Philippines, and lives in Bangkok.

Guillerma (Emma) Durst

Financial Management

EI’s Editor.  One of the original founders of DAI, John Buck recently completed five years with EI in Bangkok, supporting the administrative, editorial, and production components of major donor projects.  Presently he provides editorial services for EI reports and publications.  He was Phi Beta Kappa from the University of Michigan and holds an MPA from the Kennedy School of Government, Harvard University.  He lives near Washington, D.C.

John M. Buck