Linda Hiniker Eddleman

Linda Hiniker Eddleman

Chief Executive Officer, The Trust for the Americas – Washington, D.C. (2002 – Present)

Oversees implementation of multi-year capacity building projects in 21 countries in the Western Hemisphere directed at both individuals and local NGOs. Programs for individuals provide job training/placement to underserved populations. Specific programs include:

  • Technology for Development: Programs such as POETA and MI Llave provide information communication technology (ICT) skills, leadership training and support for establishing microenterprises to people with disabilities, at-risk-youth and demobilized combatants (Colombia).  Public/private partnership funded primarily by the US, Canada, Colombia, the IDB, and Microsoft.  Over 200 private sector companies, 75 local NGOs and 35 universities participate in these programs that have provided training to over 250,000 participants.  Leveraging of core funding has allowed program to grow from two centers in Guatemala to 80 in 21 countries in six years
  • Youth Training: Provide job skills, “life skills”, and job placement assistance to at-risk youth in the Eastern Caribbean and Central America.  Funding provided by Canada, U.S, Microsoft, and Cisco
  • Tourism Training: Provided basic business training (accounting, finance, strategic planning) as well as how to effectively use ICT to improve efficiencies to small hotel owners in the Eastern Caribbean

Programs for NGOs provide training in management, advocacy and use of ICT to improve efficiencies, including:

  • Microfinance/Environment: Pilot program provided training and funding to Eastern Caribbean banks that made micro-loans to local businesses and individuals to allow them to convert to solar power
  • Microenterprise: Participated in creation and implementation of Colombia’s program to support microenterprises created and operated by demobilized combatants (through Mi Llave program)
  • Trade/Competitiveness: Multi-year USAID trade-capacity building program that promoted information exchange and dialogue on the opportunities and challenges that could result from the US/Colombia FTA. Over 100,000 participants in program that operated in 22 regions, including Red Zones. Program involved unions, civic groups, local businesses and senior government officials. Related program provided training to civil society groups, local businesses and local governments on the internal reforms needed to increase Colombia’s competitiveness after implementation of US/Colombia FTA. Served as a model for other AID-funded trade capacity programs
  • Labor/Alternative Dispute Resolution (ADR): State Department-funded program to promote an understanding of rights and responsibilities established in the Labor Chapter of the CAFTA. More than 20,000 individuals participated representing local businesses, labor unions, and NGOs from six Central American countries. Key component provided training in use of existing ADR mechanisms. Related program educates business owners, local government ministries and unions about rights of migrants under CAFTA

Prior to her work at the OAS, Ms. Eddleman served in the Clinton Administration as Deputy Assistant Secretary of State for Regional Economic Affairs, as well as a Special Negotiator for Trade Agreements at the Department of State.  She was also a Senior Trade Policy Advisor at the Treasury Department and before that a White House Fellow, serving as the special assistant to the Deputy U.S. Trade Representative.  She practiced law in Madrid, New York, and Washington D.C., respectively,  from 1988-1997.