Sharon Freeman Publishes Book on USAID Awards Management

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January 03, 2017

Sharon Freeman Publishes Book on USAID Awards Management

By Elizabeth Walsh

Director, Communications and Marketing InsideNGO

Congratulations to InsideNGO member Sharon Freeman of Creative Associates International, who has published a new book, Development Practitioner’s Gems of Wisdom for Managing USAID Awards.

“This is the book I would have wanted to read before I became a compliance officer,” says Freeman, who has been the senior director of compliance for Creative Associates International since September 2011. “After years of study and research about regulations, I came to realize that an updated resource was needed to bring everything together in one place, from the Uniform Guidance, USAID ADSs, Mandatory Standards Provisions, and applicable U.S. and host government regulations, in order to shed light on how they impact award management and on how implementers comply with them on a day-to-day, function-by-function basis.”

Development Practitioner’s Gems of Wisdom explains the meaning and the importance of award regulations, and looks at the interconnections between 12 key functions that are integral to award management. The function areas examined in-depth range from HQ and field office start-up to close-out as well as everything in between, including human resources, procurement, grants, finance, and other key areas. Likening the book to a “workshop in book form,” Freeman hopes it will become indispensable reference guide for the development community.

Freeman brings a deep and broad perspective to the topic of USAID awards management. She began her career as an auditor with the U.S. General Accounting Office (now the U.S. Government Accountability Office, or GAO) and then joined Booz, Allen & Hamilton as a senior consultant before becoming its regional director for Asia, based out of Hong Kong. She then worked with the former U.S. Trade Development Program (now the U.S. Trade and Development Agency, or USTDA). Concurrently for much of that time, she has also been a small business owner specializing in international development and organizational systems and management through her own company, The All American Small Business Exporters Association (AASBEA). Through all of this, she has honed her publishing expertise.

“I previously wrote 23 books, and published many of them through AASBEA,” Freeman says. “Many of them provided “how to” information about doing business with the U.S. Government and how to do business in various domains such as exporting, leveraging small business programs, and others. It has been my personal calling to learn how to do things and then to share that information with others. I have been writing and publishing books since 1999 when I wrote my first book on exporting for the Department of Commerce.” Two of her prior books are also published under the Gems of Wisdom branding, including Gems of Wisdom for Succeeding in the 8(a) BD Program and Beyond, written for small business owners who want to become more competitive in the government marketplace.

At Creative Associates, Freeman promotes compliance with all applicable U.S. and host government policies, procedures, award terms, and conditions. This entails day-to-day liaising with operational and programmatic units to promote compliance by ensuring understanding, recommending risk minimization strategies, and encouraging all to be champions of compliance in their actions and intentions.

With two dozen books under her belt, what’s next? Clearly Sharon has a calling for capacitation and sharing gems of wisdom…  

Read an excerpt from Development Practitioner’s Gems of Wisdom for Managing USAID Awards here.

Development Practitioner’s Gems of Wisdom for Managing USAID Awards is available here.

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