Sarah Fandell was sworn in as the General Counsel of the USTDA on June 11, 2018. In this capacity, she serves as the chief legal officer and a member of USTDA’s executive management team. She is responsible for providing authoritative legal advice and representing the agency on a diverse portfolio of issues while leading the team of attorneys in USTDA’s Office of the General Counsel. She also provides legal guidance to the Director on broad issues related to the mission, strategic direction and effectiveness of the Agency.
Ms. Fandell previously served as VP, General Counsel and Corporate Secretary at the Millennium Challenge Corporation, where she also served as a member of the executive team and oversaw the Office of General Counsel, including operation of the MCC’s ethics program and anti-fraud and corruption program. Prior to joining the MCC, Sarah briefly served as Strategic Advisor in the Inter-American Development Bank’s Office of Institutional Integrity, and she was the General Counsel of the Inter-American Investment Corporation (IIC) for thirteen years. As chief legal officer for the IIC, which promotes the economic development of its Latin American and Caribbean developing member countries by financing private enterprises, she was responsible for advising the on all legal matters relating to the IIC, including extensive support related to its corporate governance. She oversaw the range of legal services provided by the legal department, which was charged with furthering the institution’s unique private sector mission in Latin America and the Caribbean while appropriately protecting its interests. During her tenure, the IIC pioneered the extensive use of local law in its investment agreements throughout the region to manage the risks inherent in its mission while also maximizing its developmental impact. Building on the IIC’s unique regional perspective, she also took leadership roles in promoting secured transactions reform, the availability of innovative finance to SMEs, and the IIC’s initiatives related to corporate governance improvements for its clients, knowledge products, and the financing of women entrepreneurs, among others.
Sarah joined the IIC in 2001 from Baker & McKenzie’s Chicago office, where she primarily represented U.S.-based clients with respect to their investments and projects throughout Latin America, including extensive work related to telecom, energy and other infrastructure investment projects, joint ventures and privatization. In the 1990s, she worked as an adviser to the Government of Costa Rica, coordinating negotiations involving foreign investment in natural resources, and as a high school teacher in Honduras.
Sarah is fluent in Spanish and Portuguese and holds a BA in History with honors in Humanities from Stanford University and a JD from Harvard Law School.