AUTM Annual Meeting in New Orleans to Feature Alejandra Y. Castillo, U.S. Assistant Secretary of Commerce for Economic Development Washington, DC – January 31, 2022


Alejandra Y. Castillo, U.S. Assistant Secretary of Commerce for Economic Development, will be a featured speaker at the AUTM Annual Meeting Fireside Chat, on Sunday, February 20, from 5:30 – 6:30 p.m., at the Hilton New Orleans Riverside. She will discuss the U.S. Economic Development Administration’s (EDA) seven investment priorities, the importance of federally funded research and technology transfer on advancing them, and EDA’s historic $3 billion allocation under President Biden’s American Rescue Plan, among other topics.

As head of the EDA, Ms. Castillo is responsible for fulfilling the agency’s mission of leading the federal economic development agenda, including overseeing the implementation of EDA’s  American Rescue Plan funding. An experienced public administrator, she previously served as National Director of the Department of Commerce’s Minority Business Development Agency and held senior policy positions at the White House and the International Trade Administration. The media is invited to attend the Fireside Chat as well as the rest of the four-day Meeting, which will also feature:

Crisis-solver Lt. General Russel L. Honoré, perhaps best known as “The Category 5 Gen,” for his striking leadership style in coordinating military relief efforts in post-hurricane New Orleans, will address how we can use technology to address the world’s most enduring issues.  Honoré will be the opening keynote speaker on Monday, February 21. Meet Lt. General Honoré

Economist-turned-medical-designer, Anna Young works from a fundamental belief that, with the right tools, everyday people can use their ingenuity to create devices that heal. Applying years of global experience with the Maker Movement, she brings prototyping tools and makerspaces into hospitals to enhance the natural problem-solving abilities of clinicians and patients. She is the Co-Founder of MakerNurse, a Robert Wood Johnson Foundation sponsored program to support inventive, frontline nurses. Her roots come from MIT as a researcher in the Little Devices Lab and as a lecturer in the Institute for Medical Engineering and Science. Young will be the closing keynote speaker on Wednesday, February 23. Meet Anna Young

About AUTM
AUTM is the non-profit leader in efforts to educate, promote and inspire professionals, throughout their careers, to support the development of academic research that changes the world. AUTM’s community is comprised of more than 3,000 members who work in more than 800 universities, research centers, hospitals, businesses and government organizations around the globe. To learn more, visit

For press credentials and complimentary registration, contact:
Leef Smith Barnes
AUTM Chief Marketing Officer
[email protected]

The conference program can be found here. Additional information, including a Media Resource Center, is available on the conference website.