The U.S. Economic Development Administration (EDA) has provided nearly 50 years of public service, with a mission of leading the federal economic development agenda by promoting competitiveness and preparing American regions for growth and success in the global economy. EDA is a bureau within the U.S. Department of Commerce that partners with distressed communities throughout the United States to foster job creation, collaboration and innovation.
Assistant Secretary of Commerce for Economic Development
Jay Williams was appointed by President Obama to serve as the Assistant Secretary of Commerce for Economic Development and was sworn into office on May 20, 2014. As the Administrator of the U.S. Department of Commerce’s Economic Development Administration (EDA), Williams is charged with leading the federal economic development agenda by promoting innovation and competitiveness, preparing American regions for growth and success in the global economy.
Prior to joining the Department of Commerce, Jay served as the executive director of the Office of Recovery for Auto Communities and Workers. In this capacity, he worked directly with state and local stakeholders in areas affected by the changing American automotive industry to deliver federal support to ensure they returned to better economic condition. He also served in the White House as Deputy Director for the White House Office of Intergovernmental Affairs. In this position, he led efforts to engage mayors, city council members, and county officials around the country. Williams served as the Mayor of Youngstown, Ohio from 2006 to August 1, 2011. During his tenure as Mayor of Youngstown, Williams led efforts that had a direct impact on improving the quality of life for the citizens of Youngstown. Prior to being elected, Williams spent five years as the Director of Community Development for the city. Before transitioning into public service, Williams enjoyed a distinguished career in banking, which included stints at the Federal Reserve Bank of Cleveland and First Place Bank, as a vice president.
Williams is the recipient of the 2007 John F. Kennedy New Frontier Award. The JFK Library Foundation, in conjunction with the Harvard University Institute of Politics, annually recognizes two exceptional young Americans under the age of 40, whose contributions in elective office, community service or advocacy demonstrate the impact and value of public service in the spirit of President John F. Kennedy.
Williams was born and raised in Youngstown. He graduated from Youngstown State University with a B.S.B.A., majoring in finance.
Matt S. Erskine
Deputy Assistant Secretary/Chief Operating Officer
Matt S. Erskine serves as Deputy Assistant Secretary for Economic Development for the U.S. Economic Development Administration. He was appointed Deputy Assistant Secretary of Commerce and Chief Operating Officer in September 2011.
Before joining the Obama Administration, he was Senior Vice President at the Greater Washington Board of Trade and Executive Director of the Greater Washington Initiative, a private-public regional economic development effort that has helped to position the Washington region as a premier business destination. Additionally, Erskine was President of PLAY, a management consulting firm in Richmond; a Principal in the Advanced Technology-Telecom and Professional Services practices of the management consulting firm Korn-Ferry International; and, management consultant at Coopers & Lybrand Consulting in the Telecommunications & Media Strategy and Federal Government practice areas.
He also served in the public sector as the Deputy Secretary of Commerce and Trade in Virginia Governor Mark Warner Administration, where he led and managed multiple gubernatorial initiatives and had oversight of the operations of 16 departments and agencies, consisting of more than 2,500 employees and a combined annual budget of $800 million. Erskine was also appointed by Virginia Governor Timothy Kaine to the bi-partisan Virginia Research and Technology Advisory Commission.
Erskine earned a Bachelor of Arts (B.A.) from the University of Virginia as an Echols Scholar and a Master of Business Administration (M.B.A.) from the Harvard Business School. He recently completed his five-year term membership with the Council on Foreign Relations. He regularly competes in triathlons, marathons, and endurance races. Erskine and his wife have three children.
Deputy Assistant Secretary for Regional Affairs
Thomas Guevara in his capacity as Deputy Assistant Secretary for Regional Affairs directs and supervises the activities of the Economic Development Administration's (EDA) Office of Regional Affairs, including the Performance and National Programs Division and all six EDA Regional Offices. EDA's Regional Offices are responsible for program delivery of investments that fulfill the agency's mission of leading the federal economic development agenda by promoting competitiveness and preparing American regions for growth and success in the worldwide economy. Mr. Guevara brings over 21 years of management experience in financial advisory services, public-private partnership finance, and local economic development consulting.
Most recently, Mr. Guevara served as a Director at Crowe Horwath LLP in Indiana, where he managed financial advisory services for over $1 billion in bond sales for public and publicprivate capital projects and delivered economic impact studies for projects totaling over $500 million. He previously worked for the state of Indiana as CIO of the largest state agency, where he was responsible for information technology projects and expenditures in excess of $140 million annually, serving over 8500 agency users statewide, and administered by over 250 employees and contractors. Mr. Guevara also served as Assistant State Budget Director at the Indiana State Budget Agency, where he headed the Health and Human Services division. Mr. Guevara's budget oversight responsibilities included over $3 billion in agency budgets, meeting the Governor's mandated spending reduction targets, negotiating budgets with agency heads and legislators, and implementing new spending plans.
Mr. Guevara also has served as an adjunct professor at Indiana University, teaching finance, management and budgeting courses to graduate and undergraduate students.
Director of Performance and National Programs
Bryan Borlik serves as the Director of Performance and National Programs at the U.S. Department of Commerce’s Economic Development Administration (EDA). In this role, he leads EDA’s efforts to measure the economic impact of its investment portfolio while also overseeing the agency’s national research and technical assistance programs. He also directs the Trade Adjustment Assistance for Firms program, which funds a national network of eleven Trade Adjustment Assistance Centers that help to strengthen the competitiveness of manufacturing and service firms that are facing declines in domestic sales and employment due to increased imports of similar goods or services.
Bryan has also served at EDA as the Acting Director of Public Affairs, where he led the bureau’s efforts to educate stakeholder groups and media outlets on EDA's policies and programs, and as Acting Director of Executive Secretariat, in which he oversaw EDA’s correspondence and grant announcement processes.
Before joining the Department of Commerce, Bryan led the public outreach function at the National Council for Advanced Manufacturing (NACFAM) in Washington, a leading policy think tank on U.S. manufacturing competitiveness issues, and served as Director of Membership at the American Society for Training and Development (ASTD) in Alexandria, Virginia. Bryan holds a Masters Degree in Public Administration and Policy from George Mason University in Fairfax, Virginia.
Program Analyst/Project Officer, Research & National Technical Assistance