GIF Team

Jason Zhengrong Lu
Jason Zhengrong Lu
Head
Jason Z. Lu joined the GIF as Lead Infrastructure Finance Specialist after ten years of working at the Multilateral Investment Guarantee Agency (MIGA) of The World Bank Group. While at MIGA, Jason worked on a broad range of complex energy and infrastructure projects worldwide. He has built expertise in managing and closing complex projects and advising clients on infrastructure financing, risk mitigation and credit enhancement to support their investment and financing needs in emerging markets and developing economies. Jason started his banking career with Bank of America in its Global Project Finance Group in 1996 where he was responsible for transaction structuring and execution. He also worked at ABB Energy Capital with responsibilities for renewable energy financing in the United States and State Street Bank and Trust Company in credit and portfolio management. Jason holds graduate degrees from Yale University (MBA), Central European University (Prague), and China’s Peking University.
Towfiqua S. Hoque
Senior Infrastructure Finance Specialist
Michael Kane
Senior Infrastructure Finance Specialist
Michael joined the World Bank from the African Development Bank (AfDB) where over an 8 year period, he held several positions/titles in the Infrastructure Complex with the latest being as a PPP Advisor within the Renewable Energy Department working on project development and transaction structuring for small to medium scale RE projects across several technologies including biomass, WTE, mini-hydros, and Solar. His other role in AfDB was as in the Transport Department where he was a TTL for public sector financed projects/programmes. Prior to the AfDB, Michael worked in engineering consultancy in the UK focusing on the transport/highways sector where he advised clients including the Highways Agency on the PFI Roads Programme, PFI SPVs/JVs, Transport for London (TfL), the Olympic Delivery Authority (ODA), Private Developers and municipal/county councils. Michael is a national of Ghana where he completed his undergrad studies with a BSc in Civil Engineering. He has an MSc Transport Engineering & Planning (University of Salford, UK) and MSc Infrastructure/Construction Economics (University College London/UCL, UK) and in the process of concluding an MBA at Imperial College London.
Lori Kerr
Senior Infrastructure Finance Specialist
A banker by profession with more than two decades of leadership in international development and emerging markets sustainable infrastructure investment, Lori joined the Global Infrastructure Facility in September 2018. Prior to the GIF, Lori was a Senior Director at Climate Finance Advisors, BLLC where she worked with private developers, investors and financiers, as well as governments and development finance institutions on low-carbon, climate-resilient investment strategies and designed blended finance solutions through programmatic approaches (e.g. facilities, funds) and project-level investments. Previously, Lori held a variety of senior positions at the Inter-American Development Bank Group, including management and senior officer roles. She was private sector focal point for the Climate Investment Funds and the Global Environment Facility, and in addition to serving as investment committee chair of a US$250 million donor-backed blended climate finance fund, Lori chaired the portfolio supervision committee overseeing loan and equity portfolios, and was a member of the credit committee reviewing risk/return of proposed loans and investments. As a senior advisor to the VP of Private Sector Operations, she led a variety of strategic initiatives aimed to support the expansion and development impact of the IDB Group’s private sector activities. Previously, as a senior investment officer, Lori led the origination, analysis, structuring, negotiation, and execution of limited and non-recourse project finance, corporate finance and guarantee transactions in sustainable infrastructure and clean energy throughout Latin America and the Caribbean. Lori holds an International MBA in Finance and Economics from the Schulich School of Business at York University in Canada.
Atsuko Okubo
Senior Counsel
Atsuko, a Japanese citizen, first joined the Bank in 1998 as a consultant in Corporate Finance unit, Legal Vice Presidency (LEG) to provide legal advice and services to the World Bank’s borrowing, asset management, and liquidity investment transactions. She has since held several positions in LEG, including in Co-financing and Project Finance unit and Special Operation unit, where she worked on a number of Bank guarantee operations and risk sharing facilities in collaboration with IFC and MIGA. She also worked on the establishments of a number of cutting-edge financial mechanisms, including among others the Pandemic Emergency Finance Facility (PEF) to set up the world’s first pandemic risk insurance mechanism using bond and derivative transactions; the Caribbean Catastrophe Risk Insurance Facility (CCRIF) to set up the world’s first multi-nation catastrophe risk fund; the Adaptation Fund to support the first-ever monetization of certified emission reduction (CER) credits collected by UNFCCC as a share of proceeds; and the Clean Investment Funds (CIFs) to mobilize different types of donor contributions and provide a wide range of financings. Her most recent assignment was a Senior Counsel in Development Finance unit in LEG, where she served as the Team Lead for Trust Funds, Programs and Partnerships. Prior to joining the Bank, she worked for Toshiba HQ and Jardine Fleming Investment Trust and Advisory Company in Japan. She also taught at a university in Japan as a professor and served as a visiting researcher at Harvard Law School. She holds a B.A. from Kobe University in Japan, an M.A from Sheffield University in U.K., and an LL.M with distinction from Georgetown University Law Center in U.S.A.
Zanele Hlatshwayo
Infrastructure Specialist
Zanele, a South African national, joined the GIF team in 2018 as an Infrastructure Specialist. Zanele started her career off in investment banking and has over 8 years’ experience in project finance across multiple markets including Africa, South-East Asia and Western Europe. Prior to joining GIF, Zanele was a Senior Manager in the Deals team at Pricewaterhouse Coopers in Nairobi, Johannesburg and Shanghai. She advised across the entire project finance value chain and was involved in financial structuring and commercial negotiations for buy and sell side PPP transactions. Key projects included advising the National Treasury of Kenya on the roll out of USD2.5 billion road financing program. Prior to PwC Zanele worked at a corporate finance boutique advising public sector clients in sub-Saharan Africa on the privatization and/or restructuring of national assets. Zanele focused on the transportation and energy industries and was involved in deals in Mozambique, South Africa, Tanzania, Zambia, Botswana and Cameroon. Zanele holds an LLB (Hons) from Lancaster University (UK), a Master’s in Public Policy from the National University of Singapore and an MBA from IE Business School, Madrid.
Robert William Pilkington
Robert William Pilkington
Infrastructure Specialist
Rob joined the GIF team in 2016 as Infrastructure Specialist with over 10 years' of experience advising on the development of infrastructure projects in over 20 countries across the globe, and with a particular emphasis on Latin America. Rob holds a Masters in Applied Economics from Johns Hopkins University, and is a CFA charterholder. He is a native English speaker, and having lived in both Colombia and Brazil speaks Spanish and Portuguese. Prior to joining GIF, Rob spent six years working for the infrastructure finance team of the consultancy Steer Davies Gleave, culminating with 18 months spent leading their Sao Paulo office. Subsequent to this, Rob worked for three years at the Interamerican Development Bank focusing on regional infrastructure integration in Central America and the strategic planning and pilot implementation of the IDB's PPP project development capability. Key projects included leading IDB's pre-feasibility support to the Paraguayan government for the Rutas 2 & 7 highway expansion and the strategic planning of the Corredor Pacifico logistics corridor in Mesoamerica. During this period Rob also led the technical oversight of the IDB's Spanish language online PPP knowledge sharing course.
João Reye Sabino
Investment Officer
João joined the World Bank Group in Brazil in June 2011. He started working at IFC in the manufacturing, agribusiness and services department on the investment side. He then moved to IFC transaction advisory services in 2013, where he contributed to developing and structuring infrastructure projects in various sectors including: transport (airports and roads), energy (distribution and public street lighting), education and forestry. Prior to the joining the WBG, João worked in a think-tank, structuring a local development fund and analyzing income generation in the Amazon rainforest area. João speaks Portuguese, English, Spanish and French. He holds a Bachelor in Public Management and an MBA in Finance.
Agnes Chew
Analyst
Agnes is joining the GIF team in Singapore as an Analyst. Agnes started her career at the Singapore Economic Development Board, where she built economic forecast models and was responsible for developing cross-sector partnerships. Agnes has also worked with the UK Department for International Development and Save the Children in London. Agnes is the published author of a nonfictional book titled The Desire for Elsewhere (2016, 2nd ed.: 2017), and has served as volunteer writer for UN Women. She holds a MSc in Development Management from the London School of Economics where she was awarded the Best Overall Performance Prize, and a double degree in Economics and Business from the Singapore Management University.
Rui Ma
Operations Analyst
Rui joined the Global Infrastructure Facility in May 2017 as an Operations Analyst. Rui has been working in the World Bank for over 20 years and held various positions including most recently supporting the Climate Investment Fund (CIF) on its budget formulation and monitoring, funds management and financial reporting. Prior to that, Rui was responsible for the resource management of the Poverty GP and South Asia Region. She also worked in the World Bank’s Beijing office to provide project support to the energy team. Rui holds an MBA from the University of Maryland University College.
Giulia Motolese
WBG Analyst
Giulia, an Italian national, started her career working in lobbying and public affairs in London and Brussels, first with the Confederation of British Industries and then with an agency, focusing on clients in the energy sector. She then joined Booz Allen Hamilton to work on the development of utility-scale renewable energy projects for the US federal government. She has also collaborated with an Italian consulting firm to write a report on Turkey’s renewables and power sector, and has worked on policy analysis at the EU Delegation to the USA and at the Italian Senate. Prior to GIF, Giulia spent two years in the World Bank with PPIAF, supporting the management of the Global Knowledge portfolio and implementing PPIAF’s Knowledge strategy. Giulia holds a Masters of Arts in International Economics, Energy, Resources and Environment from The Johns Hopkins School of Advanced International Studies (SAIS), and a Bachelor of Science in Politics and Economics from the University of Bath.
Carmel Ruth Lev
Consultant
Carmel Lev, who joined the GIF in July, 2019 as a Strategy, Knowledge & Partnerships Consultant. In tandem to her work at the GIF, Carmel serves as a Strategy Associate for Spectrum Impact, an impact investing consulting firm that works with public and private sector clients to develop investment strategies and products that integrate social and environmental impact. Before joining the GIF, Carmel worked for the IFC’s Inclusive Business unit, housed within the Blended Finance Department. Her work at IFC focused on scaling private sector investment into emerging market companies that integrate low-income populations into their business models. In her role, Carmel also helped manage IFC’s Social Bond Program, which funds projects that have a direct focus on increasing access to goods and services for underserved groups. Previously, Carmel worked at Impact Investment Exchange (IIX) in Singapore, providing investment readiness advisory services and recommending innovative financing solutions to social enterprises in the Asia-Pacific region. Carmel also supported the Case Foundation’s Impact Investing portfolio as a graduate intern. Prior to Case Foundation, Carmel served as a Senior Program Assistant at the National Democratic Institute, managing and implementing U.S. government and international donor-funded foreign assistance programs in the Middle East & North Africa. Carmel earned an MS in Global Business & Finance from Georgetown University’s School of Foreign Service and a BA in Global Studies and World Arts & Cultures from the University of California, Los Angeles.
Michael Tran
Consultant
Michael has over 8 years of experience in advising both public agencies and private industry on infrastructure development and public and project financing. He was most recently with KPMG Infrastructure, where he structured PPP transactions for US transportation, ports and logistics, telecommunications, and energy projects. His recent transactions include SH288, a $1bn toll-road in Texas, and the concession of the New Orleans Public Belt. Michael has advised public agencies with large infrastructure portfolios, such as California High-Speed Rail Authority, on implementing PPP programs. Before KPMG, Michael focused on infrastructure financing on World Bank Group projects in Southeast Asia and East Africa with Castalia Strategic Advisors. In his role, key projects include the development of a loan guarantee facility for energy efficiency in the Philippines and a feasibility study for a PPP of a wastewater treatment plant in Albania. Michael also contributed to the IFC's report on energy access, "From Gap to Opportunity: Business Models for Scaling Up Energy Access" in 2012.
Adrián Ortega-Andrade
Consultant
Adrián is from Ecuador and has recently moved from Houston to pursue a career in international development. Prior to this position, Adrián worked for 9 years at TechnipFMC, a multinational Engineering Procurement and Construction (EPC) company serving the energy industry. He has experience in developing public/private infrastructure projects, contract negotiation, project finance, and engineering. Adrián holds a Bachelor’s degree in Civil Engineering from Texas A&M University and a Master’s degree in International Relations from The Johns Hopkins University School of Advanced International Studies (SAIS). In his spare time, Adrián enjoys running, watching soccer, and reading non-fiction novels.
Neeli Shah
Neeli Shah
Consultant