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Sara VanLear
Project Manager, Development Finance Initiative

Sara VanLear joined the DFI team in 2023 as a Project Manager. Sara brings over 10 years of experience in economic and community development. Prior to DFI, she directed research at RTI International that ranged from national scale economic impact analyses and programmatic evaluations to economic development investment strategies and workforce development assessments. She is adept at using a range of data and cross-sectoral stakeholder input to develop creative, action-oriented solutions. Her work spans a variety of clients that include federal and local government entities, universities, private foundations, nonprofits, and Fortune 500 companies. Sara has a bachelor’s in History from the College of William and Mary as well as a master’s in City and Regional Planning from the University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill.