Ponti-Lazaruk has nearly 17 years of leadership experience at USDA Rural Development, leading the Telecommunications and Water Programs for more than 11 years, and leading critical agency-wide efforts to streamline programs and increase the agency's impact in rural areas.
The Rural Development Innovation Center is hard-wired into USDA’s structure, with a mission to identify best practices and bring continuous improvement in program delivery to enhance rural quality of life.
For more information, visit Rural Development Innovation Center.
Innovation Center Mailbox RD.Innovation@osec.usda.gov
The Center is comprised of three teams that support Rural Development’s programs to help build prosperity in rural communities:
Data Analytics Division
The Innovation Center's Data Analytics Division analyzes and evaluates program performance to support strategic investment of RD programs.
The Innovation Center's Partnerships Division builds and maintains multi-sector partnerships, promotes cross-agency collaborations, and identifies best practices in economic development. The team collaborates with the Data Analytics and Regulations Management Divisions to improve program delivery and equip Rural Development staff with the economic development tools necessary to drive prosperity in rural communities.
Factsheets and Guides
- Strategic Economic Development and Community Development (SEC-D)
- Rural Economic Development Innovation (REDI)
- Rural Workforce Innovation Network (RWIN)
- Broadband Resources for Rural America
- Tribal Resources Guide
Regulations Management Division
The Innovation Center's Regulations Management Division supports program areas in the development and implementation of regulations, directives, and forms to manage agency policies and procedures.