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Principal Associate, International Development

Catherine Connor has more than 30 years of experience in the domestic and international health fields, working with governments, NGOs, the private sector and bilateral and multilateral agencies in Africa, Latin America and Asia. She is a leader in health system strengthening with a focus on health financing. 
Since joining Abt Associates in 1999, she has managed and delivered technical assistance in health sector reform and system strengthening on several global USAID projects. She leads selected assignments, among them a feasibility assessment of performance-based incentives in Mozambique, a health system assessment in Angola, a regional health insurance workshop for eight countries in sub-Saharan Africa, and a technical session on health insurance for the East Central Southern African Health Community.
Previously, Connor developed a proposal for a self-sustaining HMO for a union of coffee cooperatives in El Salvador on behalf of a donor investment fund and negotiated the successful divestiture of a $1.5-million investment in a hospital and the sale of an IUD distribution company in Brazil. She worked in Brazil for six years in banking and management consulting, including on the launch of a private health insurance administrator serving large self-insured employers. In the United States, she directed a hospital-based program in Massachusetts to coordinate health and social services for homebound elderly through a grant from the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation and a contract with Medicaid, achieving the highest client enrollment in the state.
Connor is currently deputy director of USAID’s global $200-million Health Finance and Governance Project, where she oversees development of technical approaches and work plans and implementation of health financing activities, including health insurance, resource tracking and pay-for-performance.
Connor has field experience in Albania, Angola, Bangladesh, Brazil, Egypt, El Salvador, Ethiopia, Indonesia, Jordan, Liberia, Mozambique, Philippines, Rwanda and Yemen.  


  • Health system strengthening
  • Health policy
  • Health insurance, performances-based financing, contracting
  • Management of large-scale global development projects
  • Language: Portuguese (fluent)

Key Projects

  • Health Finance and Governance Project, USAID Office of Health Systems
  • Health Systems 20/20 Project, USAID Office of Health, Infectious Disease, and Nutrition
  • Partners for Health Reform plus, USAID Office of Health, Infectious Disease, and Nutrition


  • Avila, Carlos, Connor, Catherine and Amico, Peter. August 2013. Universal Coverage of Essential Health Services in Sub-Saharan Africa: Projections of Domestic Resources. Bethesda, MD: Health Finance & Governance Project, Abt Associates Inc.
  • Connor, Catherine, Laurel Hatt, and Thierry Van Bastelaer. Paying for a Healthier Future. Global Health Magazine. Issue 11. Summer 2011.
  • Connor, Catherine; Amélia Cumbi, Paulo Borem, Alix Beith, Rena Eichler, Jodi Charles. January 2011. Performance-based Incentives in Mozambique: A Situational Analysis. Bethesda, MD: Health Systems 20/20, Abt Associates Inc.
  • Connor, Catherine, Denise Averbug, Maria Miralles. July 2010. Angola Health System Assessment 2010. Bethesda, MD: Health Systems 20/20, Abt Associates Inc.
  • Borem, Paulo, Estevao Alves Valle, Monica Silva Monteiro De Castro, Ronaldo Kenzou Fujii, Ana Luiza de Oliveira Farias, Fabio Leite Gastal, and Catherine Connor. January 2010. Pay for Performance in Brazil: UNIMED-Belo Horizonte Physician Cooperative. Bethesda, MD: Health Systems 20/20 project, Abt Associates Inc.
  • Hong, Wang and Catherine Connor, editors. October 2009. Extending Health Insurance: How to Make it Work. Health Systems 20/20 Project, World Bank, WHO. Abt Associates, Inc.
  • Hotchkiss, David; Kate Stillman, Paul Hutchinson, and Catherine Connor. September 2006. Improving Health System Performance through Monitoring and Evaluation. Bethesda, MD: The Partners for Health Reformplus Project, Abt Associates Inc.
  • Connor, Catherine and Fernando Verani. June 2004. Evaluation of GAVI Immunization Services Support Funding Case Study: Mozambique. Bethesda, MD: Abt Associates Inc.
  • Saunders, Margaret K., Raj Gadhia and Catherine Connor. June 2004. Investments in Health Contribute to Economic Development - Health and Wealth. Bethesda, MD: The Partners for Health Reformplus Project, Abt Associates Inc.
Catherine Connor