Melvin Crawford is the Managing Partner/CEO of Development Management Associates LLC (DMA). True to his ambition when graduating from Ricks in 1973, Melvin is today an Engagement Manager, Regional Planner, and Africa expert, with more than 15+ years of experience leading multidisciplinary teams of subject-matter experts (SME’s) on high-level United Nations (UN) missions to 21 African governments in East, West, and Southern Africa. He has served in some of the most senior positions in the United Nations Development Programme as Operations Manager, Assistant Resident Representative, and Special Assistant to the Deputy Special Representative of the UN Secretary General and to the UN Resident Coordinator. After migrating with his family to the United States in 2000, he sustained his passion for Africa by serving as Fundraising Director at Habitat for Humanity International (HFHI) forming partnerships and raising money for social housing projects in Africa, Middle East, Central America, Central Europe, and India.
After leaving HFHI in 2009, he established a consulting business with the vision to recruit and deploy Diaspora talents to help resolve Africa’s problems with a particular focus on Liberia’s recovery. And since the inauguration of the Ellen Sirleaf’s administration in Liberia, he has served intermittently as the Lead Program Advisor/Consultant to Minister(s) of Finance and Development Planning (Liberia’s Treasury, and fiscal and Economic Development authority) on the formulation, implementation, and reviewing of two five-year national development plans, two (first ever) five-year strategic plans (covering 2014 to 2023) for the treasury and fiscal authority, among other things.
The firm he manages (DMA) was formed and began operations in Atlanta. DMA moved its main office to Monrovia, Liberia in 2010 as a statement of commitment to play a significant investment and policy advisory role for clients in Liberia and the ECOWAS subregion. Melvin has cultivated a solutions “mindset” over the years. And believes that all the means for resolving Liberia’s and ECOWAS major problems are there. We just have to grab hold of the solutions and run well.
He is married to Williette Horace Crawford who he met right after leaving Ricks. They live in Atlanta metro and have 5 grown and successful children who are playing leadership roles and winning recognition in Investment Banking, Information Technology, aerospace engineering, and the food service industries.
At Ricks, Melvin was active in student leadership and there began to build his skills in public communication. He was President of the Sports Association, Senator for the 11th Grade class (and the lead drafter of the first student government constitution), Asst Editor and Editor in Chief of the Newspaper “the Excelsior”, on the school team for national competition on TV, member of the Science and Math (SicioMatic) Club, and member of the Drama club.