2024 Congressional Trade Agenda




On Tuesday, March 5, WITA hosted the annual Congressional Trade Agenda where Congressional Trade Leaders shared their perspectives of the Hill’s Trade Agenda.

This event is OFF-THE-RECORD and was only available LIVE on Zoom on Tuesday, March 5.

No recording of this event is available.


Program Agenda 

9:30 AM (US/Eastern): Welcome 

Kenneth I. Levinson, Chief Executive Officer, Washington International Trade Association

9:35 AM: Discussion Featuring

Sally Laing, Chief International Trade Counsel, U.S. Senate Committee on Finance, Democratic Staff

Mayur Patel, Chief Counsel, International Trade, U.S. Senate Committee on Finance, Republican Staff

Josh Snead, Republican Chief Trade Counsel, Trade Subcommittee, House Ways and Means Committee

Alexandra Whittaker, Democratic Chief Trade Counsel; Staff Director Trade Subcommittee, House Committee on Ways and Means

Followed by 

Q & A with Audience Moderated by Ken – Webinar attendees are encouraged to use the Q&A function on the Zoom app to submit their questions in real time.

11:00 AM: Event Close


Speaker Biographies

Sally Laing is the Chief International Trade Counsel for the U.S. Senate Committee on Finance, Democratic Staff, where she serves as an advisor to Ranking Member Ron Wyden (D-Ore.) and to Democratic Senators on the Committee. In this position Sally and her counterparts work to provide oversight of the U.S. Trade Representative’s Office, U.S. Customs and Border Protection, and the Department of Commerce on trade issues. She also advises on a variety of trade matters, including negotiations and implementation of U.S. free trade agreements, operation of U.S trade and customs laws, World Trade Organization (WTO) negotiations, and similar matters.

Before working for Ranking Member Wyden, Sally served as an Assistant General Counsel in the Office of the General Counsel at the U.S. Trade Representative’s Office. In this capacity Sally was responsible for the development and litigation of several U.S. disputes against China at the WTO. Sally also participated in the United States – Mexico – Canada Agreement negotiations, providing legal support on the sanitary and phytosanitary, agriculture, and other chapters. Before working for the U.S. government, Sally was in private practice specializing in antidumping and countervailing duty proceedings, trade policy, and customs matters. Sally holds bachelor’s and law degrees from the University of Virginia.

Mayur Patel is the Chief International Trade Counsel for the U.S. Senate Committee on Finance, Republican Staff, serving Chairman Chuck Grassley and the Committee’s Republican members.

Previously, he served for over seven years as an Associate General Counsel at the Office of the U.S. Trade Representative (USTR). While at USTR, Mayur was the lead litigator on a number of WTO disputes, including in disputes with China and India. He also served as the lead lawyer for several chapters of the United States – Mexico – Canada Agreement (USMCA), and the proposed Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership (T-TIP). Prior to USTR, Mayur worked at an international law firm in New York practicing corporate litigation. Mayur has a J.D. and an L.L.M. in International and Comparative Law from Duke University School of Law, and a B.A. in International Relations from the College of William & Mary.

Joshua Snead is the Republican Chief Trade Counsel on the Trade Subcommittee of the Committee on Ways and Means in the U.S. House of Representatives. He advises Committee Ranking Member Kevin Brady (R-TX) and Trade Subcommittee Ranking Member Adrian Smith (R-NE) on trade matters, including negotiation and implementation of trade agreements, bilateral relationships with U.S. trading partners, and preference programs for developing countries.

Before joining the Committee staff in 2016, Mr. Snead was in private practice at King & Spalding in Washington, DC, specializing in trade litigation and policy. Previously, he represented U.S. pork producers on trade policy matters as an International Trade Specialist at the National Pork Producers Council. Mr. Snead holds a JD and an MBA from Pepperdine University, and a Bachelor of Arts in Philosophy from Gordon College.

Alexandra Whittaker is the Democratic Chief Trade Counsel and Trade Subcommittee Staff Director of the U.S. House of Representatives. She advises and represents the House Ways and Means Committee on all trade matters including trade agreement negotiations, implementation, and enforcement, bilateral relationships with U.S. trading partners, customs law, preference programs, sanctions, trade remedies, congressional oversight, as well as the World Trade Organization (WTO).

Before joining the Committee staff, Alexandra was Assistant General Counsel for the Office of the U.S. Trade Representative (USTR) with responsibility for providing legal counsel and policy guidance on a wide variety of international trade matters, as well as litigating trade remedies and agricultural disputes before the WTO. During her time at USTR, Alexandra also served as Assistant Legal Advisor to the U.S. Mission to the WTO in Geneva, Switzerland, where she was a U.S. negotiator for the WTO dispute settlement reform negotiations and represented the United States in all disputes and disputes-related matters before the WTO. Alexandra previously worked as an environmental attorney for the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency and counsel for a trade association. She is a graduate of Spelman College and Howard University School of Law.

Kenneth Levinson is the Chief Executive Officer of the Washington International Trade Association (WITA). WITA is Washington’s largest non-profit, non-partisan organization dedicated to providing a neutral forum in the U.S. capital for the open and robust discussion of international trade policy and economic issues. WITA has over 4,500 members, and more than 170 corporate sponsors and group memberships.

Previously, Ken served as Senior Director for Global Government Affairs for AstraZeneca. Prior to joining AstraZeneca, Ken served as Senior Vice President and COO at the Washington, DC consulting firm of Fontheim International. Ken started his career on the staff of U.S. Senator John D. (Jay) Rockefeller IV, where he served as the Senator’s chief advisor for international trade, tax, foreign policy, and national security. Ken received a Master’s degree in European History from New York University after doing his undergraduate work at the University of Massachusetts, in Amherst. Ken also spent a year studying at the University of Copenhagen, Denmark.