IDA Selects DowntownDC BID’s Nabavi Oliver for the 2023 Emerging Leader Fellowship Program


May 10, 2023
For Immediate Release
Contact: Braulio Agnese,

New COO Oliver will be among 30 fellows learning essential leadership and place-management skills

Washington, D.C. — The International Downtown Association (IDA) has selected Nabavi Oliver, the DowntownDC Business Improvement District’s Chief Operating Officer, as one of the urban district management industry’s brightest professionals for the 2023 Emerging Leader Fellowship (ELF) program.

These 30 senior staff hail from 25 cities around North America, including Washington, D.C.; San Diego, California; Moncton, New Brunswick, Canada; Davenport, Iowa; Cleveland; Houston; Denver; and Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada. Alumni of the ELF program, launched in 2016, are fast becoming sought-after leaders for the future of city building worldwide.

“The success of our fellowship program underscores how critical this training is to our growing industry,” says David Downey, President and CEO of IDA. “This is the only program of its kind created specifically for urban place-management professionals. IDA is looking to further illustrate the importance of our industry by elevating leaders with the necessary skills to champion inclusive city building. Professional development remains a hallmark of IDA.”

The ELF program is a week-long experiential curriculum that brings together a cohort of professionals from within the place-management industry. The fellows learn essential leadership and place-management skills and gain practical tools in the areas of place-based economic development, the live-work-play experience, and public-private partnerships.

“I am honored to be selected to participate in this year’s Emerging Leaders Fellowship program alongside esteemed place management professionals,” Oliver says. “I plan to utilize tools from the program across the DowntownDC BID organization in HR, IT, and other departments under my leadership. Additionally, I understand from other previous ELF members that the knowledge shared, and the relationships made, extend far beyond just the program and create lifelong partnerships.”

Gerren Price, DowntownDC BID president and CEO, agrees.

“I know from firsthand experience that the Emerging Leader Fellowship is an invaluable program for place-management organization professionals,” Price says. “Over the years, several DowntownDC staff have taken advantage of it, and I am glad to see Nabavi continue that tradition for us.”

The program will take place June 4–9, 2023, in New York City, where professionals from several place-management organizations across the city will provide technical in-the-field training. The event occurs at various locations throughout Manhattan, with field visits provided by several local BID leaders.

For more information about this year’s cohort, visit

* * *

About the DowntownDC BID
The DowntownDC Business Improvement District (BID) was founded in 1997 and is a private nonprofit organization that provides capital improvements, resources, and research that keep the BID area clean, safe, economically and environmentally strong, and accessible. The DowntownDC BID is a catalyst, facilitator, and thought leader in diversifying the economy, promoting public-private partnerships, and enhancing the downtown experience for all. DowntownDC encompasses a 138-block area of approximately 520 properties, from Massachusetts Avenue on the north, including the convention center at Mount Vernon Square, to Constitution Avenue on the south, and from Louisiana Avenue on the east to 16th Street on the west.

About the International Downtown Association
The International Downtown Association (IDA) is the premier organization for urban place professionals who are shaping and activating dynamic city center districts. Members are downtown champions who bring urban centers to life, bridging the gap between the public and private sectors. IDA represents an industry of more than 2,500 place-management organizations, employing 100,000 people throughout North America and growing rapidly around the world. Founded in 1954, IDA is a resource center for ideas and innovative best practices in urban place management. For more information, visit