Matthew Aho is an international affairs specialist at Akerman Senterfitt, with more than eight years of experience working on issues throughout Latin America, with a particular focus on Cuba, Venezuela, Central America, Peru, and Mexico.
Prior to joining Akerman, he was Manager of the Policy Department at the New York headquarters of Americas Society and Council of the Americas (AS/COA)—the Western Hemisphere’s premiere business membership organization—and editor of the hemispheric policy magazine Americas Quarterly. From 2009–2012, Matthew oversaw the AS/COA’s Cuba Working Group (CWG), which since 2008 has brought together senior executives of select-Fortune 500 companies with officials from the U.S. Departments of State, Commerce, Treasury, and the National Security Council to discuss topics including financial services, telecommunications, energy, pharmaceuticals, hospitality, and agriculture. The CWG’s discussions focus on possible future changes to U.S.–Cuba relations. In this capacity, Matthew is a recognized expert on the legal and regulatory frameworks comprising the U.S. embargo on trade with Cuba. During his tenure at AS/COA, Matthew also worked on region-wide public policy projects on issues ranging from insecurity and violence prevention to youth unemployment.
Matthew holds a Master of International Affairs degree in international economic policy from Columbia University’s School of International and Public Affairs (SIPA) and a B.A. in Political Studies from Bard College. Matthew has lived extensively in Latin America, including Venezuela, Peru, and Brazil. In 2002, he was awarded a Fulbright grant and conducted year-long research on agricultural markets in Peru. Matt is fluent in Spanish and proficient in Portuguese and Russian.