ARLINGTON, Va. – The Student Conservation Association (SCA), the largest provider of hands-on environmental conservation programs for youth and young adults, is pleased to announce the appointment of Dr. Usha Chaudhary as Chief Operating Officer (COO), effective Dec. 13, 2023.

Dr. Chaudhary joins the SCA from Internews, an international media development non-profit organization where she was the Global COO responsible for its strategic and business transformation. She brings a wealth of experience and a stellar track record of helping lead organizations. As the SCA’s COO, Dr. Chaudhary will play a pivotal role in the organization’s growth and operational excellence.

“We are delighted to welcome Usha to the Student Conservation Association for the newly formed role of COO that will connect financial brilliance and operational excellence with the organization’s long-term strategy,” said President and CEO Lidia Soto-Harmon. “Her extensive experience and leadership in building high-performing teams will be instrumental in advancing our mission and vision into 2024 and beyond.”

Dr. Chaudhary will report directly to President and CEO Lidia Soto-Harmon and will focus on driving the SCA’s strategy development, financial management, and operational excellence, accelerating the expansion of the SCA’s urban programming and ensuring the organization’s long-term sustainability.

Before joining the SCA, Dr. Chaudhary also served as the Chief Transformation Officer of The MITRE Corporation, President and Chief Operating Officer of Kettler, Senior Vice President, Chief Financial Officer and Treasurer of The Pew Charitable Trusts, Vice President and Chief Financial Officer at The Washington Post, and Executive Vice President and Chief Financial Officer at United Way of America. Prior to that, she held several executive positions at Freddie Mac with a focus on strategy, operations and risk management.

“I am thrilled to be joining the SCA, an organization that is making significant contributions to raise environmental awareness among our youth while protecting, preserving, and restoring our natural and cultural resources,” Dr. Chaudhary said. “I look forward to partnering with the SCA’s capable leadership and management teams to help advance the mission and vision of the organization.”

Dr. Chaudhary has served on several for-profit and non-profit Boards, including on the Board of Nathan Associates, an international economic consulting organization. She is a strong advocate for education and supports several charitable organizations geared toward bettering youth through structured enrichment programs. A few of her philanthropic involvements include serving on the Boards of the George Mason Honors College and India International School, a Northern Virginia Indian American education and cultural center.

Dr. Chaudhary holds a Doctor of Business Administration from Drexel University, a Masters in Business Administration from George Washington University and a Bachelor of Arts in English from St. Stephen’s College in New Delhi, India. Dr. Chaudhary is also a Certified Public Account and was a 2016 Honoree of the Washington Business Journal 2016 Women Who Mean Business.