Hilda M. Arellano was the Director of the Scholars in the Nation’s Service Initiative (SINSI) at Princeton University’s Woodrow Wilson School from 2014 to 2016 following her retirement from the United States Agency for International Development (USAID). Her last assignment for USAID was as the Senior Development Advisor at the State Department’s Foreign Service Institute. In August 2013 Ms. Arellano returned from Afghanistan where she served at U.S. Embassy Kabul as the Coordinating Director for Development and Economic Affairs. For this position she held Ambassadorial rank.
Before joining Embassy Kabul, she served as Counselor at USAID in Washington DC, and prior to that as Mission Director in Egypt, Iraq, Peru, Regional Center – Budapest, and Ecuador. Ms. Arellano joined USAID in 1987 and her first assignments were to Guatemala, Bolivia and Ecuador. She served as Deputy Mission Director in Guatemala and Bolivia.
Before joining USAID, Ms. Arellano lived and worked in Latin America for 17 years. In 1971 Ms. Arellano joined the United Nations Volunteer Program and was posted to Peru and Bolivia for three years working on credit projects for rural women. She subsequently did consulting and project management work for the World Bank, the UN and the Organization of American States.
A graduate of Cornell University with a BA in Political Science, Ms. Arellano has a Master of Arts in Political Science from the University of Texas at Austin. She also received her Masters of Arts in Teaching from Antioch College.
A native of Westfield, New Jersey, Ms. Arellano and her husband, Jorge, have four children and seven grandchildren.