Dr. Jacqueline Rychnovsky Joins COA/COF as Executive Director

Washington, DC (May 5, 2020) –  Dr. Jacqueline Rychnovsky joins as Executive Director of The Commissioned Officers Association of the U.S. Public Health Service (COA) and the foundation of COA, the USPHS Commissioned Officers Foundation for the Advancement of Public Health (COF). Sterling Martin Associates led the search to fill this position.

Dr. Rychnovsky’s professional experience includes more than 25 years in a variety of sectors including a national healthcare association, healthcare organizations and service in the United States Navy.

Prior to accepting this Executive Director role, Dr. Rychnovsky served as the Vice President, Research, Policy & Strategic Initiatives for the Association of Women’s Health, Obstetric and Neonatal Nurses (AWHONN).

In Dr. Rychnovsky’s initial career, she served in the United States Navy as a nurse practitioner in the Navy Nurse Corps. In 2009, Dr. Rychnovsky had the opportunity to pursue her interest in policy and serve as a Health Legislative Fellow in the United States Senate. In this role, Jacqueline served as the Legislative Assistant for Senator Daniel Inouye (D-HI) and was responsible for managing all healthcare-related meetings, drafting legislation, and representing the Senator’s interests in meetings with lobbyists, committees, and constituent staff. After her fellowship ended, Jacqueline returned to her naval positions and served as the Assistant Director, Nurse Corps Policy and Practice for the U.S. Navy Bureau of Medicine and Surgery. In that role, she was tasked with implementing the Surgeon General’s priorities for the provision of centralized policy development and providing professional advice on the health care programs for the Navy.

After a year in that role, Dr. Rychnovsky was deployed to Japan to serve as the Chief Operating Officer for a naval hospital. Dr. Rychnovsky returned to the United States in 2013 and held Chief Executive Officer roles in Naval Health and Medical Research Centers. In 2017, Dr. Rychnovsky made the decision to retire from the Navy and then found her most recent position with AWHONN.


The mission of COA/COF is to protect and enhance the public health and safety of the United States by supporting and advancing the interests of the Commissioned Corps of the U.S. Public Health Service. USPHS is one of seven uniformed services including the: USPHS, Navy, Army, Air Force, Coast Guard, Marine Corps and the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA). For more than 200 years, men and women of the USPHS have served on the front lines of the nation’s public health.   

COA is a 501(c)(6) membership association and COF is the 501(c)(3) nonprofit foundation of the association. COA/COF is located in Landover, MD, outside of Washington, DC. COA/COF was founded in 1951 by a group of Public Health Service (PHS) Commissioned Officers who realized the need for a fulltime effort to advocate for their interests though leadership, education, and communication. COA’s membership is approximately 5,000 and consists primarily of active duty and retired members of the PHS Commissioned Corps.  

About Sterling Martin Associates

Sterling Martin Associates (SMA) is a national executive search firm founded in 2006 by CEO and Managing Partner, David Martin. SMA specializes in working with associations and nonprofit organizations on senior-level executive searches. With five office locations in Washington, DC, Chicago, New York and California, SMA offers national reach and scope while providing superior quality of service in a cost-effective manner. Our partners and consultants bring association, nonprofit and for-profit management experience to each of our client engagements. Our team also serves as volunteers for a wide range of nonprofit governing boards.