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Samar Arny, PMP

Harvard University Graduate | PMP Certified | Former US Diplomat to Sweden | Governed on boards of 10+ nonprofits

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Meet Samar

Samar Arny is the Executive Director of WhidbeyHealth Foundation. She joined the foundation in March 2023 to continue to serve the Whidbey Island community and drive impactful results, partnerships, and sustainable growth initiatives. She returns to serve with the mission of empowering healthcare on remote Whidbey.   


Samar is a Harvard University graduate with a master’s degree in Management, a certified Project Management Professional (PMP) from the Project Management Institute, and a distinguished graduate from the Joint Military Attaché School through the Defense Intelligence Agency.  


The Whidbey community is not new to her. She was honored to serve alongside her husband, Captain Matt Arny, when he held the commanding officer position for Naval Air Station Whidbey Island (NASWI) from 8/2018 to 7/2021. As a Base COW and a full-time community advocate, she served as the voice and face of the US Navy community—dedicated to empowering military family members of 10,000+ personnel within 50 commands on NASWI. 


In 2020, she was recognized by the Former Second Lady, Mrs. Karen Pence for her distinguished leadership and community advocacy programs on Whidbey. She was awarded the Military Spouse of the Year for NASWI and made it to the top three Navy candidates nationwide. 


In 2021, she was distinguished by the First Lady Dr. Jill Biden for her invaluable dedication and leadership on Whidbey. On March 9, 2021, Dr. Biden opened her remarks during her historic visit to Whidbey by saying,  


“I am so impressed by your work. Everything you do from employment, to healthcare, to childcare…Thank you for your dedication and your service…your leadership here is invaluable…”  


Samar contributed to the development and launch of Dr. Biden’s Joining Forces Initiative—driving policy changes and empowering the voice of thousands of service members and their families. During the same year, she was recognized by LinkedIn on its first TopVoices list across the military community—nationwide. 


Her career journey is distinguished with a pattern of leading complex engagements, partnerships, and projects from launch to execution within the USA, Sweden, Dubai, Abu Dhabi, and Lebanon. These efforts ranged in complexity, scope, and scale. Examples of her leadership experience include leading 3 public private partnership projects in Abu Dhabi of $35M budget to develop underserved and rural regions at the borders of Saudi Arabia and Oman, to leading the operations and launch of $20M Inspection Program in Dubai, to serving as a US diplomat to Sweden coordinating programs with international diplomats from all over the world, all the way to the White House and the Pentagon coordinating policy change initiatives and programs to empower military families and promote diversity, equity, and inclusion within our military.

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