Sidney Olinyk

Founder & CEO @ Duco

San Francisco, CA, USA

(GMT-08:00) America/Los_Angeles

About Sidney Olinyk

Sidney is the Founder & CEO at Duco, whose mission is to empower leading companies to operate safely, securely, and responsibly by mobilizing the world’s leading experts. 

Sidney's career spans national security, leadership development, and entrepreneurship – from the Pentagon to civil society to Silicon Valley.  She has extensive experience managing people, processes, and operations in multiple organizations in both the private and public sectors. As the CEO of Duco, she brings together her drive to build a scalable organization with lasting impact and her passion for international business and policy.

A former Obama Administration political appointee, Sidney served as the Chief of Staff for Middle East Policy in the Office of the Secretary of Defense from 2013-2014. In this capacity, Sidney was the principal advisor to the Deputy Assistant Secretary of Defense for Middle East Policy and supported the Secretary of Defense in developing strategy and identifying priorities, implementing organizational change, and managing interagency coordination across a number of US national security priorities, including the Syria conflict, the war in Iraq, and peace negotiations in Israel.

Sidney’s private sector experience includes serving as Vice President at Sayara International, an international development organization focused on the Middle East and Afghanistan. At Sayara, she managed global operations and business development from the Washington, DC office. Prior to Sayara, she was the first employee and Chief of Staff at a US-based startup company, Measure, the leading Drone as a Service company, that provides services related to unmanned aerial systems for commercial and civilian use around the world.

From 2010 to 2013, Sidney directed the Leadership Development Department at the Truman National Security Project, a national security and leadership development organization based in Washington, D.C. that identifies, organizes, and positions next-generation American leaders to communicate, advocate, and lead on issues of national security and foreign policy. At Truman, she created and implemented strategy for membership programs and managed professional development, policy development, and policy advocacy engagements for over 1,000 leading political and foreign policy professionals across the country.

Before the Truman Project, Sidney worked at the Department of Justice, where she conducted legal research and advised on mergers and acquisitions, including a $19.5 billion proposed international acquisition in the mining industry.

Sidney is an avid explorer and globetrotter and has visited 25+ U.S. national parks, 50+ countries, and 6 continents. She has led foreign policy delegations in Turkey and Azerbaijan, developed and implemented youth programs at a refugee camp in Kenya, was selected as an Emerging Leader to contribute to the German Marshall Fund’s Atlantic Dialogues conference in Morocco, contributed to the Japan Foundation’s Young Researcher Program in Tokyo and Kyoto, and studied abroad at John Cabot University in Rome, Italy.

Sidney holds a Masters in Science in Global Politics from the London School of Economics and Political Science, where her dissertation explored the implications of the Iraqi refugee crisis post-2003. She holds a dual B.A. in International Studies and Media & Government Studies from American University in Washington, D.C. Sidney is a National Security Fellow at the Truman National Security Project, a visiting Fellow at the National Security Institute at George Mason University’s Antonin Scalia Law School, and a Governing Board member at the Project for the Study of the 21st Century, a global think tank based in London.