Elaine Rogers, President and Chief Executive Officer
Today, USO-Metro is the largest USO affiliate in the world. With ten locations and a “deployable” Mobile USO, USO-Metro provides signature USO services across the greater metropolitan Washington, D.C. and Baltimore region where more than 300,000 troops and their families reside. Under Ms. Rogers’ leadership, USO-Metro has increased the scope and depth of the programs it provides to active duty military and their families, as well as wounded, ill and injured service members and their caregivers.
USO-Metro services have grown exponentially with Rogers’ leadership. The organization focuses on needs-based programs and services which include emergency housing, food assistance, therapeutic and morale-building programs at area military hospitals, a ticket distribution, six recreational family centers, and four airport lounges that cater to the 150,000 traveling through our airport lounges every year. USO-Metro is also responsible for Operation USO Care Package, a worldwide program that has successfully delivered more than two million care packages to deployed and deploying troops.
Recently, in partnership with USO, Inc., USO-Metro opened the largest USO center in the world. At 25,000 square feet, the USO Warrior and Family Center at Fort Belvoir is a state-of-the-art facility that includes a large community room, classroom, music and art rooms, sports lounge, multimedia rooms and a commercial grade kitchen. The grounds also feature beautiful healing gardens, a grill terrace and a fitness trail. A similar facility on NSA Bethesda provides 16,000 square feet of space optimized for relaxation and rejuvenation for recovering service members and their caregivers receiving care at Walter Reed National Military Medical Center.
Throughout her tenure, Ms. Rogers has worked to grow private and corporate annual donations from an annual budget of $100,000 to over $14 million in cash, goods and services. She has successfully developed the volunteer roster from 50 to more than 1,200 caring local citizens. This dedicated volunteer corps, along with meticulous, program-focused management continues to ensure that about 90 cents out of every dollar donated goes directly to programs and services.
For her tireless dedication to members of the U.S. Armed Forces and their families, Ms. Rogers has been recognized by the U.S. Army, Navy, Marine Corps and Air Force with service awards and medals. She has also been honored by the Secretary of Defense with the Outstanding Civilian Service Medal and by the Military District of Washington with the Doctor Mary E. Walker Award. In addition, Ms. Rogers received the Lifetime Achievement Award from Maryland Freestate ChallenNGe Academy, Maryland National Guard. She has also received the Distinguished Civilian Award from the Union League of Philadelphia.
A native of Harrisburg, PA, Ms. Rogers earned her degree from Catawba College in Salisbury, North Carolina. Following college, she embarked upon a lifelong career in social services, working with organizations such as the Red Cross and the Pennsylvania Department of Social Services. She is also a member of the Board of Directors for the National Guard Youth Foundation.
Elaine Rogers began her work at the USO of Metropolitan Washington (USO-Metro) in 1976. She quickly proved herself and became president in 1977. In the four decades since, USO-Metro has grown to serve as a model for a charity changing with the times while staying true to its mission.