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Sean Callahan

President & CEO

Based in Baltimore, MD.

Sean is President & CEO of Catholic Relief Services.

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As regional director for South Asia from January 1998 to May 2004, Sean strengthened CRS’ programming and partnerships in India, Pakistan, Afghanistan, Sri Lanka, Bangladesh and Nepal. He worked closely with Saint Teresa of Calcutta and the Missionaries of Charity in Calcutta and led the regional response to floods, droughts, earthquakes, cyclones and man-made emergencies. He experienced a terrorist attack by the Tamil Tigers at the Sri Lankan airport, and championed programming in Afghanistan during and after the Taliban’s rule.

Sean was executive vice president for Overseas Operations from June 2004 to September 2012. He provided oversight for a program and management portfolio which grew to more than $700 million, serving people in more than 100 countries and engaging a team of more than 5,000 staff.

From 2012 to 2016, Sean served as the chief operating officer for CRS, responsible for Overseas Operations, U.S. Operations and Human Resources, and for ensuring CRS’ fidelity to its mission to cherish, preserve and uphold the sacredness and dignity of all human life, foster charity and justice, and embody Catholic social and moral teaching.

Sean and his wife, Piyali, have two children, Sahana and Ryan. Sean is a member of the Church of the Resurrection in Ellicott City, Maryland.

Areas of Expertise

Assistance, CRS, Catholic Teaching, Disaster Relief, Emergency Relief, Faith, Global Development, Global Health, Global Hunger, Stewardship


Fletcher School of Law and Diplomacy, Tufts University
Master's in Law and Diplomacy

Tufts University
B.A., Spanish