Science Fair Project Encyclopedia
Kateryna Mykhaylivna Yushchenko-Chumachenko is the current and second wife of Ukrainian President Viktor Yushchenko. She is a Ukrainian-American born in Chicago, United States, and a former official with the U.S. State Department, where she worked as a special assistant to the Assistant Secretary of State for Human Rights and Humanitarian Affairs. She holds a degree in International Economics from the Edmund A. Walsh School of Foreign Service at Georgetown University and an MBA from the University of Chicago Graduate Business School .
She later worked in the White House in the Office of Public Liaison during the administration of Ronald Reagan. Subsequently, she worked at the U.S. Treasury Department in the executive secretary's office during the administration of George H.W. Bush. After leaving that position, she was on the staff of the Joint Economic Committee of the U.S. Congress. After Ukraine declared its freedom, Chumachenko went to work for KPMG, the international consulting company, where she met Viktor Yushchenko, whom she subsequently married.
Opponents of her husband Viktor Yushchenko have criticized her for remaining a U.S. citizen. During the 2004 Ukrainian presidential election campaign, Yushchenko-Chumachenko was accused of exerting the influence of the U.S. government on her husband's decisions, as an employee of the U.S. government or even a CIA agent. She had earlier been accused by Russian television journalist Mikhail Leontyev of leading a U.S. project to help Yushchenko seize power in Ukraine; in January 2002, she won a libel case against him. Ukraine's pro-government Inter television channel repeated Leontyev's allegations in 2001, but in January 2003 she won a libel case against the channel as well.
The Yushchenkos have three children together: two daughters and one son.
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