Officers & Staff

Irada Akhoundova, President

Irada was born in Baku, Azerbaijan and has been actively involved with HBSCA since early 2005, first as Senior VP and then as HBSCA President since 2006.   After obtaining her Bachelor of Arts degree from Baku State University and completing Extended Psychology studies at the Center for Psychological Studies in Baku, she began her career in 1988 as a High School Counselor and Language Instructor at one of the main high schools in Baku.   Her primary professional experience is in education, languages, cross cultural orientation and project/event management.  She is fluent in English, Russian and Azeri, and has life and work experience in various countries, including Azerbaijan, Spain, Saudi Arabia and the United States.  She is married and has one daughter.

Dr. Satish Kalra, Vice President

Dr. Satish K. Kalra, a petroleum engineering professional and businessman, is President of SKAL-TEX Corporation, a Houston-based international petroleum management and technology consulting  and training company.  Dr. Kalra first  joined Houston–Baku Sister City Association  (HBSCA) in 1993 and has spent time in Baku during his career and education. He serves on the board of several non-profit organizations including HBSCA, Sister Cities of Houston (SCH) and the Global Teaching Network.  Satish studied in Baku and Moscow and holds  M.S. and Ph.D. degrees in Petroleum Engineering.  He is fluent in Russian, English, and several Indian languages.  Recently, Dr. Kalra was nominated as a member of the Russian Academy of Natural Sciences- US Section. He has worked for University of Louisiana ( Lafayette), Arco (now merged with BP) and Schlumberger.  Satish and his wife, Ann, also own and operate a Montessori school in Houston. They are active members of HBSCA and live in Cypress , TX.

Nargiz Ahmadova, Treasurer

Nargiz Ahmadova, an MBA graduate of Western University in Baku, has worked 6+ years for Big 4 audit firms.  She is a CPA/CIA.  Currently, she works asa  controller for a local property investment company.  She has lived in Houston since 2007.  She is married and has 2 children.

(Vacant) Secretary
Maud Bech, Executive Director

Maud is a Human Resources professional of Dutch origin and gained her 25 year work experience with Unocal Corporation in the international oil and gas industry.  She received her education in The Hague and in Leiden, Netherlands.  She has worked and/or lived in Suriname, the Netherlands, Azerbaijan and the US.  Also, she worked short foreign assignments in China, Bangladesh, India and Russia. Maud retired in 2005 after Unocal Corporation’s merger with Chevron Oil Corporation.  She has a keen interest in cross cultural topics, the arts and world music.  Since 2007, Maud has been actively involved with HBSCA as a Board Member and Executive Director.  She also serves on the Board of Sister Cities of Houston as a Director at Large.