Hisako Sonethavilay

"Your work is going to fill a large part of your life, and the only way to be truly satisfied is to do what you believe is great work. And the only way to do great work is to love what you do. If you haven't found it yet, keep looking. Don't settle. As with all matters of the heart, you'll know when you find it." Steve Jobs

Director of Applied Research

Marine Corps Spouse


Hisako Sonethavilay is the Director of Applied Research at Blue Star Families where she oversees a portfolio of programs including the annual Military Family Lifestyle Survey, program evaluation, and national policy initiatives. A strong believer in the power of data-driven stories, Hisako finds ways of using data to increase the general public’s awareness and understanding of military family experiences. By doing so, she hopes to help organizations and policymakers drive better decisions related to programs, policies, and initiatives that contribute towards the well-being of military families.

Hisako has a decade of experience in mixed methods research, practicing family-focused community social work, and advocating on behalf of military families. She earned her Masters of Social Work (MSW) from George Mason University and is a Licensed Master Social Worker (LMSW).

In her free time, Hisako enjoys a good Amazon Prime binge but can also be found spending time with her active duty Marine Corps husband and two sons in San Diego, CA.