The LeMieux Center for Public Policy hosts PBA graduate and Former Undercover Officer in the U.S. Central Intelligence Agency’s Directorate of Operations
Michele Rigby Assad, a PBA graduate and former undercover officer in the U.S. Central Intelligence Agency’s Directorate of Operations, signed copies of her book “Breaking Cover” and shared her story at Trinity United Methodist Church in Palm Beach Gardens on March 1st, 2018. Assad spoke about her decade of service with the agency. Trained as a counterterrorism specialist, Michele served her country for ten years, working in Iraq and other secret Middle Eastern locations. Upon retirement from active service, Michele and her husband Joseph (also a former agent) joined a group of Americans who wished to aid persecuted Christians. Their efforts resulted in the evacuation of a group from northern Iraq that was featured on ABC’s 20/20. Michele’s book “Breaking Cover: My Secret Life in the CIA and What It Taught Me about What’s Worth Fighting For,” reveals how courage and determination enable ordinary people to do extraordinary things. Her rise from modest beginnings in rural Central Florida was fueled by a fascination for the Middle East which she discovered in college. Despite this early realization, Michele’s efforts to find her place of purpose were filled with rejection and uncertainty before they took her to the frontlines of the war on terror. Detailing the arc of her career progression, Michele reminds us of the importance of faith and the criticality of hanging on, especially when you are tempted to fold.