You must keep secrets but skillfully persuade others to tell you theirs. You have to love your country but willingly leave it behind for dangerous operations around the world. You need to live a double life but be trustworthy enough to carry out the nation’s most sensitive tasks.
Michele Rigby Assad was one of those people. Working undercover for the CIA, she served in treacherous areas throughout the Middle East—a woman leading some of the most highly skilled operatives on the planet.
The threats were real.
The missions were perilous.
And deep inside, Michele wondered: Could she really do this job or had she misunderstood her life’s calling?
In Breaking Cover, Michele has at last been cleared to drop cover and tell her story of incredible struggle, of unexpected challenges and thwarted missions, and most significantly, of powerfully realizing what really matters in the face of her greatest fears.
Michele Rigby Assad is a former undercover officer in the U.S. Central Intelligence Agency’s Directorate of Operations. 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 in December 2015.
Michele holds a master’s degree in Contemporary Arab Studies from Georgetown University. Today she serves as an international security consultant, splitting her time between the Middle East, Florida, and Washington, D.C.
Photograph by Axel Muench www.axelmuench.com
Michele Assad is one of our favs! Her open, authentic and engaging style made her an immediate hit among our students, and her stories brought the classroom discussions to life.
Michele Assad’s stories of life in the CIA are riveting, and she tells them in a way that captures the astounding nature of her experiences in the Middle East. She challenged us to pursue a fresh perspective on the interaction between Christianity and Islam and the role of America in the world.
Our organization has monthly speakers and we’ve seen and heard from our fair share of amazing people. Michele was different, however. She was unique to her story but her story was really all of our stories. We were able to relate to how we underestimate our own capabilities. Whether you are a CIA Intelligence Officer or a Homemaker, she shares how the power we all have to create our own destinies has always been within us. Wonderful presentation!
Michele’s presentations are great for sales and negotiation training, managing teams, and working with colleagues/collaboration.
Michele enjoys speaking to women’s groups, providing personal security training to international travelers, and showing business teams how they can apply intelligence lessons to workplace productivity, sales and team culture.