Hall of Fame

To honor those students who have achieved noteworthy success after leaving Florida Atlantic University, the Leon Charney Diplomacy Program Hall of Fame was initiated in 2010. Students whose accomplishments merit induction are nominated by a committee of faculty for inclusion into the Hall of Fame.


Michael Grillo
Michael Grillo
Dr. Michael Grillo graduated from Florida Atlantic University in 2002 and was a participant in the Diplomacy Program from 2000 to 2002. He attended Nationals as well as a number of local conferences. After completing his Masters of Arts degree in Political Science at FAU, Michael pursued his PhD in Political Science and International Relations at the University of Delaware. Dr. Grillo is currently an Associate Professor of Political Science at Schreiner University in Kerrville, Texas. He teaches a variety of international relations courses and his research focuses on the psychological determinants of political behavior and public opinion in the realms of foreign policy and domestic conflict. He has won teaching and research awards for his work. Inspired by his participation in the Leon Charmey Diplomacy Program, Michael began a Model United Nations program at Schreiner University. Established in 2015, the program has been recognized for academic excellence with NMUN Awards.


Yuval Manor
Yuval Manor
Yuval Manor graduated from Florida Atlantic University, magna cum laude, in 2016 with a B.A. in Political Science and a minor in History. During her time with the Diplomacy Program, Yuval attended four conferences as a member of award-winning delegations and served as Head-Delegate twice. Serving on a wide range of committees, from the Security Council to the United Nations Population Fund and the General Assembly Second Committee, Yuval was able to focus on issues such as globalization and the green economy, maternal health, and international counterterrorism strategies. In 2016, Yuval was the inaugural recipient of the Leon Charney Diplomacy Scholarship. Yuval began her first year at the University of Florida Fredric G. Levin College of Law and plans to graduate with a J.D. in 2019. Born in Israel, Yuval hopes to employ and continue to sharpen the skills she gained in the Diplomacy Program, as well as her legal skills, to pursue a career in diplomacy and conflict-resolution.


Anne Cathrine
Anne Cathrine (Ace) Ballegaard graduated from Florida Atlantic University Magna Cum Laude in 2016 with a degree in Political Science with a minor in Spanish. As president of Leon Charney Diplomacy Program, she participated as a delegate and as Head Delegate. She was selected for the Program in 2014 for Nationals in New York where the delegation won two national awards, Outstanding and Distinguished Delegations. Anne Cathrine participated in additional diplomatic competitions (Washington, D.C., Seattle, Indianapolis) before graduating.

Anne Cathrine was the recipient of the Stan & Nancy Engle Diplomacy Scholarship in 2014 and the Lost Tree Community Scholarship in 2015. She was also inducted into the Political Science Honor Society. In 2016, Ace was awarded the United Nations Association of the USA (Palm Beach Chapter) Diplomacy Program Delegate of the Year Award.

After graduation, Ace moved to Copenhagen Denmark to pursue her Graduate degree in MSc Security Risk Management at the University of Copenhagen. She is a board member of the Network for Strategic Studies at the Center for Military Studies at the University. 

Jenny Baez
Jenny Baez graduated from Florida Atlantic University in 2011, majoring in Political Science and Graphic Design. As a member of the Diplomacy Program, Jenny competed at Nationals in New York in 2010 and led a FAU delegation to the European Model United Nations in the Netherlands in 2011. After graduating from FAU, Jenny pursued her Master of Arts in International Studies at Sciences Po in Paris, France.

Jenny Baez served as Projects Officer in the United Nations Relief Works Agency in Amman, Jordan. Her responsibilities included refugee assistance, shelter management and fundraising. In addition, Jenny managed UNRWA relationships with national refugee committees and provided appraisals of ongoing projects aimed at alleviating refugee suffering.

Leyla Sharafi
Leyla Sharafi
Ms. Leyla Sharafi, Technical Specialist in Gender, United Nations Population Fund. Leyla Sharafi graduated from Florida Atlantic University in 2001 with degrees in Political Science and Communication. As a member of the Diplomacy Program she competed in the National Model United Nations simulation in New York City. Leyla went on to receive an M.A. in International Affairs from the New School in New York City.

Since 2004, Leyla has worked at the United Nations, first for the UN Development Fund for Women and then for the United Nations Population Fund. Leyla is currently working with the organization’s Technical Division at the UN headquarters in New York. The Technical Division is responsible for guiding the organization’s strategic and policy direction, providing expertise both within the Fund and externally on a range of issues related to sexual and reproductive health and rights and population and development as outlined in the Programme of Action of the International Conference on Population and Development (Cairo, 1994).

Jenna Lefler
Jenna Rose Lefler
Jenna Rose Lefler graduated from FAU magna cum laude in 2012 with a major in Political Science. She was selected to participate in the Diplomacy Program in 2010, where she competed at Nationals in New York. In 2011, Jenna served as Head Delegate in the Model United Nations of the Far West competition in San Francisco.

After graduation Jenna went to Morocco to study refugee integration issues. In 2013, she commenced graduate studies at Georgetown University, completing a Masters in Conflict Resolution and interning at the State Department’s Bureau of International Narcotics and Law Enforcement.After working in West Africa implementing police capacity-building, Jenna accepted a position in the US Department of State in the Bureau of International Narcotics and Law Enforcement. 

Ashley Parker
Ashley Parker
Ashley Parker attended Florida Atlantic University from 2010-2012, majoring in Political Science with a specialization in international Law. Ashley was selected in 2012 by the Diplomacy Program to represent the university in the Midwest Model European Union simulation in Indianapolis, Indiana. She represented Estonia as an Environmental Minister, addressing issues such as environmental degradation. While 2012 represented FAU’s first participation in Midwest Model EU, Ashley and her delegation were recognized with two Best Delegate Awards and an overall 2nd place in the competition.

Ashley earned her JD Columbia University Law School.

Saadia Ghazi
Saadia Ghazi
Saadia Ghazi attended Florida Atlantic University from 2006-2010, majoring in Political Science and Interdisciplinary Studies.In 2007, she joined the Diplomacy Program to represent the University at Nationals. In 2008, Saadia returned to New York in her capacity as Head Delegate for the FAU Diplomacy Program delegation, leading the team to its second national award.  Saadia was honored in the same year as the recipient of the United Nations Association Student-Delegate of the Year Award.

Saadia continued her studies at the American University in Cairo. While in Egypt, she volunteered with the organization Student Action For Refugees (STAR),a small student run organization focused on teaching English to refugees in Egypt.

Saadia earned her JD from Harvard University.

Michelle Barton
Michelle Barton
Michelle Barton attended Florida Atlantic University from 2004-2008, majoring in Political Science.  In 2006, Michelle was selected by the Diplomacy Program to represent the university at the National Model United Nations simulation in New York City.   

Michelle graduated with a Bachelor of Arts degree in Political Science. Fluent in French, Spanish and Italian, she worked for the American Chamber of Commerce in Paris, France after completing an internship there in 2007.  In 2010, Michelle was appointed as the Protocol Assistant to Ambassador Ivo Daalder at the United Stated Mission to the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) in Brussels, Belgium. 

Michelle left NATO in 2015 to serve as Associate Director of Communications at the Council of Foreign Relations. Currently, she is assigned to the Office of the Special Presidential Envoy in the Global Coalition to Counter the Islamic State at the US Department of State. 


 Last Modified 6/26/18