Michele Rigby Assad is a former undercover officer in the National Clandestine Service of the U.S. Central Intelligence 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 (also a former agent) began leading teams to aid refugees, including a rescue mission to Iraq that was featured on ABC’s 20/20. Michele holds a master’s degree in Contemporary Arab Studies from Georgetown University. Today she serves as an international management consultant, splitting her time between the Middle East, Florida, and Washington, D.C.

In this episode we talk about (in order):

  • Building rapport with members of Al-Qaeda
  • Mental toughness
  • Emotional Intelligence
  • Living in combat zones for nearly a decade
  • What she does to de-stress
  • What traits new CIA officers should have
  • What to do during an attack
  • Who she was allowed to tell that she worked in the CIA
  • What inspired her book
  • What projects she’s working on now