“I promise to always lead and serve with integrity and in the best interest of our country, while continuing to strengthen our diplomatic relations with the people of Croatia.” – Nathalie Rayes
Washington D.C., December 8, 2023 – The Aspen Institute Latinos and Society program (AILAS) extends its sincerest congratulations to Nathalie Rayes on her U.S. Senate confirmation as the new U.S. Ambassador to the Republic of Croatia, announced Domenika Lynch, Executive Director. The Senate confirmed Rayes in a 53-47 vote.
“On behalf of the Aspen Latinos Advisory Board, I want to offer our earnest congratulations to our colleague, Nathalie Rayes, on her confirmation as U.S. ambassador to the Republic of Croatia. Nathalie’s wealth of experience developing networks and strengthening organizations to advance the common good will be instrumental in fostering U.S. interests in the Republic of Croatia to the benefit of both nations. Nathalie’s passion, intelligence, and judgment, as witnessed in her work with the Latinos and Society program, will undoubtedly serve her and our country admirably in this new and important venture,” said Aspen Latinos advisory board chair, Ambassador Gaddi Vasquez.
“Natalie’s visionary leadership and remarkable people skills were evident in her pioneering contributions to the Aspen Institute,” said Elliot Gerson, Executive Vice President of Policy and Public Programs at the Aspen Institute. “Not only was she effectively a founder of Aspen Latinos and Society, an impactful policy program promoting American Latino prosperity, but she was also a critical contributor to the establishment of Aspen Institute Mexico.”
Rayes has devoted her career to advancing and empowering the Latino community through advocacy and education. In her early career, she served as Deputy Chief of Staff for Los Angeles Mayor James K. Hahn, where she created and directed the city’s first–ever Office of Immigrant Affairs and managed the Mayor’s Office of Intergovernmental Relations, International Trade, and Protocol.
She served as the Vice President of Public Affairs for Grupo Salinas in the United States and Executive Director of Fundación Azteca America. Rayes was also the former President and CEO of Latino Victory Project, a national organization dedicated to building Latino political power by increasing Latino representation at every level of government and building a base of Latino donors.
In 2022, Rayes was confirmed by the U.S. Senate to serve as President Joe Biden’s appointee to the board of the United States Institute of Peace. She also served six years as President Barack Obama’s appointee to the Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars, chairing the Audit Committee.
“Nathalie’s vision and diligence in establishing the Latinos and Society policy program at the Aspen Institute have paved the way for impactful initiatives that foster greater economic opportunities for American Latinos. We look forward to her continued success as she forges stronger ties between the United States and the Republic of Croatia,” said Domenika Lynch, Aspen Institute Vice President and Executive Director of the Latinos and Society Program.
About the Aspen Institute
The Aspen Institute is a global nonprofit organization whose purpose is to ignite human potential to build understanding and create new possibilities for a better world. Founded in 1949, the Institute drives change through dialogue, leadership, and action to help solve society’s greatest challenges. It is headquartered in Washington, DC and has a campus in Aspen, Colorado, as well as an international network of partners. For more information, visit www.aspeninstitute.org.
The Aspen Institute founded the Latinos and Society Program in 2015 to identify and promote solutions that foster greater opportunity for American Latinos, and enable a more prosperous, inclusive America. Through proprietary research, partnerships with the private and public sectors, high-level gatherings, and community-building initiatives, Aspen Latinos ignites Latino growth and resiliency for the benefit of all Americans. To learn more, visit www.aspenlatinos.org.