Meet Our Team

AFDC Staff


    Executive Director - Sarah DILIGENTI

    Sarah comes from a multicultural and multilingual family. She spent her childhood in the West Indies and arrived in Toulouse, France at age 6. She was educated in France and obtained an LLM in International Law in 1986 and a Master of Philosophy in Political Science at the University of Toulouse. Her thesis in 1988 covered History, War, and Cinema. She also passed two National Certifications to Teach French (1992) and English (1993) at the High School and University levels.

    Sarah moved to the US in 1995. She joined the Alliance in 2004 as a teacher, then in 2005 as Academic and Deputy Director, and finally in 2013 as Executive Director.

    Sarah is a 1984 Young Poet Laureate of the Académie des Jeux Floraux. She has published poems in anthologies in France and in the US and was invited to submit a text for a book written by 100 authors, published in October 2017 in Beirut, Lebanon. She is currently preparing to publish her first poetry chapbook for Fall 2018 and is writing a series of short stories as well as her first novel.

    She was a Founding Director of Word Fest, the Annual DC International Poetry Festival and sat on its Board from 2001 to 2006. Sarah was invited on the Diane Rehm Show in 2009 to speak about The Elegance of the Hedgehog, a literary phenomenon in France.

    She was president of Washington Accueil Association, -an association dedicated to helping French and francophone expatriates coming to live in the Greater Washington area- from 1998 to 2000 and founded a book club in 1997, “Avid Readers in DC” to introduce American Literature to French expatriates, which she managed until 2014.

    In January 2017, Sarah was made a Knight in the Order of the Academic Palms, the oldest non-military distinction of the French Republic. Presented by the French Ministry of Education, it recognizes those who have rendered eminent service to French education and have contributed actively to the prestige of French culture. Sarah was recognized specifically for her continuous efforts in the promotion of the French language and to her commitment to grow the Alliance Française D.C. as the premier French Cultural and Language Center in the Nation’s Capital.

  • Ameneh MADJLESSI

    Deputy and Academic Director - Ameneh MADJLESSI

    Originally from Iran, Ameneh learned the French language at the age of 3 in Belgium where her father was a diplomat. After doing a BA in French/Persian Translation and interpretation in Tehran, she obtained a Master 2 FLE (French as a Foreign Language) from the Université Stendhal in Grenoble, France. She moved back to Iran after her Master’s. She founded her own private language school and linguistic lab in Tehran and taught French at all levels. She also worked as a French Instructor and Administrator at the Service de Coopération et d’Action Culturelle (Cultural Services) of the French Embassy in Tehran. In 2004, she moved to DC and started work as a teacher at Alliance Francaise of Washington in September 2005 until November 2013. She also taught French at the World Bank from 2006 to 2016; she was an Adjunct Professor at George Washington University from 2010 to 2016 and has been adjunct Lecturer at Georgetown University since September 2015. She came back to AFDC in October 2016 as Deputy and Academic Director. 

  • Kelsey HAMMER

    Director of Library Programs - Kelsey HAMMER

    Originally hailing from Colorado, Kelsey has been in the AFDC Library for the past 6+ years. A lifelong lover of books and libraries, Kelsey worked in the University of Denver’s library all throughout undergrad before joining the AF Library in DC. With degrees in French, Criminology, and a minor in International Studies, being a part of the AFDC has been a great compliment to her studies. Recent favorite reads include Soleil by David Bouchet. When not reading, you can find Kelsey exploring any number of used book stores and trying to befriend as many dogs and cats as possible.

  • Natasha BOLLIER

    Director of Cultural Programs & Social Media - Natasha BOLLIER

    Originally from Russia, Natasha studied and worked in Paris for three years before moving to the United States in the summer of 2017. She received a Master’s degree in International Relations and Interpreting in Russia, as well a Master’s in International Affairs and Intercultural Communication at the Université Paris Nanterre. Natasha has been teaching and tutoring Russian, English and French for many years, and traveled a lot among Russia, Finland and France before settling down in Washington. She is very grateful for the opportunity to maintain her ties with French culture and language. When not at work, Natasha is fond of chatting over a cup of tea (and a couple of croissants), going off to discover a new place or visit old friends, skiing, or trying out a new recipe.

  • Liz NUTI

    Controller - Liz NUTI

    Liz Nuti graduated from George Washington University with a BBA. She is the Founder and President of Accounting and Tax Solutions, Inc. She is an an EA (Enrolled Agent) and has years of experience as an IRS registered tax preparer. Liz's dog is a Bichon frisé whose name is Bisous (Kisses in French).

  • Sandrine ATANGANA

    Executive Assistant to the Executive Director - Sandrine ATANGANA

    Sandrine embodies a rich multicultural heritage, originating from the Papala tribe in Angola, part Yaoundé, Cameroon, and the Makela tribe of the Democratic Republic of Congo. Despite her African roots, she was born in the vibrant city of Paris, France, and spent her formative years there.

    Her academic achievements include an MBA and a Bachelor of Arts degree in Foreign Languages and International Studies. Fluent in French, Sandrine's diverse interests encompass travel, hot vinyasa yoga, music, fashion, language acquisition, and fostering positive vibes. She has notions of Russian, German, and Lingala. She's alaso a devoted companion to her beloved dog, Mazu.

  • Fanny OWHOKA

    Youth Programs Coordinator - Fanny OWHOKA

    Born and raised in a cozy little village in Burgundy, France, Fanny has loved traveling for as long as she can remember. It was during her undergraduate studies in LLCER (Regional and Foreign Languages, Literatures and Civilizations) that she seized the opportunity to embark on an ERASMUS exchange program in Poland. This experience served as a turning point, making her realize that her future would be abroad.

    During her Masters' in FLE (Teaching French as a Foreign Language), she was fortunate to work at the Alliance française in Dar Es Salaam, Tanzania. Her time there was so enriching that she returned, this time to Zanzibar, taking on the role of Director of Studies. Fanny continued her passion for teaching to individuals of all ages and proficiency levels.

    Afterwards, Fanny's journey led her to the United States, where she decided to make her new home in Virginia. Now settled there, she finds joy simply being outside with her furry friend, Sushi. She also loves exploring the great outdoors through hiking, indulging her taste buds with various culinary adventures, and satisfying her wanderlust by traveling whenever the opportunity arises.

  • Patrick MOUMIET

    Education Admin Assistant - Patrick MOUMIET

    Born in Gabon and raised in France, Patrick relocated to the United States in the winter of 2021. He earned a Master's Degreee in Organizational Economics from the University of Grenoble and subsequently worked for Canva, a tech startup. After a few years, he transitioned into building an online following as a content creator, assisting businesses in enhancing their visibility. When he is not working to help students succeed at the Alliance Française of Washington DC, he dedicates his free time to learning Mandarin and reading science books.

  • Clementine THIERRY

    Certifications and Private Classes Coordinator - Clementine THIERRY

    Hailing from the picturesque streets of Paris, Clementine embarked on a transformative journey to Washington DC in November 2022 driven by a passion for cultural exchange and the allure of American landscapes discovery.

    Armed with a Ph.D. in Geography and Urban Planning, her scholarly pursuits have revolved around unraveling the enigmatic charm of French fortified cities, delving into their historical depths with fervent curiosity and academic rigor.

    Thrilled to be a part of L’Alliance Française, a beacon of cultural convergence and connection, she finds immense joy in fostering bridges between her heritage and the kaleidoscope of experiences that unfold daily in the United States. She is proud to collaborate with dedicated teachers and enthusiastic students who share a deep passion for French language.

     Beyond the Alliance Française walls, you’ll often find Clementine traversing the blossoming landscapes of the DC area on her bike, enraptured by the magic of springtime. When not lost in the pages of a captivating book, she delights in the timeless pleasures of wine and cheese, a cherished ritual that pays homage to her French roots, however cliché it may be! 

  • Badiss NOUAR

    Saturday Receptionist - Badiss NOUAR

    Hailing from Algeria and recently settling in the U.S., Badiss holds a Bachelor's degree in Marketing with an eleven-year tenure in social media, seven of which were dedicated to advertising, and four with the State Department’s public diplomacy division.

    Beyond his professional expertise, Badiss is a true francophile, with French being his favorite language. This passion has led him to pursue teaching opportunities at the French Alliance of Washington D.C., where he shares his love for the language and culture with others.

  • Sophia FRANK

    Library Intern - Sophia FRANK

    Salut! Je viens de New York et je me spécialise en linguistique, science cognitive et français à Georgetown University. En ce moment je fais un stage à la bibliothèque de l'Alliance Française de Washington DC avec Kelsey la merveilleuse. Pendant mon temps libre, vous me trouverez en train de chanter mon air préféré de l'opéra "Les Contes d'Hoffmann ("Les oiseaux dans la charmille") ou griffonner des modèles de mode.

AFDC Instructors

Some instructors are only available for private classes. Most instructors are avaialable for private classes, unless otherwise indicated.



Ghislaine AKHAVI
Adults (Beginner Specialist), No private classes.
Achille ANGO
Do Ré Mi (Musical Storytime)
Adults, Youth Programs (Sub Teacher)
Youth Programs, Camps, Adults
Olga BAUER Adults
Flora BERREFAS Adults, Youth Programs, Camps
Christel BROWN de COLSTOUN Youth Programs, Camps
Vincent BRUDO Adults
Katerina COTE (DELF/DALF) Adults
Jocelyne DO SACRAMENTO Adults, Private classes only
Isabelle DUPEUX-EUNSON Adults (Sub Teacher)
Bassima EL MASRI  Youth Programs, Adults, Yoga Instructor
Nabiha ETTAYEBI Youth Programs, Camps
Ella FATHI Youth Programs, Private Classes only
Jennifer GORE Translation Specialist, Adults
Stéphanie GUERIN Adults
Frédéric HOCDE Youth Programs, Camps, Judo Instructor
Christian HOMMEL Literature, Actualites, Adults
Mariia KADYKALO Adults
Ernest KAMBA (DELF/DALF) Youth Programs, AP Specialist, FLE and FLAM, Adults
Anne Tulin KERIMOL MCCLAIN-CALDWELL (DELF/DALF) Youth Programs, FLE and FLAM, Adults
Gaelle Le DIUZET Youth Programs
Zohreh MIRSHARIF Adults (Sub Teacher)
Véronique MOUILLESEAUX Adults
Badiss NOUAR Adult and Youth Programs
Alain NOUET (DELF/DALF) Adults, Corporate
Bernadette NTSAME Youth Programs
Karine Esther ONANA MFEGE MANGA Adults, Private Classes only, Youth Programs, Camps
Fanny OWHOKA (DELF/DALF) Youth Programs Coordinator, Adult Teacher
Caleb PALFREYMAN Youth Programs, Camps
Claudine PARLOFF Adults
Eric PEDURAND Adults, Youth Programs
Voahangy Joela RANAIVO Adults, Youth Programs
Sidiki TRAORÉ  Adults
Magali VIENS-KOLB Adults and Youth Programs
Sandrine VONGY Adults, Youth Programs
Ke'Kemba YWASSA Youth Programs - Private Classes Only