President: Monique Copeland
A French Canadian native, Monique Laniel Copeland is a Sales Manager for Citrix Systems, a digital workspace, networking, security and analytics technology company. She has been on the French Alliance board since 2017. She lived in Paris, Montreal and has been living in Raleigh for the last 28 years.
Vice-President: Polly Lyman
An American citizen, Polly is a fundraising and communications professional who has worked in French-speaking organizations most of her adult life. She has a B.A. in French Literature from Trinity College and an M.A. in French Literature from Tufts University. She also serves on the Board of Directors of the Federation of Alliances Francaises of the United States. She has a much-neglected but formerly award-winning blog, "Polly-Vous Francais?" which she began when living in Paris from 2006 - 2009.
Secretary: Claire Gellion
A French American citizen, former project manager for the United Nations Conference for Trade and Development, computer engineer in research center in France, Claire Gellion grew up in Africa and lived in several countries across the world. She moved to Chapel Hill in 2010.
Treasurer: Edmund Tiryakian
Edmund Tiryakian, US citizen married to a French, is a former lawyer and investment banker who spent his career in Hong Kong, ran marathons around the world, has tracked mountain gorillas in Rwanda and bonobos in Congo. He has now retired to his native North Carolina, living in the unexplored wilds of Hillsborough, where he tends to chickens, bees, cats and dogs in modest attempts to be a gentleman farmer.
Stephen Smith, Ph.D
An American citizen, former correspondent in Africa for Reuter and Radio France Internationale, journalist at Libération and Le Monde, Stephen Smith is a writer and a professor at Duke University in the African & African American Studies department. He leads the Center for French and Francophone Studies at Duke.
A French-American citizen, retired teacher from NCSU and musician, Michèle Darrah has chaired the Alliance française for more than twenty years.
A French-American citizen, writer, and journalist, Hélène Crié has worked for many years at Libération, a national French news daily, and for the national public radio France Inter. Based in the USA since 2000, she now writes for French media as a freelancer.
A Maine native and French-American citizen, Michelle studied art history at La Sorbonne, trained in art restoration in New York, Paris, and Florence, taught English as a foreign language for several years and wrote investment research on Wall Street. She has lived in North Carolina since 2005, with her French husband and their two sons. Her favorite pet is, of course, a French bulldog.