America Abroad Media Hosts "Power of Film" Awards Dinner

Judy Woodruff, Mithat BereketWhat: America Abroad Media Hosts "Power of Film" Awards Dinner Where: Andrew W. Mellon Auditorium Who was there: General Michael Hayden, Congressman Edward Royce, Ambassador Yousef Al Otaiba, Tony Mendez, Pat Taylor, Mark Lijek, Cora Lijek, Bob Anders, Zeresenay Mehari, Mehret Mandefro, Meaza Ashenafi, Aberash Diriba, Mithat Bereket, Noura Al Kaabi, Ambassador Jim Jefferies, Ambassador Shaikh Abdullah bin Mohammed bin Rashid Al Khalifa of Bahrain, Ambassador Elin Suleymanov of Azerbaijani, Ambassador Gary Doer of Canada, Senator Mark Kirk, Congresswoman Betty McCollum, Congresswoman Shelia Lee Jackson, Reema Khan, Maajid Nawaz, Dina Powell, Judy Woodruff, Gonzalo Sánchez de Lozada, Evan Ryan, Mohamed Kanoo, Hoda Kanoo, Martin Indyk, Said Jawad, Bassam Saba Other details: General Michael Hayden, Congressman Edward Royce and Ambassador Yousef Al Otaiba of UAE were among the notable attendees who joined America Abroad Media (AAM) at its third annual “Power of Film” Awards Dinner at the Andrew W. Mellon Auditorium. The evening honored four outstanding leaders whose work exemplifies the power of media to inform, educate, and empower citizens about the critical social and public policy issues of our time. This year's honorees included two highly-praised films: Argo, the American drama, directed by Ben Affleck, based on the U.S. hostage crisis in Tehran in 1980 and winner of the 2013 Academy Award for Best Picture; and Difret, Ethiopian docu-drama and winner of the 2014 World Cinema Dramatic Audience Award at the Sundance Film Festival. Honored Argo guests included real-life houseguests and key figures depicted in the film, including former CIA officer Tony Mendez (played by Ben Affleck), Pat Taylor (wife of the late Canadian Ambassador Ken Taylor), Mark and Cora Lijek, and Bob Anders. After Pat Taylor received a standing ovation from the crowd to honor her late husband, actor and director Ben Affleck appeared on-screen to thank AAM for the prestigious award. Guests accepting the award for Difret included the film’s director Zeresenay Mehari and producer Mehret Mandefro as well as real-life subjects of the film Meaza Ashenafi and Aberash Diriba. Individual honorees in attendance included Turkish journalist and broadcaster, Mithat Bereket, and Emirati media executive Noura Al Kaabi, CEO of twofour54 Abu Dhabi. The night ended with musical performances from Bassam Saba, one of the nation’s leading figures of Arabic music. Aaron Lobel, Gary DoerAaron LobelAmbassador Elin Suleymanov, Lala SuleymanovAmbassador Shaikh Abdullah Al KhalifahBassam SabaBen AffleckGeneral Michael Hayden, Dina PowellJonna Mendez, Tony MendezJudy Woodruff, Mithat BereketMark Dubowitz, Edward R Royce, Peter FreemanMithat Bereket, Aaron Lobel, Zeresenay Mehari, Mehret Mandefro, Noura Al Kaabi, Meaza Ashenafi, Aberash BekeleNoura Al Kaabi, Ambassador Yousef Al OtaibaPat TaylorReema Khan [Photos via Moki Media]
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