Youth the Focus of 45th Annual Meridian Ball

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Written by Monica Marks, Contributor

The Meridian House, once a private residence and is now home to the offices of Meridian International Center, is a must-see on your list of historic buildings in D.C. The front doors welcome you with unimaginable heights, and eye-catching hardware capture your attention even before entry. The gardens are quaint yet grand. You only need to stand on the balcony to contemplate the spectacular view the original homeowners would have had straight down to the White House.

Meridian International Center will host their 45th Annual Meridian Ball at this lovely location on Friday, October 18, 2013 in conjunction with the Global Leadership Summit. The White-Meyer Dinner will be held at the White-Meyer House adjacent to the Meridian House, while other dinners will be hosted at more than 20 embassies in the Washington, D.C. area. After dinner guests will proceed to the Meridian House for the ball.

On Tuesday, September 10th the co-chairs were presented and gifts of gratitude for their commitments were bestowed while light appetizers and drinks were served under a gorgeous green canopy of trees. The chair of the Ball for 2013 is Dalia Mroue-Fateh, a Lebanese-born woman who grew up in France and West Africa and now has U.S. citizenship and a Ph.D. in International Politics. The White-Meyer chair is Dr. Britlan Malek, psychologist at the Children’s National Medical Center – Sheikh Zayed Campus for Advanced Children’s Medicine in Washington, D.C. Congressional co-chairs for 2013 are Senator Roy Blunt and Mrs. Abigail Blunt, and Congressman John Delaney and Mrs. April McClain-Delaney. The corporate chair for 2013 is Christophe Navarre, Chairman and CEO of Moët Hennessy.

The chairs and committee members will be dispersed among participating embassies that evening for dinner to experience diverse food and culture. The under-40 crowd will attend dinner at the White-Meyer House with co-chair Dr. Britlan Malek, and there will be many surprises to keep the evening exciting and energetic.

The goal of the Ball chair is to bring youth and energy to this year’s Meridian Ball. Dalia Mroue-Fateh has been involved in providing the event with a fresh attitude. She said, “The entertainment is a surprise. It will be different and new and very international.” Another goal is to generate interest from newcomers and young professionals who might not be familiar with Meridian International. She has been successful in procuring individuals from oversees to attend the event and help globalize it.

The mission of Meridian International is to, “create innovative exchange, education, cultural, and policy programs that advance three goals: (1) strengthen U.S. engagement with the world through the power of exchange; (2) prepare public and private sector leaders for a complex global future; and (3) provide a neutral forum for international collaboration across sectors.” Proceeds from the ball will aid Meridian International in its endeavors.

Don your pretty gowns and striking tuxes, and prepare for a fantasy of an evening sure to enchant those lucky enough to attend.

All photos copyright Joyce N. Boghosian. Top Photo: Sean Randell, Young Professional Co-Chair Jaclyn Mason, and Brendan Kownacki pose for the camera. Second Photo: Ben Chang, Senior Vice President for Communications, Albright Stonebridge Group, and Young Professional Co-Chair Frances Holuba are all smiles.