UCLA alumna Nathalie Rayes was confirmed by the U.S. Senate on Dec. 6 as U.S. ambassador to Croatia. “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,” she said after her confirmation.

Rayes, who earned a bachelor’s in sociology from UCLA and a master’s in public policy from the UCLA Luskin School of Public Affairs, was most recently president and CEO of Latino Victory, an advocacy group working to increase Latino representation. In 2022, President Biden appointed her to the board of the United States Institute of Peace. She has also served in Los Angeles city government, including as deputy chief of staff to James Hahn, who was mayor at the time.

While at UCLA Luskin, she was a Department of State fellow in the U.S. Embassy in Cairo. In 2014, Rayes was named the UCLA Luskin Public Policy Alumna of the Year.