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Diane Skelly Ponasik passed away on November 17, 2017, after a short illness, in Washington, DC. Diane was born in San Francisco on April 9, 1939.
Diane graduated from William and Mary College in 1961. After working a short time as a travel agent in New York City, she became a Peace Corps Volunteer in Morocco. Her Peace Corps Activities motivated her to pursue graduate studies, earning a PhD in anthropology from the State University of New York in Binghamton. She continued her interest in international development as a democracy officer with USAID from 1977 to 20002. In retirement Diane was a docent at the Freer-Sackler gallery in Washington, DC, specializing in Islamic art and she was an officer with the Tangier American Legation Institute for American Studies (TALIM). She also wrote the novel, Tangier.
Diane is survived by her husband, Gerald; daughter Amal Disparte (Dante Disparte); brothers Jack and Edward, and grandchildren Andalus, Messina, and Nero. A memorial will be held on from 2:30 to 5 p.m., Saturday, December 2 at Restaurant I Ricchi, 1220 19th Street NW, Washington, DC 20036. In lieu of flowers please donate to the Freer Sackler Gallery or TALIM.

Published in The Washington Post on Nov. 26, 2017