Melissa’s work as Founder & Executive Director of The Pad Project and her collaborations with Girls Learn International, The Feminist Majority Foundation, Action India, and other global non-profits give her meaningful and wide-ranging expertise on women’s issues around the world. She enjoys speaking about gender equity, amplifying women’s voices, and encouraging her audiences to dream big. Melissa passionately believes that when–individually or collectively–we take risks in pursuit of education, equity, and empowerment, we better our own lives in the present and bolster the generations that will follow.
A speaker with electric energy, Melissa’s inspirational style invites audiences to share in the excitement of her quest for girls’ and women’s equality worldwide. For over a decade, she has been an English teacher at North Hollywood’s innovative Oakwood Secondary School. She brings her love of literature to every presentation, populating her speeches with characters and stories that remind all of us of our shared humanity.
A Period Should End a Sentence,
Not A Girl’s Education.®
The 3 E’s: “Education,
Equity, and Empowerment”
Facing into Privilege:
Empowering Young Activists
LEADING TOWARDS EQUITY
EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR | DREAMS FOR SCHOOLS | OC GRANTMAKERS ANNUAL SUMMIT CO-CHAIR
WORK WITH MELISSA
As a high school English teacher for over twenty years, Melissa believes in the importance of education as a fundamental human right. With her public speaking, she engages and energizes audiences at colleges, universities, and forums around the world. In addition, Melissa has been hired to deliver keynote speeches for organizations such as The American Federation of Teachers, Planned Parenthood, The Saint Helena Forum for Innovation & Creativity, The Feminist Majority Foundation, Orange County Grantmakers, The United Jewish Federation, Nexus Global Summit, and many more. Melissa has made TV appearances on various news programs as well as on talk shows, including ABC’s The View and Good Morning America. She champions female empowerment, youth activism, and equal access to education for all.
“Trust your truth, your need to take risks, your understanding of your pursuits, and trust that your inner student can become your teacher.”
*Photo By: The Archer School for Girls