Melissa is Chief of Staff & Managing Director, Community & Policy, California at Elemental Excelerator, leading Elemental’s Equity & Access strategy in California and the organization’s long-term initiatives and new opportunities. Melissa is also Manager of Innovation & Community at Emerson Elemental, the platform of Emerson Collective committed to strengthening the relationship between humanity and nature through scalable, equitable and innovative solutions.

Prior to Elemental Excelerator

Melissa practiced commercial litigation, real estate, and municipal project finance law at Alston Hunt Floyd & Ing in Honolulu, Hawaii.  She has worked for the Environmental Working Group in Washington D.C. on environmental health policy and for the United Nations Development Program on community and individual land rights issues.  Melissa was also a Nature Conservancy Science fellow at the Natural Capital Project at Stanford University where she focused on international ecosystem service valuation mechanisms. Melissa has a J.D. from the William S. Richardson School of Law with an additional certificate in environmental law and a B.S. from Santa Clara University.

Outside of the office

Melissa enjoys surfing, hiking, and traveling.