Vice President, Planning at Downtown Austin Alliance
Melissa is an urban planning and design professional who specializes in helping communities make the most of their public spaces. With 20 years of experience in public, private, and nonprofit sectors, Melissa has helped communities discover, enhance and connect to their downtowns, town centers, parks, streets, trails, and greenways. She is currently working on a number of public space enhancement efforts in Downtown Austin, including a major public-private partnership to transform Republic Square. In addition, her work has influenced communities in the San Francisco Bay Area, the Hudson Valley Region of New York, and the Phoenix Metro area.
Melissa holds a BS degree in Biology from the University of Albany and an MS degree in Planning from Arizona State University. She is an inaugural member of the Project for Public Spaces’ Placemaking Leadership Council. Recent volunteer experience includes sitting on the Design Review Board for the 2015 and 2016 SXSW Place by Design Competition, serving as a Juror for Preservation Austin’s 2016 Preservation Merit Awards, and acting as a Community Leader for American Planning Association’s Planning Mentorship program.