As Deputy Director for Strategic Initiatives for The Florida Bar Foundation, Melissa Pershing Moss is responsible for the grants, development and pro bono departments. As part of the Foundation’s executive team, she directs strategic investments in research, program assessment, capacity-building, technical assistance and technology. She also provides research and other support to the Florida Commission on Access to Civil Justice.
Melissa has a track record of success as a senior executive/CEO and consultant in multiple sectors, including business, membership associations and nonprofit management and governance. She has 20 years of experience in legal services, including serving as executive director of Legal Services Alabama and Legal Aid of North Carolina. She also served as a program counsel in the Office of Program Performance at Legal Services Corporation in Washington D.C., where she earned the 2003 Sustained Excellence Award and was responsible for 12 states, including Florida. Previously, as Director of Public Services Activities for the North Carolina Bar Association, she directed the North Carolina Pro Bono Project, the North Carolina Commission on the Delivery of Civil Legal Services and the North Carolina Lawyer Referral Service.
Prior to joining the Foundation in 2013, Melissa lived in Indianapolis, where she worked as executive director for The Julian Center, the state’s largest domestic violence and human trafficking shelter. She was the recipient of the Indiana Coalition Against Domestic Violence 2010 Harlene Barnett Public Service Award. She also has 13 years of corporate and agency experience in marketing communications.
Melissa earned her law degree at Georgia State University College of Law and her bachelor’s in broadcast media at Butler University.