Early this spring, seemingly overnight, the time-tested habits of Advancement...
Melinda Church leads the firm’s Strategic Communications practice area. She is accomplished in accelerating the mission of others by growing revenue and positioning of organizations and large-scale change initiatives.
Since joining GG+A, she has partnered with more than seven dozen clients to accelerate their missiondriven goals, grow their philanthropic support, and elevate their reputation. Her work with clients includes philanthropic priority setting; case and proposal development; organizational structures, development, and planning; issue mitigation; and new leader coaching; among other activities.
Before joining GG+A in 2016, Melinda served in numerous leadership positions in higher education at the University of Virginia and The Ohio State University, among other colleges and universities. At U.Va, she worked for President John Casteen during public higher education’s first billion-dollar campaign. Much of her work there involved institutional and executive positioning, speech writing, and case and proposal writing.
As Vice President of University Communications and Marketing at Ohio State, Melinda oversaw the full range of marketing, branding, communications, and public relations functions. She developed the University’s first unified visual identity, led communications strategy for corporate affinity partnerships that generated more than $500 million, and led successful mitigation strategies for issues that presented significant challenges to institutional reputation. As Vice President, Advancement Integration and Communications, she worked with deans and others to develop concepts, white papers, and proposals for eight- and nine-figure gifts; create optimal structures for fundraising communications across the institution; and conceive engaging events for volunteer leaders.
Melinda served as Executive Officer to the President of Ohio State, leading the operations of the President’s Office, special events, the University Residence, and executive communications. To maximize the effectiveness of the University’s senior leadership team, she developed and led a new approach to planning and staging the implementation of major institution-wide initiatives. She planned international travel to grow higher education and business partnerships, and she served as a University delegate throughout China, Turkey, India, Iceland, Europe, and the United Kingdom. She conceived and executed the 2012 opening events for Ohio State’s Gateway Office in Mumbai.
Melinda has served in philanthropic and alumni communications roles at Washington and Lee University and Virginia Military Institute. She taught expository writing at Harford County Community College. Prior to her work in higher education, she was managing editor of Indiana Business magazine. Melinda has edited and designed several academic and general-audience books. She is an award-winning writer, artist, designer, and silversmith.
Melinda holds a master’s degree in science and health journalism from Indiana University and a bachelor’s degree in English (creative writing) from the University of Washington.