Melinda joined PAR in January 2022 as Research Director after serving as an Associated Press reporter for 22 years. She has a bachelor’s degree in mass communication from LSU and a master’s degree in journalism from the University of Maryland.
Melinda is known for her expertise in covering the Louisiana state budget and finances, as well as the governor, the Legislature, elections, redistricting, education, health care and partisan shifts in politics. She has covered hurricanes, the coronavirus pandemic, racial justice protests and the trials of former Gov. Edwin Edwards and a Baton Rouge serial killer. As Research Director, Melinda will lead PAR’s primary mission of producing research that promotes best practices and accountability in state and local government.
She is on the board of the Capitol Correspondents Association, which produces the Gridiron Show. She is a former member of the LSU Manship School of Mass Communication Alumni Board and the Press Club of Baton Rouge Board.
Melinda was born and raised in LaPlace and lives in Baton Rouge.