• EXECUTIVE LEADERSHIP

Melissa Watrous
  • Melissa Watrous
    Vice President, Engagement

    While attending an education conference, Melissa experienced an AVID presentation with one of our student panel speakers. She knew immediately that she wanted to be a part of an organization that impacts the lives of so many. Four years later, in 2017, Melissa joined AVID as Senior Director of Partner Engagement where she was responsible for building, leading, and developing the Partner Engagement Manager (PEM) team in service of increasing our impact with students and educators. Today, she brings over 16 years of experience and a passion for connecting business and education to the role of Vice President of Engagement.

    Melissa's acumen for sales leadership, business development, and account management landed her previous roles at several companies, including Cisco Systems and Renaissance Learning, where she served as Regional Vice President. As a transformational leader, she has built high performing teams and led them to peak performance.

    A first-generation college student and lifelong learner, Melissa earned her BA at Michigan State University and continued her education to become a Certified Professional Coach in Leadership Development and an Energy Leadership Index Master Practitioner.

    In addition to her work at AVID, Melissa serves on the board of the National Alliance on Mental Health, Santa Cruz Affiliate, a local non-profit that services the mental health community in Santa Cruz.