Melanie is the manager of programs offered by the Hawaii Sustainable Tourism Association including Certification, Stamps, Pono Traveler and more. She has an academic background in criminal justice, environmental sustainability, and cultural anthropology. She is set to graduate from Arizona State University with a graduate degree in Social Justice & Human Rights in summer 2022. Melanie worked for several years as an interpretive guide for Hawai’i Forest & Trail (Hawai’i Island). She is well-versed in naturalist interpretation and has extensive experience conducting sustainably-minded excursions that strive to educate local and non-local populations about Hawai’i’s exquisite natural and heritage resources, the challenges we face in protecting and preserving them, and the innovative opportunities through which we can create a better future. She and her daughter live in Kukui’opae ahupua’a near the boundary of South Kona and Kaʻū. They are working to reclaim a small piece of land from invasive species, restoring it to an ecologically-harmonious respite for native dry forest plant, bird, and insect species, canoe plants, and their favorite contemporary food plants. She is an ongoing member of Hālau Kaʻeaikehelelani, Keauhou (Kona). Fun fact: Melanie is originally from a very remote and mountainous area tucked deep within the Sierra Nevada range. She grew up deeply immersed in nature but was exposed to very few humans! For her, tiny little Kona feels like New York City!