Welcome from Melanie
Hello and thank you for visiting my web site.
I am celebrating my first decade as a full-time
professional speaker. I listened to my teachers who said I was a
good student, but I talked too much. Now I get paid for talking!
That means I make my living by delivering motivational speeches
and educational seminars an average of 80 days a year. I have had
the privilege to speak to audiences in 48 states, Canada, Australia,
New Zealand, Hong Kong, and Singapore.
It is my hope that, through the words I share, the
people who hear them are able to make positive changes toward living
a fulfilled life. Simply put, I do what I do to make people’s
I am frequently asked, “How did I become a
professional speaker?” I started as a teacher, graduating
from Colorado State University with a Bachelor of Science in 1985.
I taught Middle School in Windsor, Colorado, and coached high school
volleyball and basketball, then completed my Masters in Education
from the University of Northern Colorado in Greeley in 1991.
In my first year of teaching, I developed a program
that taught able-bodied students to work one-on-one with kids who
have special needs. This program attracted lots of attention and
I was asked to do a workshop teaching other teachers how to develop
a similar program. Attending my first workshop was a gentleman who
worked on a grant for the Colorado Department of Education. He asked
me to present workshops in different school districts. One workshop
expanded into six, then 12, and more. I soon needed to decide whether
I would stay in the classroom or move on.
Based on some good advice, I made my decision and
didn’t look back. I left teaching in 1992 and founded Higher
Ground Training and Development. Within six months of starting this
business, CareerTrack, Inc. hired me as an independent contractor.
At the time, CareerTrack was the largest public seminar company
in the U.S. and also had an overseas presence.
By the time I left CareerTrack in 1995, I had been
doing more than 150 full-day speaking engagements a year. I spoke
on a variety of topics dealing with the “people side”
of business in front of every type and size of audience you can
imagine. My experience with CareerTrack proved to be invaluable.
Since 1995, I have focused on nurturing Higher Ground,
Inc., offering full-day education seminars, consulting in many forms,
and coaching. Over the last few years, I have been invited to do
more motivational keynotes, which are between 45 and 90 minutes
Though I have always communicated a variety of topics
in a variety of formats, the common theme in all of my work is “people
living a fulfilled life.” I believe strongly that when you
feel fulfilled in life, you will be effective at work. It is impossible
to separate the two.
I feel fortunate to really enjoy what I do and am
amazed to feel I have the best job in the world: Restoring hope
to people by reminding them what they already know.
Life doesn’t get more fulfilling than