Be Inspired | Do Good:
Melissa is a Roanoke native that has lived and worked in almost every zip code around here. Her passion for startups and youth shines through each day as a co-owner and philanthropist at chocolatepaper.
Melissa’s family-owned business started as the brainchild of her uncle in 1985. He started with a greeting card shop in downtown Roanoke housed within the Market Building. Unfortunately, or fortunately, depending on how you look at it, the 100-year flood of November 1985 wiped out his entire greeting card inventory.
Afterwards, he moved to Carytown, in Richmond, but his dream of pairing chocolate and paper (greeting cards) under one roof never subsided – enter chocolatepaper. As a family, they have put them under one roof. At chocolatepaper, Melissa and the entire team provide customers, friends, and businesses with love, laughter, and joy. Through decadent chocolate (of course!), exceptional service, and unique gift options. I’ve never been disappointed with any interaction or product.
When Melissa is not planning, coordinating, or hosting corporate sales events and marketing for chocolatepaper some of her biggest “wow” moments come through her involvement with Junior Achievement (JA). The organization teaches financial literacy, work readiness and entrepreneurship to grades K-12 in schools across our region. Melissa says, ” Whether I was teaching this at the Noel C. Taylor Learning Academy while holding one of the student’s infants or sitting with second graders at Highland Park Elementary, you can see the direct impact you are making. Powerful and Empowering stuff for these students!”
You won’t see Melissa at many, if any, “Networking” events. One of her biggest tenets is that ‘we are ALL relationship based.’ She specifically will not use the word NETWORK as that seems superficial and self-serving. She never has business cards on her – “Our paths will cross and our relationship will evolve. In whatever way it should; whether into a client or a friend or both. It’s that work/life connection.”
For Melissa it’s about real, authentic relationships – that’s where the value is in life. Serving professionally and personally.
[Photo credit: LinkedIn]
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