|Member of the California State Assembly
from the 67th district
December 3, 2012
|Preceded by||Kevin Jeffries (redistricted)|
|Residence||Lake Elsinore, California|
Melissa Melendez is an American politician serving in the California State Assembly. She is a Republican representing the 67th district, encompassing parts of western Riverside County. Prior to being elected to the state assembly, she was a Lake Elsinore city council member.
Early life and education
Melendez is a native of Youngstown, Ohio. Upon graduating from high school, she entered the United States Navy. She attended the Defense Language Institute in Monterey, California, where she became a fluent Russian language speaker.
Melissa became one of the first women approved by the U.S. Navy to fly aboard EP-3 reconnaissance aircraft overseas, conducting reconnaissance and intelligence gathering operations in partnership with our allies. She served as a Russian translator for ten years during the height of the Cold War, and flew covert missions during Operation Desert Shield and Desert Storm.
After the Navy, Melissa took an academic advisory position at Chaminade University for two years before deciding to begin her own business. She then formed her own transcription company, contracting with the Chief of Naval Operations, and providing services to the Secretary of the Navy as well as other top-level Pentagon officials. Melissa attended the Murrieta Campus for the University of Phoenix to earn her MBA in June 2008. In 2008, Melissa Melendez was elected to the Lake Elsinore City Council. She served as Mayor Pro Tem as well as Mayor during her four years in local government. Melissa has distinguished herself throughout the district by tackling some of the most important issues of the day, like fighting for increased government transparency, reducing taxes, and easing the burden on the business community. Melissa is also known to be a tireless advocate for veterans and military families.