About Melissa Link
Experienced - Pragmatic - Effective - Progressive
Melissa Link was born in southeast Washington, DC in the hospital where her mother worked as a nurse for over 30 years. She is a descendent of Irish and Lithuanian immigrants, Tennesee & West Virginia hill people, and multiple generations of Pittsburgh steel workers. She grew up in southern Prince George's County, Maryland where she graduated from Frederick Douglass High School in 1988. Her maternal grandparents met while serving in the US Navy during WWII, her paternal grandfather was a survivor of the USS Wasp, sunk by a Japanese kamikaze submarine in the South Pacific in WWII, and her parents met while serving as Naval communications officers stateside during the Vietnam War. Melissa continues to spend summer vacations on her great-grandfather's farm property in rural Massachusetts, once a stop on the Underground Railroad. This background drives her passion for socio-economic justice, racial equality, environmental protection, historic preservation, and a patriotic defense of democracy.
Melissa 's appreciation of urban living and public transportation was fostered during visits with her mom's extended family in Brooklyn, NY as well as trips to see paternal grandparents in Pittsburgh. Her grandmother took the bus downtown every day to her job at a department store beauty salon. Melissa regularly rides Athens Transit and commutes via electric scooter on the Prince Avenue bike lanes to her job on North Campus.
Melissa graduated from East Carolina University, and arrived in Athens as an art history graduate student in 1993. She is a longtime supporter of the arts & music scene, neighborhood activist, & environmental activist. She works in the UGA Department of Philosophy as a communications specialist & managing editor of an environmental ethics journal. She has lived on Hiawassee Avenue since 2002 and is married to a high school English teacher who works in a neighboring county school district.