Melissa Ann is a fun loving, gregarious southern gal who grew up in the world of pageants, modeling, and competitive dance. She moved from West Virginia and now is living in the beautiful wine country of southern California, nestled between Los Angeles and San Diego. In her various roles, she has appeared in commercial and print ads as well as on CNN, ESPN, ABC and many other national TV networks. With education, hard work, perseverance and great faith, she became passionate about authentically developing her vocations. She is most proud of being mom to three healthy, happy teenagers, Natalie, Nick, and Julianna. As a health care professional, she is proud of her clinical work as a registered nurse and humbled by the human experience. Her path to success necessarily included overcoming significant adversity, not the least of which was wearing an obtrusive Milwaukee brace for years to treat scoliosis. Two-time Mrs. West Virginia and Mrs. United States, second runner up, Melissa Ann used her poise and sense of style to become a model and fashionista. She has shared her unique life and lessons under the banner, “Brains, Beauty and Balance.” She has been a modeling instructor, a pageant coach as well as a fashion and bridal show coordinator. “As women,” she says, “we need to help each other and build each other up! We need to emphasize strengths, confidence, and goal setting. Life is too short not to strive to always become the best version of yourself.” Melissa Ann has evolved into a serial entrepreneur with a software development company, a publishing company, and a designer online fashion boutique and she is also embarking on the path of reality TV producer and actress.
You have an exotic look. What is your ethnic background?
I get asked that all the time. People come up to me and say, “What are you?” and I have to laugh! People will guess that I’m Brazilian or Italian. My lineage is actually from the United Kingdom — from England, Ireland, Scotland and Wales. Oh, and that exotic piece must be the American Indian in me, something I’m very proud of!
What is your educational and early career background?
I studied nursing science and business at the University of Charleston and at Marshall University. Then I worked as an advanced registered nurse in surgery, the recovery room, and in out-patient plastic surgery.
Tell us how you got involved in your 40’s to do a swimsuit calendar benefitting veterans?
My dad proudly served in the army and I wanted to honor and support him and all the men and women in the military. As for the swimsuit calendar, I was approached by a publisher about my “Brains, Beauty, and Balance” platform, which really is about embracing the intelligence and inner beauty of all women and about unlocking hidden potential. I believe that age is just a number and was proud to do it. The overall message was intended to be: we women can have it all. We are strong. We are intelligent. We are beautiful.
What is your current profession?
Ha, it depends on the time of day!
As mom, I have early morning and afternoon chauffeur duties to get the kids to and from school. In fact, mom duties never end! And that’s completely fine with me, because it’s my most important role.
As COO of the MindCare Group with the registered nursing background, I look after the day-to-day business operations, from research to sales to content development. MindCare is an integrated health and wellness software development company providing an ever-growing library of web- and mobile-based applications.
My newest ventures are really exciting, too! I am at the beginning of a retail revolution and have an MKC boutique that features top designers like Marisa Kenson, Ella Moss, and Sheri Bodell, some of my personal favorites. We have women’s, men’s and children’s fashions as well as shoes, jewelry and cosmetics, with new designers and new products always being added. There is something special for everyone! Come check it out at www.shopmkc.com/melissaann. I’m also getting involved in Reality TV – on both sides of the camera and I’m really enjoying it. I wish I could say more but…mums the word!
And now some fun facts!
What is your favorite color?
Red, red and more red!
Do you have pets?
I have an adorable teacup Maltese named Coco Chanel; she is the sweetest little sidekick one could ever imagine. We also have a beautiful, green-eyed tabby cat named Cody. Oh! And, though I don’t have one, I also love lions!! As a Leo, I love, love, love lions. I love lion jewelry, décor, statues….I love it all!
Sandra Brown and Danielle Steele
Favorite Types of Books:
Autobiographies. I love to learn what makes people tick!
Favorite Movies/Movie lines:
Shawshank Redemption: “Get busy living or get busy dying.”
Titanic: “I figure life’s a gift and I don’t intend on wasting it.”
Carrie Underwood, Shania Twain, Bruno Mars, and Michael Buble. I love many genres! My kids and I crank up the volume and sing along.
Jennifer Garner. A sweetheart from my hometown Charleston, West Virginia, she lights up the screen.
Keanu Reeves. His real-life ability to overcome adversity, his humility, and his action-packed roles make him a favorite.
Tennis, Skiing, and Football.
Favorite TV Shows:
Shark Tank, Dateline, and the Real Housewives.
My home state of West Virginia, gorgeous California, Hawaii, and Cabo San Lucas, Mexico.
Gulfstream in Newport Beach, California and Chart House in Cardiff-by-the-Sea, California, the Top of the World in Las Vegas, the 365 at the CN Tower in Toronto, the Sea Grill in New York City, Jake’s in Del Mar, California, and Duke’s in La Jolla, California. And my favorite bakery is: Paula Vega Cakes in Huntington, West Virginia.
Where do you see yourself ten years from now?
Doing just what I’m doing now plus…my husband and I will have developed our land into a vineyard and will have entered the wine industry! With God all things are possible!