Melissa likes to joke that she eats and drinks for a living but it’s not far from the truth. Since founding Melissa Libby & Associates (MLA) in 1992, Melissa has opened more than 300 restaurants, and that’s after spending a few years in hotel public relations, promoting cafes and fine dining rooms. Her skills include publicity, social media, strategic planning, idea generation, event implementation and always ordering the best dish on the menu.
She has received numerous honors, including being named the Crohn’s & Colitis “Citizen of the Year” and is distinguished among her peers for taking Julia Child through the McDonald’s drive-thru while on a media tour. She is president of the Board of Trust for the University of Georgia’s Grady College of Journalism and Mass Communication and a long-time board member of Georgia Organics and Adopt A Golden Atlanta and is a KCBS certified barbeque judge. She is a member of several food-focused non-profits including Les Dames d’Escoffier, James Beard Foundation and the National Restaurant Association. She has published two cookbooks featuring Atlanta chefs, Atlanta Cooks (2001 Longstreet Press) and Atlanta Cooks at Home (2006 CityBooks Publishing).
When not eating or drinking, Melissa enjoys traveling, running, gardening and is always up for learning something new.