Melissa Appleton

Program Director
Participatory Budgeting Project

At the Participatory Budgeting Project, Melissa oversees training and consulting for PB processes across the U.S. and Canada, and heads the Participation Lab, which develops tools and resources to support PB advocacy and implementation. She has led major advocacy efforts around PB and civic engagement, including helping establish the NYC Civic Engagement Commission, the first body of its kind approved by voters in North America. Melissa has trained hundreds of volunteers, civic leaders, elected officials, educators, and city staff on PB implementation in cities and schools. She brings a passion for collective decision-making to PB, with a Masters degree in Peace Education from Columbia University and over eight years of experience supporting group and interpersonal dialogue at the largest community mediation organization in the US, New York Peace Institute. Melissa is a proud Canadian and worked internationally in Israel, Kosovo, and East Timor before settling in NYC. Outside of the office, you can find her at the ceramics studio, biking to the beach, and grocery shopping at the Park Slope Food Coop.

[Programming descriptions are generated by participants and do not necessarily reflect the opinions of SXSW.]