Melinda is the mother of three and a grandma. Her addiction advocacy began in 2005 when her oldest began using prescription medication; from there he began using heroin and benzodiazepines. He was in and out of treatment until he reached his 18th birthday, and after that, Melinda was longer allowed to force her son into treatment. He had to want it, his rights.

Melinda's goal is educate, prevent and try to come up with a solution to the opioid crisis we face in America. She started a group called Family of an Addict to bring family members affected by addiction together in a safe place without judgment to tell their stories. I’m currently a member of: Addiction Policy Forum, Addiction & Recovery Community Advocates, Stop the Stigma, Not my Child, and Black Balloon Day for overdose awareness.

"If I can save lives from addiction, it will all be worth it," says Melinda.