Dr. Melanie Reese enthusiastically joined CADRE as Director in 2017, coming from the Idaho Dept. of Education where she was the Dispute Resolution Coordinator for seven years. There she oversaw the state's IDEA mediation, state complaint, and due process hearing systems, and helped grow the IEP facilitation program into a popular option for Idaho’s districts and parents. Working collaboratively with the state parent center and local school districts, she actively fostered relationships to better serve children with disabilities.
Professor emerita (Boise State University, 2009), Melanie remains active in the academic community as a co-author of conflict and mediation textbooks and by guest lecturing. She was a founding member of the BSU Dispute Resolution Graduate Advisory Board, teaching in that program for over 20 years, and was an Associate Professor in the College of Applied Technology. Previously, Melanie served on the executive board of the Idaho Mediation Association, was a college ombudsman, and has been a professional mediator since 1990. Melanie has consulted for numerous organizations to improve their communication effectiveness, and has facilitated large and small groups in widely diverse contexts and populations. She is regularly called to present on dispute resolution issues in special education and productive conflict engagement, loves supporting system improvement work, and currently sits on several national advisory boards and committees.
Melanie comes to this work with the experience of growing up in a small rural farming community to later teaching at three different state universities. She's experienced the challenges, frustrations, and successes that come from advocating for her two neurodivergent boys when they were in elementary and high schools. She is actively engaged in social justice causes, particularly related to equitable access of healthcare and defending individual rights and liberties. She and her husband, a jr. high science teacher, are proud parents of two adult sons. They live alongside three sweet dogs and one snarky cat.
Get to know Melanie:
Read a note from Melanie (2017)