Melanie Bates Consulting, LLC
Principal Sep 2017–present
Melanie Bates Consulting, LLC is a Washington, DC-based strategic policy and communications firm. MBC provides superior guidance and solutions that empower clients to achieve their goals. With a proven track record of success, MBC provides high quality services resulting in consistent attainment of optimal results. MBC specializes in local government relations, criminal justice reform, and communications.
Legal Counsel for the Elderly, an affiliate of AARP
Legal Aid Attorney Dec 2018–present
Provides legal advice, referrals, self-help materials, and other telephone assistance involving a wide variety of civil matters to older District of Columbia residents. Serves as Co-Chair of the African-American/Black Safe Circle, a component of the LCE Racial Equity Initiative.
Future of Privacy Forum
Director of Communications Apr 2016–Dec 2018
Responsible for all FPF communications requirements including website updates, media relations, internal member communications, and social media presence. Assisted with development of FPF’s strategic communications plan. Supported availability of written or in-person representation of FPF’s position on important public policy questions on consumer privacy issues.
American Civil Liberties Union of the District of Columbia
Director of Policy & Communications Jun 2015–Apr 2016
Identified policy change opportunities, participated in researching and writing about policy issues, developed issue campaigns, and helped identify and mobilize coalition partners. Oversaw the development and execution of a communications and media relations strategy that utilized both traditional and new media. Handled press and other media inquiries as appropriate. Led the ACLU-DC's representation before legislative and executive branch officials and agencies.
Policy & Communications Associate Dec 2014–Jun 2015
Worked with the Policy Director to implement strategies for advancing legislative and policy campaigns. Helped monitor government policy proposals related to civil liberties and recommended actions where appropriate. Maintained targeted press lists; drafted, edited and disseminated press releases, advisories and talking points.
Council of the District of Columbia
Legislative Director, Ward 6 Councilmember Sep 2013–Dec 2014
Managed all legislation. Drafted bills, amendments, and memoranda. Provided briefings. Staffed Legislative and Committee of the Whole Meetings. Coordinated with the Office of General Counsel, Council Budget Office, and other legislative staffers. Attended public hearings, meetings, and workshops. Conducted research. Resolved constituent issues. Communicated with stakeholders and members of the public on a daily basis.
Legislative Counsel, Committee on the Judiciary and Public Safety Feb–Sep 2013
Responsible for oversight, budget, and legislative issues related to the Committee on the Judiciary and Public Safety purview. The Committee on the Judiciary and Public Safety is responsible for matters affecting the judiciary and judicial procedure which are within the authority of the Council; matters affecting decedents’ estates and fiduciary affairs; matters affecting administrative law and procedure; matters affecting criminal law and procedure; returning citizen affairs; matters arising from or pertaining to the police and fire regulations of the District of Columbia; and other matters related to police protection, correctional institutions (including youth corrections), fire prevention, emergency medical services, homeland security, criminal justice, and public safety.
United States Commodity Futures Trading Commission
Paralegal Specialist Dec 2011–Feb 2013
Provided extensive litigation support to investigators and attorneys in the CFTC Division of Enforcement. Drafted letters, subpoenas, motions, discovery requests, and other memoranda pertaining to commodities fraud, manipulation, abusive practices, and systemic risk related to derivatives that are subject to the Commodity Exchange Act. Coordinated with the US Marshals to execute Statutory Restraining Orders. Corresponded with banks, Futures Commission Merchants, and members of the public on a daily basis. Performed complex legal research via LexisNexis and Westlaw. Organized and maintained thousands of documents in Concordance and Practice Manager databases. Analyzed and processed exhibits. Coordinated with the United States Attorney’s Office regarding pretrial litigation support. Arranged witness travel. Participated in depositions. Utilized Public Access to Court Electronic Records (PACER). Attended CFTC Dodd-Frank training sessions.
Legal Aid of North Carolina
Martin Luther King, Jr. Legal Intern May–Jul 2010
Worked closely with a seasoned legal aid attorney on various areas of domestic violence and family law. Obtained certification under the North Carolina State Bar Third-Year Practice Rule. Litigated various civil actions throughout the Durham/Henderson area. Observed depositions. Attended unemployment hearings. Composed letters and other memoranda. Drafted motions. Prepared notice of hearings, mediation papers, and interrogatories. Conducted client intake. Performed legal research. Engaged in substantial client contact in-person and over the telephone.
Neighborhood Legal Services Program
Legal Intern May-Jul 2009
Performed legal research and prepared motions for civil matters. Conducted client consultations. Attended various court proceedings including custody, divorce, and landlord tenant in the District of Columbia Courts. Participated in Fair Hearings at the Washington, DC Housing Authority.
The Washington Post
Advertising Coordinator Jul 2007–Jul 2008
Provided support to four sales account managers in the Major Accounts Unit. Worked directly with advertisers to ensure acceptable ad placement within all of The Post’s publications. Ordered an average of 334 ads per month, processed artwork, and ensured accurate billing. Generated contracts, sent tear sheets, and responded to internal and external inquiries on a daily basis.