Melissa Conner

Melissa Conner, Chief Advancement Officer

Melissa Conner headshot

Areas of expertise:

  • Resource development 
  • Marketing and communications
  • Grant writing
  • Marketing campaign and branding development 

As Chief Advancement Officer, Melissa Conner is responsible for leading the Foundation’s Advancement team, where she oversees the organization’s resource development, grant writing, marketing, communications, and external relations efforts, as well as the Foundation’s fiscally sponsored programs. 

Conner has over 12 years of experience and proven results in guiding communications and advancement for public, private, and non-profit entities. She joined the Foundation in 2006 to oversee the organization’s marketing and communications strategies and initiatives. 


  • Supporting statewide Student Success initiatives through the California Student Success Center and the Student Success Flagship Initiative. 
  • Developing branding, marketing, and outreach strategies for multiple campaigns, including LaunchPath, the newly developed student internship matching and badging technology tool, and website and the award-winning Step:Forward student awareness campaign and website to increase momentum towards improving student success in the California Community College system.
  • Securing over $6 million for workforce development initiatives, including recent funding to develop a mobile app for educational planning with a focus on Career Technical Education programs in the Inland Empire.

As part of the Communications and Technology department, Conner and her team have been recognized with over 40 awards at the state, regional, and national level for excellence in marketing, communications, and design, including the gold CASE award for rebranding the Foundation.

Prior to her work with the Foundation, Conner was Director of Admissions for the Los Angeles Film School, and also taught English at the high school and university level for over six years. Conner holds a master’s degree in English from the University of California, Davis, and a bachelor’s degree from the University of Georgia.

Management Team

Keetha Mills
President and Chief Executive Officer

Julian Roberts
Chief Financial Officer

Joseph Quintana
Chief Operating Officer

Melissa Conner
Chief Advancement Officer

Bryan Miller
Vice President of Communications and Technology

Andrea Meyer
General Counsel and Corporate Secretary

Board of Directors

Manuel Baca
Chair of the Board

Kathy Williams
Vice Chair of the Board

George Acero

Arnoldo Avalos

Ferial Govashiri

Frank Gornick

Geneve Villacres

Jennifer Perry

Lance Izumi

Patrick Mulvaney

Yasmin Davidds

Foundation for California
Community Colleges

1102 Q Street, Suite 4800
Sacramento, CA 95811

Toll Free: 866.325.3222
Fax: 916.325.0844

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Who we serve

The Foundation serves as the official foundation supporting the Board of Governors, Chancellor’s Office, and the entire California Community College system, including 115 colleges and 73 districts, serving 2.1 million students.

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