Melissa Reaves (she/her) is a professional and award-winning storyteller and storytelling coach to executives. Her sales and marketing background includes more than 20 years in technology enterprise sales, as well as countless stage credits as a professional actor/improviser. This combination of sales, marketing, acting, writing, directing and producing storytelling shows, ultimately led her to found Story Fruition to help others find and tell their stories--with impact.
Melissa works with CEOs, Founders and Senior Executives to build their storytelling skills and enrich their leadership. Melissa is the Pitch Coach for Founders Live and has been invited to instruct storytelling for business narratives at conferences all over the United States.
As an actress and professional storyteller, Melissa Reaves regularly appears on The Moth Story Slams (she wins too!), Seattle's Fresh Ground Stories, Ignite Seattle, NAMI's Brainpower Chronicles, Speak Up Podcast, The Otter Story Hour and Unexpected Productions Improv. Her work has also been featured on NPR.
Melissa is constantly teaching storytelling, studying it, and performing so she masters the power of this skill and art form. She's known for producing rich characters in her stories so her listeners step inside the emotional journey with her.
In June 2020, Melissa was reflecting on her own (white) experience. Her story opens with a frighteningly common thread: she was raised by a southern based family where racist views were common. While discussing how to share her story, a friend suggested to Melissa that maybe it wasn't her story that needed to be told, to be heard. She took the conversation to heart and shifted focus on the people who are screaming to be heard, literally, and asked, "How can we help magnify those voices?"
Thus, Melanin Stories Matter was born. Produced by Story Fruition, Melanin Stories Matter exists to amplify BIPOC voices. These stories are hard and often painful--both to tell and to hear--but these stories matter.
Need a seasoned MC, energetic host, or powerhouse storyteller for your event?
The Moth meets Whose Line is it Anyway, only less formatted, more spontaneous and out of control fun!
Melissa debuted on the Speak Up virtual stage on August 22, 2020 for the "Letting Go" virtual show.