Respect Feature: Merissa Green
Compiled By Andrea Cruz
Merissa Green is well-known in the 863 for her work ethic, dedication to helping others, big heart, smile — and love of purple. We asked her a few questions to get at exactly what makes her tick.
Name: Merissa Green, a.k.a. #violetfierce.
Age: Forever 21.
Resident of: Dundee.
Work/professional history: Thirteen years as a reporter at The Ledger, currently the communications manager for the City of Auburndale.
What has been the most meaningful aspect of your career? The relationships I have built with people in the community and my seven national television appearances on investigation programs, including Oxygen’s Snapped and MSNBC’s American Greed.
What organizations have you participated in and why did you feel there was a need to do so? I am a member of the Coalition of 100 Black Women, Polk County Chapter; I am a team leader for American Cancer Society Making Strides For Breast Cancer, volunteer with United Way ReadingPals, director of professional outreach for FPRA, Dick Pope Chapter; and founder of a peer mentoring group called Queens of the Roundtable. These organizations help me to continue to grow professionally and personally.
What sorts of challenges (if any) have you encountered in your community work efforts and how did you overcome them? Getting others engaged and caring about what is happening in our community. I attend a lot of events countywide and often requested to assist with certain efforts. To increase engagement, I make sure others have a seat at the table by being a positive example.
What gives you inspiration? What gives me inspiration is seeing and helping others achieve their goals. The Southeastern University Leadership Forum also gives me inspiration because it is so motivational to hear from the dynamic speakers. I learn so much that I apply to my life.
What do you love best about living in this community (Polk Co.)? The diverse friendships I have. I have a melting pot village. When I was recovering from foot surgery last year, I had people from all walks of life and stature in the community checking up on me. This was much appreciated. I spend a lot of time with a variety of people and I consider myself well-rounded because of it.
What are your hopes and dreams for our area? More diversity in leadership because diverse ideas make our community stronger.
What are your business and personal goals? Financial security so I can enjoy life a little more and experience opportunities described in Viola Davis’ Emmy acceptance speech. I know I have peers and especially young women who look up to me. If I continue to experience professional success, they know they can get there, too.
Outside of work and community efforts, what activities do you enjoy? Reading, journaling, attending church, cooking, sleeping, jogging, dressing up for social events, and watching a good movie.
Favorite quote: “Stay Engaged.”
Lastly, why purple? I often tell people purple is my happy color. I have always loved wearing purple since I was a kid. Wearing purple gives me strength and confidence and helps me to empower others.