Columbus nonprofit See Kids Dream awarded its 2018 Inspired Leader Award to Melissa Rogner, our Vice President of Marketing. She received the award May 3 at the annual Inspire Us gala at Villa Milano.
“See Kids Dream is an incredible organization committed to creating future leaders,” Melissa said. “Leading new opportunities to support their efforts aligned perfectly with our company goals of giving back. It was just the right thing to do for myself and the Crimson Cup team.”
Melissa has provided volunteer support since she began with Crimson Cup in 2012. She currently serves as a member of the See Kids Dream marketing committee created in 2017.
“Melissa is one of the most inspired leaders I’ve had the privilege to work with,” said See Kids Dream Co-founder and Executive Director Laura Grindle. “When we have a need, she never lets us down. She gets to work and finds innovative solutions.”
When See Kids Dream was ready to launch Project Dream, a new program that enables volunteers to fill the “service learning coach” role typically filled by a school staff person, Melissa stepped up to organize a group of volunteers from Crimson Cup. For the 2017-2018 school year, the Crimson Cup team worked with students at Ohio Avenue Elementary School, the closest Columbus City School to the company’s Innovation Lab at 700 Alum Creek Drive.
“In many schools, staff members have many more demands, than they have time,” Grindle said. “Thanks to Melissa’s leadership, we have been able to give kids at Ohio Avenue Elementary the opportunity to participate.”
For the past nine months, the Crimson Cup team has met weekly with 10 Ohio Avenue Elementary fifth-grade students to help them learn about community issues. The students chose homelessness as the issue most important to them. After voting to work with Huckleberry House, a program for runaway and homeless teens at 1421 Hamlet Street in Columbus, the kids created an advocacy video. The project was recently featured on the “What’s Cool at School” segment of the WBNS-10TV morning news program.
“Having the opportunity to work closely with See Kids Dream has changed my perspective on giving back,” Melissa said. “Leading the Crimson Cup Project Dream team has been professionally and personally fulfilling by allowing me to see our impact of working with the students first-hand. It has been an incredible experience to be a part of this organization.”
A graduate of Hillard High School and Ohio University, Melissa lives in Hilliard (43206) with her husband Kevin and their two sons. She serves as a parent volunteer and youth sports advocate for a busy schedule of school and sports activities for her children.