Melody Chatelle

Melody Chatelle began her career as a legislative aide, gaining 10 years of experience as a staffer in the Texas State Capitol. She then served as director and vice president of government affairs for Mariner Post-Acute Network for 12 years and in 1999, founded Chatelle and Associates, a legislative and communication consulting company.

Her degrees include a Ph.D. in Communication Studies from the Moody College of Communication and a master's of public affairs from the LBJ School of Public Affairs, both from The University of Texas at Austin. She earned her bachelor's in journalism from Stephen F. Austin State University, where she was named Outstanding Female Graduate.

Chatelle is author of "Journeys of Heartache and Grace: Conversations and Life Lessons from Young People with Serious Illnesses." Her book, published in 2008, is a narrative non-fiction piece centered on the topic of end-of-life communication and is based on her dissertation, which was nominated for dissertation of the year at UT Austin.

Chatelle is a volunteer of Hospice Austin and Dell Children's Medical Center, long-serving consultant for United Ways of Texas, board member for My Healing Place, and a former board member for Texas CASA, Court Appointed Special Advocates.

Nationally, she has served as chair of the American Health Care Association's (AHCA) Legislative Subcommittee and was named the 1997 AHCA Outstanding Key Member.

Her work and research interests include healthcare policy, leadership development and interpersonal, organizational and healthcare communication. Through her company and on her own, Chatelle advocates for both profit and non-profit organizations including many groups that are in need of support but lack a strong voice in government or society.