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Melissa Townsend 
Reporter   Producer   Editor

Senior Producer & Editor
Daily News Magazine Show

Minnesota Now is an award winning hour-long daily news magazine show on MPR News hosted by veteran journalist Cathy Wurzer. I co-created the show with Cathy and served as senior producer of the production team - approving pitches, editing all content and working with staff on the podcast, web and social media content. National Public Radio Journalist Award, Midwest Broadcast journalist Awards, Minnesota SPJ Awards.

News Features

The Upper Harbor Terminal is a 48-acre industrial site owned by the city of Minneapolis in a working class, racially diverse part of the city. It is primed for redevelopment. Can city officials embrace a vision of development that centers the BIPOC community and forces private developers into a new way of doing business? My reporting for MPR News, in collaboration with North News community newspaper, traces the history of this part of town and shows us the ways things may be changing.  Midwest Broadcast Journalists Award - First Place, General Reporting.

Reporter & Producer
Narrative Podcast

The study of ACES, or adverse childhood experiences, shows early trauma can rewire children's brains to make them defensive, hypervigilant and depressed.  But understanding ACES can arm adult survivors with the information they need to heal their brains and change their lives. Susan, Kayla and Jeep found their way to an ACES training on childhood trauma held at the White Earth Band of Ojibwe. And they let me into their lives to follow how their new understanding of trauma was changing the way they lived. This project was a collaboration with the White Earth tribal radio station, Niijii Radio and produced during mandatory isolation period of the Covid pandemic. 

Show Host
Daily News Magazine Show

I am a curious and compassionate host compelling guests to tell engaging stories and give straight-forward answers to important questions. Minnesota SPJ Award.


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Melissa Townsend

Minneapolis, Minnesota



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