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Melissa Townsend 
Editor   Producer   Reporter

My Skills

  • Build - research, collaborate, and create new media projects

  • Lead - set an editorial direction, coach, support and give feedback

  • Produce - clarify write, research, script, book and hand logistics

  • Communicate - effectively summarize and promote projects

  • Collaborate - forge new partnership and manage external relationships 

  • Organize - create internal systems and production protocols

  • Edit - collaborate with producers and reporters to edit scripts and copy

  • Report - connect with sources and conduct deep research 

  • Write - construct engaging and well-crafted narrative scripts 

  • Manage Audio - record, mix edit, and create sound design 

  • Listen - detect nuances and make space for people to open up and explain

  • Interview - host insightful conversations that have personality

Senior Producer & Editor

Example: 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.


Example: 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 Podcasts

Example: 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 & Featured Interviewer

Example: Many residents in this south Minneapolis neighborhood wanted to turn an abandoned city bus barn into an urban farm. The city stood in their way and some residents' protests crossed a line and became abusive. I spoke with both a resident and a city council member about the project , the passionate pleas, and how to set a standard for peaceful protest.


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Melissa Townsend

Minneapolis, Minnesota



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