Dr. Melany J. Silas, M.Div., is an Educator, Minister, Author, Playwright, Motivational Speaker, and Mother. She attended the University of Rochester, where she earned a Bachelor of Arts in Health and Society and a Master of Science in Counseling and Human Development. She later attended Colgate Rochester Crozer Divinity School, where she earned a Master of Divinity. Finally, Dr. Silas attended Syracuse University where she earned her PhD in Counseling and Counselor Education, where her area of study was the mental health help-seeking and self-care strategies of Black women.
Melany has been an educator for over 25 years. The past 18 years she has spent teaching at Monroe Community College. Melany was the first African American hired within her department at Monroe Community College. She is currently a tenured Full Professor in the Health and Physical Education Department, in the Health Studies Program. She is the creator and course coordinator for the course: Black Women’s Mental Health and Wellness. She has also taught courses such as Death and Dying, Emotional Wellness, Issues in Child Health, Foundations of Health and Wellness and Stress Management. Currently, Melany serves the college as the Chair of the African American Affinity Group as well as serves on the College Diversity Council and the Wellness Council.
Melany is the Founder and CEO of MJS Productions, LLC, a production company committed to producing original pieces of work on the theatrical stage as well as hosting renowned guest to evoke a sense of community empowerment and healing. Since the inception of her production company in 2010 and her first stage play in 2011, Melany has written, directed, produced and served as songwriter for (18) eighteen productions and events. Her first production, Black Girls Anthem, selling out 6 shows in one weekend at Geva Theater. She has hosted celebrities Cynthia Bailey, Mathew Knowles, Sheryl Lee Ralph, Maggie Anderson and Claron McFadden. She has hosted many empowerment events including the sold out event with icon Angela Davis. Most recently she impacted over 1400 women and girls with her 2019 Women and Girls Empowerment Summit on the topic: Black Women and Girls and Mental Health. Melany is currently completing a documentary on Black Women and Mental Health that will be released in Fall 2020.
Melany is an active member of professional organizations including Delta Sigma Theta Sorority Inc., The American Counseling Association, and The National Association of Black Counselors. She is a licensed Minister at St. Luke Tabernacle Community Church and serves within the Women’s and Worship Ministries. Melany has served a number of organizations and institutions locally and nationally by facilitating seminars and workshops on a variety of topics. She is a highly sought after keynote speaker, curriculum developer and workshop presenter.
Melany has been recognized by a variety of magazines and newspapers including the Democrat and Chronicle, About Time, and Open Mic Magazines. She has also been honored by a number of organizations. She was honored with the 2012 Outstanding Alumni Award by the University of Rochester. She was honored as the “2012 Woman of the Year,” by the Black Heritage Commission founded by the City of Rochester. She received the 2014 Inspiring Woman of the Year award by Breakthru Magazine. She was the 2015 Artist Award recipient by the LINKS, Rochester Chapter. She was honored with the 2017 Influential Woman Award by The ROC Awards. She received the 2017 Sisterhood Award in by Zeta Phi Beta, Psi Omega Zeta Chapter. And Melany was honored by the Rochester Alumnae Chapter of Delta Sigma Theta Sorority, Incorporated with the 2017 and 2018 Chapter Service Award during her term as President.
Although Melany has many accomplishments, her most treasured roles are that as a mother to her daughter, Nyah Anita, and as a family member and sister to her closest family and friends.
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