Melissa Duff Brown is the Director of Business Development and Corporate Initiatives at the Joseph Center® and related entities. She also oversees the Illinois SBDC, ITC and PTAC at the Joseph Center® and is the Dean of the Small Business Program at the Joseph Business School. She is the current President of the Illinois Entrepreneurship and Small Business Growth Association, a member of America’s SBDC Professional Development Committee that is responsible for the annual training conferences for the over 1,000 Small Business Development Centers across the country.
Melissa also holds a degree in Digital Media Production, is a Six Sigma Green Belt, an Adobe Certified Education Trainer, and a Certified Business Development Advisor. She is GrowthWheel Elite User. She is in the top 40 of over 2,000 advisors in 29 countries certified to use GrowthWheel, a tool to help small and medium businesses focus and take action to grow their businesses, and she is a graduate of the Living Word School of Ministry.
Melissa began her career in accounting as a small business accountant in a CPA firm and held positions in the banking, construction, and electronics industries. Melissa also served in the public sector in local government as a legislative aide and chief of staff. She is an award-winning Director of Sales & Marketing with over twenty years in the hospitality industry with a proven ability to manage multi-functional teams and multi-million dollar budgets.
In 2017, Melissa was named to the State of Illinois 18-member Project Reimagine Committee as Chair of the Minority Business Development Sub-Committee. As a result of that project, Melissa now chairs the Small Business Development Center (SBDC) Network’s Assistance for Minorities and Underserved Communities Strategic Planning Group. Additionally, in 2018, Melissa was honored at America’s SBDC national convention as the 2018 Illinois SBDC State Star because of her outstanding leadership, guidance, engagement, and support provided within the Illinois SBDC Network.