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Today in
S.C.V. History
June 21
1941 - Ernie Hickson buys out Trem Carr's interest in their Monogram movie ranch, renames it "Placeritos" (later called Melody). [story]
Ernie Hickson

JillMelladyThe College of the Canyons Foundation has appointed Jill Mellady, president of Mellady Direct Marketing, to be the new chair of the COC Chancellor’s Circle. The group comprises community members, alumni and companies, with a focus on the success of COC.

In her new role, Mellady said she hopes to generate additional community support for the Santa Clarita Valley’s many family-owned businesses and offer resources for succession planning.

“I care deeply about COC and its future. As chancellor, Dr. Dianne Van Hook has done a phenomenal job creating workforce training and partnerships that benefit our local economy,” Mellady said. “Particularly as a small business owner, I believe I am in a position to foster connections between future generations of business owners, plus businesses that continue to move into the SCV, as our company works with so many of them.”

She said the idea for this new focus came from conversations with local family business owners who want to see their companies continue to succeed as future generations take on greater responsibilities.

Family-owned businesses continue to be a major contributor to the economy, in the SCV and beyond. A recent study performed by EY and Kennesaw State University reported that family businesses account for more than two-thirds of all companies around the world.

College of the Canyons Chancellor Dr. Dianne Van Hook said she is excited about what Mellady will bring to her role as chair.

“There are a number of people who would meet the qualifications to serve as the chair, but Jill really provides a unique, much-needed perspective,” Dr. Van Hook said.  “Her drive, her perspective, her positive attitude, her passion and her pride as an alumna of the college will be of tremendous benefit to our valley’s vibrant business community.”

Mellady certainly will bring a business owner’s perspective to the table. She and her husband, Jim, started Mellady Direct Marketing in their garage in 1986. Over nearly 30 years, the company has continued to grow, offering a full range of digital and print marketing services, mailing services and public relations and advertising. This spring, Mellady Direct moved from its longtime Canyon Country location to a nearly 15,000-square-foot facility in the Valencia Industrial Center.

Mellady said an increased focus on family-owned businesses can only enhance COC’s position as a true asset to the community.

“I want to get the college involved in leading the way to provide resources for succession planning as well as fostering networking among business owners and the next generation of leaders in their midst,” she said.

With an ever-growing network of industries including aerospace, biomedical, production and manufacturing in the SCV, Mellady said she will be able to help facilitate connections and partnerships with the college.

Mellady is herself an alumna of COC, having earned an Associate in Science degree in Business Administration in 1991. She sits on the foundation’s executive board, and was chair of the COC Foundation Board of Directors from 2009 to 2012. She has helped lead the school’s Culinary Institute Capital Campaign, serves on the Measure M Bond Oversight Committee and in 2006 was inducted into the COC Alumni Hall of Fame.


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