Melissa Garai, M.A.J.C.S., M.P.A.

Associate Director, Development & Community Relationships, Zelikow School of Jewish Nonprofit Management

Contact Information

school/program: Zelikow School of Jewish Nonprofit Management
campus: Los Angeles, National


Melissa serves as the Associate Director of Development and Community Relationships for the Zelikow School of Jewish Nonprofit Management. She is responsible for helping to bring new students, new funds, and more attention to the leadership pipeline development that is the Zschool. 

Melissa has over 15 years of experience in fundraising, communications, and program development in established and emerging nonprofit organizations, as well as in university settings. Melissa has worked in key development, strategy, and program roles throughout the California nonprofit community at organizations including UCSD, UpStart, Jewish Federations (in the East Bay and in Los Angeles), and most recently as the Director of Major Gifts at the Oshman Family JCC in Palo Alto, CA. 

Melissa holds an M.P.A. from USC (2010), and an M.A.J.C.S. (now-M.A.J.N.M.) from the Zelikow School of Jewish Nonprofit Management (2010). A “valley girl” born and raised, Melissa is thrilled to call the San Fernando Valley home, once again, after a decade spent sampling the other two major cities in California, San Diego and San Francisco. She and her husband are raising two amazing kids in a home that’s a blend of their Sephardi, Ashkenazi, conservative, and orthodox backgrounds and traditions.