As MAC’s grants director, Melody Moody Thortis’ work focuses on overall management of the agency’s grant programs, including the eGRANT online application. She previously served as MAC’s arts-based community development director, where she managed the agency’s community development grant programs. Prior to her work at MAC, Melody was executive director of Bike Walk Mississippi, where she focused the statewide organization around issues of equity, access, placemaking and livability. Moody Thortis comes to MAC with a background in community development and many years of experience collaborating with community leaders, elected officials and organizations across the state.

A native of Kingsport, Tennessee, Moody-Thortis came to Mississippi in 1999 to pursue a bachelor’s degree in art at Belhaven University and went on to receive a master’s degree in International Development from Eastern University. Moody-Thortis is an acrylic painter and musician who enjoys singing with local bands as well as playing banjo, guitar, drums and washboard.