Melissa Amarawardana

Melissa Amarawardana

Communications Manager

As Audubon’s Communications Manager, Melissa is a writer, editor, content creator, and enthusiastic promoter of all things Audubon. She manages the Great Plains website, produces newsletters and social media content, and spends a lot of time admiring bird photography – a skill she hopes to improve on. Most importantly, she gets to talk to conservationists, birders, and climate scientists and help them tell their stories.

Prior to Audubon, Melissa worked in politics and advocacy, researching voter mobilization and messaging. She was the Lead Designer at Catalist for three election cycles, but also worked at Avionics Interface Technologies, the Close Up Foundation, the International Center for Journalists, and as a special assistant at the USDA Farm Services Agency.

Melissa earned a Master’s degree in Political Science at the University of Nebraska-Omaha and a Bachelor’s degree in International Peace and Conflict Resolution from the American University. She has lived and worked in DC, Maryland, Germany, and South Korea – but Nebraska is and always will be her home. In her free time, Melissa is a voracious reader of psychology, historical fiction, and mysteries; she loves musicals, restoring her cottage, and rewilding her backyard for birds and bugs.

Conservation Influence:

My family is full of nature and animal lovers. Growing up on a lake, I caught tadpoles and frogs, the Mallard ducks were so tame they would take bread right from our hands. One year we had a mother duck build her nest behind our wood pile and got to watch little ducklings hatch. The Canadian Goose migration was a holiday for us. Now we also have a handsome pair of Great Blue Herons nesting nearby. Being able to share this wonder with my daughter and niblings is the best part of living here.

Favorite Bird:

Mallard Ducks, obviously. But I also find owls funny and adorable, and I love that penguins are so graceful in the sea but (like me) so awkward shuffling around on land.

To contact Melissa, please email her at

Articles by Melissa Amarawardana

Audubon Nebraska announces $34 million Elevate Fundraising Campaign
Elevate Nebraska

Audubon Nebraska announces $34 million Elevate Fundraising Campaign

— To date, Elevate Nebraska has raised $31 million for capital expansion, conservation, and education.
Easement Landowners share their stories with State Senators
Press Room

Easement Landowners share their stories with State Senators

— Several landowners host Agricultural and Conservation Easement visit in Gretna