Melissa May is running for U.S. Congress for the 35th District in California. She and her husband of 17 years have a son. Melissa is proud of her multi-cultural heritage coming from immigrant, hard-working families on both her mom’s and dad's side of the family - her mom's parents being from Mexico and her dad and his parents being from Canada, England and Wales.
A College Graduate (with Thousands of Dollars in Student Loan and Medical Debt)
May graduated from Chaffey High School in Ontario. She received her Bachelor's degree from California State University, Chico, and her Master's in Education from National University. Along with her degrees, she graduated with thousands of dollars in student loan debt. In addition to her student loan debt, May has significant medical debt, both for her own medical issues, as well as in relation to her son’s autism and her husband's medical issues. She knows firsthand the challenges and roadblocks to attaining the American Dream when burdened with medical and student loan debt.
An Advocate for the Working Class
Today she is an Educator, Director, and Community Organizer with more than 20 years of experience committed to making change for the lives of the working class. May is dedicated to helping the working class, small businesses, people with medical and student loan debt, nurses, educators and the hundreds of thousands in District 35 that are neglected by a system that isn’t working for Inland Valley residents and the American people.
May's commitment to education led her to a successful career as a science teacher and English Language Immersion Specialist in Alexandria City Public Schools, located in the Washington D.C. Metropolitan area. There, she pioneered a highly successful English Language Immersion program for refugee students from Honduras and El Salvador, which continues to thrive today. May was then promoted as a science coach, where she developed award-winning science curriculums for Kindergarten through fifth grades, receiving the Virginia Math and Science Coalition Award in 2020 for driving considerable academic growth.
In 2019, May and her husband, Stephen, started the Art and Science Cultural Center, a nonprofit in Ontario - in the hopes of building the first children's science, art and cultural centers throughout the Inland Valley to drive a love of learning, and encourage discovery.
In 2021, with the Ontario Fireworks Explosion, the Mays temporarily switched the focus of their nonprofit to help the families displaced by the disaster. May, her husband and countless Ontario community members raised money to help families stay in hotels and pay their insurance deductibles. She started the local chapter of LULAC (League of United Latin American Citizens) civil rights organization to teach residents of Ontario and surrounding areas to advocate for themselves so they would never be left unprepared to fight for their rights again.
In 2022 May was elected to the Mountain View School Board in Ontario, California. But tragedy struck her family and she had to make the impossible decision to move out of the district to become a caretaker for her dying father and to assist her mother financially after her father's passing. May continues to advocate for the underserved, currently serving as Community Coordinator for the Center for Community Action & Environmental Justice (CCAEJ).
In 2023, May was awarded the League of United Latin American Citizens (LULAC) - Woman of the Year Award from the state of California for her work empowering the Inland Empire and Washington D.C. Latino communities in education, civil rights, economic development, environmental justice and access to equitable healthcare.
Today, May serves as a Governor Appointee as a Board of Director for the 28th Agricultural District of the California Department of Food and Agriculture. She is the Founder, Coordinator for the Rising Voices: Community Engagement Conference, a Founder of the Ontario Future Alliance. May also serves as a Board of Director for the Tongan nonprofit M.A.L.O., a Deputy District Director for LULAC District 5 of the Inland Empire, and is the Founder and former President of LULAC de Ontario. May has also served the community as a Campaign Manager for the Ontario for Agriculture Preservation Ballot Referendum, and has volunteered her time serving on the Rialto Ballot Referendum and Fontana Ballot Referendum recently.
Melissa May is running for U.S. Congress, prioritizing opportunities for the working class, protecting Medicare and Social Security, and bringing much-needed federal dollars to the Inland Valley.