Close this search box.

WGI Unleashed Podcast Episode 82: Melissa McKinlay, VP, Government Relations

On the latest episode of the WGI Unleashed podcast, we sit down with Melissa McKinlay, VP of Government Relations, based out of our corporate office in West Palm Beach, FL.

Welcome back to another captivating episode of the WGI Unleashed Podcast!

In our 82nd episode, we sit down with Melissa McKinlay, VP of Government Relations, from our West Palm Beach corporate office.

From early childhood roots in the Northeast to becoming a key player in Palm Beach County’s political landscape, it’s safe to say that Melissa’s journey is nothing short of riveting.

From Northeast Beginnings to Florida Roots

Melissa’s story began in Sarasota, Florida, where she relocated from the Northeast with her family when she was just six years old – But it didn’t take very long for the Sunshine State to win her over and become home.

For the past 20 years, Melissa has called Palm Beach County her home, deeply embedding herself in the community and working to make a difference along the way.

Academic and Early Political Aspirations

Melissa’s passion for politics took root during her high school years when she ran for class president, with her ambition leading her to Florida State University (FSU), where she pursued a degree in Political Science. Drawn to Tallahassee for its proximity to the state capital, she relished the experience of attending a renowned “football school” while simultaneously cultivating her political acumen.

A pivotal recommendation from a professor landed her a legislative internship, setting the stage for her career in public service.

Making a Difference in Palm Beach County

Melissa’s commitment to making a tangible difference in the community around her is evident through her impressive contributions. Notably, she has played a crucial role in establishing the Butterfly House, a sexual assault treatment center in Palm Beach County.

Her collaboration with Senator Marco Rubio to improve housing conditions for farm workers in Belle Glade further underscores her dedication to advocacy and community welfare.

Political Career and Personal Resilience

In 2014, Melissa was elected as a Palm Beach County Commissioner, a role she approached with vigor and determination.

Balancing the demands of political life and being a mother of three was no small feat, and Melissa candidly shares the challenges and triumphs of this journey in our latest episode of the WGI Unleashed Podcast.

A New Chapter at WGI

Melissa joined WGI to leverage her extensive experience and connections in government relations, with her role involving influencing public officials and securing vital contracts that shape how communities are envisioned, designed, and experienced.

Her dedication to public service seamlessly aligns with WGI’s value of ‘being the change you seek,’ making her an invaluable asset to the team.

Beyond the Office

When she’s not shaping policy or advocating for her community, Melissa enjoys exploring the great outdoors. An avid hiker, she also embodies a particular fondness for national parks, with Glacier National Park holding a special place in her heart.

Join us in thanking Melissa McKinlay for sharing her remarkable journey, her insights on balancing career and family, and her unwavering commitment to making a positive impact. And tune in next time as we unravel more captivating tales and insights on the WGI Unleashed Podcast. Until then, stay inspired and keep unleashing your potential!

Visit your favorite podcast app now and subscribe to WGI Unleashed to receive alerts every time a new episode drops. You can find us on SpotifyApple PodcastsiHeart RadioGoogle Podcasts, or wherever you find your favorite podcasts!


More Episodes

We're Hiring Nationwide


Enter your zip code, and we’ll personalize your experience with local projects, office locations, team members, and more.

WGI's success starts with our Associates

WGI supports its associates with meaningful opportunities for growth, strong benefits and perks, while we work collaboratively with clients and co-consultants to shape and improve communities.

Our Team in Action

Join the Team

WGI is a dynamic organization with opportunities nationwide for engineers, land surveyors, landscape architects, environmental scientists, and architects.

Find a team member:

Let's talk about your next project.