Board Member Spotlight: Melissa Kozak Freed


Name: Melissa Kozak Freed

Role on the Board: Vice President

Number of Years Served: 4

Current Employment: Oncology Sales – Merck & Co., Inc.

Why do you serve? I want to make sure every child has the best educational experience possible. I also see how hard and dedicated our teachers are and want to support them and give them a voice with the Foundation.

What do you love most about Bennington Public Schools? When we purchased our land in 1999 Bennington was still one school. By the time my daughter started it was 2 schools. We chose the community for the small town feel with a strong sense of community. Through all the growth, that sense of closeness is still present today.

Where do you hope to see the Foundation in 5 years? As an organization they are aware of and can support financially, through donations of their time, or by supporting our fundraising efforts. We are always in need of new ideas and talents. 

What is your favorite program that the BPS Foundation supports and why? All Star Kids Before-And-After-School Program. As a working mom I don’t know what I would have done without the program when my kids were younger. I hope it will continue to improve and offer our Bennington families a great place for kids before and after school. 

Family members?  Husband: Enrique (Rick), Daughters: Sahara (senior), Aviana (freshman), Amaris (5th grade at Bennington).

Other local organizations you are involved with?

I have led all three daughters’ Girl Scout Troops and been a leader for 13 years. I have coached volleyball, soccer and softball. Both Rick and I have served as President of Bennington Elementary PTO and are involved with PTO currently.

Other organizations I’ve been involved with:

Friends of Henry Doorly Zoo board (9 years)

Ronald McDonald House Board (8 years)

Swim Across America (Current)