Chairman of the Board of Trustees
Ariel Investment Trust
Mellody is responsible for firm-wide management and strategic planning, overseeing all operations outside of research and portfolio management. Additionally, she serves as chairman of the board of trustees for Ariel Investment Trust. Beyond her work at Ariel, Mellody has become a nationally recognized voice on financial literacy and investor education. She is a regular contributor and analyst on finance, the markets and economic trends for CBS News. She also contributes weekly money tips on the Tom Joyner Morning Show and pens a column for Black Enterprise magazine. As a passionate advocate for investor education, she is a spokesperson for the Ariel/Hewitt Study: 401(k) Plans in Living Color and the Ariel Black Investor Survey, both of which examine investing patterns among minorities. Mellody is vice chair of the Board of Starbucks Corporation and a director of JPMorgan Chase. Her community outreach includes serving as chairman of After School Matters, a non-profit that provides Chicago teens with high-quality, out-of-school time programs. She is chair of The Economic Club of Chicago’s board of directors, co-chair of the Lucas Museum of Narrative Art, and a board member of the George Lucas Education Foundation. She is also a member of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences, The Rockefeller Foundation Board of Trustees, and serves on the executive committee of the Investment Company Institute’s board of governors. Mellody earned her AB from Princeton’s Woodrow Wilson School of International Relations and Public Policy. In 2019, Mellody was awarded Princeton University’s highest honor, the Woodrow Wilson Award, presented each year to the alumni whose career embodies a commitment to national service. She has also received honorary doctorate degrees from Howard University, St. Mary’s College, University of Southern California and Johns Hopkins University.