top of page

Meet Melin

A portrait shot of Melin Sotiriou Droz

Of Greek and Puerto Rican ancestry, Melín learned to navigate the complexities that accompany a multicultural home from an early age. Raised in Puerto Rico, she excelled in her commitment to her education, graduating with academic distinction from Inés María Mendoza High School in Cabo Rojo. Upon completing her senior year, Melín moved to Greece to learn about her paternal lineage and came to appreciate the benefits of American citizenship. In an international environment, Melín observed how an individual's citizenship determines what opportunities are available to improve one's quality of life. She then decided to study government to make a more equitable society.

She graduated with a bachelor's degree in government and public policy from the University of Maryland. Melín applied her formal education working directly in legislative formulation, always focused on social justice and her responsibility as a Latina. She was an intern at the Embassy of Spain, a legal assistant for an immigration attorney, and worked with the State Department in the Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs and the U.S. Embassy in Argentina. In Buenos Aires, she met with various spiritual leaders to gain insight into the political and socioeconomic landscape of the country with a focus on human rights during the vote to legalize abortion. Realizing that values informed by religion define the common good, Melin returned to Maryland to work at the intersection of faith and social services.

Melín standing next to a volunteer.
Melin shaking hands with Dean Hempton during the 2023 Commencement Ceremony

As Community Relations Director for the Salvation Army, she fought for food accessibility for the city of Baltimore, a predominantly African-American and Latin American low-income community, raising awareness of the racial and economic apartheid of a human right: food. Recognizing that the intersection between civic duty and moral calling to one's neighbor requires further study, she enrolled at Harvard Divinity School to complete a master's degree in theological studies focusing on religion and social sciences.

While in Cambridge, she researched the religious emblems in Puerto Rico's coat of arms and learned about the United States' influence on the island's democratic processes. It was then that Melín decided to dedicate her academic knowledge, work preparation, and personal experience to navigating governments in multiple countries for the betterment of her homeland. 

Among her priorities is Puerto Rico's status, which must be addressed by creating an alliance with other communities, such as the District of Columbia (Washington DC), which aspires to a similar constitutional resolution, the health system, which needs to recruit and retain physicians to restore care in the community, and the Financial Oversight & Management Board, which has never translated its annual reports into Spanish, the language of the community affected by its decisions, emblematic of the lack of transparency between government and citizens.

bottom of page