Born in East Chicago and raised in Merrillville, Melissa Borom is a native of northwest Indiana, where she developed an early understanding of the connections between a quality education, skills development and economic success.
The daughter of a 35-year East Chicago teacher and a 20-year Merrillville school custodian, Borom learned early in life that education and hard work provided a gateway to opportunity. She took on two newspaper delivery routes while in high school, often rising at 2 am to make deliveries, before heading to Merrillville High School, where she played on the varsity basketball team.
She earned a degree from Indiana State and a law degree from Valparaiso University Law School, and quickly gained valuable experience in both the public and private sectors.
While attending law school, she worked in the offices of northwest Indiana’s Congressman Pete Visclosky, U.S. Senator Dick Durbin and for the U.S. House Committee on Appropriations in Washington, D.C.
Borom then went to work for AAR Corporation, an independent provider of global aviation services, where she manages government affairs in six states, including Indiana.
In that role, Borom helps fund (and direct) job training programs to partner with local schools and businesses to help students learn the skills needed to become aviation maintenance technicians. She is committed to developing job skills for those who don’t attend college, and she will continue that work in Congress.
Borom also worked with congressional members on the FAA Reauthorization Act of 2018, which authorizes a new $5M per year for a five years workforce development grant program. This program will help recruit and train the next generation of aviation maintenance technicians. In addition to working on the FAA Reauthorization Act, Borom has also worked with Congress to improve competition for Department of Defense (DoD) Maintenance Contracts, which could possibly save our government billions of dollars if they adopt commercial best practices.
Her focus on job skills development and government efficiency will be vital to the economic development of our region, where a skilled workforce in a changing job market is the key to our future success.
Her lifelong commitment to bettering lives is evident in her community service. Borom serves on the board of directors for NorthShore Health Centers in northwest Indiana, which provides vital health care services to those in our region who would otherwise not have access to quality health care options.
She also serves on the board of Ladies of Virtue, a mentorship program for hundreds of young girls, providing professional guidance and developing problem-solving skills in teenagers and young adult women.
Melissa has been named to the Northwest Indiana Times “Top 20 Under 40,” is a member of the NAACP and the Chicago Urban League and attends Salem Baptist Church in Chicago. She currently resides in Gary.