Melanie A. Baden
Executive Director of the Arkansas Waterways Association
What is your secret to success?
I see people for who they are. When I meet someone, whether they’re a dockworker or a CEO, I treat them the same. Everyone has a purpose, and everyone deserves the same respect, care and opportunity.
What can we do to better empower female professionals?
Be a mentor and surround yourself with female mentors. I’ve been blessed to have been surrounded by so many strong women, and as a result I actively participate in mentoring programs to uplift young women. Simply put, we must pay it forward.
What accomplishments are you most proud of?
I recently thru-hiked all 2,200 miles of the Appalachian Trail. On a professional level, when I came to the AWA it had been dormant for five years, and today it’s a large and dynamic organization at every port, terminal and dam across Arkansas.