Wayne State College

Melissa Nelsen Named Interim CEO of Wayne State Foundation

Published Wednesday, June 12th, 2024

Effective July 1, Melissa Nelsen will serve as the interim CEO of the Wayne State Foundation.

Melissa NelsenThe Board of Trustees of the Wayne State Foundation (WSF), which provides financial support for the mission of Wayne State College, announces the selection of Melissa Nelsen to serve as interim CEO beginning July 1, 2024. Nelsen currently serves as the Director of Major Gifts for the Foundation. She will succeed current CEO Kevin Armstrong, who is leaving June 30 for a new position in Omaha. The interim CEO appointment is in effect while a national search is conducted to fill the position.

Nelsen joined the WSF in January 2022 as the Director of Major Gifts, and she has been successful in fundraising for a wide variety of projects and campaigns in support of Wayne State College. Most recently, she was the lead fundraiser for the Peterson Fine Arts building renovation project. Nelsen has also been active in preparing proposals for financial support from private foundations. Prior to joining the Wayne State Foundation, she served three years as Director of the Foundation and Marketing at Providence Medical Center in Wayne.

An alumna of Wayne State College, Nelsen earned a bachelor’s degree in Psychology and a Master of Science in Education degree with a focus in Health Sciences. Professionally, she is active in the Council for Advancement and Support of Education (CASE), a global nonprofit association for educational advancement. In the local community, she is a Wayne Ambassador for Wayne America Inc. and currently serves as president of the Wayne Kiwanis Club. Nelsen resides in Wayne with her husband Kyle Nelsen, and they are parents of two adult daughters and a son who will be a senior at Wayne High School this fall.

“I am excited about this new opportunity and look forward to collaborating with the WSF staff to continue their great work for the continued success of the Foundation," said Nelsen. "I also look forward to working more closely with College leadership, the WSF Executive Committee, and the rest of the Foundation’s Board of Trustees.”

“We are very pleased that Melissa has accepted this interim appointment," said Brenda Carhart, President of the Wayne State Foundation Board of Trustees. "We will support her and the staff during this time of transition so the Foundation continues to provide strong financial support to the College and its students.”

For more information, please contact these representatives of the Wayne State Foundation Board of Trustees: