Melissa Mahady Wilton holds a Master’s Degree in Clinical Psychology from Queen’s University, where she earned numerous distinctions, including: the W.R. Thompson Prize in Psychology; Medal In Psychology; Ontario Graduate Scholarship; Queen’s University Graduate Award; A.Z. Arthur Prize in Psychology; Queen’s University Graduate Fellowship; R. Samuel McLaughlin Fellowship; and Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council of Canada Doctoral Fellowship. Her research on bullying victimization has been published in numerous scholarly journals. Melissa is a former Senior Manager of Strategic Planning at Braxton Associates, the international strategic consulting boutique of Deloitte Management Consultants, where she specialized in the development of corporate cultures of competitive advantage.
Ms. Mahady Wilton is formally trained in classical ballet (Vaganova, Cecchetti), ballroom (international and social styles), Latin (international and social styles), wheelchair dance, flamenco, Spanish classical, tap, jazz, and various cultural dances. Melissa is a Master Teacher of wheelchair ballroom dance; the only teacher in Canada certified by the American DanceWheels Foundation. She has completed dance medicine certificates in foot and ankle function, injury prevention and assessment; pointe readiness and shoe fitting; and adolescent dancer health with the Harkness Centre for Dance Injuries, part New York University’s School of Medicine. In 2006, drawing upon her clinical and dance training and commitment to therapeutic arts programs, Melissa founded ConCorpsDance Inclusive Dance Programs, a Kingston organization devoted to dance for people of all abilities. Her contributions to inclusive dance have been recognized by the Ontario Trillium Foundation, the Community Foundation of Greater Kingston, the Kingston Arts Council, the Ontario Communities in Action Fund, Exceptional Families Magazine and the Queen’s Alumni Review. She has presented master workshops to Variety Village, Bloorview Kids’ Rehabilitation Centre, the Canadian Paraplegic Association, and Queen’s University.
She is the Choreographer for Peerless Productions, a production company she founded with Kathryn Mackay and David Archibald, dedicated to the presentation of professional theatre for all abilities, whose works been supported by the Kingston Arts Council, Ontario Arts Council and Canada Council for the Arts. At the Kingston School of Dance, Melissa directs the Young Dancers Program and the Ballet Company, and teaches classical ballet, pre-pointe, pointe, Broadway Jazz, World Beat, Latin and Afro Cuban dance. Melissa is the City of Kingston’s Dance Engagement Coordinator, responsible for liaising with professional dance artists to present dance residencies, master classes, education and outreach events, under the Ontario Dances Program. She was appointed by Ontario Dances to lead and implement an inaugural dance outreach project in four Northern Ontario communities, and has been invited by the Ontario Arts Council to sit on its grant review juries for dance. She is a former Zumba® instructor, Lululemon Community Dance Ambassador and Chairperson of Canada DanceSport, an international ballroom dance competition and host of the 2009 World Senior Standard Championships in Kingston. It is her great privilege to share the joy of dance with people of all ages and abilities.