Supported by a Bachelor of Education in elementary education, with a minor in history, and a Master of Education in elementary education from Hofstra University in 1967 and 1969, respectively, Melanie L. Freese commenced her career as an elementary school teacher in Roosevelt and Massapequa, New York, in 1967. Remaining in her role until 1971, she was subsequently employed by Adelphi University in Garden City, New York, in 1972, where she served in numerous roles, such as assistant to social work librarian, assistant to acquisitions librarian, biographical searcher, reserve librarian and circulation assistant. Ms. Freese departed from Adelphi University in 1983. During her tenure there, she received a Master of Library Science from Long Island University Post in 1977.
In 1984, Ms. Freese joined the faculty at Hofstra University in Hempstead, New York. First serving as a senior catalog librarian from 1984 to 1999, she then excelled as the assistant dean and chairwoman of technical services in the Joan and Donald E. Axinn Library between 1999 and 2001. Concurrently, she has been an associate professor of library services since 1990. During her career, Ms. Freese has lent her time and expertise to the Wayside Home and School for Troubled Girls, where she established a library in 1993. Citing this moment as a crowning achievement of her career, she has also worked extensively with students in high school to establish scholarships to aid in their college ventures through the Woman’s Advance Club.
Additionally, Ms. Freese has dedicated much of her spare time to civic involvement in Nassau County, New York, where she has contributed extensively to such organizations as Business and Professional Women of Nassau County, Inc., and the Nassau County Library Association. A longstanding member of the St. Peter’s Lutheran Church in Baldwin, New York, she has served the church as a Sunday school teacher, librarian and lector since 1959.
To attest to her success, Ms. Freese has accrued several accolades and honors. In 1994, she was named Woman of the Year by Business and Professional Women of Nassau County, Inc., having also received an International Order of Merit and a Twentieth Century Award for Achievement from the International Biographical Centre in 1980 and 1994, respectively. Furthermore, Ms. Freese earned a Distinguished Service Award from St. Peter’s Lutheran Church in 1993. Likewise, she has been highlighted in myriad Who’s Who publications, including Marquis Millennium Magazine, Pro-Files Magazine and Who’s Who in America. Marquis Who’s Who bestowed upon her the Humanitarian Award between 2013 and 2021, and she was notably interviewed for “The Star Treatment” by Star Jones in 2020. Ms. Freese was also featured on the Thomson Reuters billboard in Times Square in 2019, was honored in Sky Magazine in 2019, and was highlighted in The Wall Street Journal in 2018, among other awards.