2004 Reasons to Believe Alumni Honor Roll

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Role models who give us Reasons to Believe in the power of education

Melissa L. Redway

Sumner Academy of Arts and Science, 1994Melissa L. Redway

Sometimes just one interaction or one word can make a difference in people's lives. This is what keeps Melissa Redway going.

An assistant district attorney in Grant and Garfield counties in Oklahoma, she is challenged by prosecuting criminals, counseling individuals, and helping to prevent others from becoming a part of the court system. Her most difficult cases are those involving domestic violence.

"Through my work, I feel like I am able to help a lot of people in a number of ways and to make a difference in their lives," she said.

A 1994 graduate of Sumner Academy of Arts and Sciences, law wasn't always something she aspired toward, although she certainly qualified academically. She graduated from Sumner cum laude with an international baccalaureate degree, and as an accomplished swimmer who competed and earned a number of titles, including NCAA All-American Swimmer. She said the challenges taught her discipline and perseverance.

She earned her bachelor's degree in English and French from Drury College, Springfield, Mo., and went on to law school at the University of Tulsa on the recommendation of one of her professors, graduating in 2000.

Redway serves on the Garfield County Domestic Violence Task Force and is a member of the Community Service Sentencing Program Committee. When she's not working in her field, she is helping to inspire youth. She is a youth sponsor at Oakwood Christian Church and a junior high girls' Sunday school teacher.

Her advice to today's students is to "be the best example you can be to others."