Melissa Wasser is Policy Counsel at POGO. Melissa takes a leading role in advancing POGO's advocacy campaigns and provides legal guidance and support to the policy team. She also represents POGO in coalitions and at meetings with Executive Branch officials and Congressional staff.
Melissa is an expert on whistleblower protections, FOIA, OLC transparency, court access, and freedom of the press. She has testified before Congress and has been cited in various news outlets, including The New York Times, The Los Angeles Times, Bloomberg, Courthouse News Service, Law360, and the National Law Journal. Prior to joining POGO, Melissa has worked as a Policy Analyst at the Reporters Committee for Freedom of the Press and as a Law Fellow for the American Constitution Society.
Melissa earned her J.D. from The Ohio State University Moritz College of Law, where she served as the Technology Editor of the Ohio State Law Journal, and her M.A. in Public Policy and Management from The Ohio State University John Glenn College of Public Affairs in 2017. She earned a B.A. in Philosophy and Political Science at Youngstown State University in 2014, where she graduated summa cum laude. In her free time, Melissa serves as Vice President and Game Day Chair of The Ohio State University Alumni Club of Greater Washington, DC, plays Pokémon Go, and teaches online cycling classes.
Congress Should Act to Improve FOIA Fact Sheet: Reforms to the Freedom of Information Act Fact Sheet: Strengthening Protections for Intelligence Community Whistleblowers