Dr. Girard Melancon

Board Chair

Dr. Melancon brings over 25 years of progressive workforce development experience to serve in his role as President/Founder of Durango Works, an independent workforce development consultancy firm. He is also the Director of the National Green Jobs Advisory Council (NGJAC) at NCWE.  Dr. Melancon has just been appointed to the 21st Century Energy Workforce Advisory Board (EWAB) and advises the Secretary of Energy in developing a strategy for the Department of Energy (DOE) to support and develop a skilled energy workforce to meet the changing needs of the U.S. energy system.   In addition, he recently completed his 10-year tenure at Baton Rouge Community College (BRCC) as the Vice-Chancellor for Workforce Solutions. Dr. Melancon has worked with a very small team and many employers in the Greater Baton Rouge area to achieve national recognition for his programs. From 2012 to 2015, he grew his workforce development program from serving only 350 students per year (not including contract training) to over 3,500 BIPOC students with more than 40 diverse instructors.  

In May of 2018, Dr. Melancon’s North Baton Rouge Industrial Training (NBRITI) program was nationally recognized after only two years of program redesign with great support from businesses and industry.  This updated NBRITI program has become a top-three workforce development program in the United States, according to the National Skills Collation (NSC). In 2019, Dr. Melancon received the National Skills Coalition Skill Champion Award. From 2015-2020 his team has helped generate over 20 million dollars for business and industry. His team has also provided more than 22,000 people with the necessary skills to embark on careers in multiple industry sectors, including transportation, healthcare, construction, energy, petrochemical, and manufacturing.  

Dr. Melancon has over 20 years of experience in executive-level leadership and has been recognized by independent workforce development policy leaders.  Dr. Melancon has many years of experience in managing more than 150 million dollars of direct workforce development initiatives for the State of Louisiana and the federal government.  He was also the Office of Juvenile Justice Assistant Secretary (acting as the Deputy Secretary) for a statewide agency that included three 24-hour secure-care facilities and 11 regional offices. He oversaw a very diverse staff of over 1,100 employees.   

Dr. Melancon has the passion and track record for being the ideal servant-leader for business and industry, state and local government, and federal policymakers. Being the President/Founder of Durango Works has better positioned him to bring more resources to local communities nationwide.  Dr. Melancon states.” I want to play a more significant role in growing our economy by providing pathways for high school students, college students, disconnected young adults, and the working poor to obtain gainful employment and to be competitive with the future changes of work.” 

Dr. Girard Melancon