Miss A Columnist

Melissa Curtin covers charity and style related events and loves to cover LA's best in beauty, fashion, and culture. She is an educator who recently returned to the classroom to motivate and inspire third graders at a private school in Pacific Palisades. In 2012, she launched an educational T-shirt line called Wear2learn. When she is not working out, hiking a canyon, or at the beach, she is writing. Her latest dream come true has been travel writing for Johnny Jet.

After teaching in the Maryland public school system for almost a decade, she left the conservative East Coast environment in Washington, DC for West Coast living. Eager for adventure, inner growth, and a new environment, she packed her car and took to the open road on her own landing in her new home - Hollywood, California. As a Connecticut Yankee at heart, she has now lived in Los Angeles for six years surrounded by the stars.

Melissa graduated from Gettysburg College with a double major in psychology and art history. Soon after, she earned a Master's Degree in education. Melissa traveled around the world on Semester at Sea, and earned a Fulbright Scholarship which enabled her to teach in England. A lust for travel and learning has fueled her globe trotting ever since. Some of her favorite destinations are Costa Rica, Thailand, Fiji, Morocco, Vietnam, Belgium, Italy, Sicily, Prague, Egypt, Australia, Greece, and Paris.

Los Angeles has won over her heart. She is constantly taking advantage of what LA LA Land has to offer - new boutiques and restaurants, finding great deals, discovering new hikes and beaches, music, and West Coast fashion.

Recap: Artwork Of Janet Roberts And Billy Zane Benefits The Cancer Support Community

Comedic writer Alan Zweibel, actress Laraine Newman, friend, Janet Roberts, Billy Zane (Photo credit: Vince Bucci)

The Museum of Flying in Santa Monica hosted a gala to raise money for cancer –  a 30 year anniversary celebration for The Cancer Support Community – Benjamin Center on Thursday May 17, 2012 in Los Angeles, CA.

The night included live music, open bar, incredible food, all in an open air space filled with the artwork of Janet Roberts (a four time cancer survivor) and her friend actor and artist Billy Zane.  The large scale art gallery paintings were incredibly moving – many of Janet Robert’s art pieces included messages of hope, forgiveness, and love, and Billy Zane’s art pieces showed an energy and passion via his swirls of paint, vibrant colors, and even a smashed guitar. I fell in love with every piece and couldn’t help taking photos of almost every creation.

As Janet Roberts says in her own words about the core of her new paintings – ” My intention is to express the ever hopeful, expansive human heart. At the core of my work, is my desire to impart the spirit of forgiveness and a sense of our shared “oneness.” She also states that together her and  Billy Zane are influenced by the compassionate efforts of the Cancer Support Community, and when working in studio, we are offered a generous wellspring of inspiration.

(Photo credit: Vince Bucci)

The night including some moving speeches by comedic writer Alan Zweibel who accepted the inaugural “Gilda Award” (a bowl of cherries) from actress Laraine Newman. The award is a tribute to the late Gilda Radner, who worked with Zweibel and Newman on Saturday Night Live and who was one of the Cancer Support Community ‘s first participants. Zweibel spoke of his dear friendship with Gilda Radner, how they first met, how their careers intertwined, the fun they had, and how she just wanted him to make her laugh as she fought hard to win the battle against cancer.

The night was a moving celebration of life and how a dedicated group of people and friends can help support those who battle cancer.

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