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: The Onyx & Breezy Foundation’s Saving Tails Fundraiser In Los Angeles


Priscilla Presley, songwriter Diane Warren, celebrity pet photographer Christopher Ameruoso (Photo Credit: Michael Bezjian)

A wonderful night was had by animal lovers and passionate animal activists as guests were shuttled up to the private home of James Costa.  Guests enjoyed the breathtaking LA view shoeless while dining on vegan bites from Food By Mother Organic. Selections included “meatless meatloaf” and mushroom risotto. The cookies and peanut butter and jelly tasting ice cream from Stella’s Best were a hit with me. The Onyx and Breezy Foundation fundraiser was chaired by Tony and Emmy Award winning actor, and current SAG/AFTRA co-President Ken Howard and his wife Linda, along with Foundation Trustees Wanda & Mark Shefts, and co-chair Cindy Kay. The evening recognized two important people for their passion for helping animals –  Grammy and Golden Globe Award-winning songwriter Diane Warren and renowned photographer Christopher Ameruoso for their tireless efforts on behalf of animal welfare. Musical performances occurred by American Idol winner Lee DeWyze and Smash star Leslie Odom, Jr.


Actor Ronn Moss and Actor Sam Elliot (Photo Credit: Michael Bezjian)

Guests included Emmy Rossum and boyfriend Tyler Jacob Moore, Peter Facinelli and girlfriend Jaimie Alexander, Priscilla Presley, Kristin Bauer, Gilles Marini, Neal McDonough, Frances Fisher, Sam Elliott, Katharine Ross, Ken Howard, Greg Louganis and Ronn Moss. My date’s night was made by getting a chance to meet his longtime favorite actor Sam Elliot and getting a chance to express his appreciation for his work and snap a birthday photo with him.  Peter and I also enjoyed talking to a lovely very good looking older couple Chris DeRose and his wife. Chris DeRose is the president and founder of Last Chance for Animals, a nonprofit organization dedicated to eliminating animal exploitation that has been around for thirty years. They primarily do investigations for very big cases to support a cruelty free environment for animals, such as animals that are stolen or used for research.

Ryan Kavanaugh’s newly acquired FreeHand dog food company was a presenting sponsor, which not only has created high quality dog food, but for every bag you buy, they donate a bag called rescueOne to shelters and rescues pound for pound.  Other sponsors included Les Compagnons, Patrón Liquor and Omega Infusion Water. Guests left with a wonderful gift bag full of dog goodies.


Actor Gilles Marini with his wife Carole (Photo Credit: Michael Bezjian)

The Onyx and Breezy Foundation for the Welfare of Animals is a non profit that provides financial support to credible organizations and individuals that benefit the welfare of animals. The Foundation was formed in 2004 by Mark and Wanda Shefts to honor the memory of their two labrador retrievers. 100 percent of donations to the Foundation go directly to animals in need. The Foundation provides assistance in a variety of ways: funding of equipment for medical facilities, spay and neuter programs, disaster relief, puppy mill rescues, food, medicine and supplies, funding of shelters, rescues, foster groups and sanctuaries. The Foundation also provides funds for the pets of individuals where hardship is present.

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Peter Gibson, celebrity pet photographer Christopher Ameruoso, writer Melissa Curtin (Photo Credit: Melissa Curtin)

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