Melinda D. Thompson was born and raised in Ferguson, Missouri. After graduating from McCluer High School in 1990, Melinda enlisted in the United States Marine Corps. Promoted to LCPL at the completion of boot camp in Paris Island, South Carolina, she went on to complete the Marine Corps Air Traffic Control Communications Technician training program at the Naval Air Station in Millington, Tennessee. After completing her tour at Marine Corps Base Camp Lejeune, North Carolina, Melinda returned home and her career transitioned from electronics maintenance technician to computer services technician. Over the years, she gained experience with several local businesses before shifting her focus to providing services to small and medium businesses. Having developed a diverse technical skill set, as well as management experience, Melinda founded her own company. Although she had become well established in her career, Melinda decided to obtain her Bachelors Degree from Lindenwood University. The requirement to have a Natural Sciences credit led her to take the Introductory Astronomy course offered there. Expecting this to be an easy course for the Summer term, Melinda was caught off guard by what happened next. The course turned out to be the most challenging course of her college career. She gained both personal insight and a renewed energy in her quest for knowledge. This ultimately resulted in her new found obsession with exploring the vast expanses of space. Her desire to share with anyone willing to listen as she continues to learn herself, has become a very rewarding experience. Melinda is a member of the Astronomical Society of Eastern Missouri based in Saint Charles County, Missouri.