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Melissa Román Burch is the Chief Operating Officer for the NYC Economic Development
Corporation (NYCEDC) where she leads major economic development transactions, initiates
investments that grow NYC’s innovation sectors, and spearheads development on city-owned
land. Managing to a double bottom line of financial returns and measured social impact, Melissa
mobilizes public and private investment across a portfolio of 64 million square feet and 230 assets
comprised of life sciences, film & entertainment, advanced manufacturing, off shore wind, and
green economy businesses.
Melissa joined the NYCEDC in 2022, after two decades in the private sector as a leading business
executive and property developer. In her Executive leadership roles at Lendlease and Forest City,
she led teams and businesses that assembled, entitled, capitalized and constructed millions of
square feet of mixed-use office, housing and entertainment developments. Melissa managed key
negotiations with capital partners and government entities; oversaw the development of Pacific
Park Brooklyn, anchored by the Barclays Center, new transit infrastructure and thousands of units
of affordable and market-rate housing; and pioneered the use of modular housing for high-rise
A committed civic leader, Melissa proudly serves as a Trustee of the Henry Street Settlement and
Coro New York Leadership Center. Melissa graduated from Harvard College and the Harvard
Business School. She lives in Manhattan with her husband and two children.
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