Wednesday, October 21, 2015

Melanie Cook Found Her Home

By Torie Temple

Melanie Cook, who has been with GE for 20 years, has moved more than a dozen times as a result of career decisions. But for the first time, her choice to move from Rochester, New York, to Louisville was personal.

“At the time we moved to Louisville, our two children were at the ages of 5 and 6,” Melanie says. “We had already moved with them three times, so Kentucky was their fourth state. We had too many changes, and it just got to the point where we needed a place to call home but also be challenged from a career standpoint.

“We had heard such great things about Louisville that we proactively asked GE to get us to Louisville, which they supported, and I was able to find a terrific leadership role as the product general manager for the cooking products division,” she says.

Three years later, Melanie accepted a new position as general manager of sourcing without any regrets. “I now have a global team with some in Asia, Korea, China, and most are in Louisville. I travel quite a bit, and it is extremely different from what I have done before.”

No challenge seemed big enough to keep Melanie from becoming active in the community immediately after her move from Rochester. “GE supported me taking on the role as a board member for the Family Scholar House,” she says. “It is a tremendous not-for-profit that focuses on ending the cycle of poverty through education, and it is primarily aimed at the single parents who have come from extreme difficult situations.”

Melanie says her kids are thriving in school and she feels fortunate that GE supported her decision. She receives plenty of help from her husband, who stays at home with their kids and, according to Melanie, takes care of everything. With this support and the spirit to accept change and welcome challenges, Melanie says failure is not an option. “Mixing things up every once in awhile is good for your brain and your stimuli. You have to push yourself to learn, but be ready because with change comes some sacrifices. Knowing that my sponsors and role models think I can do it makes me believe I can do it.”

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