Board of Directors & Staff Bios


 Mia Docto, M.S.

Founder and Co-director of Programs

Mia founded WIFE after returning home from living in the Philippines, the country of her family’s ancestry, in early Fall 2010. Throughout her travels she was struck by the level of global inequalities, and felt motivated to support young women. She believes that in order to build a better world, you need to enable people to act locally on behalf of their community and environment. Through her work with WIFE she hopes to empower women with the tools necessary to improve their lives and their community.

Mia has a BS in Earth Science from UC Santa Cruz, and a Masters in Environmental Planning at UC Berkeley. Mia is a two time World Youth Congress Delegate, and has worked with various non-profits nationally and internationally on environmental and social issues.


 Melissa Mello, M.A., BCBA

Co-director of Programs

Melissa is dedicated to empowering women through education and understands the endless opportunities education can provide. She became passionately interested in enhancing educational opportunities for women after spending time in Tanzania, Africa as a volunteer teacher at a school for orphans of HIV/AIDs. She recognized that the women she encountered there had so much to offer yet so few opportunities and many inequities to accessing education. She felt compelled to act on behalf of these women and work to provide them with the opportunities they may not otherwise be able to access.

Melissa has a B.A. in Psychology; a Master’s in Special Education with a certification in Autism Spectrum Disorders and is a Board Certified Behavior Analyst. She has been working with children with special needs for the past 8 years. Melissa spends much of her free time volunteering with organizations to help enhance the quality of people’s lives.


 Hannah Franz, M.S., BCBA

Director of Outreach

Hannah believes that education is the key to successful change.  Through international and national travel, volunteering at an orphanage in South Africa, and mentoring refugees from Burma she has witnessed first hand the tribulations women face.  Her life passion and goal with WIFE is to work towards gaining access to resources – particularly education, necessary for women to make a lasting impact in their communities.

Hannah has a B.A. in Psychology from Eastern Illinois University, an M.S. in School Psychology from Winthrop University.  She is the recipient of the NASP Children’s Fund Service Grant 2011 and is TEFL certified.  Hannah’s fervor is to enrich the lives of others.