Director, The OVC VOCA Center
Janelle Melohn serves as director for The OVC VOCA Center, administered through NCJA, overseeing The OVC VOCA Center staff and consultants and serving as the primary liaison with the Office for Victims of Crime (OVC). Ms. Melohn previously served as the director of the Crime Victim Assistance Division (CVAD) in the Iowa Attorney General’s Office, where she advanced the needs and rights of crime victims. Janelle was with CVAD for almost 15 years and oversaw a staff of 29 individuals, an annual budget of roughly $45 million dollars, and eight statewide programs aiding victims of crime including Crime Victim Compensation, Sexual Abuse Examination Payment, Victim Services Support grants, IowaVINE a statewide automated victim notification system, the Identity Theft Passport Program, Registrant Watch an automated victim notification partnership with Department of Public Safety, and Training, Outreach, and Anti-Human Trafficking efforts.
Prior to the joining the Iowa Attorney General’s Office, Janelle worked for the Story County Sheriff’s Office as a detention officer supervisor in the Story County Jail. In her 4.5 years there, she supervised a staff of 8 detention officers and maintained the custody, care, and control of the Iowa state and federal inmate population.
Janelle is a current Board of Trustees member of the National Council on Criminal Justice and the immediate past board president of the National Association of VOCA Assistance Administrators. She has also also served as a board member or trustee for the National Association of Crime Victim Compensation Boards, the Iowa Governor’s Criminal Justice Reform Committee, the Friends of Iowa Civil Rights Inc., and the Iowa Sex Offender Research Council.
Janelle is a recognized victim services leader. In 2019, Janelle received the Trailblazer Award from the Iowa Coalition Against Sexual Assault for her work to prioritize funding and services to open doors for historically marginalized communities.
Janelle holds a Master of Public Administration from Drake University with an emphasis in executive development and a B.S. in Sociology from Iowa State University.