Mary-Ellen grew up on the North Shore in Massachusetts. She holds a BFA in Music Theatre from the Hartt School (U Hartford), and has performed at regional, off-broadway, and summer stock theatres nationwide. Upon graduating, she discovered a love for working with children while performing in school assemblies on a seven-state tour, in plays on social issues like abuse and bullying with Saltworks Theatre. She found such a joy in combining youth education with performing arts. She spent the next 3 years as the Performing Arts & Education Director at the Boys & Girls Club in Salem, Massachusetts, a dream job which had a powerful impact on her. She met her wonderful husband and relocated to Colorado in 2010. Mary-Ellen would spend the next 5 years at Young Americans Center for Financial Education in Denver, a group that serves 50,000 kids and 300 schools annually. After a decade of working with children, she and her husband are expecting their own first child in March 2016.