Founder, CEO

Melea McRae is a marketing strategist with 25+ years of B2B and B2C experience leading client-facing marketing departments, where she earned the reputation of an insightful brand strategist. Formerly the senior vice president and chief marketing officer at the Greater KC Chamber, she led the organization’s marketing and business development efforts.

In July 2016, Melea made the entrepreneurial leap and launched her own marketing firm, Crux KC, a certified WBE providing in-house marketing, outsourced – the “un-agency” – for her small to mid-sized B2B clients. As founder and CEO, she builds marketing, communications and business development strategies for her clients, while positioning them for sustainable growth. The Crux team of 22 then executes on those strategies.

In January 2019, Melea joined Rick Kahle in launching a sister company to Crux, appropriately named Crux-Xcelerate, with an emphasis on accelerating revenue for emerging and small businesses.

Melea received her Executive MBA from Rockhurst University’s Helzberg School of Management in 2020 and is a fellow in the Helzberg Entrepreneurial Mentorship Program (HEMP). Melea serves on multiple boards in the region, including the Kansas City Repertory Theatre board of directors, executive committee and chairs the governance committee; Cristo Rey Kansas City board of directors; the board of directors for Crux client EnXchange in McKinney, Tx; the board of trustees for the National MS Society Mid-America Chapter; the CX Women to Watch advisory board and peer group; the marketing committee for the United Way of Greater Kansas City; the patron’s committee for the Women’s Foundation of Greater KC; and is a member of CEOs for Real World Learning, a collaboration among the Civic Council, KC Chamber, Aligned, Kauffman Foundation and KC Rising.

Melea is a member of Kansas City Business Journal’s 2021 Women Who Mean Business class and was a recipient of Enterprising Women Magazine’s 2021 Enterprising Women of the Year Award. Crux KC was recently honored as a Greater KC Chamber of Commerce Top 10 Small Business and named to Kansas City Business Journal’s Best Places to Work for 2021.


“The definition of Crux is the most important point, and we believe in getting to the point by providing exactly what our clients need to grow their business, increase engagement and elevate their brand from a marketing perspective, without any of the unnecessary fluff.”




Executive MBA from Rockhurst University’s Helzberg School of Management; Bachelor of Science in business management with a minor in marketing from Webster University.








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