As Executive Director of ZERO TO THREE, Matthew Melmed is an internationally recognized leader and tireless advocate devoted to promoting the health and development of infants and toddlers. Bringing together the perspectives of many fields and specialties and cutting-edge research about the importance of early experiences, Mr. Melmed is committed to translating what we know into what we do for very young children and their families.
Since 1995 he has guided the growth of the organization’s activities to help enhance early social emotional development through promotion, prevention and treatment strategies in both public and private systems and programs. Under his leadership ZERO TO THREE launched a number of major initiatives including:
- The Early Head Start National Resource Center
- The Center for Training Services
- The ZERO TO THREE Press
- Coming Together Around Military Families
- Safe Babies Court Teams
- The ZERO TO THREE Policy Center
- The ZERO TO THREE Leaders for the 21st Century Fellowship
In addition, Mr. Melmed has initiated national parental awareness campaigns and forged strong partnerships with corporate and nonprofit partners. Under his leadership, the organization has flourished and ZERO TO THREE’s budget has grown to more than $25 million. Its many accolades include being selected in 2001 by Worth Magazine as one of “America’s 100 Best Charities.” Mr. Melmed was awarded the prestigious Sonya Bemporad Award by the World Association of Infant Mental Health. This award was given in recognition of significant contributions to the advancement of social and public policies that contribute to the mental health and overall benefit of infants, toddlers, and their families.
Prior, Mr. Melmed served for 13 years as Executive Director of the Connecticut Association for Human Services. He began his career as a staff attorney for Connecticut Legal Services in 1978. Mr. Melmed is a Phi Beta Kappa graduate of Harpur College, where he graduated with highest honors. He received his Juris Doctor degree from the Faculty of Law and Jurisprudence at S.U.N.Y. Buffalo.
Mr. Melmed served as the first elected Chair of the Children’s Leadership Council, a coalition of 55 leading national policy and advocacy organizations working together to improve the health, education and well-being of children and youth. Mr. Melmed is the immediate past Chair of the Board of the Food Research and Action Center, the nation’s leading domestic anti-hunger policy organization and serves as Vice-Chair on the Board of Generations United. In addition, he is a Trustee of the Turrell Fund of New Jersey, has been a Director on such boards as the I Am Your Child Foundation, and is the recipient of several community, state, and national honors.