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Honoring Lifelong Baby Champions

The Lifetime Achievement Award recognizes individuals who have made substantive contributions of national or international significance to improving the lives of infants, toddlers and their families. Award recipients are individuals whose research, practice, teaching or advocacy has had a demonstrable impact on very young children and those who care for them. 

2023 Lifetime Achievement Award Winner

Ross A. Thompson

Dr. Ross Thompson, a retired University of California, Davis psychology professor, is a leading academic in the social and behavioral development of young children and served as ZERO TO THREE board President from 2015-2018.  

Dr. Thompson had a distinguished career at UC Davis serving for many years on the executive committee of the Center for Poverty Research, after assisting in the creation of the center, and on the boards of several national nonprofits. At the university, he was also able to grow the graduate program by establishing and directing the Social and Emotional Development lab. Dr. Thompson became a fellow of the Association for Psychological Science and the American Psychological Association, ultimately gaining recognition for his notable work. As a founding member of the National Scientific Council on the Developing child, he’s contributed widely to the field as a highly respected developmental psychologist who has carried out studies on early parent-child relationships, the development of emotion understanding and emotion regulation, conscience development, prosocial motivation, early moral development, and the growth of self-understanding in young children.

He established and directed the Social and Emotional Development Lab, contributing to the creation of the university’s Center for Poverty and Inequality Research and served on its executive committee for many years. He was a founding member of the National Scientific Council on the Developing Child. And also about being a fellow at the National  Psychological Association.

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