Matthew Melmed, JD, Executive Director of ZERO TO THREE 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 with cutting-edge research about the importance of early connections, Mr. Melmed is committed to translating the science of early childhood development into practical resources and policies that support very young children and their families. Since 1995 he has guided the growth of the organization’s activities to enhance early social-emotional development through promotion, prevention and treatment strategies. Under his leadership, the organization’s budget has grown more than 20-fold and ZERO TO THREE’s reach now extends to millions of parents, professionals and policymakers. In recognition, Worth Magazine selected ZERO TO THREE as one of “America’s 100 Best Charities.”
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 S.U.N.Y. Binghamton, where he graduated with the highest academic honors. He received his Juris Doctor degree from the Faculty of Law and Jurisprudence at S.U.N.Y. Buffalo.
Mr. Melmed is Chair of the Board of Generations United which promotes intergenerational collaboration for the enduring benefit of all, and he is a past Board Chair of the Food Research and Action Center, the nation’s leading domestic anti-hunger policy organization. He served as the first elected Chair of the Children’s Leadership Council, a coalition of 55 leading national organizations working together to improve the health, education and well-being of children and youth. He is a Trustee of the Turrell Fund and has been a Director on such boards as the I Am Your Child Foundation.
Mr. Melmed is the recipient of multiple community, state, and national honors, including 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. In 2018, the Simms/Mann Institute recognized Mr. Melmed with the 2018 Whole Child “Visionary” Award. The award recognizes individuals who have made a “significant, tangible, and lasting impact” on children for a sustained period, who “exhibit strong passion and commitment” to the whole child movement, and who exhibit “a high degree of personal integrity.”