Children’s Leadership Council is Coming to an End

December 23, 2018

~ A message from the Board of the Children’s Leadership Council ~

Thank you for your commitment to our nation’s babies, children and youth and for being a supporter of the Children’s Leadership Council (CLC). We wanted to inform you that after 9 years, the CLC is winding down its operations as of December 31, 2018.

When the CLC was created, it was envisioned as being between a two to five-year project. Instead, the CLC has been in operation for nearly a decade, becoming a national, big-tent children’s coalition whose member organizations were committed to the mission of ensuring all babies, children and youth have the opportunity to develop and achieve their full potential.

It is a testament to people like you – adults who have successfully spoken out for children – that the CLC has been so effective. Over the years, CLC successes included helping to secure essential investments for children in the areas of health, nutrition, early care and education, child care, child welfare, youth development and higher education. CLC contributed to:

• Passage of the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act (ARRA)
• Passage of the Affordable Care Act (ACA)
• Passage of the Student Aid and Fiscal Responsibility Act of 2009
• Passage of the Healthy, Hunger Free Kids Act
• Creation of the Maternal, Infant, and Early Childhood Home Visiting Program
• Creation of the Preschool Development Grant Program

Most recently, over the last two years, we’ve reaffirmed our commitment to children by ramping up our efforts to protect, defend and advance these hard-won gains. We collectively fought repeated attempts to roll back gains and improvements in the areas of children’s healthcare and nutrition, as well as wide-ranging threats to the wellbeing of children in immigrant families, all the while securing gains for children where possible. Together we spoke out against the repeal of the ACA, harmful changes to Medicaid and SNAP; and stood with the majority of Americans by opposing the harmful tax bill. Together we also fought for and won sequestration relief, a historic investment in child care funding, and a ten-year reauthorization of the CHIP program.

These successes could not have been accomplished without people like you.

Nearly ten years ago, a group of child advocacy organizations joined together to create the Children’s Leadership Council (CLC) , to serve as a national “coalition of coalitions” whose member organizations were committed to the mission of ensuring all babies, children and youth have the opportunity to develop and achieve their full potential. And since its inception, the CLC has worked to bring children’s organizations and allies into broader economic and social justice coalitions both as activists and as leaders of their own issue-networks; helped broaden budget and tax coalitions to place children’s needs and investments among top public policy and budgetary priorities; placed a children’s investment frame around federal budget and tax debates; and used those debates as a means to build cooperation and cohesion among all who care about the well-being of children.

Today, because of the efforts of the CLC, its members, and allies, more and more policy makers are carrying forth a pro-active agenda for children and families; the media is paying more and more attention to economic inequality and child and family well-being; and more and more organizations and coalitions have fighting for children as part of their focus.

While the CLC will no longer be in operation, we know that because of the great work of CLC members and allies – people like you – the needs of babies, children and youth will be well spoken for going forward. We urge you to continue lifting up your voice for children in the months and years ahead. Because as we have proven together for nearly ten years, when adults who care about children speak out on their behalf, children win.

We also want to express our deep appreciation for CLC’s Executive Director, Randi Schmidt. We’re deeply grateful for Randi’s long and ongoing dedication and professionalism, and the board continues to rely on her during this important process. You can reach her during this transition at and after December 31st at

Please feel free to reach out to any of the board members below or to Randi if you have any questions or need further information. Thank you again for all of your support for the CLC and all you do for children.

Lynette Fraga, CLC Board Chair and Executive Director of Child Care Aware of America
Brian Ahlberg, CLC Vice Board Chair and Executive Director of Every Child Matters
Matthew Melmed, CLC Treasurer and Executive Director of ZERO TO THREE
Jim Weill, CLC Fiscal Agent and President of the Food Research and Action Center (FRAC)
Debbie Weinstein, CLC Board Member and Executive Director of the Coalition on Human Needs
Olivia Golden, CLC Board Member and Executive Director of the Center for Law and Social Policy (CLASP)

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