Joan Lombardi chairs the Birth to Five Policy Alliance, a group of organizations committed to shifting the odds for very young children and narrowing the achievement gap. She is a former deputy assistant secretary for external affairs in the administration for children and families, US Department of Health and Human Services, and she was the first director of its Child Care Bureau. She has also directed the Children’s Project and has served as a research professor at Georgetown University. In 2004, she launched the Global Leaders for Young Children program. She is the author of Time to Care: Redesigning Child Care to Promote Education, Support and Build Communities and a co-editor of A Beacon of Hope: The Promise of Early Head Start for American’s Youngest Children.