Tracy Zimmerman
Executive Director


  • Politics
  • Public opinion and advocacy
  • Early learning
  • Child development
  • Cognition and brain development 
  • Early childhood and preschool
  • Federal funding
  • School funding

Tracy helped found the North Carolina Early Childhood Foundation (NCECF), where she serves as Executive Director. NCECF is driven by the vision that each North Carolina child has a strong foundation for lifelong health, education and well-being, supported by the nation’s premiere birth-to-eight system. Under her leadership, NCECF launched its signature initiative, the NC Pathways to Grade-Level Reading (Pathways). Pathways is a collaborative effort bringing together the state’s early learning and education, public agency, policy, philanthropic and business leaders to define a common vision, shared measures of success and coordinated strategies that support children’s optimal development beginning at birth. She also serves on My Future NC, a statewide commission on educational attainment led by North Carolina’s public education systems, and was appointed to the Birth-through-Third Grade Interagency Council. Prior to NCECF, she led The North Carolina Partnership for Children’s (NCPC) public engagement efforts and developed the First 2,000 Days campaign. She holds a BA in political science from Washington University in St. Louis. Tracy and her husband, an elementary school teacher, have two children.