Melissa Bernstein

Co-founder of Melissa & Doug, mother of six, and a leader of the movement to Take Back Childhood

Melissa Bernstein is the co-founder of Melissa & Doug, the toy company committed to igniting imagination and a sense of wonder in all children so they can discover themselves, their passions, and their purpose. Melissa credits her creativity to a childhood of boredom, relying on only her imagination to fill the blank canvas — with magic. Concerned this generation of children is missing out on the kind of unstructured downtime that enables them to find their passions and purpose through exploration, Melissa is leading a movement to Take Back Childhood. She dreams of a day when kids are free from over-scheduling, undue pressure, and digital distractions so they may develop into free thinkers and realize their full potential. Learn more at