From the start, the Child Health and Development Institute of Connecticut (CHDI) has worked to improve the quality of children’s lives by building stronger health and behavioral health systems.
CHDI was established in 1997 as a not-for profit by the Children’s Fund of Connecticut (CFC), a public charitable foundation, and moved into full operation in 1999. From 1999 to 2021 CHDI served as the operating arm of CFC, translating their shared mission into action.
In 2021, the Children’s Fund of Connecticut was dissolved as a legal entity and CHDI became a fully independent nonprofit focused on improving the behavioral health and well-being of children, youth, and families.
1989: Newington Children’s Hospital and Hartford Hospital filed a Certificate of Need (CON) with the State to consolidate pediatric health services and build a new children’s hospital in Hartford.
1990: A study of the CON application validated the need for an acute care children’s hospital in Hartford and proposed the establishment of the Children’s Fund in order to evaluate and improve health systems for children in Connecticut.
1992: The Children’s Fund of Connecticut was founded. The initial endowment of $21 million included $15 million from Newington Children’s Hospital, endowed when the hospital dissolved and the assets were transferred to build Connecticut Children’s Medical Center.
1997: The Children’s Fund incorporated the Child Health and Development Institute of Connecticut in December to serve as its operating arm and began the process of establishing the institute.
1999: CHDI moved into full operation with an independent board, an executive director (Judith Meyers), and a commitment of five years of funding from the Children’s Fund of Connecticut. CHDI was established as a partnership with Connecticut’s two major universities with medical schools: the University of Connecticut and Yale University. The aim was to bring the resources of these institutions to bear on improving health outcomes for children in Connecticut.
2002: CHDI became a subsidiary of the Children’s Fund, while retaining its nonprofit status.
2017: President and CEO Judith Meyers, who led the organizations for 19 years, announced plans to step down and transition leadership. Jeffrey Vanderploeg was appointed President and CEO of CHDI on October 1, 2017.
2018: Jeffrey Vanderploeg was appointed President and CEO of the Children's Fund of Connecticut on October 1, 2018.
2021: The Children’s Fund of Connecticut was dissolved as a legal entity and its assets were transferred to support the work of CHDI and the Connecticut Children’s Foundation. CHDI became a fully independent non-profit.
Read CHDI: Celebrating Twenty Years or contact us to learn more.