Michele Kayal Vice President, Media and Communications

Michele Kayal is an award-winning journalist who has covered everything from post-Communist Europe to country music cookbooks for the New York Times, Associated Press, NPR and other national outlets. As a “recovering reporter” she now deploys her media and communications skills on behalf of the children served by First Focus and First Focus Campaign for Children.

Before joining First Focus, Michele spent three years leading communications for Relief International, a $100 million humanitarian organization providing refugee assistance in 16 countries. For more on Michele’s background, please visit her LinkedIn profile.   

Resources by Michele Kayal


White House move prioritizes children’s health and well-being with plan for vaccine

| October 21, 2021 |

First Focus on Children has long advocated for a plan to distribute the COVID-19 vaccine to eligible children. We are pleased that the Biden Administration has


Statement: In recognition of Children’s Environmental Health Day

| October 14, 2021 |

Bruce Lesley, president of First Focus on Children, made the following statement in honor of the 6th annual Children’s Environmental Health Day: “All children


Statement: Malaria vaccine will save thousands of children’s lives

| October 6, 2021 |

Today, the World Health Organization (WHO) announced the endorsement of the first malaria vaccine for children. In response to the announcement, First Focus on


Statement: We condemn the mistreatment of Haitian children and families

| September 22, 2021 |

In response to the treatment of Haitian migrants gathered on the U.S. southern border, First Focus on Children President Bruce Lesley issued the following statement: 


Health insurance for children drops for fourth year in a row

| September 14, 2021 |

Data released today show the number of U.S. children without health insurance rose in 2020 for the fourth year in a row as the coronavirus


Child poverty soars during pandemic, but aid to families blunted the impact

| September 14, 2021 |

The child poverty rate climbed above 16% in 2020 — a more than 10% increase over 2019 — according to figures released today, but stimulus


70 organizations protest Texas order that endangers immigrant children

| August 30, 2021 |

Gov. Abbott’s order takes effect tomorrow WASHINGTON, August 30, 2021 — Seventy organizations from Texas and around the country have urged Governor Greg Abbott to withdraw


Statement: $3.5T budget would benefit children, families

| August 12, 2021 |

 In response to the Senate’s passage of a $3.5 trillion budget plan, First Focus on Children President Bruce Lesley issued the following statement:  “We


Statement: SCOTUS decision on ACA will save kids’ lives

| June 17, 2021 |

The Supreme Court’s decision to leave the Affordable Care Act intact literally saves the lives of 23 million Americans, including 3 million children.  “We


Watch: Child Care: It’s (not just) a Kids Issue | #ChildrensWeek2021

| June 16, 2021 |

Child care and early learning offer critical developmental support to children, experts told a Children’s Week audience Wednesday, but they also provide vital infrastructure to the larger U.S. economy. “To think about child care as