Mara Mintzer

Mara Mintzer

Executive Director and Co-founder, Growing Up Boulder
Mara Mintzer is a Co-Founder and Executive Director of Growing Up Boulder (GUB), Boulder, Colorado, USA’s child- and youth-friendly city initiative. GUB ensures that young people have a voice in decisions which affect them, and it has deeply engaged more than 6,000 local children and youth on 100+ projects since 2009. Ms. Mintzer presents and writes internationally on the topic of engaging young people in community planning and child-friendly cities. Her talk, “How Kids Can Help Design Cities,” was featured on the homepage of and has received almost 2.4 million cumulative views and been translated into 21 languages. She co-authored the book, Placemaking with Children and Youth: Participatory Practices for Planning Sustainable Communities, with lead authors Victoria Derr and Louise Chawla, and the text is regularly used by academics and practitioners worldwide. Prior to GUB, Ms. Mintzer was director of a community school, where she oversaw child and family support services on a underresourced school campus. She has designed and implemented programs for marginalized children, families and neighborhoods in New York and California. Ms. Mintzer received her B.A. in Psychology from Brown University and her M.A. in Organizational Psychology from Teachers College, Columbia University. She loves to practice her French and Spanish skills fearlessly.

Participation in past events