melissa rayworth

Kidsburgh Executive Editor Melissa Rayworth named a Woman of Influence by Pittsburgh Business Times

Photos by Ted Anthony.

What does it mean to have influence? The dictionary says that “influence” is the power or capacity of producing an effect in indirect or intangible ways. It can come in all forms, whether it’s a quiet nudge or a loud proclamation, to convince us to do something. 

At Kidsburgh, we think of influence as sharing, but the type of sharing that leads to learning something good — like so good that a different level of awareness results. 

We were excited to see that Melissa Rayworth, Kidsburgh’s executive editor, was honored Wednesday night as one of Pittsburgh Business Times’ 2024 Women of Influence for her work creating journalism and resources for families in western Pennsylvania.

She was among 26 women who received the award in a ceremony at Acrisure Stadium. Other honorees included the president of Robert Morris University and leaders from PNC, Howard Hanna, Highmark, UPMC Children’s Hospital and other local organizations.

Rayworth joined Kidsburgh as executive editor in 2021 after two years as managing editor of NEXTpittsburgh. Prior to that, she was the managing editor of the Pittsburgh-based national magazine “Military Spouse.”  

Under Melissa’s discerning eye, Kidsburgh readers are regularly informed about Pittsburgh’s family-friendly hidden gems. She is relentless in her search for impactful resources, high quality events and joyful stories for families. 

“Her heart is always in the right place. Through her editorial leadership of Kidsburgh, she champions kids, giving voice to those in need and enlightening readers on many important topics about kids and families,” said Tracy Certo, former owner and publisher of NEXTpittsburgh. “She’s a talented and dedicated team player who’s all about the cause. Pittsburgh is lucky to have Kidsburgh to empower our kids and families and in turn, Kidsburgh is lucky to have Melissa.”  

Video interviews with each of the honorees were played during the ceremony at Acrisure Stadium.

Melissa has worked throughout the world as a writer for regional and global news outlets, and through her travels has met families from far-ranging backgrounds. A Pittsburgher first and foremost, she dives into all the neighborhoods to find the best of everything, always asking: “Will families learn something from this story?” “Will this information make parenting a tiny bit easier?” “Will families gain reassurance that important issues are being addressed in our communities?”

Since 2021, Melissa has been at the helm of Kidsburgh as its executive editor and the results speak for themselves: website traffic has increased exponentially, the number of stories have doubled, we’ve launched a cohort of Youth Reporters with Saturday Light Brigade and later this month, we’ll launch a Kidsburgh Podcast. 

In large part, these strides have been driven by Melissa’s unfailing eagerness to welcome and showcase diverse storytellers and creative ways of storytelling. 

Former Kidsburgh colleague Lyn Krynski adds: “Melissa is a parent herself and is right there with us. She knows firsthand that parenting is a labor of love and uses that filter to elevate every story to honor the challenges and joys of the parenting journey.”

Her influence is quiet but powerful, and we’re now reaching tens of thousands of families across the greater Pittsburgh region. Stories that she has written about Parents as Allies and Learning 2025 reflect the heart she brings to every topic.  

The 2024 “Women of Influence” are making a mighty difference. Congratulations, Melissa Rayworth. Your selection by the Pittsburgh Business Times is a credit to you and to all the parents served by Kidsburgh.