MEET A MOM: Melissa Baker | New Canaan & Darien Moms

SLS Parent & Trustee Melissa Baker on 2-7-24



Meet Melissa Baker, a New Canaan mother of three and a cellist with the Park Avenue Chamber Symphony in NYC. An active volunteer in the community, Baker serves on the Board of the New Canaan Chamber Music Organization as well as the Board of Trustees at St. Luke’s School. Learn more about Baker, her family and what she loves best about living in town.

Do you work and/or volunteer? If yes, please tell us where and what you do.
I am a member of the Board of Trustees at St. Luke’s School. I love being a part of the St. Luke’s community and contributing in any way I can to support its students, faculty, and administration. Serving on its board has been both fulfilling and enriching. I enjoy collaborating with and learning from fellow St. Luke’s board members whose vast knowledge and experience are invaluable.

I also serve on the board of the New Canaan Chamber Music Organization. This non-profit organization brings world-famous musicians to our small town for concerts. Essentially, NCCM brings Carnegie Hall right to our doorsteps! It’s been wonderful to meet with and enjoy performances by these impressive musicians!

I have a Master’s in Cello Performance from NYU and am a member of the Park Avenue Chamber Symphony in NYC. Being a part of the symphony allows me to tap into my creative side and collaborate with fellow musicians who share a deep passion for performing beautiful music together. Our concerts are uniquely intimate because the audience sits among the musicians, so it’s a fully immersive experience.

How many kids do you have, and what are their ages?
I have three children: a 15-year-old son, a 13-year-old son, and an 11-year-old daughter.



Where do your children go to school, and how did you pick their school?
Our children go to St. Luke’s School in New Canaan. We wanted to provide them with a rigorous academic experience and the benefit of smaller class sizes. We had heard wonderful things about SLS, and it has lived up to its glowing reputation.

What about your school makes it right for your family?
We love SLS because we feel like we are part of a larger family. The teachers are excellent and genuinely care about the students. The same goes for all the faculty and staff. There’s a sense of community, kindness, and respect for which we are so grateful. The school is constantly evolving and growing in continuous efforts to maintain the highest integrity and excellence. We feel assured that our kids are getting the best education and are thriving in a supportive environment.

When did you move to New Canaan, and what led you to settle there?
Twelve years ago, we were living in Manhattan with our two toddler boys. Both my husband and I grew up in small towns and knew we didn’t want to raise our kids in the city. We had some very good friends living in New Canaan and instantly fell in love with the town. We haven’t looked back since!

What are your favorite family activities in the area?
When our kids were younger, we loved riding bikes around the neighborhood and hiking on local trails. Now that the kids are teenagers, it’s harder for us to get them to do that! Our favorite thing now is watching the kids play sports and cheering them on with other parents.

Name one thing people would be surprised to know about you.
In my past life, I was a portfolio manager of a hedge fund and thought I’d sustain a career in finance.

When you need “me time,” what are your favorite ways to escape?
In the summer, I love tending my vegetable garden and using those ingredients to make healthy and delicious meals. It’s so rewarding!

What’s the best advice you’ve received from another mom/dad?
The best advice I ever received was to allow your children to embrace their individuality and do what you can as a parent to support that.

What is your favorite place in town to:
Have dinner: Elm
Go out for a special occasion: The Cottage (Westport)
Spend time together as a family outdoors: Waveny Park
Grab coffee: NEAT Coffee (Darien)
Shop for the perfect gift: Consider the Cook



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