Adoption STAR

Michele Fried, BS


Michele Fried is the founder of Adoption STAR and CEO Emeritus (as of October 2020).    She has led the agency for over 20 years with incredible love and dedication. Michele has never been fond of titles, always stating that mom remains her favorite one. It is the journey of becoming a mom, that Michele found herself in the adoption field.


Michele began her professional career as an educator in Pennsylvania. In 1989 (within two years of adopting their first child), Michele became the director of an adoption agency licensed in Pennsylvania and New Jersey.

Michele’s own family began to grow, and they returned to Western New York, where she and her husband grew up. Michele was inspired by the great need for a passionate, advocacy based, non-profit child-welfare agency in the area and so Adoption STAR was born in March of 2000!


Michele carefully named the agency using the acronym STAR and was determined to utilize the words within the name to provide comprehensive services to all members of the adoption triad: Support, Training, Advocacy and Resources (STAR).


Michele believes in permanency planning and believes that every child deserves a forever family. She created Adoption STAR to operate on the belief that there is a family for every child. Michele also developed A-OK (Adopt an Older Kid) a program of Adoption STAR that was announced in 2016. Today it is a busy and successful child placement program identifying adoptive families for children in the United States foster care system. 


After 32 years in the adoption field, 20 with Adoption STAR, Michele made the difficult decision to step into a consultative role with the agency. This allows her to spend more time with her large family. Michele and her husband enjoy spending time with their adult children and grandchildren!