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BRANDEIS UNIVERSITY MS 035 P.O. Box 549110 Waltham, MA 02454-9110

LISA M. LYNCH Dean and Maurice B. Hexter Professor of Social and Economic Policy SAMUEL O. THIER, MD Chair, Heller Board of Overseers CHRISANN NEWRANSKY, MA’05 President, Heller Alumni Association Board

LESLIE GODOFF ’71 Director, Development and Alumni Relations

CLAUDIA J. JACOBS ’70 Director of Communications Initiatives

SHARRA OWENS-SCHWARTZ, MBA’10 Assistant Director, Alumni Relations and Annual Giving

COURTNEY LOMBARDO Senior Program Administrator, Development and Alumni Relations

TRACEY PALMER Feature Writer

LETTER FROM THE DEAN Dear Heller Alumni, Fall is always a time of renewal at Heller as we welcome our incoming students and new colleagues. This year, 196 new students from 48 countries began their studies at Heller. As diverse as they are geographically and professionally, their common bond is the social problems they have come to address. These include the following: Why does our society continue to have so many people who are living in vulnerable circumstances? Where are our policy approaches and our institutional support structures failing, leading to persistent need for social services? This issue of the Heller Alumni News and Views focuses on one complex social issue — racial and ethnic disparities that negatively impact the well-being and prevent the social inclusion of individuals, families and communities. The stories highlight both the dedication of alumni in the field and some of the research conducted by Heller’s faculty and research staff. This issue also includes our acknowledgment of all of you who have chosen to make Heller a philanthropic priority. As we face continuing financial headwinds, your support helps us to ease the financial burden our students incur as they pursue a Heller degree and strengthen their skills as social-change agents. In addition to asking you to continue your annual support, I encourage you to consider leveraging the power of your giving by including Heller in your estate plans. Planning today will make a big difference tomorrow for the sustainability of your school. I also encourage each of you to keep Heller informed of your successes and challenges, to share news of Heller with colleagues and friends, and to suggest our programs to potential students. Best wishes,

Lisa M. Lynch Dean and Maurice B. Hexter Professor of Social and Economic Policy


NEW STUDENTS ORIENTATION At the end of August, Heller greeted 196 new students from 48 countries. These midcareer professionals have come together to pursue one of six advanced degrees or have chosen to maximize their academic time at Brandeis by enrolling in dual- or joint-degree options. The three-day orientation included degree-specific information sessions and opportunities for students in this diverse group to get to know one another during schoolwide activities.

HELLER ADMISSIONS TEAM REQUESTS ALUMNI SUPPORT Heller admissions hosts information sessions and campus visits throughout the year to give prospective students the opportunity to experience Heller. We find that once people visit, they are eager to become a part of this amazing community. Please help by inviting your colleagues and friends to one of our admissions events. You can find details about these events at

INAUGURAL HELLER PROJECT FAIR On Sept. 13, 2012, the Career Development Center hosted its inaugural Heller Project Fair. Twenty-five organizations from Waltham and the Greater Boston area attended, offering more than 40 part-time projects and internships to Heller students. A number of organizations were represented by Heller alumni. Prior to the fair, the Career Development Center held sessions to advise students on developing effective résumés and professional presentation strategies. Students interested in particular opportunities were able to post their résumés in advance to their chosen employers; employers were able to contact students they were interested in and invite those students to meet them in person at the fair.





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In the weeks following the fair, more than 16 students representing all five master’s programs accepted positions with organizations such as DEAF Inc.; Mercy Corps; the Public Conversations Project; WATCH CDC; YouthBuild Boston; and Strong Women, Strong Girls. Many more of the 75 students who attended the fair were confirming placements by the end of October. The Career Development Center will continue to monitor and evaluate the fair’s effectiveness from both students’ and employers’ perspectives. Alumni, please stay tuned. Whether your organization is near Waltham or at a distance, we would be very happy to work with you to have your organization represented at next fall’s project fair! If you are interested, please contact Nancy Pratt at

COEX HOSTS WEDNESDAY LUNCH SERIES During the fall semester, Heller’s master’s program in Coexistence and Conflict hosted a range of speakers addressing issues of international conflict. The U.N. Security Council’s economic sanctions levied on Iraq and their impact on health care, education, economy and infrastructure was the focus of the talk on Oct. 3 by Joy Gordon and Hans C. Von Sponeck. Gordon is the author of “Invisible War: The United States and the Iraq Sanctions,” and Von Sponeck served in the United Nations for 32 years. For additional information about the talks in this series, please visit

TUESDAY TALKS Heller researchers, faculty and students sometimes struggle to find time to share their work with one another — even with colleagues just down the hall. Last year’s popular monthly Tuesday Talks series, initiated by Dean Lisa Lynch, returned last fall, providing members of the Heller community opportunities to learn from one another and exchange ideas. Past speakers have included Dolores Acevedo-Garcia, director of the Institute for Child, Youth and Family Policy; Michael Doonan, PhD’02, director of the Master of Public Policy program; and Ricardo Godoy, professor of international development. Spring semester speakers will include Ted Johnson, assistant professor in the Coexistence and Conflict program; Frederick M. Lawrence, Brandeis president and professor of politics; and Constance Horgan, professor, associate dean for research, and director of the Institute for Behavioral Health.

(RE)DISCOVERING HARRINGTON’S “THE OTHER AMERICA”: A SYMPOSIUM ON POVERTY SINCE THE GREAT SOCIETY On Nov. 1, Heller’s Master of Public Policy concentration in poverty alleviation and the Louis D. Brandeis Legacy Fund for Social Justice co-sponsored a campuswide symposium to assess the state of poverty in the United States since the publication 50 years ago of Michael Harrington’s book “The Other America: Poverty in the United States.” Discussions and workshops explored how economic and policy trends affect poverty, who the “new poor” are and what can be done to address the crisis. Speakers included Robert Kuttner, who is an author, the founder and editor of the American Prospect, a Boston Globe columnist and a Heller adjunct professor, and Bob Herbert, who is a former New York Times op-ed columnist, a Demos distinguished fellow and a senior adviser to Heller’s Institute on Assets and Social Policy.

HELLER ORGANIZES FIRST BRANDEIS CONFERENCE ON INTERSECTIONALITY On Nov. 8 and 9, faculty members of the Heller School and other Brandeis graduate schools and departments hosted a symposium titled “Intersectionality: Innovations in Research, Policy and Teaching.” The term “intersectionality” is used to describe the simultaneous intersections between aspects of social difference and identity (race/ethnicity, gender, class and so on), and forms of systematic oppression such as racism, sexism and classism at micro and macro levels. The impact of these intersections is often overlooked in research, policy analysis and teaching. This emerging field addresses the importance of recognizing these intersections

and how the work of scholars, policy professionals and educators can be improved by considering this perspective. The keynote speaker was Kimberlé Crenshaw, ( mission/co-founders), an internationally renowned scholar on intersectionality who is credited with being the originator of this perspective. In addition to delivering the keynote address, which was open to the entire Brandeis community, Crenshaw spoke at sessions tailored for small groups of students and faculty.

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INSIDE YOUR SCHOOL: WHAT’S HAPPENING AT HELLER CELEBRATING HELLER AUTHORS Doctoral student Samuel George Anarwat spoke to students and faculty this fall about his book “Health Promotion in Northern Ghana: The Contribution of NGOs.” As developing countries increasingly face health-budget constraints, the role of nongovernmental organizations in health promotion becomes vital. In northern Ghana, many NGOs have undertaken diverse health projects to improve quality of life, and Anarwat’s book examines their effectiveness, explores duplication of efforts, and recommends coordination of activities, increased networking and collaboration for better health promotion, and integration of peace building and conflict management. The book is a useful resource for students and practitioners of public health and community development.

On Nov. 28, Janet Giele, a professor emerita, discussed her recent book “Family Policy and the American Safety Net,” which shows how families adapt to economic and demographic change. Government programs provide a safety net against the new risks of modern life. Family policy includes any public program that helps families perform their four universal obligations of caregiving, income provision, shelter and transmission of citizenship. In America, this means that child care, health care, Social Security, unemployment insurance, housing, the quality of neighborhood schools, and anti-discrimination and immigration measures are all key elements of a de facto family policy. Yet many students and citizens are unaware of the history and importance of these programs. This book argues that family policy is as important as economic and defense policy to the future of the nation, a message that is relevant to students in the social sciences, social policy and social work, as well as to the public at large.

RCRC BEGINS SECOND YEAR BY ANNOUNCING NEW PARTNER The Relational Coordination Research Collaborative (RCRC), founded in 2011 by Heller Professor Jody Hoffer Gittell to build knowledge, evidence and tools to help organizations transform their relationships for high performance, announced its newest partner, the Danish Regions. Much like the regional Strategic Health Authorities in the U.K.’s National Health Service, the Danish Regions are public entities that deliver health and human services to the Danish people. Facing demographic shifts and unsustainable cost trends similar to other RCRC partners around the world, the Danish Regions have been charged with increasing the quality of care and the well-being of patients and workers while reducing costs. Relational coordination — coordinating work through relationships of shared goals, shared knowledge and mutual respect — is an increasingly popular strategy in Denmark, indicated by the scope of RCRC activities there and the recent translation of Gittell’s book “High Performance Healthcare” into Danish.





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In addition to Gittell, who serves as RCRC’s executive director, the organization is staffed by Gene Beyt, Chris Wirth, Anna Perlmutter, Saleema Moore and Debbie DeWolfe. Advocacy, advice and resources are provided by Heller School Dean Lisa Lynch and Heller colleagues Stan Wallack, Connie Horgan, Ron Etlinger, Carole Carlson, Claudia Jacobs, Jack White and Alex Rubington, who have been critical to RCRC’s success. At the start of its second year, RCRC had 10 organizational partners, eight professional partners, four research-center partners, 120 faculty partners and 44 student partners from across the U.S. and from Canada, Australia, Denmark, Japan, Spain, Italy and other countries. Founding partners include Kaiser Permanente, Indiana University Health, the Dartmouth Institute, the McArdle Ramerman Center, Salus Global Consulting, the MIT Lean Advancement Initiative, Stanford Health Policy and the UT Health Science Center at San Antonio. For more information, go to


The Lurie Institute’s Clarence Schutt (left) with Cathy Lurie and Aaron Bishop.

On Thursday, Oct. 4, the Lurie Institute for Disability Policy hosted its second annual Distinguished Lecture. Aaron Bishop, executive director of the National Council on Disability, addressed an audience that included advocates, students, researchers, funders and representatives of private and government agencies. In his talk, “Disability Policy Beyond Politics: Building Blocks to a Better Future,” Bishop discussed the potential impact of the political situation in Washington on disability services. He examined the major contributors to current budget problems, and how U.S. legislators who have largely been unwilling to work together have failed to solve these problems. Bishop stated that it is imperative for advocates across the field to engage in assertive, coordinated activism to prevent sequestration and avoid widespread cuts to disability services.

EXECUTIVE LEADERSHIP DEVELOPMENT One of the most exciting growth areas for the Heller School is executive leadership development. Through Heller’s Executive Education Program, directed by Associate Professor Jon Chilingerian and managed by Program Coordinator Linda Purrini, Heller faculty have delivered nearly 20 residential executive management programs that spanned more than 600 classroom hours. Since 2005, the Executive Education Program has trained more than 200 surgical fellows from the American College of Surgeons and the Thoracic Surgeons Foundation for Research and Education; the fellows received Continuing Medical Education credit for their participation. In addition, the Heller Executive Education Program has conducted advanced leadership training for organizations such as the Brandeis Office of Human Resources, the St. Petersburg (Russia) Hospital Association, the Jewish Healthcare Foundation of Pittsburgh, the Massachusetts Medical Society and the American Academy of Thoracic Surgeons. Last year, the Heller School was awarded a long-term contract by the Maine statewide physician coalition and the Hanley Leadership Institute. Over the next five years, Heller will provide

Dr. Michael Jellinek (right) speaks with thoracic surgeons attending Heller’s Executive Education Program.

advanced health care leadership training to 200 Maine physicians in a series of one-year leadership academies. The Heller School has a long history of providing management training to future health leaders, especially physicians. In June 1995, Chilingerian launched a four-year MD-MBA program in health management with Tufts Medical School, which today is the largest MD-MBA program in the United States.

HELLER MBA PROGRAM AND GREENLIGHT FUND CO-SPONSOR EVENT On the morning of Oct. 23, more than 60 individuals from the for-profit and nonprofit sectors came together for a panel discussion titled “Private Sector Skills and Nonprofit Board Leadership: Who Will Lead Boston’s Innovative Nonprofits?” This first of an anticipated series of programs was a collaborative effort of Heller’s MBA in Nonprofit Management; Heller’s Sillerman Center for the Advancement of Philanthropy; and the GreenLight Fund, an organization that identifies high-performing, innovative nonprofits in other communities and supports their expansion to Boston, Phila­delphia and the San Francisco area. Brenda Anderson, direc-

tor of Heller’s MBA program, introduced the event along with Margaret Hall, national executive director of the GreenLight Fund. A keynote address by Paul Grogan, president and CEO of the Boston Foundation, was followed by an engaging panel that included Michael Brown, CEO and co-founder of City Year; Jeff Glass, managing director of Bain Capital Ventures; Joanna Jacobson, founder and managing partner of Strategic Grant Partners; and John Simon, co-founder and board chair of the GreenLight Fund.

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ADDRESSING DISPARITY, ADVANCING EQUALITY More than 40 years after the passage of civil rights legislation, significant economic and social inequalities persist among racial and ethnic groups in the United States. These disparities plague our society across the spectrum, affecting everyone from the very young to the elderly. Whether the issue is health care, education, employment, financial security or housing, minorities in general and African-Americans in particular continue to face an uphill battle toward social and economic equity. From its inception, the Heller School has been committed to improving the plight of the most vulnerable in society. Not satisfied with the status quo, Heller faculty and alumni are continually rethinking the causes of racial and ethnic disparities as well as devising and implementing new approaches to reduce them.

Our researchers not only collect and analyze the data that help explain why these imbalances still exist but also involve and empower marginalized people in the process, drawing on their wisdom and experience. At the same time, our alumni are on the ground every day using what they learned at Heller to help make lasting social change a reality. The work to reduce racial and ethnic disparities that is being done by Heller faculty members and researchers across the school’s institutes and centers, and out in the wider world by our students and graduates, is too vast to cover in one magazine article. Here are a few highlights.

CULTURALLY COMPETENT CARE While 1 in 8 Americans is African-American, only 1 in 15 doctors is. And though 1 in 6 Americans identifies as Hispanic/Latino, only 1 in 20 doctors does. — WBUR’s CommonHealth blog, Feb. 10, 2012 Racial and ethnic minorities make up 26 percent of the total U.S. population, but only about 6 percent of physicians and 9 percent of nurses are Latino, African-American or Native American. In Baltimore, where 65 percent of the population is African-American and the Latino population has increased dramatically, there is a similar disconnect between providers and patients. Brian Gibbs, PhD’95, is working to change that. As the first associate dean for diversity and cultural competence at Johns Hopkins Medicine, Gibbs is responsible for diversity issues related to faculty, staff and fellows’ recruitment, retention and promotion; institutional cultural climate; community perception; and patient satisfaction. “I’ve always had a spirit of caring for people and justice,” says Gibbs, who started his career in health care as a practicing occupational therapist. “At the bedside, I experienced communities of color suffering more disease, but so much of what I saw was preventable. I wanted to move upstream to make a bigger difference.” The Heller School played a major role in Gibbs’ career advancement. “At Heller, I learned the rigor needed to understand even the smallest question, and I learned to use research to tell the story.” After Heller, Gibbs spent 10 years at the Harvard School of Public Health, where he served as the founder and director of the Program to Eliminate Health Disparities. At Johns Hopkins, he is undertaking a diversity and inclusion initiative that fosters a culture in which everyone’s contributions are valued, and that provides better

Dr. Brian Gibbs, PhD’95 (second from left), during a broadcast of the Urban Health Radio Program.

medical care through respect for patients’ backgrounds and beliefs. In this effort, engaging patients and the local community is paramount. A key piece of this initiative is the Urban Health Radio Program, a weekly live broadcast that facilitates straightforward, culturally relevant discussions about the health problems of minority groups in Baltimore. Expert guests on the show include Hopkins faculty members, local policymakers and health care advocates. Launched two years ago, the show is slated to move into national syndication. Gibbs and his team are also working with a Hopkins Latino faculty group to launch a Spanish-language version of the program. Another diversity initiative focuses on education around health issues that affect

minorities, such as sickle cell disease. Gibbs organizes regular community forums that bring together professors of color with patients, students and community leaders in a rich learning environment. A third program, called Claiming Our Futures, is a career-exploration day for Baltimore public-school students. In the program’s first year, 400 students visited the Hopkins campus to learn about careers in science, technology, engineering and mathematics as well as the health professions. In the second year, the number of participating students doubled to 800. Gibbs hopes some of these students are inspired to become doctors and return to serve the Baltimore communities where they grew up.

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LATINO CHILDREN, AUTISM AND HEALTH CARE: A CLOSER LOOK Autism prevalence among Latino children increased by 110 percent between 2002 and 2008, compared with a 70 percent increase for white children. — Medical News & Perspectives, May 23/30, 2012 According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, autism is on the rise among children. Compounding the problem, says Susan Parish, director of Heller’s Lurie Institute for Disability Policy, is the fact that Latino children have much more limited access to quality health care than their white peers. This is a public health problem, but it’s also a social justice problem. With funding from the Maternal and Child Health Bureau of the federal Department of Health and Human Services, Parish and her colleagues — Sandra Magaña, PhD’99, professor of disability and human development at the University of Illinois at Chicago, and





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Heller doctoral student Maria Timberlake, health care quality, even more challenging MA’10 — analyzed data on 4,414 children for Latino parents. from the National Survey of Children with Special Health Care Needs. Their findings “These are very worrisome results,” says regarding the treatment of Latino children Parish. “If these children don’t get good and their families are troubling. health care, they could develop other conditions in addition to their current “Latino children with autism receive health disabilities.” care that is of much worse quality than white children with autism,” says Parish, Disparities could be reduced, Parish notes, whose analysis showed that Latino children if physicians were more culturally sensitive with autism do not get enough time with and engaged parents and families as parttheir doctors, their doctors are not culturners in their children’s health care. Health ally sensitive, and their parents are not insurance programs could also offer incentreated as partners in care. Understanding tives to providers who ensure that these what a diagnosis of autism means and children receive better-quality care. obtaining services are difficult for all parents but, because of the disparities in

BETTER CARE FOR SENIORS The older population in 2030 is projected to double from the start of this century — from 35 million to 72 million — representing nearly 20 percent of the total U.S. population. — The Fiscal Times, April 10, 2012 If families who care for their elderly relatives received a bigger tax credit, would this change their motivation or ability to provide such care? What if this question could be answered without actually waiting for legislators to change the tax code? That’s exactly what Emily Ihara, MA’02, PhD’05, is planning to do. Before coming to Heller, where she was a Kellogg fellow, Ihara was a mental-health social worker and had many clients who were people of color.

“The way we structure our policies and programs in this country influences the way people get services and what services they get,” she says. “I’m really excited about applying a different methodology to these issues.”

other, and you can forecast outcomes from these models,” Ihara says. “You can try out different solutions without actually implementing them, or at least decide what roads to explore. It’s opening a brand new world … and it’s been a lot of fun.”

Agent-based modeling software is typically used in transportation policy and engineering. Ihara learned how to apply the method to public health and social policy investigations at a seminar last summer. “I’m still learning, but the beauty of this methodology is that it’s a way to simulate the actions of agents — you can give them characteristics, they can interact with each

“One of the frustrating aspects of my job was seeing patterns for individual clients that were really problems with the larger macro environment,” she says. “These structural issues were not helping people; in fact, they often hurt them.” Today, Ihara is an associate professor of social work at George Mason University, where her work focuses on Asian/Pacific Americans, specifically seniors who need family care or who raise their grandchildren in multigenerational households. She studies social and family structures and how they affect health. Using a tool called “agent-based modeling,” which is new to social-policy research, Ihara hopes to forecast multiple trajectories that may lead to health inequities, and to test different policy changes that could create different possible outcomes.

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HEALTH AND SELF-RELIANCE According to the latest statistics, African-Americans are 1.5 times as likely as whites to be obese. — The Root, May 31, 2012 Obesity and diabetes are at epidemic proportions in the African-American community, especially in poor areas. It’s a national health care crisis. But it’s also at the core of many other racial disparities that keep people from moving out of poverty. That’s why Sokoni Karanja, PhD’80, a longtime social activist, is turning his attention to health and wellness. Karanja has dedicated his career to reducing racial disparities. He founded the nonprofit Centers for New Horizons in 1971 in Bronzeville on the South Side of Chicago to give people better access to workforce development, affordable housing, effective schools, viable businesses and improved public transportation. “The recent economic downturn has taken most folks in this community to the ground,” says Karanja. “Of the 66,000 people in Bronzeville, 43 percent are very, very poor — that means income of $10,000 to $15,000 for a family of four. We provide multiple ways for people to help themselves, but we try to do nothing for folks that they can’t do for themselves.” Self-reliance is key to Karanja’s philosophy and his organization’s success. But what he’s learned over the past 40 years is that people can’t help themselves if they aren’t healthy. “Health disparities are one of the main problems people in our community face in finding employment, getting an education, getting around, and being able to do those things required on the job and in school. If you can’t get around easily and you’re





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not healthy, you are limited,” Karanja says, “which is why we’ve gone at this problem aggressively.” One of Centers’ new efforts is the annual Bronzeville Walk, an event that drew 500 participants last year to promote the prevention of childhood obesity. Another component is free health and exercise classes almost every night of the week, teaching everything from karate to yoga to nutrition.

Sokoni Karanja (right) at a Save-A-Lot grocery store opening.

“It’s not just an opportunity to learn about In addition, because Bronzeville is in a food. It also teaches children an important food desert — overrun with fast-food science lesson,” says Karanja. “We’re very options — Karanja realized he had to excited about the possibilities. It has great help people get access to healthier food. potential to spread.” A “corner store campaign” started with elementary and high-school students from Karanja’s staff also played a significant the area marching together to ask local convenience store owners to carry healthier role in the publication of “Place Matters for Health in Cook County: Ensuring products, such as baked chips, fruit, Opportunities for Good Health for All.” vegetables and granola bars. And what Produced in partnership with the Joint better place to get those vegetables than Center for Political and Economic Studies, from a local community garden? Centers helps hundreds of local residents create and the report shows that your ZIP code does maintain vegetable gardens throughout the more to determine your health than your genetic code. In other words, where you community. One youth group is setting live determines your health outcomes to up a business enterprise to sell produce to a greater extent than how often you go to corner stores. the doctor. Local schools are even getting onboard. With Centers’ help, two elementary schools As people begin to take charge of their health and the health of their neighborand one high school have launched aquahoods, Karanja is seeing real change — ponics programs, where kids are growing and has hope for the future. vegetables year-round inside the classroom using a water system.

A NEW APPROACH TO REDUCING POVERTY The new data show that 46.2 million people in the U.S. lived below the poverty line [in 2011] — about $23,000 for a family of four. The number of poor was almost exactly the same as it was the year before, but still historically high. — National Public Radio, Sept. 12, 2012 The numbers tell the story. In the United States, 16.2 million children cannot count on having enough healthy food to eat each day. In Massachusetts, 3,800 families are living in state shelters, and thousands more are living in unstable housing circumstances. To some, it might seem like poverty is an intractable problem. But to Donna Haig Friedman, PhD’96, director

of the Center for Social Policy at UMass Boston, it’s time to transform the way we develop poverty solutions.

To start, Friedman is undertaking the “Knowing about dire poverty in the abstract seemingly improbable — bringing together is one thing,” Friedman says. “Developing academics and people living in persisrelationships with people in these circumtent poverty to dialogue and conduct stances is quite another.” research together. This “merging of knowledge” approach was developed by the Throughout her career, Friedman has International Fourth World Movement managed human services; analyzed home(, a network lessness policies; implemented models of of people in poverty and those from consumer involvement in social policy other backgrounds who work in partnerplanning; and evaluated public, philanship toward overcoming the exclusion thropic and NGO social policy innovaand injustice of chronic poverty. It’s a tions. Working in partnership with people living the realities of poverty has transformed her thinking.


Millions in poverty Percent in poverty Recession

50 45

U.S. Goes Off Gold Standard


Nixon Institutes Wage-Price Controls

35 30

Y2K Scare


1989 Savings and Loan Crisis


Subprime Mortgage Crisis Credit Crisis

15 10 5 1959






methodology that resonates with Friedman. Early in her career, she lived and worked in rural Appalachia.






“We spend our careers coming up with solutions that, at times, cause more harm than good because we’re not listening to nor drawing upon the wisdom of those directly affected,” she says. “With the Fourth World Movement’s approach, people living in extreme poverty, practitioners and academics engage together as equal partners in generating ideas and solutions.” Friedman is leading the UMass Boston Center for Social Policy’s deepening collaboration with the Fourth World Movement, which has teams throughout the U.S. and in 25 other locations across the world. “I haven’t seen a methodology as wellthought-out as the Fourth World’s,” she says. “This approach is truly respectful of people living the problems we have a collective stake in solving.”

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TRACKING SENIOR FINANCIAL INSECURITY Senior-citizen households lost the most money during the recession. —, July 23, 2012 Many of today’s senior citizens are afraid of outliving their resources. Indeed, senior economic insecurity is on the rise. In only four years, between 2004 and 2008, seniors at risk of outliving their resources increased by nearly 2 million households. Tatjana Meschede is shedding light on this crisis. As research director of Heller’s Institute on Assets and Social Policy (IASP), Meschede issued a series of reports titled “Living Longer on Less,” written in collaboration with Tom Shapiro, IASP director and Pokross Professor of Law and Social Policy; and Demos, a national public policy and research organization. With funding from

the MacArthur Foundation, the Atlantic Philanthropies and the Ford Foundation, the reports showed that 78 percent of all seniors lack the economic security to sustain them through their lives. Single women, African-Americans and Latinos are the senior groups most likely to be economically at risk. More than 90 percent of both African-American and Latino seniors face financial vulnerability. Combining the sources of retirement security (income from Social Security, pensions and assets) with actual living expenses, such as housing and health costs, Meschede and Shapiro created a new measurement tool called the Senior

Financial Stability Index. Combining these factors provides a fuller picture of economic security and risk of U.S. seniors. As Meschede says, “Many factors needed to be taken into consideration to describe how our current seniors are doing.” The reports’ sobering results have been cited in many different formats, including radio, print media and congressional reports. “In the end, this is an issue that’s important for everybody,” says Meschede. “We’ll all be seniors someday, and there are many signs that today’s seniors are better prepared for retirement than we may be in the future.”

BUILDING STRONGER COMMUNITIES The [wealth] gap between the races widened considerably during the recent economic downturn, which whites weathered better than blacks, Hispanics and Asians. — CNN Money, June 21, 2012 Racial and ethnic “It’s a very long journey between a large disparities are health-focused foundation in central New persistent in Jersey that spends hundreds of millions many parts of of dollars and a small group in the inner the United States city that tries to address the social deterand difficult minants of health, such as housing,” to shift. There says Prottas, a professor and senior staff is no shortage member of Heller’s Schneider Institutes of grass-roots for Health Policy. “We want to break that organizations journey down into shorter trips.” and community groups ready and willing to jump into To try to understand how large foundathe fray, but many don’t have adequate tions decide which groups receive their resources and can’t seem to get outside money, Heller’s Sillerman Center for the funding. Laurie Nsiah-Jefferson ’80, Advancement of Philanthropy is funding MA’02, PhD’06, and Jeffrey Prottas are Prottas and Nsiah-Jefferson, a senior sciengoing to find out why. tist and senior lecturer at Heller, to study the relationship between the Robert Wood





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Johnson Foundation (RWJF) and the Praxis Project, an intermediary nonprofit of color that supports organizing and change work at local, state and national levels. The project will seek to answer the following questions: What initiated the relationship between the RWJF and Praxis? How does Praxis decide which organizations and projects it will support? Praxis says its goal is to build healthy communities by changing the power relationships between people of color and the institutional structures that affect their lives. Does their approach — fueled with funding from the RWJF — provide strong and impactful outcomes for communities regarding racial equity?

FORECLOSURE AND NEIGHBORHOODS Minority homeowners have been disproportionately affected by the foreclosure crisis and stand to lose homes at a faster pace than white borrowers in the future. — Washington Post, June 19, 2010 Foreclosure isn’t just about banks and mortgages — it’s about communities, neighborhoods and families. And those families are disproportionately more likely to be families of color. Hannah Thomas, PhD’12, wanted to understand why this is the case. Thomas’ Heller dissertation, funded by the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development, focused on foreclosure sales in Boston and how they impact neighborhoods. As a research associate with Heller’s Institute on Assets and Social Policy, she continues to examine the impact of foreclosures on wealth in communities of color and the intersection of individual and community assets. “When housing fails, families split up, relationships are destroyed, and neighborhoods are decimated,” says Thomas. “We can do all sorts of things to support people who are struggling, but when you kick them out of their house, it’s not helping to get them back on their feet.” The subject hits close to home for Thomas, who grew up in rural England. “When I was 11, my dad went through bankruptcy. We almost lost the house,” she recalls. “I remember as a kid being really stressed out about that.” Thomas is currently the project manager for “Leveraging Mobility,” a multisite interview study that is following 180 families over 12 years to examine the intersections of race, assets and social mobility.

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GETTING TO KNOW DIVERSE KIDS In May 2012, after years of speculation, estimates and projections, the Census Bureau made it official: White births are no longer a majority in the United States. — New York Times, May 17, 2012 In 2012, minority births — including Hispanics, blacks, Asians and those of mixed race — reached 50.4 percent, representing a majority for the first time in U.S. history. Because this trend shows no sign of reversing, Dolores Acevedo-Garcia thinks it’s time we learned more about these diverse children. Acevedo-Garcia is director of Heller’s Institute for Child, Youth and Family Policy; the Samuel F. and Rose B. Gingold Professor of Human Development and Social Policy; and project director for, a multiyear indicator project on racial/ethnic equity in U.S. metropolitan areas, supported by the W.K. Kellogg Foundation. Over the past few years, Acevedo-Garcia has worked to enhance to make it a more comprehensive database of indica-





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tors on minority-child well-being. The new site,, will incorporate systematic reviews, indicators and case studies of policies that may help improve the lives of vulnerable children. “Minority children are literally going to be the future of our country,” says AcevedoGarcia. “We really want to focus on doing a much better job of disseminating our data and findings, which we hope will highlight some of the inequities.” With this new interactive tool, policymakers, advocates, researchers and funders will be able to create customized reports describing over 100 measures of diversity, opportunity and quality of life for 362 metropolitan areas. The data will focus on children, early childhood education, educational achievement and birth outcome data

by geographic location (state, city, county and school district), race and ethnicity, socioeconomic level, and immigrant status. “The way I always approach my work is to think about issues from a life-course perspective,” says Acevedo-Garcia. “It’s critical to consider childhood.” In collaboration with the Kirwan Institute for the Study of Race and Ethnicity at the Ohio State University, diversitydatakids. org is scheduled to launch in summer 2013.

BRIGHTER TEEN FUTURES In 2009, 4.8 percent of blacks and 5.8 percent of Hispanics between 15 and 24 dropped out of grades 10-12, compared with 2.4 percent for white students. — The Huffington Post, Feb. 14, 2012 In the United Pineros Shields and her colleagues involved in the data collection. Then we States, one in at Heller’s Center for Youth and give one-on-one site-level support to help four students Communities has partnered with the them analyze the data.” drops out of high Hyams Foundation’s Teen Futures school — only Initiative to work with eight community This approach is working — a majority of 75 percent make organizations in Boston and Chelsea, Mass., teens complete these programs and rate it to graduation. to boost the success of young people — them highly. In 2009, the 85 percent of whom are black or Latino — dropout rate who have dropped out of school and are “It takes a long time for us to finish our for low-income not employed. The community organizaresearch,” says Pineros Shields. “In the students was tions, many led by minority professionals, meantime, people on the ground are still five times greater than their high-income help teens gain a high-school credential trying to help these young people. We’re counterparts — 7.4 percent compared and move toward higher education or helping the organizations create their own with 1.4 percent. Many community-based career training. feedback loop in real time to improve the organizations are tackling the problem services they deliver. It’s empowering for with varying degrees of success. Alexandra “We’re not only evaluating the success of community groups to have some of the Pineros Shields, PhD’07, is helping these these programs but also helping these skills we take for granted at the Heller groups improve their results by building grass-roots and community-based organiSchool. With the ability to use more their capacity to strengthen alternative zations develop their own evaluation tools sophisticated measures, assess their own education programs for low-income and and instruments,” says Pineros Shields. programs and refine their work, we hope minority youth. “They help design the surveys and are they can secure more funding.”

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very day, Heller students, faculty and staff benefit from the generosity of donors. This section of the magazine provides an opportunity to acknowledge the valuable support of alumni and friends who have made gifts of $100 or more during this past fiscal year (July 1, 2011, to June 30, 2012).

DEAN’S CIRCLE ($5,000+)

Irene E. Cramer, PhD’99


Joan and Ron Curhan ~

Stuart H. Altman

Diane M. Disney, PhD’89 ~

Neal F. Bermas, PhD’81 ~

Robert Dunigan, PhD’04 *

Ellen Hassenfeld Block ~ +

Anne and Daniel Ferguson

Moses Feldman ’62 ~ +

Len Fishman +

Linda + and Michael Frieze ~

Alejandro Garcia, PhD’80

Each gift to Heller strengthens our ability to provide the education our students seek — an education that develops the policy skills and management expertise needed to impact change. By supporting Heller, each donor conveys a belief in our mission of knowledge advancing social justice. Please share your understanding and commitment to Heller with others — prospective students and potential donors. We thank you, and we look forward to keeping in touch throughout the coming year and seeing many of you at Heller events, on campus and around the world.

May H. Futrell, PhD’76 ~

Lillian Labecki Glickman, MSW’71,

Jody Hoffer Gittell

   PhD’81 ~ *

Thomas P. Glynn III, MSW’72,

John E. Hansan, PhD’80

   PhD’77 ~ +

Constance Fairweather Kane, PhD’85

Leonard C. Goodman ~ +

Jonathan D. Katz, PhD’81 +

Sherwood ’55 and Judith Gorbach ’58 ~

Kersten L. Lanes

Steven and Nancy Lear ~

Edward F. Lawlor, PhD’85 ~

Nancy Lurie Marks ~

Alfred B. Lewis III

Laura and Selwyn P. Oskowitz

Lisa M. Lynch

Muriel K. Pokross ^ ~

Jane Mattson, PhD’94

Daniel E. and Susan + Rothenberg ~

Paula A. Paris, MMHS’79 ~ * +

Bryna Sanger, PhD’76 ~ +

David Pokross Jr. and Laurie Gill ~

* FY’12 Heller Alumni Association Board Member

Irving Schneider

Gail K. Robinson, PhD’80 ~ +

+ FY’12 Heller Board of Overseers Member

Lynn C. Schneider +

Chris Sabourin and Eileen McCarthy

^ Deceased

Carl J. and Ruth Shapiro ~

Judith and Armand Sabourin

~ Consistent donor (five years or more)

Adam J. Sheer ’92 ~ +

Michael Sabourin and Ann Kelly Roger ’84

Alan B. Slifka ^ and Riva Ritvo

   and Sarah Kroloff Segal ’86, MMHS’89

David + and Patricia Squire ~

Alan C. Shakin ’69

Richard S. Takasaki ’73 ^

Thomas M. Shapiro

Lisbeth L. Tarlow +

Samuel + and Paula Thier

Rhonda + and Michael Zinner ~

Sidney Topol Nancy Kolack and Christopher Winship





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ALUMNI LEADERS’ CIRCLE ($1,000-$4,999)

ASSOCIATE ($500-$999)

Anonymous (3)


G. Lawrence Atkins, PhD’85 ~ +

Doris Toby Axelrod ’63, PhD’99

Eileen Dunn Berger

Johanna Klip Black, MA’07

Christine E. Bishop ~

Diane Bradway

Bridgewood Fieldwater Foundation ~

Betty Jane Cleckley, PhD’74 ~

Eric E. Cahow, PhD’04 ~

Austin Patrick Egan, MBA’09

Rosalind B. Chaikin ^ ~

Rachel Fichtenbaum, MPP’11

Sheldon R. Gelman, PhD’73 ~

Linda Holiner, MMHS’89

Leslie Cohen Godoff ’71

Colin Holmes, MA’07 *

Walter N. Leutz, PhD’81 ~

Christina Jameson, PhD’81

Eva Marx, MMHS’80 ~

Leslie Pechman Koch, MMHS’93

Elizabeth Levy Merrick, PhD’98 ~

Sarah R. Larson, MBA’04

Deborah Kaplan Polivy, MSW’72,

Nancy, PhD’77, and Roger


   Lohmann, PhD’75 ~

Margo L. Rosenbach ’78, PhD’85 ~

Laura S. Lorenz, MA’06, PhD’08 ~ *

Arthur and Barbara Sheer ~

Lynne Man, MA’05, PhD’08

Debra Rahmin Silberstein, MA’05,

Danna Mauch, PhD’90

   PhD’09 *

Vincent Mor, PhD’79 ~

Jason A. Soloway, MA’01, MM’01 ~ *

Susan E. Perlik, PhD’84

Jennifer Elizabeth Swanberg,

Avis Y. Pointer, PhD’74 ~

   MMHS’91, PhD’97

Thomas P. Quinn, MBA’10

Mary Ann Wilner, MMHS’81,

Jeffrey Howard Richard, MA’96,

   PhD’86 ~

   MMHS’96 Robert B. Seidner ’98, MBA’03

FOUNDER ($250-$499)

Windsor Westbrook Sherrill, PhD’00 ~ *


Yvonne Eleanor Thraen, PhD’77 ~

Alidu Babatu Adam, MA’09

Ione Vargus, PhD’71 ~

Jennifer Azzara, MM’98, and Jacob

Roberta Ward Walsh, PhD’89 ~

   Murray, MM’98

Lisa Wang, PhD’91

Mary Bouchard, MBA’05 ~

Jonathan Wasserman ’92, MBA’08

SUCCESS OF FIRST DEAN’S CHALLENGE: ENGAGING STUDENTS TO “PAY IT FORWARD” During this past academic year, Dean Lisa Lynch presented a challenge to graduating students to support the Heller Annual Fund. Representatives from each academic program volunteered to solicit classmates individually, at Heller events and during lunchtime. Enthusiasm and participation swelled, and as a result of the Dean’s Challenge, 110 graduating and continuing students contributed, reflecting their gratitude for the support they received from alumni and the desire they have to “pay it forward” for the next generation of Heller students. As this issue goes to press, Dean Lynch has issued a new challenge, and current students are eager to beat last year’s dollars raised and percentage of students donating.

Mary F. Brolin, PhD’05 Joseph Castellana, PhD’02 ~

CONTRIBUTOR ($100-$249)

David and Wendy Greene Chaikin ~

Anonymous (4)

Karen Chaikin

Arnaa Alcon, PhD’00 *

Andrew F. Coburn, PhD’82

Nick William Alex, MPP’09 *

Joel and Pamela Cohen ~

Laura S. Altman, PhD’88 ~

Jennifer Kane Coplon, PhD’94 ~

Jessie Evans Babcock, MBA’09

Gerben DeJong, PhD’81 ~

Laurie Ansorge Ball, MMHS’83

Dan Finkelstein, PhD’05 ~

Mary Elizabeth Belgard, MMHS’91 ~

Lynn Garvin, MA’11

Mary Bell and William Joplin

Elizabeth Louise Glaser, MS’08, MA’11

Jeremy N. Benjamin, MA’99, MM’99

Arturo N. Gonzales, PhD’83

Amy Bernstein, MMHS’98 ~

Denise D. Hallfors, PhD’93

Martin Black

Elizabeth J. Hibner, MM’98

Oksana Bondar, MBA’03

M.C. Terry Hokenstad Jr., PhD’69 ~

Elliott I. Bovelle, PhD’80 ~

Current students (left to right) Daniel Shulman (Heller/Hornstein MA/MBA), Neyha Sehgal (Heller MBA) and Samantha Ory (Heller MBA) participate in the Dean's Challenge.

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HOW MUCH WILL POWER DO YOU HAVE? With just a few sentences, you can benefit future generations of Heller students, faculty and researchers. By naming the Heller School as a beneficiary of your will, retirement plan or life-insurance policy, you use your WILL POWER to create a lasting legacy for Heller’s future. WILL POWER enables you to make a more significant contribution in the future than might be possible for you today. WILL POWER allows you the flexibility to allocate a fixed sum or percentage of your estate if you are concerned about changes in the value of your assets. And the full value of your legacy gift is removed from your taxable estate. For more information on bequests and other deferred gifts, including personalized illustrations of giving options, please contact: Leslie Godoff, director, Development and Alumni Relations, at or 781-736-3899.





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Ruth A. Brandwein, PhD’78 ~

Wayne Michael Harding ’70, PhD’92 ~

Jacqueline Daniels Braunthal,

Oscar W. Harrell, PhD’95

   MMHS’84 ~

Cariann Guyette Harsh, MBA’04 ~

Richard O. Brooks, PhD’73 ~

Evelyn Bullitt Hausslein, MMHS’84 ~

Thomas G. Broussard Jr., PhD’06 ~

Cornelius M. Hegarty, MMHS’80

Jeffrey Stuart Brown, PhD’02

Miriam R. Hodesh, MBA’07 ~ *

Lois C. Camberg, PhD’85

Francis Holt, MA’06, PhD’11

Victor A. Capoccia, PhD’78 *

Constance M. Horgan

Mady E. Chalk, PhD’90 ~

Lois E. Horton, PhD’77

Deborah E. Cohen, PhD’84

Kathleen J. Hunt, MMHS’98 ~

Judith Cohen ’54 ~

Sharon R. Hunt, PhD’01

Maura Coan Colling, MMHS’79

Clare L. Hurley, MM’05 ~

Nancy Sachne Cooper, MMHS’89

Otis S. Johnson, PhD’80

Taletha Derrington, MA’07, PhD’12

Pamela Joshi, PhD’01

Carol J. DeVita, PhD’85 ~

Frances Anne Kanach, PhD’89

Michael T. Doonan, PhD’01

David Kantor, PhD’63

Almas Dossa, PhD’07 ~

Sarita Lynn Karon, PhD’91

Phillip Byrnes Earley, MMHS’91

Kathleen Alane Keck, MMHS’97,

Efrat Yeshva Eilat, MBA’00


Carol Hall Ellenbecker, PhD’89

Margaret Kennedy, MM’01

Sarah K. Emond, MPP’09 *

Shanti Kumar Khinduka, PhD’68

Ayorinde Fasina Fayehun, MS’12

Sanford L. Kravitz, PhD’63 ~

Virginia M. Fitzhugh, MM’03 ~

Ravi Kujur, MA’12

Murray W. Frank, PhD’74 ~ *

Michelle Lackie, MBA’03 ~

Hollis N. Gauss, MA’01, MM’01 ~

M. Barton Laws Jr., PhD’97

Ivy George, PhD’85

Ann C. Lee, MMHS’95

Jack W. Gettens, MA’06, PhD’09 ~

David Robert Leslie, MMHS’84

Janet Zollinger Giele

Katharine Kranz Lewis, PhD’07 ~

David and Eva Gil ~

Nancy Ellen Lightman, MM’02

Andrew Ian Ginsberg, MA’08

Carl G. MacMillan, MMHS’88 ~

Shirley Ann Girouard, PhD’88 ~

Diane Feeney Mahoney, PhD’89 ~

Howard H. Goldman ’70, PhD’78

Margaret Ellen Martin, PhD’90

Stephen Gorin, PhD’83, and Cynthia D.

Jacqueline Katunge Mativo-Kandaya,

   Moniz, PhD’90 ~

   MBA’11, MS’11

James C. Gorman, MSW’73, PhD’78 ~

Nancy E. McAward, MMHS’84

Elaine Selig Gould, MSW’71

Martha J. McGaughey, PhD’88

Maura Jane Griffin, PhD’86

Pamela Ann McQuide, PhD’97

Gail Shangraw Hanssen, PhD’97

Jacqueline R. Michelove, MMHS’81 ~

Ricardo A. Millett ’68, MSW’70,

Caren B. Silverlieb, MMHS’92

   PhD’74 ~

Nina M. Silverstein, PhD’80 ~ *

William Richard Miner, PhD’76 ~

Linda Simoni-Wastila, PhD’93 ~

Paula M. Minihan, PhD’03

Abby N. Spector, MMHS’80

Susan E. Moscou, PhD’06 ~

William D. Spector ’67, PhD’81

Ann E. Mowery, PhD’92

Susan Squire

Otrude Moyo, MA’00, PhD’01

Edward Ssentongo, MBA’05

Nicolas A. Mutch, MA’05

Emma J. Stokes, PhD’78 ~

Sharon F. Neuwald, MMHS’82

Miriam E. Sullivan, MBA’08

Edward Newman, PhD’68

Jeanette C. Takamura, PhD’85

Chrisann Newransky, MA’05, and Jose

Fomunyam Tewuh, MS’12

   Suaya, MA’02, PhD’06 ~ *

James Wilson Trent Jr., PhD’82

Darlene O’Connor, PhD’87

Michael G. Trisolini, MA’00, PhD’01 ~

John Oliver, PhD’75

Winston M. Turner, PhD’87 ~

Sylvia B. Perlman, PhD’85 ~

Denise A. Tyler, MA’06, PhD’07

Elizabeth M. Petheo, MA’06

Julio Alejandro Urbina, PhD’01 ~ *

Barbara A. Pine, PhD’91

Nancy Marie Valentine, PhD’91

Janet Poppendieck, MSW’71, PhD’79 ~

Joel S. Weissman, PhD’87 ~

David J. Portowicz, PhD’80

Jean S. Whitney, MM’01 ~

Deborah A. Potter, MA’00, PhD’07

Steven K. Wisensale, PhD’83

Scott E. Provost, MM’98 ~

Assunta Young, PhD’79 ~

Tzvi Moshe Raviv, MA’11, MBA’11

Leona R. Zarsky, MMHS’78 ~

Sharon Reif, MA’00, PhD’02 ~

Wu Zeng, MS’05, MA’07, PhD’09 *

Every effort has been made to accurately list the names of all donors. Please let us know if your name has been inadvertently omitted or incorrectly listed. For more information, please contact the Heller Office of Development and Alumni Relations at 781-736-3808 or visit, where you can also make a gift online.

Saoussane Rifai, candidate for MA’13 Cecilia Rivera Casale, PhD’79 ~ * Betty Holroyd Roberts, PhD’75 ~ Daniel E. Rodell, PhD’76 ~ Beatrice Lorge Rogers, PhD’78 ~ Shirah Kate Rosin, MA’10, MPP’10 Brian L. Saylor, PhD’87 Brenna Nan Schneider, MBA’12 Myrna L. Schultz, MMHS’84 Andrea F. Schuman, PhD’99 Magueye Seck, PhD’95 Alane Karen Shanks, MMHS’87 Carolynne M. Shinn, PhD’12 Raelene V. Shippee-Rice, PhD’90 Melissa Shurkin, MMHS’97

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MILESTONES NEW JOBS/DEGREES/DIRECTIONS Romina Edelmira Arcamone, MA’11 (SID), works in the renewable-energy private sector and is happy to be part of Power to the People, an NGO that was founded by a Heller alum and is based in Berkeley, Calif., whose mission is to bring solar energy to schools and health clinics in Nicaragua: “We hope more people from the Brandeis and Heller family will come on our trips to help install solar systems. Check out our ‘voluntourism’ program at or contact me directly.” ( Adwoa Benponmaa Atta-Krah, MA’09 (SID), following graduation has been working for the Education Development Center (EDC) in Waltham, Mass., as an international project coordinator. Her portfolio consists of teacher training and teacher professional development projects in the Democratic Republic of the Congo, Benin and the Comoros islands. In September 2011, Atta-Krah was accepted into the U.N. Economic Commission for Africa’s (UNECA) research fellowship program for young African professionals. Taking a leave of absence from the EDC to participate in the seven-month fellowship in Addis Ababa, she worked with the Millennium Development Goals and Least Developed Countries Section of the Economic Development and NEPAD division of the ECA. Atta-Krah’s experience was both challenging and rewarding. She contributed to various research papers, publishing two items: a background paper on articulating Africa’s position on the post-2015 MDG development agenda, and a policy brief on how African countries can fast-track progress on the MDGs. In addition, she participated in major conferences and summits co-organized by UNECA, the African Development Bank and the UNDP, including the Africa Economic Conference and the Conference of African Ministers of Finance, Planning and Economic Development. (





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Kelly Axtell, MBA’05, is the assistant director of senior services in Lexington, Mass., where she provides supervision for services to older adults in the community. Axtell received her MBA with a concentration in elders and people with disabilities. Additionally, she earned a Bachelor of Science degree in human services from the University of Hartford. Along with her degrees, she brings to this role her management experience in assisted living, home care and housing as well as her love of working with the senior population. (kaxtell@ Christopher Beyere, MS’11, was appointed head of preservice training in the Ministry of Health in Ghana. He will ensure that all staff members in nursing training colleges and other health training schools are given a quality education; in return, they will train other health workers. ( Prabhakar Babu Bisana, MA’03 (SID), is going to start the Rural Resource and Training Center, which will enhance the managerial and technical skills of rural youth under the Rural Action for Social Integration NGO. ( Chad Brustin, MMHS’96, was recently promoted to professional service manager at CLEAResult in Austin, Texas. Brustin manages database applications and develops information systems that help utility clients across the nation track, implement and evaluate cost-effective energy optimization programs. Since 2006, CLEAResult’s efforts have resulted in more than 1 billion kilowatt hours of reduced energy use in schools, government buildings, commercial facilities and individual homes. ( Robert S. Caulk, PhD’75, retired after 45 years in the administration of health, mental health and human services. His current activities include sport motorcycling, performance bicycling, playing guitar and spending time with his family. His son Steven, born while Caulk was attending Heller in 1974, is a history teacher in Iowa. Caulk’s son Roger is an artist in Southern California. (

Curt Davis, MA’11 (SID), joined a PhD program at the Center for Energy and Environmental Policy at the University of Delaware. His plan is to research the successful adoption of clean cookstoves in the world’s most energy-poor locations, where daily use of the traditional three-stone fire still exists. This research interest stems directly from his experience during his professional practicum in India, while in his second year at the SID program. Recognizing that many initiatives are top-down and ad hoc, Davis intends to investigate how clean-cookstove initiatives can make their programs more efficient, effective and inclusive of feedback from end-users. (curtjdavis@ Almas Dossa, PhD’07, started a new job as an associate research scientist at New England Research Institutes, after completing a postdoctoral fellowship at the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs’ Center for Health Quality, Outcomes and Economic Research in Bedford, Mass. ( Dena Fisher, PhD’91, retired as assistant commissioner of the Westchester County Department of Health in 2000, after receiving a Fulbright Fellowship to study IsraeliPalestinian health disparities at the School of Public Health, Birzeit University, in Ramallah. For her next post-retirement position, Fisher became the executive director of Seeds of Peace, a conflict-transformation program that brings together children from conflict regions — Israel and Palestine, northern and southern Cyprus, India and Pakistan, and the Balkans — through which she accompanied the first Afghan children to the organization’s Maine camp. She went on to become executive director of Dos Pueblos, a sister-city project with Nicaragua. Fisher retired in 2009 to become a rural community development U.S. Peace Corps Belize volunteer in refugee Latino/a villages until 2011. She returned home with great concern about the U.S. role in Central American human rights violations and spent last year in various Central American accompaniment projects in Honduras and El Salvador with the National Literacy Program, an initiative of the Salvadoran government that began in 2010, following the FMLN election. Having become good at un-retiring, in 2012 Fisher began work-

Dena Fisher (standing, third from left) in San Salvador with volunteers from the Committee in Solidarity with the People of El Salvador.

ing as director of programs and community outreach at El Taller/Latin American Workshop in New York City — a program that brings the Spanish language to adults and children through Latino/a music and art. She plans to continue along this path of repeatedly un-retiring. ( Louise Kaplan, PhD’92, accepted a position at Saint Martin’s University in Lacey, Wash., in January 2012 as an associate professor and director of the nursing program. She is starting an RN-to-BSN program that includes an elective course in traditional Chinese medicine. In February 2012, Kaplan and Marie Annette Brown, a research colleague, published a book that they co-edited, which is titled “The Advanced Practice Registered Nurse as a Prescriber,” published by Wiley-Blackwell. ( Erika Kates, PhD’84, received a fourth year of funding for her action-research projects on women offenders and alternatives to incarceration. ( Lang Dieu Le, MPP’10, marked his twoyear anniversary working on health reform in October 2012. After a year in the Center for Medicare’s Performance-Based Payment Policy Group, he began working for the Innovation

Center. These opportunities have allowed him to build a portfolio of experience that ranges from large integrated delivery systems, to academic medical centers, to urban and rural hospitals intimately connected to communitybased organizations focusing on redesigning the care patterns in their respective communities. ( John A. Lippitt, MMHS’96, PhD’03, is teaching early care and education policy at Tufts University and UMass Boston, while also blogging on national policy and politics ( He has also been consulting on early childhood plans, proposals and policies since leaving his job as executive director of Thrive in 5 Boston in April 2011. Lippitt’s blog is not focused on early childhood but on broader issues of national policy and the state of our democracy, such as corporate power and misbehavior, campaign finance and voting, priorities in the federal budget, and taxes. He believes that these issues are blocking our ability to make progress on early childhood issues, other social issues (including jobs and the economy), and, more broadly, economic inequality and social justice. He also believes that the mainstream media are not doing a good job of covering these issues, so he’s writing concise, focused pieces that can be read in a couple of minutes. (

Javed Ahmed Malik, MA’06 (SID), leads the policy and implementation of Punjab Education Sector Reform in Pakistan as education adviser working with the DFID. Punjab is the largest province in Pakistan, and its government education system is twice as big as that of the U.K., with 10.6 million students in 59,000 schools. The program aims to address marginalization and low learning achievement in government schools through a variety of supply-and-demand measures. Two key innovations are bringing in the political oversight of the reform from the office of the chief minister to make the bureaucratic system much more responsive and focusing on low-cost private schooling. “This is a real opportunity to transform my country and a true application of what we have studied [at the SID program],” says Malik, who was a recipient of the Bailis Family Social Justice Award in his second year at Heller. ( Susan E. Moscou, PhD’06, was granted tenure at Mercy College in Dobbs Ferry, N.Y., in May 2012. Moscou has been an associate professor at the college’s School of Health and Natural Sciences since 2006. As a faculty member in the nursing program, she teaches undergraduate and graduate nursing students, and continues with her research interests in social capital in homeless shelters and racial bias in clinical education. Additionally, she continues her clinical practice as a nurse practitioner at Columbia University Student Health Service. ( Janet Poppendieck, MSW’71, PhD’79, after 35 years of teaching sociology at Hunter College, has retired from teaching to devote her time to writing, speaking and advocacy. ( Joyce Pulcini, PhD’87, joined the George Washington University School of Nursing in January 2012 as the director of the master’s programs and the director of community and global initiatives. (

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MILESTONES Hugo Reichenberger, MA’12 (SID), is serving the United Nations, through the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) in Ouagadougou, Burkina Faso, where the agency is managing more than 10 refugee camps, which host more than 100,000 Malians who are fleeing violence in their home country. Reichenberger has worked with refugees since 2008, when he left his job in the private sector in São Paulo to become an intern at UNHCR’s small office in Brazil’s capital, Brasília. This was one of the best decisions he has ever made, and thanks to his Heller experience, Reichenberger was able to learn and share experiences with friends from all over the world. Thanks to the passion we all share in making a difference today, he doesn’t feel alone anymore when things get tough, making his professional experience even more enriching. (

Hugo Reichenberger in Burkina Faso.

Trilby Smith, MM’98, is the director of evaluation at the Michael Smith Foundation for Health Research in Vancouver, Canada. ( Van Ngoc Ta, MA’12 (SID), has applied Heller’s values and spirit through his rescue work around the world. In Hanoi, Vietnam, he helped to rescue 24 children from slave labor at garment factories through the Blue Dragon Children’s Foundation. His foundation work continued as he traveled to China to rescue four young girls who were being forced to work in brothels. The core values he learned while studying at Heller push him to fight for those most vulnerable in Vietnam and other parts of the world. ( Sarah Winawer-Wetzel, MBA’09, accepted a position at Dana-Farber Cancer Institute





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(DFCI) in April 2012 working as a manager in the Clinical Planning and Network Operations department. She is thrilled to be back in the nonprofit world and is enjoying her work opening up DFCI-affiliated cancer centers in community hospitals around New England. ( Dinah Zeltser-Winant, MM’00, MA’00, is continuing her adventures in the Foreign Service. In fall 2011, Zeltser-Winant relocated from Liberia to Central Asia, where she is splitting her time between Kazakhstan and Kyrgyzstan as USAID’s regional democracy officer. She covers access to justice, rule of law and conflict mitigation programming. In July 2010, she got married to a fellow Foreign Service officer who is posted in Almaty. Zeltser-Winant is always happy to hear from anyone heading out to Central Asia. (dinah_z@

PUBLICATIONS Brenda Bond, PhD’06, recently co-edited the book “Looking Beyond Suppression: Community Strategies to Reduce Gang Violence” with Suffolk University colleague Erika Gebo; Bond also co-authored several chapters of the book. The publication explores Massachusetts’ six-year effort to reduce gang and youth violence through the use of a national “best practices” model, the Comprehensive Gang Model. The successes and challenges of implementing this gang policy through the collective work of law enforcement, grass-roots agencies, community leaders and collaborating researchers is high-

lighted. Addressing gang violence using a broad community approach is a key part of reducing gangs and the violence they cause. “Looking Beyond Suppression” tells the important story of the Massachusetts experience. ( Fernando Torres-Gil, MSW’72, PhD’76, served as first assistant secretary for aging under Bill Clinton and now is associate dean of academic affairs and professor of social welfare and public policy at the UCLA Luskin School of Public Affairs. He spoke on NPR this past August about health care reform coverage and its financial impact on the aging population of baby boomers. You can listen to the story at James W. Trent Jr., PhD’82, published “The Manliest Man: Samuel G. Howe and the Contours of Nineteenth-Century American Reform” (University of Massachusetts Press, 2012). The book traces the life of Samuel Gridley Howe (1801-1876), founding director of the Perkins School for the Blind and the Massachusetts School for Idiotic and FeebleMinded Youth, from his boyhood in Boston to his efforts to provide education for people with disabilities and his role in founding the Massachusetts State Board of Charities. Trent is professor of sociology and social work at Gordon College. ( Christian Velasquez Donaldson, MA’07 (SID), published his first book, titled “Analysis of the Hydrocarbon Sector in Bolivia: How Are the Gas and Oil Revenues Distributed?” in January 2012. He continues to work at

the Bank Information Center doing advocacy around World Bank policies. (

AWARDS/HONORS/BOARDS/GRANTS Ruth Brandwein, MSW, PhD’78, served as legislative chair for the Florida Chapter of the National Association of Social Workers. She received the 2011 Lifetime Achievement Award from the National Association of Puerto Rican-Hispanic Social Workers. In February 2012, Brandwein published an editorial titled “Remember the Women: Inequality Is a Women’s Issue” in Affilia: Journal of Women and Social Work, V 27:1. ( Diane Disney, PhD’89, was elected chair of the Board of the National Academy of Public Administration. She has been an academy fellow since 1997. ( M.C. “Terry” Hokenstad Jr., PhD’69, was inducted into the Ohio Senior Citizens Hall of Fame by the Ohio Department of Aging in May 2012. Also, Menorah Park, a Jewish nursing home in Beachwood, Ohio, announced Hokenstad as the recipient of its annual Dr. Arnold Heller Memorial Award in March 2012. ( Siiri Morley, MBA’10, was included in Fast Company’s League of Extraordinary Women alongside Oprah Winfrey, Cherie Blair, Dina Powell, Tina Brown and many others. Morley is a founding partner with Prosperity Candle. ( Kathleen Popko, MSW’73, PhD’75, received a Lifetime Achievement Award in June 2012 from the Catholic Health Association of the United States, acknowledging her leadership within the health ministry and her impact and influence on the local community and beyond. Her works include extensive involvement with the Catholic health community and manag-

Siiri Morley (second from left), the founder of Prosperity Candle, in Haiti.

ing the operations of the Sisters of Providence Health System. Susan Windham-Banister, PhD’77, president and CEO of the Massachusetts Life Sciences Center, was named Hero in Health Care by the Visiting Nurse Association for 2012 and also received one of five 2012 Leading Women Awards from the Girl Scouts of Eastern Massachusetts. She has co-authored books and written numerous articles on competition in today’s health care marketplace.

BIRTHS/MARRIAGES Ronald Bernard, MA’12 (SID), and Thuan Tran, MA’12 (SID), married on May 16, 2012, just four days prior to receiving their Heller degrees. ( and ronbernard70@ Steven H. Byler, MBA’08, welcomed a son, Eben Samuel Byler, on Feb. 20, 2010. (

Sarah Figge Hussain, MA’04 (SID), and her husband, Arif Hussain, welcomed a daughter, Aria Figge Hussain, on June 17, 2012. They moved from New Delhi, India, to Cambridge, Mass., in April 2012. ( Linda G. Greenberg, PhD’97, and Michael “Tac” Tacelosky were married on May 12, 2012, in Washington, D.C. ( Colin Holmes, MA’07 (SID), married Wyokemia Joyner in spring 2012. In May, they moved to Kathmandu, Nepal, where Holmes will work in the program office during a twoyear assignment with the USAID Foreign Service. Email him if you are interested in forming a Heller South Asia group for alumni, current students and prospective students. ( Jenean S. Smith, MA’05 (SID), and Ryan LeBlanc announce the arrival of Violet Anabel LeBlanc, a happy, healthy 8-pound, 6-ounce girl, born on July 5, 2012, at 10:30 a.m. in Antioch, Calif. Mom and Dad are thrilled to have such an adorable little girl in their lives. (

WINTER 2012/2013





MILESTONES FACULTY/STAFF NOTES As Heller faculty, staff and friends travel the world, we encourage them to connect with our alumni. These visits are an important way to sustain connections to Heller, encourage alumni to identify prospective students, learn about opportunities for internships and jobs for future alumni, and keep those of us in Waltham updated on the variety of ways our alumni are changing the world. This past fall, Laurence Simon and Ravi Lakshmikanthan traveled to Thailand and Sri Lanka, where they were warmly greeted by alumni.

Lecturer Ravi Lakshmikanthan (second from left) and Professor Laurence Simon (right) visiting alumni in Bangkok.

Christine E. Bishop, Atran Professor of Labor Economics at Heller, is named a residential fellow in this year’s class of Health and Aging Policy Fellows. Supported by the Atlantic Philanthropies and directed by Harold Alan Pincus, professor of psychiatry at Columbia University, and in collaboration with the American Political Science Association Congressional Fellowship Program, the goal of the Health and Aging Policy Fellows Program is to create a cadre of professional leaders who will serve as positive change agents in health and aging policy, helping to shape a healthy and productive future for older Americans. The residential fellows will spend a year in Washington, D.C., working on Capitol Hill or in an executive branch agency. All fellows will participate in core program components focused on leadership in health and aging policy, and career and communications skill development. For further information on the program, visit





WINTER 2012/2013

An Institute for Behavioral Health research team led by Elizabeth Merrick, PhD’98, and Constance Horgan is partnering with the Massachusetts Behavioral Health Partnership (MBHP) under a Health Care Innovations grant awarded to MBHP by the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services. The project will test the use of recovery peer navigators and patient incentives to improve care and reduce costs for Medicaid beneficiaries with repeated detoxification admissions. Heller’s Institute for Child, Youth and Family Policy (ICYFP) was a significant presence at “Transforming Race 2012: Visions of Change,” a conference sponsored by the Kirwan Institute for the Study of Race and Ethnicity at Ohio State University. ICYFP’s new director and the Samuel F. and Rose B. Gingold Professor of Human Development and Social Policy, Dolores Acevedo-Garcia, presented “Neighborhood Opportunity, Institutional Capacity and Child Development,” and Heller Senior Research Associate Erin Hardy presented “Equity in Early Learning Opportunities: The Roles of Place, Space and Race.” Elevating the strength of diversity is at the heart of much of our work at the Heller School.

IN MEMORIAM Hobart A. Burch, PhD’65, died peacefully at his home in Marathon, Fla., from heart failure, on June 16, 2012. Born in Elmira, N.Y., on July 29, 1932, Burch received degrees from Princeton University in 1953 and from the Union Theological Seminary in 1956. He was ordained a minister of the United Church of Christ. Burch continued his education in the field of social work at Columbia University, where he received an MSW, and at Brandeis University, where he received a PhD in 1958. “Hobe” devoted his professional career to helping others. He was head of Homeland Missions for United Church of Christ (including hospitals and children’s homes). He also worked at the National Institute of Mental Health in Bethesda, Md., and was an assistant to the secretary of health, education and welfare in Washington, D.C. Burch retired after 26 years from the University of Nebraska, where he was a professor and direc-

tor of the School of Social Work. He was also an author of many books. Mareasa R. Isaacs, PhD’84, passed away peacefully on Aug. 26, 2012, at her home in Owings Mills, Md., after a brief illness. Isaacs was the salutatorian of her graduating class in 1966 at Garnett High School. She accepted a scholarship to attend Clark University in Worcester, Mass., and graduated in 1970 with a BA in English literature. Prior to completing her Heller degree, she earned a master’s in social work from Simmons College in Boston in 1975. Isaacs was a recognized expert in the area of cultural competence and had trained, developed curricula and written extensively on the subject. She was passionate about her work and wanted to alleviate ethnic and racial disparities in mental health and other systems of care. Professor Emeritus Robert Perlman, PhD’61, passed away on Sept. 21, 2012. As Dean Lynch stated, “Bob was part of the first pioneering and rather feisty class that graduated from the Heller School. After establishing Action for Boston Community Development (ABCD) in the early 1960s, he returned to the faculty at Heller, where he taught until his retirement in 1982. Bob epitomized, in many ways, the original vision of Dean Charles Schottland, who was Heller’s first dean, and founding Brandeis President Abe Sachar to create a school that would bring together students and faculty in a new model of scholarly and leadership development to advance the field of social policy.”



SEPTEMBER 12  -14, 2014 Block the dates now! Come back to Brandeis for a weekend of fun and thoughtful engagement. Recharge your Heller connections with friends, colleagues, and current and former faculty members. Participate in thought-provoking sessions focused on timely social policy issues.

Nonprofit Org U.S. Postage Paid Permit #15731 Boston, MA WINTER 2012/2013


Brandeis University MS 035 P.O. Box 549110 Waltham, MA 02454- 9110 Lisa M. Lynch Dean and Maurice B. Hexter Professor of Social and Economic Policy Samuel O. Thier, MD Chair, Heller Board of Overseers Chrisann Newransky, MA’05 President, Heller Alumni Association Board Leslie Godoff ’71 Director, Development and Alumni Relations Sharra Owens-Schwartz, MBA’10 Assistant Director, Alumni Relations Annual Giving Tracey Palmer Feature Writer Claudia J. Jacobs ’70 Director of Communications Initiatives Courtney Lombardo Senior Program Administrator, Development and Alumni Relations

Office of Communications ©2013 Brandeis University D044

Heller Alumni News, Winter 2012-2013  

A magazine for the alumni of the Heller School for Social Policy and Management

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