Jess (she/her) is a Research Associate Professor at the Eliot-Pearson Department of Child Study and Human Development at Tufts University, and the co-director of TIER. She also has an appointment as a Distinguished Fellow in the Early Childhood research area at Child Trends. Jess’s background is in child and family policy analysis, applied child development, and program evaluation, and she is particularly interested in mixed methods research that generates a deeper understanding of the community and policy contexts in which programs operate, and the processes by which policy priorities and program objectives are realized, challenged, and subverted during the day-to-day interactions between frontline program staff and families. She has more than 20 years of experience leading rigorous and applied evaluations focused on maternal and child health policies and programs, home visiting and other family support programs, public health initiatives, and community systems of care using a variety of research designs, from descriptive to quasi-experimental and experimental. Her methodological expertise includes primary data collection using quantitative and qualitative approaches, secondary analysis of extant datasets, community-based participatory approaches, and social network analysis. Jess has been the principal investigator on all state-led evaluations of the Maternal, Infant, and Early Childhood Home Visiting program (MIECHV) in Massachusetts and currently lead the state’s MIECHV Coordinated State Evaluation and evaluation of the MIECHV Data Innovation Award. She also was the principal investigator on a study to develop a conceptual framework for implementation quality in MIECHV home visiting programs, and is currently leading a national study examining how home visiting programs incorporate family voice and leadership into their work. Other projects Jess is currently leading at TIER include: a community-based participatory research project focused on identifying and responding to root causes of public health problems to create systemic change and reduce racial inequities; a mixed methods evaluation of the Essentials for Childhood project, an initiative focused on creating systemic change leading to safe, stable, and nurturing environments for families with young children; a project with Parents as Teachers National Center aimed at adapting PAT for use with families who are involved in the child welfare system; a municipal systems building effort to support families experiencing challenges related to substance use; and a care coordination project to reduce maternal morbidity/mortality among Black urban families. Earlier in her career, Jess worked with families and young children as a child care and elementary school teacher.

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