Scope of the Issue: Unholy Trinity of Excess Welfare Funds, Religious Zealots and Social Scientists. For starters.

I keep coming back to the “genius” business strategy of taking TANF money first, and justifying it afterwards, meanwhile, distributing to any number of already vested interests, so that resistance would seem to be heresy.

To understand this, one can start almost anywhere.

However, I suggest starting with the Oklahoma Marriage Initiative + Colorado-based PREP, Inc. (marriage promotion curricula & for-profit business) which was a state-wide test run of how to take TANF Contingency Funding (in this case, about $10 million), bypass the legislature to vote on it, and through the Governor’s office, do a test-run.   This took collaboration with the US Federal Department of HHS and (as it turned out) a certain G.W. Bush administration appointee Jerry Regier, founder (1981) of the Family Research Council, currently back at “HQ” in OJJDP.  People of this stripe tend to go from one state to another, and in and out the revolving door of government, think tanks, and consulting, as the bio above shows:

He previously served for five years as Secretary of Health & Human Services for Oklahoma Governor Frank Keating until he resigned on January 15, 2002 to run for Governor of Oklahoma. As Secretary, he provided policy oversight to 13 Agencies. Concurrently, he served as Deputy Director of the Office for Juvenile Affairs. He also served as Acting Director of the State Health Department during a crisis in that agency.

He has previously served in a variety of positions in federal government. He was the Acting Administrator of the National Office of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention (OJJDP) in the U.S. Department of Justice. President Bush nominated him to this Senate confirmation position. Prior to that position, he served in the Bush Administration as Acting Director of the Bureau of Justice Assistance (BJA) for three years. He was instrumental in assisting the United States Attorney General to design and implement the “Weed & Seed” Initiative which is now in over 300 communities throughout the United States. He also was an appointee in the Reagan administration as Associate Commissioner for the Administration of Children, Youth and Families in the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services.  (HHS/ACYF)

(I see he started out at Grace University in Omaha, then a Masters degree in Biblical Studies from the International School of Theology (in San Bernardino California, apparently).  This is apparently closely tied to Campus Crusade for Christ, whose founder Bill Bright, died in 2003. What I’m saying is, there are lots of similar schools around these days…

a premier Midwest Christian college located in Omaha, Nebraska. Our goal is to develop servant leaders for the home, the church and the world through excellence in biblically-integrated education. Here students receive a life changing experience in a personal, discipling environment, all for the glory of God . . . . (this appears to also be an Oklahoma Connection.  Given how old Mr. Regier must be, I’m thinking it was Grace institute, or college when he was there (the “university” title dates to 1997):Grace University was born in prayer as a group of ten leaders and ministers met in Omaha, Nebraska, on June 1, 1943, to pray and plan for a college-level institution that would be fundamental in doctrine, vitally spiritual in emphasis, and interdenominational in scope. The need for such Bible-centered education became increasingly apparent to these evangelical leaders. A number of them shared this common concern with each other during the commencement activities at the Oklahoma Bible Academy in Meno, Oklahoma, in 1942. So through the providence of God, they selected Omaha as a central location for the meeting that led to the founding of Grace Bible Institute. . . .From June 1 through September 8, 1943, the Lord opened doors and removed obstacles in such unusual ways that all were convinced that this new venture of faith was from God. At the dedicatory service on September 8, 1943, Dr. C.H. Suckau, chairman of the Board of Directors and later a president of the college, mentioned seven specific answers to prayer

:

(The more I read about Regier’s background, the more concerned I get about this HHS department — he attended a Christian Bible Academy for high school, then went to the above for an undergraduate.   He was hired straight out of 13 years working for “Campus Crusade for Christ” into ACF.  How this person got a degree from Harvard, I wonder…After three years in government (HHS/ACF 1981-1984) he went and founded the Family Research Council, a nonprofit which called women working outside the home “bondage.” . . and has a legislative action arm founded in 1992 (primarily anti-abortion, anti-gay) and made excuses for bruises and welts causing “Biblical spanking.”  If Regier didn’t actually say or endorse this, he still founded the outfit that did!!  Here’s another, volatile (wikipedia) on “Rekers” who published with Regier; ranging from NARTH (“treatments” for homosexuality) and statements that Rekers (also very religious) was on the founding board of the Family Research Council.

A 2002 article from the St. Petersburg Times tells us a little more about the Circuits this particular man has been riding, all Republican (two Bushes and a Reagan, shortly before heading to work under a third Bush, Gov. Jeb, after the Secretary of DCYF resigned, possibly in the wake of a scandal of missing children in the department…  Mr. Regier did indeed take the job.”

By STEVE BOUSQUET, Times Staff Writer © St. Petersburg Times, published August 15, 2002


Jerry Regier also worked in the White House under Bush’s father. The governor stays mum about his choice to lead the agency. TALLAHASSEE — Gov. Jeb Bush’s search for a new director of the Department of Children and Families quickly focused Wednesday on Jerry Regier, a former Oklahoma human services secretary who worked for Bush’s father and Ronald Reagan in the White House.

Regier, 57, who holds master’s degrees from Harvard University and the International School of Theology in California, founded and was first president of the Family Research Council, which calls itself a pro-family group.

The council has likened abortion to “terrorism” and calls marriage and family “the foundation of civilization.” Messages left at Regier’s home and office were not returned. Bush’s office had little to say on the search for a replacement for Kathleen Kearney, who resigned Tuesday.

Two years later, the news read about like this, regarding the same man:

Regier resigns as chief of DCF

The move comes after the Department of Children and Families leader apologized for fraternizing with lobbyists.

By JONI JAMES and ALISA ULFERTS
Published August 31, 2004
TALLAHASSEE – Florida Department of Children and Families Secretary Jerry Regier resigned Monday, six weeks after apologizing for fraternizing with lobbyists who did business with his agency. Regier announced the resignation at an abruptly called news conference with Gov. Jeb Bush, who appointed him to the post two years ago after his predecessor quit over a missing Miami girl.

Regier said he was proud of his accomplishments but acknowledged he was frustrated over continuing attention to an inspector general’s investigation that showed he and two of his top technology employees accepted favors from lobbyists or contractor..  The most recent example: Regier was hard-pressed to explain DCF’s failures earlier this summer when a 10-year-old Brooksville girl who weighed just 29 pounds was discovered only after her brother ran away from the home where DCF had placed them . . .(Secretary Kearney had resigned under “the disappearance of Rilya Wilson, a 5-year-old foster child in Miami who was missing for more than a year before the agency noticed.”)

 (advancing “Faith, Family & Freedom”)

FRC is currently “reaching out to pastors” and has a “members area” for their Watchmen on the Wall.  I shudder to think what lies ahead (I had a so-called “Christian” marriage, which meant until I found a legal way to stop the physical assault and battery, we shared the same street address.  We barely escaped with our (plural) lives…I will never be the same, and because of behaviors like this, no longer call myself a Christian, lest I be confused with them…)  This is what FRC site says now in its FAQs page about how pastors should view “separation of church and state.”

A. This is a misleading argument repeatedly trumpeted by secularists who denounce biblical morality and truth. As you probably know this often repeated mantra appears no where in our founding documents or governing documents. However, let us be clear, no one, especially bible believing Christians are calling for a state church. We do not believe any Church should rule over the State or the State over any Church, they were both created by God to fulfill separate but interrelated purposes. What is really meant by this phrase is a separation of God from government or Christians from the public square. This we unapologetically reject. We believe that since God ordained government (Rom. 13:1), He would want His people to influence it. After all, government is one of the spheres we should impact in our role as “the salt of the earth” and “the light of the world” (Matt. 5:13, 16).

Consider yourself forewarned — if you are dealing with someone of this background, you are dealing with someone with an agenda, which they tell themselves the Bible justifies at will.

As you see, I don’t deal very well on seeing this influence — and promise to get it back on track to the financing.  HOWEVER, is it wise to ignore when HHS programming — multiple millions o $$ influencing families nationwide — is being steered from the Executive Branch of government towards this type of leadership?  (NB:  This funding has been endorsed by Democrats as well including Obama.  No politician can ignore the influence of the churches, and neither party has let the existing social networks they represent unsolicited. …… This is problematic for women, and mothers who sometimes become single to avoid this type of authoritarianism — or abuse, and then are targeted for elimination (or removal of children) by the same mindset for being single. . . . . .)

DIVERT this funding from the poor in order to promote social science engineering of the poor, and further establish already established Ph.D.’s whose life work, to date, seems to have consisted in taking foundational grants from the extremely wealthy (in combination with from the HHS) to write up what poverty is like, and how it’s caused.

It doesn’t seem to have occurred to these people that it’s wrong to steal from welfare funding designated for the poor, expand its usage infinitely into pushing programming based on THEORIES about what causes poverty, and meanwhile promoting individual PhD’s already supported year after year by both federal grants and private foundations (I’ve detailed at least one below, K. Edin of Harvard), who are paid to publish.  At what point do these Piled Higher and Deeper individuals have to give an ethical account of their own careers?  They already cannot afford to stray too far from programming or where’s next year’s grant?   The language then continues in the same verbal and frameworked ruts, year after year; mental language grooves never jolted too far from the patterns of their, what I can only call, “handlers.”  I think the term applies to many intellectuals who stay in academia, or gravitate to think-tanks immediately after college.   Their paychecks often come from foundations whose originators had a serious business sense, and knew that this business sense included control of government to steer policy, etc. etc.  The PhD’s in this mix are people who have developed the ability to write and summarize datasets, which is useful skill (I obviously don’t have yet!) when one wants more funding for the project.

I will talk some more, but below that — this post has charts, and it profiles people by their published curricula.  I suggest you look at this project in particular — when it comes to this single policy agenda of “Healthy Marriage/Responsible Fatherhood” and alongside it “Healthy Families / Child Welfare / Violence Prevention ” (etc — the list is endless) — it is being framed primarily as a mental health or social science problem (or both).  This plays into the professions marketing the cure — treatments, and eventually its definitely going to get back to Pharma, representing among the largest industries on the planet.

I apologize for the length here, but it’s time to publish and move on to the next post.  The comments field is open unless you are selling something!

I also published on “Let’s Get Honest” (hover cursor over link for description) blog re this particular project (OMI & PREP, the Oklahoma Denver connection), regarding the issue of setting up resource centers (website / infrastructure) for the HHS to market from.  As I continue to revisit the issues, sometimes more developments surface, or connections I’d missed — for example, the “Bowling Green” National Center for Family & Marriage Research also set up by HHS grant with fine print at the bottom reading:

 This project is supported by the National Center for Family & Marriage Research, which is funded by a cooperative agreement (5 U01 AE000001-05) between the Assistant Secretary for Planning and Evaluation (ASPE) in the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) and Bowling Green State University. The opinions and conclusions expressed herein are solely those of the author(s) and should not be construed as representing the opinions or policy of any agency of the Federal government.
Bowling Green State (Ohio) gets its share of funding:
Recipient Name City State ZIP Code County DUNS Number Sum of Awards
BOWLING GREEN STATE UNIVERSITY  BOWLING GREEN OH 43403 WOOD 041349010 $ 20,221,951
BOWLING GREEN STATE UNIVERSITY  BOWLING GREEN OH 43403 WOOD 617407325 $ 11,405,605
 But why would this particular project’s grant be mixed in with extremely technical medical research?
Program Office Grantee Name City State Award Number Award Title Action Issue Date CFDA Number CFDA Program Name Principal Investigator DUNS Number Sum of Actions
ASPE BOWLING GREEN STATE UNIVERSITY BOWLING GREEN OH AE000001 NATIONAL CENTER FOR MARRIAGE RESEARCH 09/22/2011 93239 Policy Research and Evaluation Grants WENDY D MANNING 617407325 $ 775,000
ASPE BOWLING GREEN STATE UNIVERSITY BOWLING GREEN OH AE000001 NATIONAL CENTER FOR MARRIAGE RESEARCH 11/07/2011 93239 Policy Research and Evaluation Grants WENDY D MANNING 617407325 $ 0
ASPE BOWLING GREEN STATE UNIVERSITY BOWLING GREEN OH AE000001 NATIONAL CENTER FOR MARRIAGE RESEARCH 08/30/2012 93239 Policy Research and Evaluation Grants WENDY D MANNING 617407325 $ 0

2012 R24HD050959  CENTER FOR FAMILY AND DEMOGRAPHIC RESEARCH 8 001 NIH 04-11-2012 617407325 $ 208,500 
2012 R01GM084402  MANIPULATING SINGLE-MOLECULE ENZYME CONFORMATIONS AND ACTIVITIES 3 000 NIH 04-30-2012 617407325 $ 305,427 
2012 R01GM085328  RNA 3D MOTIF SEARCH, ATLAS, AND PREDICTION FROM SEQUENCE 3 000 NIH 07-23-2012 617407325 $ 304,899 
2012 R01GM098089  SINGLE-MOLECULE PATCH-CLAMP FRET IMAGING MICROSCOPY IN LIVING CELLS 1 000 NIH 08-30-2012 617407325 $ 236,300 

Dr. Manning, a sociologist, with colleagues and others, thus can continue her research on almost any topic relating to human beings in relationship with each other for example:ADOLESCENT DATING RELATIONSHIPS AND THE MANAGEMENT OF SEXUAL RISK, while you and I can, if we read them, learn terms such as  “sociodemographic heterogamy” or “age heterogamy,**” and are these, or are they not, predictive factors on condom use among adolescents, and (usually this also comes up) whether this breaks down differently depending on the color of one’s skin.  Women having sex with substantially older men (hardly new on the face of the earth) is, in this lingo “age heterogamy,”  and the yes, the funding to evaluate, test, and write this up came from public dollars, i.e., HHS/NICHHD.  I sometimes think that if more sociologists spent their time having (of course, safe) sex, rather than investigating and writing up others who do, we might be better off as a nation.  As obsessed with this topic as the sociologists often are (which I found out, believe it or not, following up on the HHS database and who it’s funding, they then collaborate with others intent that less sex should occur, period — i.e., abstinence educators.   Or (as in prior years, and here, published by

Journal of Marriage and Family © 1995 National Council on Family Relations, the same author (1995) writing up a comparison of cohabitation and marriage in re: entry into motherhood.  For this study, one needs words like “nonpregnant cohabitors,” and statistical studies with conclusions such as:
 Cohabitation accelerates the timing of marital first births only among White women who were pregnant when they married.
etc.   I’m curious why the need to get the profiling of our population and its habits down to such a fine, predictive science, particularly by race.  How far from eugenics based on race to eugenics based on challenging the status quo, i.e., exterminating, silencing or commandeering the creative minds by financing those who take orders better?
Eugenics texts of the 1920s emphasized the convergence of data from the fields of economics, human genetics, medicine, and the social sciences (sociology, anthropology, psychology). The power of eugenics ideology, its adaptability, and its endurance in the face of criticism lay in eugenicists’ efforts to show the interdependence of research data from different fields and an apparent, if illusionary, consensus on the hereditary nature of social problems.
“AE” series often seems to stand for “Abstinence Education, ” like this one 90AE0001.
Grantee Name State Award Number Award Title Action Issue Date CFDA Number CFDA Program Name Principal Investigator DUNS Number Sum of Actions
UNIVERSITY OF SOUTH ALABAMA AL 90AE0001 HRSA AE CONTINUATIONS 07/20/2005 93010 Community-Based Abstinence Education (CBAE) C. MICHAEL TRAINOR 143477920 $ 790,396

DIALOGUE:

This is actually common practice — i.e., while there are indeed laws against RICO (Racketeering Influenced Corrupt Organizations — and another family court blog I set up specifically for a single Pennsylvania County (Lackawanna, right next to the infamous Kids for Cash Luzerne County), at the request of one of its affected parents — has enough links to basic outline and demo of what this is Jeff Grell, RICO in a nutshell) — and it appears to me that the kind of crime most likely to actually be prosecuted as if it were a crime, is someone cutting in on the established RICO commonly called government.  In fact, the Lackawanna County Family Courthouse was actually raided by the FBI after an individual citizen had filed suit against the comptroller for having private employee hired without a contract using public real estate and offices for court-affiliated, court-ordered business.  I ended up involved because another trail from the state of Kentucky had led to the same individuals marketing their propaganda through the courts, and MANDATING class attendance in every single custody decision, at $xx a pop.

I stuck around until shortly after I learned about the Comprehensive Annual Financial Reports in general, looked up The City of Scranton’s, and began actually posting them.  This was after exposing the nationwide networks (known up front) of family court professionals and specifically identifying who brought which policies into the local courthouse.  This is done by nonprofit associations of public employees who know the federal funding streams and bring them into any institutions dealing with men, women and children — basically anything remotely “family.”  In addition, the habit of looking up real estate ownership –especially transfers — proved invaluable.  There too, it became clear only a true wizard would have the time to slog through comparing tax assessor records to real estate transfer deeds. The software was slow, bulky and not organized to get the most relevant information to the public.  Hardly accidental!

After a little too much talk about CAFRs and Real Estate ownership on the forum, I was told to go back to my box (family court topics only).  Along with several other (women & mothers), who didn’t know their “place,” and didn’t appreciate having conversations derailed with photos of genitalia and extra scatalogical talk when they got a little too intellectual, I was booted off. Good riddance on both parts; the moderator did me a favor by freeing up the time from an intimidated audience and overly censored forum.  If I stayed, I’d have continued anyhow to post what locals should know better than outsiders, IF they believed that what happened OUTSIDE the community was as relevant as it actually is.

This experience (less than a year in length) also gave another valuable lesson in “turf.”  while it’s important to respect others turf (and any blogger or forum moderator will want to), it’s immoral for individuals to drive away information which could help save a child from abuse or an adult from assault and battery, and/or tools and vocabulary which shows the local problems indeed relate to certain national “models” being moved from state to state and which, per se, constitute specific intent to take over local towns, counties, courts (up to state supreme court level and the associated “Administrative Office of the Courts” — which in most states, is large) — and in general keep the individuals / general public ignorant and down on the farm and the managers meeting privately at roundtables out of state, lobbying for private and special interest groups.

Driving away that person also contributes to a further censored and biased view of the history of our own country, or at least presenting it as a possible interpretation.  For example, there’s no question that there is a “mental health archipelago” being set up, in which dissidents (as well as those perhaps actually needing or deserving incarceration or institutionalization)  can be locked away, stigmatized, and silenced.

Apparently this is what our society (government) does, and has been conditioned to do, when a problem is identified and labeled:

It sets up a nonprofit, a website, seeks funders, develops experts (if there are none), or quotes them (if there are) and throws money at it. Then those who receive the money travel around talking about it and seeking more money (recruiting membership dues, running seminars, or selling books).

This apparently is JUST FINE with the Federal Government. Those causes which it adopts then get their crusaders, and more money is thrown that way to calm the masses. A great example of this is the recent administration’s “Defending Childhood Initiative” or “Taskforce for Children Exposed to Violence.” Many children are exposed to violence surrounding divorce or custody matters — this is by now known, yet there isn’t a single person on the taskforce who is addressing or represents the issue of the family court system’s distortion of criminal law into behavioral science.

In another season, the problem might be “divorce.” So, what is the solution? An “emergency” is announced, and to address it — each time — it’s necessary to restructure government to get a faster response time and free up more funds to solve the problem. This is how the Governor of Oklahoma decided to handle that issue — by seizing a pool of money that had been set aside from TANF and “divert” it to programming supporting not the first, but the fourth purpose of welfare — encourage the formation of two-parent families. the rest is history — part of US history. As a result of this, that drain is still open, and money being poured down it — I mean “grants.”

SCOPE OF THE PROBLEM — You have NO IDEA!

Please read (all of) this 2002 article commenting on the Oklahoma Marriage Initiative.  It summarizes the initiative and shows many of the involved parties; and is well-written; in fact by an Oklahoman with quite a bio of writing on religion, including for the AP..
This excerpt & article shows the involvement of then-President Bush, Gov. Keating, Wade Horn, Diane Sollee (Smartmarriages.com), PREP, Inc., TANF, and Ron Haskins now at Brookings but formerly (like Wade Horn) in HHS.  It should also be noted (and is, in the article) the religious makeup of Oklahoma and that Gov. Keating also wanted to outlaw no-fault divorce and reinstate covenant marriage, that the Family Research Council is also cited, and in general the close connections between religious leaders and those in highly placed US Federal Department of HHS…

In the White House budget plan sent to Congress last week (@2/28/2002), the Bush administration offered no new money to encourage job advancement. However, it proposed more than $100 million for experimental programs aimed at encouraging women on welfare to get married, The Associated Press reported.

Two years ago, Keating became the first governor in the nation to set aside Temporary Assistance for Needy Families funds to strengthen marriages and reduce the divorce rate. Those funds are block grants provided to each state through the 1996 welfare reform act.

These block grants are diverting money to people who don’t account for it right, and to PR firms (like Public Strategies, Inc.), Software firms (see other blog, “BlackBaud,” etc.) and basically anyone willing to incorporate, register for a trademark, attend a conference, sign up for the franchise, and start “outreach” through churches, child support offices, and family court systems — almost anywhere — to encourage (or, force) attendance at classes.   They also have collectively and nationwide endangered innocent women & children and gotten some of them, quite honestly, killed around murders or murder/suicides, or kidnappings, etc.

This insistence at the federal level also creates a lose/lose situation for one side of almost every custody case, as the other side (marriage/fatherhood) is literally backed by millions focused on “outcomes” in the courts.  yet when the situation involves serious danger, as it turns out (and I found out), there is no legal right to have a court order, including a protective order, enforced, at all.  While law enforcement knows this, the people marketing restraining orders most likely do, the people they are marketing it to — do not know this (by and large), which typically is those who most would need to know, for the purpose of risk assessment on their own lives.   etc.

The nation needs to acknowledge NOW that marriage works for some and does not work for others, and to lay off this insanity, and that this movement is too closely aligned with religion, not in its best form, but in its worst forms.

Fortifying marriages was a major goal of welfare reform, but few states have acted on it, said Ron Haskins, senior fellow at the Brookings Institution and former staff director of the U.S. House Ways and Means welfare subcommittee.

“Nobody has done as much as publicly and conspicuously as Oklahoma has,” Haskins said.

Diane Sollee, founder of the Coalition for Marriage, Family and Couples Education in Washington (D.C.), said, “All eyes are on Oklahoma, that’s for sure.” [[“founder of” = she is the incorporator of said DC, which holds the copyright to this logo]]

SmartMarriages

Praise for Oklahoma

Now, it appears that President Bush would like other states to follow Oklahoma’s lead.

“I think it’s quite exciting,” administration official Wade Horn said of the Oklahoma Marriage Initiative. “I think Governor Keating has shown real leadership and creativity on this issue, and we’re looking forward to seeing the results.”

Horn, former president of the National Fatherhood Initiative, spoke at the Oklahoma conference on marriage hosted by the governor and First Lady Cathy Keating in March 1999. As assistant secretary for children and families in the U.S. Health and Human Services Department, he’s a key figure in efforts to broaden the focus of welfare to endeavors that foster marriage, abstinence and responsible fathers.

For example: In re: OMI, Prep Inc. and Three UDenver Psychologists:How the rubber hits the road at the HHS: Health & Human Service both dispenses and administers welfare (“TANF,” in its various reauthorization re-namings: DRA 2005, ARRA 2009, Claims Resolution Act 2010, and — up for reauthorization in March 2013 — I don’t know the new name). No matter how you cut it — it’s the same old story of “block grants to the states” with strings, including marriage, fatherhood, abstinence (yes, still), foster care and adoption promotions, child abuse prevention, child support enforcement (a major source of collections), and fees for all kinds of friends of friends — plus money directly to religious organizations which are all over marriage promotion “like white on rice.”. . .and Healthy Marriage/Responsible Fatherhood grants, which are a significant ($150-$500million or so per year) stream which then set up shop locally (and on the internet) to divert further monies –and, as it turns out, sometimes court cases.

Here’s just a sample from the public-access HHS databse called “TAGGS.HHS.GOV.” This stands for something like “Tracking Accountability of Government Grants” which, by the way, it isn’t very well.

(Total, then a listing of which grants):

Recipient Name City State ZIP Code County DUNS Number Sum of Awards
PUBLIC STRATEGIES INC OKLAHOMA CITY OK 73116-7909 OKLAHOMA 869106179 $ 24,997,864
Fiscal Year Grantee Name State Grantee Class Award Number Award Title Budget Year CFDA Program Name Principal Investigator DUNS Number Sum of Actions
2012 PUBLIC STRATEGIES INC OK Private Profit ( Large Business ) Organizations 90FM0026 FAMILY EXPECTATIONS 2 Healthy marriage Promotion and Responsible Fatherhood Grants S CRAVENS 869106179 $ 2,500,000
2011 PUBLIC STRATEGIES INC OK Private Profit ( Large Business ) Organizations 90FM0026 FAMILY EXPECTATIONS 1 Healthy marriage Promotion and Responsible Fatherhood Grants Sammye Cravens 869106179 $ 2,500,000
2010 PUBLIC STRATEGIES INC OK Private Profit ( Large Business ) Organizations 90FE0026 HEALTHY MARRIAGE DEMONSTRATION PRIORITY AREA 6 5 Healthy marriage Promotion and Responsible Fatherhood Grants SAMMYE CRAVENS 869106179 $ 1,000,000
2010 PUBLIC STRATEGIES INC OK Private Profit ( Large Business ) Organizations 90FH0001 DEVELOPING HEALTHY MARRIAGE RESOURCE MATERIALS 5 Healthy marriage Promotion and Responsible Fatherhood Grants SAMMYE CRAVENS 869106179 $ 3,250,000
2009 PUBLIC STRATEGIES INC OK Private Profit ( Large Business ) Organizations 90FE0026 HEALTHY MARRIAGE DEMONSTRATION PRIORITY AREA 6 4 Healthy marriage Promotion and Responsible Fatherhood Grants SAMMYE CRAVENS 869106179 $ 1,000,000
2009 PUBLIC STRATEGIES INC OK Private Profit ( Large Business ) Organizations 90FH0001 DEVELOPING HEALTHY MARRIAGE RESOURCE MATERIALS 3 Healthy marriage Promotion and Responsible Fatherhood Grants SAMMYE CRAVENS 869106179 $ 0
2009 PUBLIC STRATEGIES INC OK Private Profit ( Large Business ) Organizations 90FH0001 DEVELOPING HEALTHY MARRIAGE RESOURCE MATERIALS 4 Healthy marriage Promotion and Responsible Fatherhood Grants SAMMYE CRAVENS 869106179 $ 3,250,000
2008 PUBLIC STRATEGIES INC OK Private Profit ( Large Business ) Organizations 90FE0026 HEALTHY MARRIAGE DEMONSTRATION PRIORITY AREA 6 3 Healthy marriage Promotion and Responsible Fatherhood Grants SAMMYE CRAVENS 869106179 $ 1,000,000
2008 PUBLIC STRATEGIES INC OK Private Profit ( Large Business ) Organizations 90FH0001 DEVELOPING HEALTHY MARRIAGE RESOURCE MATERIALS 3 Healthy marriage Promotion and Responsible Fatherhood Grants SAMMYE CRAVENS 869106179 $ 3,250,000
2007 PUBLIC STRATEGIES INC OK Private Profit ( Large Business ) Organizations 90FE0026 HEALTHY MARRIAGE DEMONSTRATION PRIORITY AREA 6 2 Healthy marriage Promotion and Responsible Fatherhood Grants SAMMYE CRAVENS 869106179 $ 997,864
2007 PUBLIC STRATEGIES INC OK Private Profit ( Large Business ) Organizations 90FH0001 DEVELOPING HEALTHY MARRIAGE RESOURCE MATERIALS 2 Healthy marriage Promotion and Responsible Fatherhood Grants SAMMYE CRAVENS 869106179 $ 3,250,000
2006 PUBLIC STRATEGIES INC OK Private Profit ( Large Business ) Organizations 90FE0026 HEALTHY MARRIAGE DEMONSTRATION PRIORITY AREA 6 1 Healthy marriage Promotion and Responsible Fatherhood Grants SAMMYE CRAVENS 869106179 $ 1,000,000
2006 PUBLIC STRATEGIES INC OK Private Profit ( Large Business ) Organizations 90FH0001 DEVELOPING HEALTHY MARRIAGE RESOURCE MATERIALS 1 Healthy marriage Promotion and Responsible Fatherhood Grants SAMMYE CRAVENS 869106179 $ 2,000,000

Public Strategies, Inc. is a PR & Consulting firm. Our Government is putting a lot of money into such firms. One of the chosen curriculum for the OMI (Oklahoma Marriage Initiative) is called “PREP, Inc.” which I have found throughout the system (in “marriage promotion” grantees) and also being used, strange to say, in a behavioral health research center at UGA (the University of Georgia).

About Us

Welcome to the Oklahoma Marriage Initiative (OMI). The OMI is dedicated to strengthening families and helping couples who choose marriage for themselves, gain access to services and supports to help them build and sustain healthy marriages.

The OMI, a project of the Oklahoma Department of Human Services (OKDHS), began in 1999 and is now the largest and longest-standing state-level healthy marriage and relationship program in the nation.

OKDHS has allocated a significant amount of

Temporary Assistance to Needy Families funds

to support the services of this groundbreaking initiative, which has become a national program model due to the broad-based, innovative design and statewide service delivery strategies implemented and revised throughout the years.

People seem to believe that if something is large, prominent, broad-based and different, it’s good. Show me the money! I’m showing, in part (through the HHS printouts here….) where money has been going since this tap got turned on . . . but it’s obvious that this type of printout is not a good enough tool to connect the dots — not for individuals concerned about government excesses, anyhow!

PUBLIC STRATEGIES INC. (see grants….)

Public Strategies(PSI), an Oklahoma-based project management firm, serves as the project manager for the OMI, overseeing all OMI programs and services under DHS’s leadership. The Initiative was developed and gained momentum under former Governor Frank Keating and continues to grow and prosper.

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History

In 1998, University of Oklahoma and Oklahoma State University economists produced a joint study on what Oklahoma needed to do to become a more prosperous state.

{{wouldn’t it be nice to know who — and who paid for the study??}}

Their conclusions included the usual economic analysis relating to tax issues and regulatory reform issues, as well as some surprising results.

{{results? Or hypotheses based on their study?? ALL studies have a frame of reference..To call something results is to draw a conclusion on cause. To lay out the facts is different….}}

The economic researchers found some social indicators that were hurting Oklahoma’s economy. They mentioned the high divorce rate, high rates of out-of-wedlock births and high rates of child deaths because of child abuse.

{{apparently it was hurting the children more than the economy. NB: no mention made of spousal deaths because of domestic violence in the study, apparently. Guess OK must not have many…}}

One OSU economist wrote in an editorial, “Oklahoma’s high divorce rate and low per-capita income are interrelated. They hold hands. They push and pull each other. There’s no faster way for a married woman with children to become poor than to suddenly become a single mom.“{{{SEE BELOW for one of the search results — linked right here | orange underlined..}}}

{{an editorial is by definition an opinion. Neither the economist nor the cite is given here…}}

The study prompted the development of a strong social agenda in Oklahoma, which led to the launch of what is now known as the Oklahoma Marriage Initiative. About 200 leaders from many different sectors and regions of the state convened for the “Governor and First Lady’s Conference on Marriage,” a day-long brainstorming session where several keynote speakers presented accumulating evidence of the negative effects of divorce on children and families, and the benefits of marriage for children and adults alike.** This information exchange laid the groundwork for widespread interest in the concept of an initiative to promote marriage and reduce divorce.

So, who was, and who was not, invited to the Governor & First Lady’s one-day Wedding Marriage Fest? One wonders. . . . .

Continuing with the OMI’s “About Us / History” page we see that it started with grabbing some TANF funds AND some private monies. As an Initiative is not a nonprofit, and Public Strategies, Inc. is not a nonprofit either, I wonder how we might find out WHOSE private moneys? (Note: CAFRs from those years would probably show… but Im not there yet, today…)

https://www.prepinc.com/shopping/ProductList.aspx?ID=7

Well, here’s “cs.princeton.edu” page on this topic, speculating ONE reason OK might have high divorce relates is their Below-the-Bible-Belt status! Although this is just a person’s review of a few programs — from Princeton’s Computer Science department — it’s interesting, and so I’m posting and talking back to it here:

In the selected Bible belt states, strong family and religious cultures are important structural influences on young couples. Social pressures and norms are likely inducing the comparatively young median age of marriage in these states.

In order to promote a framework that instead discourages these at-risk couples from marrying, our first solution provides policy changes that act as formal barriers. While this may help prevent these couples from rushing into marriage, our second solution instead provides incentives for the development of a more harmonious household among couples already married.

How about an honest look at why they are divorcing?

By implementing a framework that provides and encourages opportunities for couples to build positive experiences together, it is likely that more couples will be happier with their marriage and will be less likely to divorce. The higher divorce rates seen in the south and other Bible belt states are strongly influenced by religion. It is more prevalent in these regions for parents to oppose cohabitation prior to marriage and intercourse before marriage is also taboo.

These policies may induce younger couples to decide to marry rather than maintain a more casual relationship. Another contributing factor to a higher divorce in the Bible belt region is the pervasion of Baptists compared to the northeast. Massachusetts and Connecticut, two states with low divorce rates, have a much higher concentration of Catholics and the Catholic tradition is one that has historically seen divorce as a sin. Baptists, on the other hand, can simply repent and are afforded a second chance. This distinction is significant and is undoubtedly a contributing factor to the difference in divorce rates.

{{I suppose if one is not “damned to ETERNAL hell if one divorces, and damned to a living hell if one doesn’t,” then the first option looks better..}}

But let’s get to the Princeton site quoting Gov. Keating quoting an unknown OSU economist about causality of poverty based on reading their own reports (wonder what gender economist, what religious background the economist, and who screened anything for bias… Just kidding….)

Keating wanted to lower the extremely high divorce rates, child abuse-related deaths, and the out of wedlock births in the state of Oklahoma.

Good for him. Why did the wish to lower the divorce rates get listed before child abuse-related deaths? Wouldn’t preserving children’s life be placed higher than preserving a marriage, especially if there was abuse in the marriage?

The overall goal was to strengthen the institution in the state of Oklahoma.

What happened to the “prevent child-abuse deaths” goal?

Strategies adopted and why they thought they’re efficient. To solve this problem the OMI came up with workshops, research projects, and programs. OMI’s main way to counsel couples is through workshops. The OMI chose the Prevention and Relationship Enhancement Program (PREP) for marriage workshops all around Oklahoma. The PREP workshops’ goals are to teach skills such as communication, preserving fun and friendship, maintaining commitment, identifying relationship danger signs and avoiding common pitfalls.

The great things about these workshops are that they are frequent and most importantly free. Having the workshops be free opens up the opportunity to those that should seek marriage education before they decide to get married but unfortunately can’t because they can’t afford it.

OH — a Free Lunch? . . . . They’re not free! Someone paid for them, starting with the TANF budget! Then the grants to develop them, and continue refining and testing them, etc. etc. . . .

Also, there is a one day workshop called “All about us” which is supposed to be a fun marriage education program where the workshop is free and a free and fun lunch is provided. To put the icing on the cake, to those engaged couples that complete the workshop they are eligible to obtain their marriage license for $5 rather than $50. Targeted population and why this target?

In 1998, the University of Oklahoma and Oklahoma State economists conducted a study on what Oklahoma had to do in order to become a more prosperous state. The social issues of extremely high divorce rates, child abuse-related deaths, and out-of-wedlock births were causing Oklahoma to be less prosperous than it should be. An Oklahoma State economist said, “Oklahoma’s high divorce rate and low per-capita income are interrelated. They hold hands. They push and pull each other. There’s no faster way for a married woman with children to become poor than to suddenly become a single mom.

Uncritically, repeatedly quoting and anonymous OK economist and using this to justify a state-wide program seems a little less than objective . . . .

This program is targeted at both couples thinking about marriage or couples already married. The thinking behind this is to either encourage good marriage habits before the marriage even begins or to try and prevent divorce from happening. A main goal of the program was to reduce the divorce rate by 1/3 by the year 2010. Discuss the assumptions about the nature of the problem

The planners assumed that everyone in a bad marriage wants help. Keating knew that supporting a marriage promotion program would be extremely controversial so stressed marriage as an ideal and his goal was not to point the finger at anyone with a bad marriage. The planners also assumed that everyone who was thinking about marriage would automatically want to get married after the program; they didn’t seem to think that the program could scare some perfectly good couples away from marriage. The program also assumed that a child would be better off with parents that had experienced troubled times but went through the program and live together again than a child who went through troubled times/divorce and lived with one of the parents. Did they actually carry it out? The program started in 2002 and is still going on today. Discuss the result of their plans if carried out/if not discuss why it never came to existence.

Since October of 2001, an estimated 100,000 people have completed at least 12 hours of marriage education. The OMI believes that this type of training will lead to specific behavior change in struggling married couples and help them avoid divorce and also help engaged couples prepare for a successful marriage.

This program has been greatly approved and appreciated by the Bush administration and this program is the longest marriage initiative in the United States. As of now (ca. 2008, I think) the results of the program haven’t been taken and I think that they are waiting to do a full research around 2010 to see if the divorce rate has lowered by their goal of 1/3. Evaluate the problems and advantages of the entire plan. I think that there are some real advantages to this plan. I think the greatest advantage is that the program offers workshops to couples thinking about marriage. Educating couples early is far better and more effective than educating couples while they are already married and experiencing problems. I also think that having the program be free is also a huge advantage. Allowing this education program to be free of charge allows everyone to participate in the program and does not turn away the poor. I also think a major advantage is offering incentives, like the “All about us” one day workshop where if you complete it you are eligible to receive a marriage license for $5 rather than $50.

Yes, the basic behavioral motivation called bribery. Just don’t tell the poor couple where the fee reduction money came from and is going to….

Many opponents of the program feel that Oklahoma officials want couples to stay in unhealthy marriages if it meant helping Oklahoma become more prosperous. Also, many social workers of Oklahoma had problems with their own marriages so how was the staff supposed to educate couples on the benefit of marriage if the staff has had bad marriages themselves.

Good question, but my theory premise is, it’s not about strengthening marriages, it’s about reforming welfare and systems change.

Also, many opponents criticized officials for using TANF (Temporary Assistance for needy families) financial resources but officials insisted that they were using those resources.

PREP, INC. “SUCCESSFUL RELATIONSHIPS, SUCCESSFUL LIVES.

  • An amazing scope of shopping cart options didn’t happen overnight…
  • The first link up there, after “HOME,” is (top, left, position “A1”) to “my cart.”
  • On the top RIGHT are six coin-shaped (white, ridged, large) circles linking to more products. “Teaching Materials” is a drop-down list, “NEW” is an on-line only offering, and of course “SHOP” would be checkout.
  • HOME MY CART
  • Then, there’s the book by: oddly, “Stanley, Markman & Blumberg” (all are Principal Investigators in HHS grants).
  • There are 12 books offered (with volume discounts for each), most of them by one or more of the above three, including one in SPanish. Maggie Gallagher (marriage columnist who took money from Bush Administration to help further the movement, which was later outed) is also in there….

So — what’s this all about, then?

PREP was developed by — strange to say — the University of Denver Center for the Study of the Family (or similar title…) PSYCHOLOGY professors who own or at least incorporated the FOR-profit business in Colorado called “PREP, Inc.” — which must be doing just great if royalties are paid, by now. Stanley and Markman. I looked up grants to MARKMAN. Notice for some reason the bottom three lacked a “DUNS#” and the same grant award was labeled differently: at first “MH35525, then “MH035525.” Perhaps eventually they realized there was no end to Mental Health grants projects, and another decimal place would be needed to count them — who knows?

But, the “Budget Year of Support” for many awards in this field is often 1 through 10 max. Look at the numbers in this one, below!

Fiscal Year Grantee Name Award Number Award Title Budget Year CFDA Number CFDA Program Name Principal Investigator DUNS Number Sum of Actions
2009 UNIVERSITY OF DENVER R01HD053314 LONG TERM EFFECTS OF PREMARTIAL INTERVENTION 22 93864 Population Research HOWARD J MARKMAN 007431760 $ 560,615
2008 UNIVERSITY OF DENVER R01HD053314 LONG TERM EFFECTS OF PREMARTIAL INTERVENTION 21 93864 Population Research HOWARD J MARKMAN 007431760 $ 544,075
2007 UNIVERSITY OF DENVER R01HD053314 LONG TERM EFFECTS OF PREMARTIAL INTERVENTION 20 93864 Population Research HOWARD J MARKMAN 007431760 $ 552,318
2004 UNIVERSITY OF DENVER R01MH035525 LONG TERM EFFECT OF PREMARITAL INTERVENTION 19 93242 Mental Health Research Grants HOWARD J MARKMAN 007431760 $ 379,888
2003 UNIVERSITY OF DENVER R01MH035525 LONG TERM EFFECT OF PREMARITAL INTERVENTION 18 93242 Mental Health Research Grants HOWARD J MARKMAN 007431760 $ 369,955
2002 UNIVERSITY OF DENVER R01MH035525 LONG TERM EFFECT OF PREMARITAL INTERVENTION 17 93242 Mental Health Research Grants HOWARD J MARKMAN 007431760 $ 360,326
2001 UNIVERSITY OF DENVER R01MH035525 LONG TERM EFFECT OF PREMARITAL INTERVENTION 16 93242 Mental Health Research Grants HOWARD J MARKMAN 007431760 $ 350,996
2000 UNIVERSITY OF DENVER R01MH035525 LONG TERM EFFECT OF PREMARITAL INTERVENTION 15 93242 Mental Health Research Grants HOWARD J MARKMAN 007431760 $ 337,488
1998 UNIVERSITY OF DENVER R01MH035525 LONG TERM EFFECT OF PREMARITAL INTERVENTION 14 93242 Mental Health Research Grants HOWARD J MARKMAN 007431760 $ 332,075
1997 UNIVERSITY OF DENVER R01MH35525 LONG TERM EFFECTS OF PREMARITAL INTERVENTION 13 93242 Mental Health Research Grants MARKMAN, HOWARD J $ 320,680
1996 UNIVERSITY OF DENVER R01MH35525 LONG TERM EFFECTS OF PREMARITAL INTERVENTION 12 93242 Mental Health Research Grants MARKMAN, HOWARD J $ 290,081
1995 UNIVERSITY OF DENVER R01MH35525 LONG TERM EFFECTS OF PREMARITAL INTERVENTION 11 93242 Mental Health Research Grants MARKMAN, HOWARD J $ 287,696

The detailed abstracts (Many HHS grants have no abstracts at all….)

Please notice Project Start/End here is from 1985, not 1995 (TAGGS grants database only goes back to 1995). In other words, a child conceived in 1985 at the beginning of a study would be by 2006, be 21!

This is literally a full generation of funding, and even predates 1996 welfare reform and some major governmental shifts since then. It ALMOST pre-dates the expansion the internet, although for sure universities and governments (incl. military) tend to be ahead of the curve on such technologies…

itle LONG TERM EFFECT OF PREMARITAL INTERVENTION
Project Start/End 01-FEB-1985 / 30-APR-2006
Abstract DESCRIPTION (Adapted from the Applicant’s Abstract): Funding is sought to continue a large-scale community based prevention trial of a program designed to lower risk factors (e.g., teaching skills for handling conflict) and raise protective factors (e.g., increasing levels of commitment) known to contribute to marital success and mental health outcomes for premarital couples. In the most recent funding period our major aim was to evaluate the extent to which we could train clergy to deliver the PREP program in religious settings-settings in which most couples marry receive services. To the extent we can disseminate an effective program for divorce and distress prevention in the community, we can have a major impact on the high rates of destructive marital conflict and divorce, and associated mental health problems. To date, we have recruited 109 ROs, {==what??}} and randomly assigned the ROs to one of three groups:1) PREP delivered by trained clergy (RO PREP);2) PREP delivered by our University of Denver team (DU PREP);3) Naturally occurring premarital programming (NO).By using a randomly selected alternative intervention group (NO vs. a waiting list control group, for example), this design enables us to avoid the selection effects that have plagued other prevention trials in this area. Results indicate that the NO group deteriorates over time (from Pre to Post testing) on communication quality as rated by objective coders, and increases in levels of self-reported depression, while the two PREP groups improve.Longer term follow-up of the effects of the intervention programs will further assess marital outcomes, and rates and severity of depression and anxiety disorders among the groups.

We propose 5 years of funding which will allow us to study couples through the highest risk period for divorce since the goals of prevention are by definition long-term and the highest risk period for rapid erosion of marital satisfaction and divorce is within the first 6-10 years of marriage (Glenn, 1998). Other aims include (2) assessing the ongoing use of the intervention by the ROs, (3) assessing the extent to which booster sessions can enhance the effectiveness of the intervention over time, (4) using the randomized trial we have established to test our theory of the development of marital distress, success, and mental health consequences

(5) examining how marital distress, depression, aggression, and consequent mental disorders and impairment may evolve over time and (6) determining the extent to which a new version of PREP meets the needs of minority couples.

PI Name/Title MARKMAN, HOWARD J. PROFESSOR
Institution UNIVERSITY OF DENVER Office of Sponsored Programs DENVER, CO 80208
Department PSYCHOLOGY
Award R01HD053314
Award Title: LONG TERM EFFECTS OF PREMARTIAL INTERVENTION [[I believe they meant “preMARital…”}}
OPDIV: NATIONAL INSTITUTES OF HEALTH (NIH)
Organization: NATIONAL INSTITUTE OF CHILD HEALTH AND HUMAN DEVELOPMENT (NICHD)
Award Class: DISCRETIONARY

Award Abstract

Title Long Term Effects of Premartial Intervention R01HD053314
Project Start/End 01-FEB-1985 / 29-FEB-2012
Abstract DESCRIPTION (provided by applicant): The overarching aim of this proposal is to continue a large-scale community based prevention trial of a marriage education program (PREP, Prevention and Relationship Enhancement Program) delivered in Religious Organizations (ROs) to premarital couples.This program is designed to lower risk factors and raise protective factors for marital distress and associated mental health problems.Given the strong links between marital distress and mental disorders, efforts to prevent mental disorder due to marital conflict has substantial advantages over later and more costly treatment.Targeting ROs {{RELIGIOUS ORGANIZATIONS}} as a delivery system is important as ROs already serve as a less stigmatizing resource for prevention and counseling for many people who will not seek services from a mental health professional. * * *This work assesses the value of preventing (vs. treating) mental disorders through maximizing functioning during a critical adulthood transition (i.e., entering marriage). This work proposes to follow an existing sample of 217 couples into a high risk period for distress and divorce (years 5-10 of marriage) in order to assess the long-term/durable preventative effects of premarital intervention on marital distress and symptoms of mental disorders. We will also test and refine our theoretical model of how targeted risk (e.g., negative interactions) and protective factors (e.g., confidence in handling conflicts)are linked over time to marital distress and mental disorder.Benefits include enhancing existing “natural” interventions in the community (premarital counseling) and of reaching a population who might not seek services through the traditional mental health system (e.g., men, minority group members).
PI Name/Title HOWARD J Markm
Institution UNIVERSITY OF DENVER Office of Sponsored Programs DENVER, CO 80208
Department

Expressive Interlude, here..

Brilliant programming to “reach out” to RO’s (Denver & Colorado are full of megachurches, right?). In fact I found a database (megachurches by state); they list 32 for Colorado (click!)

Hartford Institute Logo

Many RO’s already see themselves as channels for God, so why not inject a few additives into the pipeline, an ancient and honorable practice indeed (I mean, the addition of diluting additives while teaching the scriptures, thereby reducing the actual content of scripture reaching the target population, etc. etc…..).. just kidding.

As someone who was subject to marital physical battering (abuse over a long-term) and has never, really, gotten over how the system handled this as a mutual responsibility, or character relationship problem on the women’s side (FYI, women also do this) I know very well that religious groups ARE less stigmatizing — then they ought to be in such situations. And it just struck home to me, reading these abstracts, that none of them mentions as a source of marital conflict or distress producing mental health “affects” the existence of spousal abuse; I mean, injury-causing, terrorizing assault, battery, property destruction, animal abuse, hostage-taking at times, isolation and all kinds of activities which towards a stranger would be immediately identified as CRIMINAL in nature, and are prosecutable.

And, having known about this particular research dynamic duo, (now, actually at least a trio as to publishing) and the Oklahoma connection (among other many connections), I really am curious is there a Mrs. Howard J. Markman, or a Mrs. Scott Stanley. . . . and if so, was that the first, second, or third one? Because these are middle aged males, as is most of Congress (those that aren’t older ones!)

While they were over here in Denver reaching out to RO’s I too reached out a local RO and said “HELP!” However, they do not teach mandatory reporting (or comply with it) in such organizations, and this actually resulted in joint marriage counseling (before I knew my legal rights) — and that joint counseling was exposing the abuse – and this exposure ALMOST got us killed. We had to flee the home.

This among many reasons is why I will no longer support church organizations. I got tired of the coverup of wife abuse, let alone child abuse, let alone the many, many difficulties caused since 2001 by the church/state amalgam being even tighter….

End of (at least that) Expressive Interlude..

R01HD053314

Total of all award actions:

$ 2,573,398

This is what we get from Operation Paperclip and related wishes by some to practice manipulation upon others, at their own expense, and with the goal of behavioral modification to reduce aggression. Unmarried, aggressive, minority males, in particular, can be a hazard to the established majority.

I wonder if anyone factored in the sense of alienation and distress to the turn of the millennium, the election of GWBush, the events on and after 9/11, and the presence of an encroaching theocracy upon some of the population. Can these studies really screen out external causation on mental distress among couples? And what constitutes a couple — how much must be known about volunteers– like residency, meals together, how often they have sex together, if children previous children, who’s the babydaddy and who babysits during classes or work, etc. . . . (and why would a psychology professor from Denver need to know this?

Here’s Markman’s Buddy (well, one of them) and HIS studies on marriage formation: there are 14:

Fiscal Year Grantee Name Award Number Award Title Budgt Yr CFDA# CFDA Program Name Principal Investigator DUNS Number Sum of Actions
2012 UNIVERSITY OF DENVER R01HD048780 MARRIAGE EDUCATION AND RISK REDUCTION FOR ARMY FAMILIES 7 93865 Child Health and Human Development Extramural Research SCOTT M STANLEY 007431760 $ 566,055
2011 UNIVERSITY OF DENVER R01HD048780 MARRIAGE EDUCATION AND RISK REDUCTION FOR ARMY FAMILIES 5 93865 Child Health and Human Development Extramural Research SCOTT M STANLEY 007431760 $ 0
2011 UNIVERSITY OF DENVER R01HD048780 MARRIAGE EDUCATION AND RISK REDUCTION FOR ARMY FAMILIES 6 93865 Child Health and Human Development Extramural Research SCOTT M STANLEY 007431760 $ 588,726
2010 UNIVERSITY OF DENVER R01HD047564 THE ROLE OF COHABITATION IN MARRIAGE AND UNION FORMATION 5 93865 Child Health and Human Development Extramural Research SCOTT M STANLEY 007431760 $ 510,360
2010 UNIVERSITY OF DENVER R01HD048780 MARRIAGE EDUCATION AND RISK REDUCTION FOR ARMY FAMILIES 5 93865 Child Health and Human Development Extramural Research SCOTT M STANLEY 007431760 $ 565,440
2009 UNIVERSITY OF DENVER R01HD047564 THE ROLE OF COHABITATION IN MARRIAGE AND UNION FORMATION 3 93865 Child Health and Human Development Extramural Research SCOTT M STANLEY 007431760 $ 0
2009 UNIVERSITY OF DENVER R01HD047564 THE ROLE OF COHABITATION IN MARRIAGE AND UNION FORMATION 4 93865 Child Health and Human Development Extramural Research SCOTT M STANLEY 007431760 $ 520,746
2009 UNIVERSITY OF DENVER R01HD048780 MARRIAGE EDUCATION AND RISK REDUCTION FOR ARMY FAMILIES 4 93865 Child Health and Human Development Extramural Research SCOTT M STANLEY 007431760 $ 570,374
2008 UNIVERSITY OF DENVER R01HD047564 THE ROLE OF COHABITATION IN MARRIAGE AND UNION FORMATION 3 93865 Child Health and Human Development Extramural Research SCOTT M STANLEY 007431760 $ 521,486
2008 UNIVERSITY OF DENVER R01HD048780 MARRIAGE EDUCATION AND RISK REDUCTION FOR ARMY FAMILIES 3 93865 Child Health and Human Development Extramural Research SCOTT M STANLEY 007431760 $ 556,682
2007 UNIVERSITY OF DENVER R01HD047564 THE ROLE OF COHABITATION IN MARRIAGE AND UNION FORMATION 2 93865 Child Health and Human Development Extramural Research SCOTT M STANLEY 007431760 $ 450,863
2007 UNIVERSITY OF DENVER R01HD048780 MARRIAGE EDUCATION AND RISK REDUCTION FOR ARMY FAMILIES 2 93865 Child Health and Human Development Extramural Research SCOTT M STANLEY 007431760 $ 576,518
2006 UNIVERSITY OF DENVER R01HD047564 THE ROLE OF COHABITATION IN MARRIAGE AND UNION FORMATION 1 93865 Child Health and Human Development Extramural Research SCOTT M STANLEY 007431760 $ 459,656
2006 UNIVERSITY OF DENVER R01HD048780 MARRIAGE EDUCATION AND RISK REDUCTION FOR ARMY FAMILIES 1 93865 Child Health and Human Development Extramural Research SCOTT M STANLEY 007431760 $ 565,865

Totaling by grant# (click on grants to see individually): Here are the “Abstracts):

Title Marriage Education and Risk Reduction for Army Families = R01HD048780
Project Start/End 01-MAY-2006 / 28-FEB-2011
Abstract DESCRIPTION (provided by applicant): Consistent with NICHD’s mission to support research on relationship dynamics, divorce, and interventions to promote strong and healthy families, we seek a continuation of a community level, controlled, longitudinal and randomized dissemination trial of the effectiveness of an empirically-based relationship education program for Army couples delivered by Army chaplains. The intervention is an adaptation of the Prevention and Relationship Enhancement Program (PREP) for Army couples, designed to target risk and protective factors for marital distress which are associated with problems in individual and family functioning. Our current funding period allows us to assess the effects of the intervention for up to 3.5 years post intervention in a sample of 662 couples (343 PREP, 319 control). We seek a continuation of this project in order to test impacts and marital processes over a longer time frame (up to 8.5 years post intervention). The longer time frame is important for the prospective evaluation of intervention effects for relationship quality and individual adjustment over time, and gain greater power to detect intervention effects for outcomes that accrue over time, such as divorce and infidelity.Our specific aims for the renewal are:1. To assess the long-term effects of an empirically-based relationship education program on relationship quality, relationship stability, and individual mental health.2. Assess the long-term effects of relationship education on outcomes of specific relevance to the military context, including PTSD symptoms and infidelity.3. To build knowledge to inform and revise future prevention efforts. (which will never stop, trust me!)We plan to achieve these aims using survey assessments with our existing sample over an additional five year period, building on a strong initial phase which addresses many key limitations in the literature on relationship education. The sample is large, relatively diverse, and comprised of married couples (many with children) rather than premarital couples (the focus of most prior research). The proposed study will be the strongest of its kind.

Our measurement evaluates a wide range of important, understudied, relationship constructs. The stressors experienced by this sample related to factors such as deployment should provide more variance on key outcomes than typically seen in relationship education studies. The proposed renewal is significant in the ways that it can advance scientific knowledge on the long-term effects of relationship education and processes of marriage and divorce over time, with the potential to inform interventions for preventing or treating relationship distress.

PUBLIC HEALTH RELEVANCE: Marital functioning is important for the physical, mental, and economic health of families. Therefore, this project has direct public health implications and import.

PI Name/Title SCOTT M STANLEY
Institution UNIVERSITY OF DENVER Office of Sponsored Programs DENVER, CO 80208
Department
Notice this one also was started in 2006:
Title The Role of Cohabitation in Marriage and Union Formation
Award Number: R01HD047564
Award Title: THE ROLE OF COHABITATION IN MARRIAGE AND UNION FORMATION
OPDIV: NATIONAL INSTITUTES OF HEALTH (NIH)
Organization: NATIONAL INSTITUTE OF CHILD HEALTH AND HUMAN DEVELOPMENT (NICHD)
Award Class: DISCRETIONARY

Award Abstract

Title The Role of Cohabitation in Marriage and Union Formation
Project Start/End 30-SEP-2006 / 31-AUG-2011
Abstract DESCRIPTION (provided by applicant): The increase in cohabitation is one of the most significant shifts in family demographics of the past century (Casper & Bianchi, 2001; Manning & Smock, 2002; Smock, 2000).The significance of this increase is that, contrary to the expectations of many, cohabitation is associated with increased risk for marital distress and divorce (e.g., Kamp Dush, Cohan, & Amato, 2003; Stanley, Whitton, & Markman, 2004)-the so called “cohabitation effect.” Current speculation for the cohabitation effect suggests theories related to selection (i.e., people who choose to cohabit have pre-existing sociodemographic risks for poor outcomes) and experience (i.e., something about cohabitation itself makes poor outcomes more likely).To date, methodological limitations of previous studies (e.g., lack of theory, retrospective accounts, weak measurement, small samples, infrequent follow-ups, and data from only one partner) have precluded an understanding of just what the experience of cohabitation is and how it is linked to higher risk factors for divorce. {{SINCE WHEN HAVE THOSE FACTORS EVER STOPPED THE FLOW OF GRANTS AND PUBLICATION OF THEIR RESULTS, TO JUSTIFY BIGGER, BETTER, LONGER AND WIDER PROJECTS OF THE SAME SORT??}}Without understanding mechanisms of risk, the most effective modes of lowering such risks cannot be developed.{{AND OF COURSE IT’S VITAL TO NATIONAL SECURITY TO KNOW HOW TO REDUCE MARITAL DISTRESS & DIVORCE …}}

This project is designed to advance understandings of cohabitation effect by examining couple development using the overarching framework of commitment theory (e.g., Stanley & Markman, 1992). {{Stanley quoting stanley, that’s cute!}}

The proposed project will be the first comprehensive longitudinal study focused on cohabitation and it will begin at an earlier stage of couple development than any other study on cohabitation.

{{THEY MAKE IT SOUND LIKE POTTED PLANTS: STAGES OF “COUPLE DEVELOPMENT.”…IN FACT, IT’S MORE LIKE TO Ph.D. Development– continue to PUBLISH OR PERISH in Newer, expanded, different variations on an earlier theme}}

Specifically, the proposed study aims to

(a) Examine the roles of selection and experience in explaining the cohabitation effect by comprehensively measuring both in a longitudinal, nationally representative sample of dating and cohabiting individuals (N = 1200),

(b) Test hypotheses framed in commitment theory that can explain why the experience of cohabitation is associated with poor relationship outcomes for some couples, (c) Use data from a sub-sample that includes both partners in couples to examine how discrepancies in commitment relate to the cohabitation effect, **

(d) Expand the foundation of knowledge upon which interventions designed to lower risks and raise protective factors for dating and cohabiting couples can be built. Random digit dialing techniques will be used to identify the sample and participants will complete questionnaires by mail every four months.

PI Name/Title SCOTT M STANLEY
Institution UNIVERSITY OF DENVER Office of Sponsored Programs DENVER, CO 80208
Department
R01HD047564 Total of all award actions: $ 2,463,111
In case you thought this was limited to just two or so professors, you’re wrong. here’s some more, and the “Abtract” for THIS $2 million+ grant (also started in 2006) reads, verbatim:
The evaluation will aim to assess whether efficacy of the responsible fatherhood and marriage education treatment depends on whether couples or individuals attend services.
The “treatment?” Do we mean PREP? And I thought I was obsessed reading about these grants –what’s with the obsession with “what works”?? Go ask the bereaved relatives in Aurora, Colorado how much longer we get to test-market “what works” on the public, at public expense, just because apparently the USA government wants to know? Or wants to pay people to explore this….
Here’s another one, although in a slightly different sector, same general idea: Does it work if they’re RELIGIOUS?
scal Year Grantee Name Award Number Award Title Budget Year CFDA Number CFDA Program Name Award Action Type Principal Investigator DUNS Number Sum of Actions
2010 UNIVERSITY OF DENVER (COLORADO SEMINARY) 90OJ2021 USING MARRIAGE EDUCATION TO FOSTER INVESTMENT IN FATHERHOOD: A LONG-TERM COMPARISON OF INDIVIDUAL VS. COUPLES LEVEL INTE 4 93595 Welfare Reform Research, Evaluations and National Studies EXTENSION WITH OR WITHOUT FUNDS JULIE CUNNINGHAM 007431760 $ 0
2010 UNIVERSITY OF DENVER (COLORADO SEMINARY) 90OJ2021 USING MARRIAGE EDUCATION TO FOSTER INVESTMENT IN FATHERHOOD: A LONG-TERM COMPARISON OF INDIVIDUAL VS. COUPLES LEVEL INTE 5 93595 Welfare Reform Research, Evaluations and National Studies ADMINISTRATIVE SUPPLEMENT ( + OR – ) (DISCRETIONARY OR BLOCK AWARDS) JULIE CUNNINGHAM 007431760 $ 434,479
2009 UNIVERSITY OF DENVER (COLORADO SEMINARY) 90OJ2021 USING MARRIAGE EDUCATION TO FOSTER INVESTMENT IN FATHERHOOD: A LONG-TERM COMPARISON OF INDIVIDUAL VS. COUPLES LEVEL INTE 3 93595 Welfare Reform Research, Evaluations and National Studies EXTENSION WITH OR WITHOUT FUNDS JULIE CUNNINGHAM 007431760 $ 0
2009 UNIVERSITY OF DENVER (COLORADO SEMINARY) 90OJ2021 USING MARRIAGE EDUCATION TO FOSTER INVESTMENT IN FATHERHOOD: A LONG-TERM COMPARISON OF INDIVIDUAL VS. COUPLES LEVEL INTE 4 93595 Welfare Reform Research, Evaluations and National Studies NON-COMPETING CONTINUATION JULIE CUNNINGHAM 007431760 $ 430,116
2008 UNIVERSITY OF DENVER (COLORADO SEMINARY) 90OJ2021 USING MARRIAGE EDUCATION TO FOSTER INVESTMENT IN FATHERHOOD: A LONG-TERM COMPARISON OF INDIVIDUAL VS. COUPLES LEVEL INTE 2 93595 Welfare Reform Research, Evaluations and National Studies EXTENSION WITH OR WITHOUT FUNDS CRYSTAL STREIT 007431760 $ 0
2008 UNIVERSITY OF DENVER (COLORADO SEMINARY) 90OJ2021 USING MARRIAGE EDUCATION TO FOSTER INVESTMENT IN FATHERHOOD: A LONG-TERM COMPARISON OF INDIVIDUAL VS. COUPLES LEVEL INTE 3 93595 Welfare Reform Research, Evaluations and National Studies NON-COMPETING CONTINUATION CRYSTAL STREIT 007431760 $ 413,723
2007 UNIVERSITY OF DENVER (COLORADO SEMINARY) 90OJ2021 USING MARRIAGE EDUCATION TO FOSTER INVESTMENT IN FATHERHOOD: A LONG-TERM COMPARISON OF INDIVIDUAL VS. COUPLES LEVEL INTE 2 93595 Welfare Reform Research, Evaluations and National Studies NON-COMPETING CONTINUATION CRYSTAL STREIT 007431760 $ 387,724
2006 UNIVERSITY OF DENVER (COLORADO SEMINARY) 90OJ2021 USING MARRIAGE EDUCATION TO FOSTER INVESTMENT IN FATHERHOOD: A LONG-TERM COMPARISON OF INDIVIDUAL VS. COUPLES LEVEL INTE 1 93595 Welfare Reform Research, Evaluations and National Studies NEW CRYSTAL STREIT 007431760 $ 366,719
Results 1 to 8 of 8 matches.
Total of all award actions: $ 2,032,761
FYI the word “seminary” there doesn’t connotate anything religious — apparently the legal (property holder) name of UDenver is still called “seminary” although the degree-granting institution (which is private) the University. They have an office which helps drums up grants for external research; Ms. Cunningham, above, manages its programs.
ANYHOW — here’s the “research advisory” list for the Oklahoma Marriage Initiative. Notice that an earlier, younger research colleague (Galena Rhoades) was then involved; now apparently it’s Ms. Blumberg? whose work they are publishing alongside — i.e., Stanley, Markman, Blumberg:

Leading marriage experts, state government officials, and highly respected researchers from across the nation comprise the Oklahoma Marriage Initiative Research Advisory Group. The purpose of this group is to provide professional expertise to guide research efforts and to apply findings to the development of future programs and services. The annual meeting brings together some of the most exceptional thinkers in the fields of marriage education, family structure and dynamics, low-income families, and public policy. Members are professionally and personally enriched by their time together through discussions about innovative ideas and projects, policy, and research. The group was created in 2001 and has consisted of the same core members throughout the years.

OMI Research Advisory Group Members:

Paul Amato, PhD – Pennsylvania State University
Bill Coffin, MA – National Association for Relationship and Marriage Education **
Ronald B. Cox, Jr., PhD, CFLE – Oklahoma State University {{see below}}
Kathryn Edin, PhD – Harvard University {{Click on Link/See Below- it’s relevant!}}
David Fournier, PhD – Oklahoma State University, Emeritus
Sarah Halpern-Meekin, PhD – Bowling Green State University {{See/Click on this link and read fine print at the bottom of page; it’s relevant!}}

Ron Haskins, PhD – Brookings Institution
Alan J. Hawkins, PhD – Brigham Young University
Christine Johnson, PhD – Oklahoma State University
Pamela Jordan, PhD, RN – University of Washington

Theodora Ooms, MSW – Marriage and Family Policy Expert


OK –Amato is who he is; Coffin & NARME: NARME is simply a nonprofit of people who want to make a living as marriage educators. Bill Coffin, however, was previously Special Marriage Assistant working IN HHS (the guys who dole out the grants, right?). The membership of NARME tend to be their own nonprofit organizations that are on the grants stream. I’ve blogged them. “NIRME, NARME, etc.” hard to keep the acronyms straight…So the organizational means to get at this money and become “leaders and experts” if one doesn’t already have some marriage/counseling degree, is to attend the Smartmarriages conference, get certified by one of the federally-supported nonprofits (sometimes the feds also help set this up, by CCF funding) — which helps with the titles (like CFLE) — a status that can be purchased with money and sitting through some trainings, buying materials, etc. Ron Haskins of Brookings is whohe is, and used to also work in HHS, I believe. He is responsible (per NAFCJ.net) for the last-minute addition of access/visitation grants funding to welfare reform (in 1996). Theodora Ooms (and probably more than one other) is AFCC. Markman, Rhoades and Stanley are, obviously University of Denver . Ronald B. Cox, Jr. (new to me) seen in his degree and interest focus, here: Coparenting (divorced Dad?), stepfamily dynamics, high-risk and Latino families:
Cox
His schooling is psychology and from Arkansas, Louisiana,and Michigan State (Ph.D.) exclusively, it seems, on studying family systems — and has stayed in this field. Work in Venezuela and Mexico, Latinos in OK, adolescent issues, and very much interested in the fields which relate to custody & divorce. I WONDER what the personal background (i.e., his own marital experiences) as I do with our Denver professors also:

Ronald B. Cox, Jr. received his B.A. in Psychology from Harding University in Searcy, AR, his M.A. in Marriage and Family Therapy from University of Louisiana, Monroe and his Ph.D. from Michigan State University in Family and Child Ecology. He currently holds a joint appointment at Oklahoma State University as Assistant Professor in the Department of Human Development and Family Science and as the Family Science State Specialist in the Oklahoma Cooperative Extension Services. His research involves contextual factors as risk regulators in the development of high-risk behaviors and resilience in adolescents with a focus on Latino youth. His most recent projects include studies on substance abuse among adolescents in Venezuela, the development of social competence among Mexican youth, a needs and resource assessment of Latinos in Oklahoma, and school dropout among Latino youth in Oklahoma. Dr. Cox has presented workshops and conferences on adolescent development, adolescent substance use, family communication, co-parenting through divorce, divorce and remarriage, and step-family formation.

Kathryn Edin (that’s her vitae, the link) is a straight-through-Sociologist, whose career is marked by receiving all kinds of grants and publishing alongside others who also do, particularly alongside some notable fatherhood polemics, and Halpern-Meekin (see above);Ronald Mincy, Sara McLanahan, etc. The William T. Grant foundation (among those listed) supports the court-centric nonprofit AFCC (as I recall, anyhow).
Here’s a list of some of the grants that enabled this expert’s career and publications — in fact, perhaps a life-long career studying and writing up how the poor manage being poor. I find that a little ironic, since the OMI itself simply takes money that would other wise go direct to needy families and diverts it to studying and testing marriage-promotion instead:
  • MacArthur
  • Elfenworks (??)
  • WTGrant
  • Spencer
  • Ford
  • Russell Sage
  • MacArthur, MacArthur,
  • NSF – National Science Foundation, “Couple Dynamics and Father Involvement. (Principal Investigator). (2002-2003)
  • WTGrant, Sage (“The Father’s Project: Charleston Site. Grant for study of low- wage employment, child support enforcement, and family involvement among low- income, non-custodial fathers in Charleston, SC. (Co-Principal Investigator with Timothy Nelson and Laura Lein)”
  • Manpower Demonstration Research Corporation (“now ‘MDRC’; various funders). The Next Generation Project. Additional two-year grant for analysis of Urban Change ethnographic data for a series of papers on child and family well-being. (Co-Principal Investigator with a group of other researchers from various institution
  • 1996-1998 Department of Health and Human Services, Assistant Secretary for Planning and Evaluation. Low Income Non-Custodial Fathers. Grant for one-year in-depth ethnographic study of the economic survival strategies of 90 African-American, white, and Latino low-income, non-resident fathers in Camden, NJ and San Antonio, TX. (Co- Principal Investigator with Laura Lein)
What this last shows me is that right at the time of welfare reform, Dr. Kathryn Edin, of Harvard-Kennedy School of Gov’t, was actually a highly-placed HHS official –and interested at the time in noncustodial fathers. Go to page 8 (out of 9) on her vita, and see how in 2009, she is STILL writing about low-income men, fathers, Fragile and Fragile Fatherhood — as she is paid to do, obviously. These writings are with an overlapping set of personnel and presented in: Institutes, Distinguished Lecture series, at Universities (here, and abroad) @ Cornell, Harvard, U of Chicago (prominent in her writings), UWisconsin-Madison, U of Pennsylvania, and of course Brookings…. There’s also links to dates she testified in front of the House Ways and Means Committee on “Hearings on Welfare Reform and Marriage Initiatives. May.” (2004, 2000).
Personal Sentiments on Reading This:
One reason this gets to me is that I, also, have degrees (plural), but once in the system have known more poverty than I ever did living in urban areas and as a young single woman. I know firsthand how time is soaked and resources drained — but looking at the policies, can also see how they set this up years earlier. While these people are continuing to perish, test, and refine “PREP” (and similar ideologies) through the previously prepared distribution networks — some of us are, literally, perishing. I know some of these people, others have dropped off the map; and many, many of them are women.
I would like to know how a single analysis of the cause of poverty and child abuse boiled down to divorce and “out-of-wedlock” births, while NONE of it relates to the squeegee-ing off of federal funds to inane programs — or to gaps in pay (i.e., women are paid less overall, and I’m sure in Oklahoma in particular), or to schooling systems that soak up children’s and single-parents’ times. There ARE other ways to make ends meet; so what’s wrong with enabling and exploring those?
Basically this is blaming the poor for their poverty and forcing them to line up (having already taken their money — privately — then publically said, come take a “free” voluntary class) and become subject matter for others’ PhDs, grants, and lecture circuits! How is that not feudalism?
I knew it married, too money came into the household, but there was a “distribution” issue all too often). The best years I had, income-wise, were (1) when there was actually a restraining order on, and I had a year’s fresh start (which was about ten years ago) and (2) a recent year — for which I am now paying steeply — when I actually could afford, no thanks to my gov’t — thanks to the forethought of another generation of parents, i.e., MINE — to hire an attorney to keep a safety zone between me and my family of origin, who were on my case ever since I threw a batterer out, to get my kids away from me, which they then succeeded in doing. As we speak, both have been alienated and one has been “dumped” — i.e., for the first time in three generations, one of our family line didn’t even make it IN to college and last I heard is working a minimum wage job cleaning up others’ sh*t, literally. Which is more work than I’ve had recently, and this appears to be DIRECTLY related to the family law system and the reign of psychologists and sociologists in the courts. I feel we are heading up on VERY dark times (and have been in them for quite a while). Just for the record, it took certain universities centers of excellence to get us there. . . .
Kennedy School Logo
Here’s a 2008 interview (very “staged“) with Edin, where she acknowledges that parents move on and form new relationships among the poor, both mothers and fathers, and that some fathers are ex-cons, substance abusers and in essence, trouble. She then launches right into “obstacles to their involvement.”
1 1 Testimony of Ron Haskins Co-Director of the Center on
College Park, MD: University of Maryland, Welfare Reform Academy, February
3 (2000): 575-591. 48 Reference Edin study of transitions in Fragile
2 HEARING
After the year 2000, CBO data suggests they may edge down a bit. first of all,
when we are looking at the War on Pcverty and welfare reform it is
3 BENEFITS OF A HEALTHY MARRIAGE HEARING
[The prepared statement of Dr. Edin appears in VerDate 11-MAY-2000 10:36
Sep 14, 2004 Clay Shaw wrote the Welfare Reform bill, with help from
4 BENEFITS OF A HEALTHY MARRIAGE HEARING
[The prepared statement of Dr. Edin appears in VerDate 11-MAY-2000 10:36
Sep 14, 2004 Clay Shaw wrote the Welfare Reform bill, with help from
5 REPORT ON THE ACTIVITIES COMMITTEE ON FINANCE
to review the provisions of the 1996 welfare re- form former White House policy
lead on wel- fare reform. VerDate 11-MAY-2000 10:21 Apr 01, 2005
Testimony of
MA: Harvard University Press.; Waite, L., & Gallagher, M. (2000). Fragile Families,
Welfare Reform, and Marriage. 01-06-FF.; England, P., Edin, K., &
End of THAT “Personal Expression of Sentiment.”
IN FACT, LISTEN TO THIS — HERE’S MARKMAN TESTIFYING, and even manages to get in a plug for PREP, while attempting to show how the marriage education classes actually might help a poor abused TANF recipient realize she’s being abused and decide to leave a relationship! My comments in green font and brackets, where they occur.

Testimony of Scott M. Stanley, Ph.D.

Co-Director, Center for Marital and Family Studies University of Denver

Testimony before the Committee on Finance, Subcommittee on Social Security and Family Policy United States Senate Hearing on The Benefits of a Healthy Marriage

Dirksen Senate Office Building, Room 215 Wednesday May 5th, 2004

Mr. Chairman and Members of the Subcommittee:

I appreciate this opportunity to share with you a glimpse of what is happening regarding marriage in the United States. I believe we stand at the door of an unprecedented opportunity for strengthening this foundational family relationship upon which so much of the future of our children and our society rests.

{{appeal to the noble “save the country, save our children, save our society” instincts.}}

My name is Scott Stanley. I am the co-director of the Center for Marital and Family Studies at the University of Denver, where my colleague Dr. Howard Markman and I have worked for over two decades from a scientific perspective to better understand what factors put couples at risk for marital distress and divorce, and what steps can be taken to help couples achieve their goals for stable, happy, and healthy marriages. This research program, begun by Howard Markman, has been supported by the National Institute of Mental Health since 1980. I am also one of two senior advisors to the Oklahoma Marriage Initiative. The ambitious and strategic efforts in Oklahoma are generating knowledge about broad-based dissemination of marriage services (among the many innovative steps they are taking), and is providing much insight to efforts around the nation.

In short, not only was the Governor’s Marriage-Day probably “stacked,” so is the OMI Advisory board. There is no voice of any feminist, any person representing — as in ACTUALLy representing — an individual on welfare, being one or having been one. Those voices are not really relevant, in this programming. . . . Nor is there anyone who might address the matters of domestic violence, although the VAWA passed in 1994, and this initiative began in 1999…
HALPERN-MEEKIN (OMI advisory group) comes from BOWLING GREEN which in 2007 hooked up (intentional use of that term) with ASPE/HHS (where Edin used to work) and set up ANOTHER Marriage Resource (website, institute, whatever) supported by — guess who, the public!
The NATIONAL CENTER FOR FAMILY AND MARRIAGE RESEARCH at Bowling Green University (i.e., in OHIO) has a nice disclaimer — because it’s a cooperative agreement, don’t blame the Federal government (HHS, specifically) if we don’t like the research. All it’s doing is paying for it, or part of it:

Disclaimer: This project is supported by the National Center for Family & Marriage Research, which is funded by a cooperative agreement (5 U01 AE000001-05) between the Assistant Secretary for Planning and Evaluation (ASPE) in the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) and Bowling Green State University.The opinions and conclusions expressed herein are solely those of the author(s) and should not be construed as representing the opinions or policy of any agency of the Federal government.

The two women currently running this were straight-out sociologists: one, from U Virginia (B.A. in women’s studies) and from there University of Pennsylvania, psychology. She graduated in 1998 with her Ph.D. (getting some grants along the way as PhD’s do — I notice an Annie E. Casey grant in there somewhere) and going STRAIGHT to work as a professor, which is a guaranteed way to get a great understanding of the real world, specifically how the majority of the population actually has to make a living, i.e., those not in academia and supported by foundations & grants. Spend your entire college career studying it and writing it up.. the other woman, who seems brainier, perhaps, comes from University of Wisconsin-Madison “with distinction,” but straight-through a sociologist; graduating in 1992, not 1998, like her co-director of this HHS project…. They seem to have some interest in alternative life-styles and same-sex cohabitation, but I won’t say anything at this point. (besides, it’s irrelevant to the point, other than — have they had a family yet? Probably not, right?)…
And here are the colleagues to Bowling Green, this particular “CENTER” — and apart from who’s funding this, we are looking at how our country is presently being run — by networks of colleagues cooperating in setting up redistribution of wealth networks surrounding how to eliminate poverty and alleviate mental health issues, specifically a lot of stress!
The National Advisory Committee of the National Center for Family & Marriage Research (NCFMR) is a diverse group of academic scholars, senior researchers, and policymakers with national reputations in the area of marriage and family. The Committee meets annually to provide feedback on the Center’s strategic plans for research, training, and dissemination activities.

Click on a highlighted name below to view that member’s biography.

Members

Ex Officio Members

  • Linda Mellgren, Senior Social Science Analyst, (ASPE/DHHS)

  • Naomi Goldstein, Director, Office of Planning, Research, and Evaluation (ACF/DHHS)

_ _ _ _ _ _ _
while managing the “National Healthy Marriage Resource Center” is an administrative accomplishment, in fact it’s another HHS grantee itself, as the fine print shows:

The National Healthy Marriage Resource Center (NHMRC) is a clearinghouse {= a complex website, really}} for high quality, balanced, and timely information and resources on healthy marriage. The NHMRC’s mission is to be a first stop for information, resources, and training on healthy marriage for experts, researchers, policymakers, media, marriage educators, couples and individuals, program providers, and others.

Initial funding for this project was provided by the United States Department of Health and Human Services, Administration for Children and Families, Grant 90-FH-0001 (9/11/2006 – 9/29/2011)
This site managed by Pivot Concepts
© 2008 – 2012 National Healthy Marriage Resource Center

Yep, I sure remember, and any “0001” of any grant series is indeed significant. here’s that one, which is not apparently the only Public Strategies, INC. grant (see above), I think… This was formerly a “small PR” firm — the HHS connection being a major client…
Grantee Name Grantee Address City State Award Number Award Title CFDA Number CFDA Program Name Principal Investigator DUNS Number Sum of Actions Award Abstract
PUBLIC STRATEGIES INC 301 NORTHWEST 63RD ST OKLAHOMA CITY OK 90FH0001 DEVELOPING HEALTHY MARRIAGE RESOURCE MATERIALS 93086 Healthy marriage Promotion and Responsible Fatherhood Grants SAMMYE CRAVENS 869106179 $ 15,000,000
And thereafter another grantee, ICF, Inc. received more funding to set up a “how-to-strategize-to-promote-healthy-marriage-even-more” assistance center, plus it says it now maintains the above one. So after the “initial funding,” I suppose it got the follow-up funding for both resource centers, such as they be. As described BY ICF on its site:

ICF maintains the National Healthy Marriage Resource Center (NHMRC), a web-based clearinghouse that serves as the “first-stop shop” for marriage and relationship education information.

NHMRC provides 170 grantee organizations and the general public with access to a wide range of resources designed to build and support healthy marriages. ICF is responsible for updating and maintaining the NHMRC website; collecting, cataloging, and disseminating information through the website; employing an online library system for cataloging and displaying information on the website in an easily searchable manner; and providing information services through a toll-free phone, email, and computer-based inquiry response system that provides centralized tracking of all customer inquiries.

ICF also provides conference outreach, program curricula, links to local programs, an online library, interactive facilitator and evaluation toolkits, tip sheets, topical collections, policy briefs, How-To guides, FAQs, and fact sheets. First launched in 2004 to support Healthy Marriage Education grantees funded by the Administration for Children and Families, the NHMRC also provides these grantees with training and technical assistance. The NHMRC is a major catalyst in advancing this nascent field.

Yep, it’s a digital world, and that our government, especially HHS, knows right well! ICF, Inc. address (on tAGGS) shows as Fairfax, VA and a consistent “DUNS#” so I omitted that field to show that it displays — for some reason — as “City Government.” Also note the name “Dr. Jeanette Hercik”
The funding announcement for this original word (pre-set to $1,500,000) stated that LARGE businesses (for-profits) actually wouldn’t be eligible. I believe it’s safe to say that ICF, Inc. is actually a very large business, and government contractor already. I also noted when the grant award was first listed (on an ACF government site) only its initials were shown, and the name of the company, ICF was written up wrong (I C F) etc. :

ICF International's Headquarters in Fairfax, VA

ICF International (NASDAQ:ICFI) partners with government and commercial clients to deliver professional services and technology solutions in the energy, environment, and infrastructure; health, social programs, and consumer/financial; and public safety and defense markets. Since 1969, ICF has been serving government at all levels, major corporations, and multilateral institutions. {{HUH??}} More than 4,500 employees serve these clients from more than 50 offices worldwide. ICF International reported gross revenue of US$841 million in 2011. Within each of our 12 markets, . . .{{one way to get large is to serve 12 markets….}}

Sudhakar Kesavan, Chairman and CEO ICF International

Its Chairman/CEO

Sudhavar Kesevan’s bioexplains ICF used to be under Kaiser (?), how it went public, and gives a scope of the extent and influence of this firm now. ”

Sudhakar Kesavan serves as the Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of ICF International. In 1997, he was named President of the ICF Consulting Group when it was a subsidiary of ICF Kaiser. Since he took on this leadership role, he has led ICF through a leveraged buyout and an initial public offering. Since going public in 2006, the company has grown at a cumulative average annual rate of 21 percent through the end of 2011.” (read the rest of the Bio!!) … Mr. Kesavan is a Board Member Emeritus of the Rainforest Alliance, a New York-based nonprofit environmental organization committed to protecting ecosystems by transforming land-use practices, business practices, and consumer behavior

((this NHMRC is supposed to change consumer behavior, for sure. I imagine it’s a pipsqueak project compared to others ICF has done….))

I am wondering how it takes $1,500,000 a year to maintain a website that’s already set up, but hey, who am I to judge? (see top two rows):
Grantee Name State Grantee Class Award Number Award Title Budget Year Action Issue Date CFDA Number CFDA Program Nameludi Principal Investigator Sum of Actions Award Abstract
I C F, INC VA City Government 90FH0002 NATIONAL RESOURCE CENTER FOR STRATEGIES TO PROMOTE HEALTHY MARRIAGE – NON COMPETING CONTINUATION APPLICATION 1 09/28/2011 93086 Healthy marriage Promotion and Responsible Fatherhood Grants Cindy Sherlock $ 1,500,000 Abstract Not Available
I C F, INC VA City Government 90FH0002 NATIONAL RESOURCE CENTER FOR STRATEGIES TO PROMOTE HEALTHY MARRIAGE – NON COMPETING CONTINUATION APPLICATION 2 09/27/2012 93086 Healthy marriage Promotion and Responsible Fatherhood Grants ROBYN CENIZAL $ 1,500,000 Abstract Not Available
I C F, INC VA City Government 90LH0001 NATIONAL CHILD CARE TOLL-FREE HOTLINE 1 09/21/2007 93596 Child Care Mandatory and Matching Funds of the Child Care and Development Fund MELISSA ZWAHR $ 882,080
I C F, INC VA City Government 90LH0001 NATIONAL CHILD CARE TOLL-FREE HOTLINE 1 06/15/2009 93596 Child Care Mandatory and Matching Funds of the Child Care and Development Fund MELISSA ZWAHR $- 702,966
I C F, INC VA City Government 90PD0270 SELF-SUFFICIENCY RESEARCH CLEARINGHOUSE 1 09/18/2009 93647 Social Services Research and Demonstration DR JEANETTE HERCIK $ 500,000
I C F, INC VA City Government 90PD0270 SELF-SUFFICIENCY RESEARCH CLEARINGHOUSE 2 09/17/2010 93647 Social Services Research and Demonstration DR JEANETTE HERCIK $ 500,000
I C F, INC VA City Government 90PD0271 SELF-SUFFICIENCY RESEARCH CLEARNINGHOUSE 1 09/27/2011 93647 Social Services Research and Demonstration DR. JEANETTE M HERCIK $ 977,256
I C F, INC VA City Government 90PD0271 SELF-SUFFICIENCY RESEARCH CLEARNINGHOUSE 2 09/19/2012 93647 Social Services Research and Demonstration DR. JEANETTE M HERCIK $ 1,000,000
I C F, INC VA City Government 90RB0043 TECHNICAL ASSISTANCE TO ORR-FUNDED REFUGEE PROGRAMS AND SERVICES. 1 09/21/2012 93576 Refugee and Entrant Assistance_Discretionary Grants BENJAMIN MILLER $ 130,500 Abstract Not Available
I C F, INC VA City Government E11OH010454 WORLD TRADE CENTER HEALTH PROGRAM OUTREACH AND EDUCATION PLAN 1 09/21/2012 93262 Occupational Safety and Health Program APRIL NATURALE $ 149,925 Abstract Not Available
Results 1 to 10 of 10 matches.
re: Kamp Dush, Cohan, & Amato
I recognized the name “Amato” as “AFCC” standard (see link, in fact, “the gang’s all there” if you scroll down and are familiar with my other blog, or family (“conciliation”) court leadership over the decades). The three mentioned here are one predoctoral woman, and two others from Pennsylvania. So we have the Denver population research/sociologist/psychologist crowd quoting the Pennsylvania crowd of similar professional profiles on the same matter, and if you look it up, it’ll show up cited in Childtrends.org. which is the Annie E. Casey (foundation) crowd – all over the custody courts, foster care, and adoption fields as to influence.
Claire M. Kamp Dush, M.S., is a National Institute on Aging predoctoral fellow in human development and family studies in the College of Health and Human Development, 113 South Henderson Building, University Park, PA 16802; 814-865-3549; cmkdush@psu.edu. Catherine Cohan, Ph.D., is a research scientist at the Population Research Institute, 601 Oswald Tower, 863-2939; lc18@psu.edu. Paul R. Amato, Ph.D., is professor of sociology and demography in the College of Liberal Arts, 215 Oswald Tower, 865-8868;pxa6@psu.edu. Their analyses were based on data from the study “Marital Instability Over the Life Course” by the University of Nebraska Bureau of Sociological Research.
Paul Amato photo… will also be seen at the “OMI” website….
2003 – Dr. Paul Amato, Ph.D.Presented at AFCC, Toronto, Canada
Dr. Amato has made important contributions to our understanding of children’s adjustment to their parents’ divorce. His initial meta-analysis of 92 studies reported from 1950-80 compared children of divorced parents with children whose parents had not been divorced. This gave practitioners and researchers a sense of children’s well-being after divorce in many important spheres of behavior.
More recently, Dr. Amato has updated this research by doing an meta-analysis of 67 studies done in the 1990’s. His findings indicate that although there remains a gap between children of divorce and children who remain with their intact family, the size of that gap has decreased. He hypothesizes that some of the decreases in measurable effects on children may result from attitudinal changes, more sophisticated research methodology, increased availability of therapeutic interventions and school-based programs. Changes within the legal system, such as mandatory mediation and parent education programs, and other out-of-courtroom interventions, may also be contributing factors.
As my other blog shows, and I learned this first, again, from the website “nafcj.net” put up by Liz Richards (Anandale, VA, since 1993), the mandatory mediation was being pushed (over the objections of battered women’s advocates, initially, i.e., people who ran shelters and saw the damages) — and supported through the “Access/Visitation” funding stream, off of Welfare. This stream was attached (lastminute, I heard) to welfare reform bill and has remained stable in there since 199, about $10 million/year apportioned among the states. Among its rules for administration is that the states receiving these grants must cooperate with the head (“Secretary”) of HHS in running or evaluating “promising projects.” 45 CFR 303.109, easy to read…
Dr. Amato has also documented the salient effect of non-residential father involvement with children after divorce. ***Dr. Amato’s research and hypothesis provide evidence that AFCC’s (and OFI’s) approach to helping promote the adjustment of children after divorce is well grounded.
**a universal theme of this organization, the courts, and intricately connected to HHS & federal funding to make sure it happens — billions of dollars in OCSE (child support enforcement), and millions — that’s EVERY single year — in the above fields, nationally, to set up and keep funding systems that affect divorce & custody issues, including divorce cases where safety & lethality risk is a main element.
Peter Salem, Executive Director, AFCC, May 9
2002 – Robert Emery
2001 – JoAnne Pedro-Carroll (quoted a lot in NYState, I DNK if still there)
2000 – Janet Johnston (northern, CA)
1999 – Charlene Depner (northern CA)
1998 – Jessica Pearson and Nancy Thoennes (Organization, FYI, found in Denver)
1997 – Joan B. Kelly (northern CA)
R01HD048780 Total of all award actions: $ 3,989,660

2 thoughts on “Scope of the Issue: Unholy Trinity of Excess Welfare Funds, Religious Zealots and Social Scientists. For starters.

  1. Pingback: A Testimony for these Times … (hypothetically before an Appropriations Hearing) | Let's Get Honest! Blog

  2. Pingback: “Scope of the Issue/Unholy Trinity” (10/2012) and “FAQs on CAFRs” (@7-5-2013) | Let's Get Honest! Blog

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