U.S. Rep. Frank to be Honored at Center for Social Policy Gala

October 16, 2012

Office of Communications


The Center for Social Policy at the University of Massachusetts Boston will celebrate its 20th anniversary on Wednesday, October 17, by honoring local and regional figures who share the center’s mission of fighting economic and social inequality in the Boston area.

Retiring U.S. Rep. Barney Frank, a lifelong champion for equality and justice in Massachusetts and across the country, will be among five honored guests at Wednesday’s event, hosted by UMass Boston Chancellor J. Keith Motley and a committee of engaged community leaders. The reception will begin at 5:30 p.m. in the Campus Center Ballroom, with dinner and awards to follow at 6:30 p.m.

“We will honor the advocacy, policy research, philanthropy, and progressive leadership of courageous visionaries who are finding solutions to ending economic disparity and serving as the soul of our body politic,” said center Director Donna Haig Friedman.

The Center for Social Policy, based at the John W. McCormack Graduate School of Policy and Global Studies, is celebrating two decades of conducting people-centered research to support the fight against poverty in Boston and beyond. Bridging the worlds of research, policy, and practice, the center has collaborated with community members, nonprofit organizations, government agencies, private foundations, and UMass Boston institutional partners to shape policies that address the root causes of economic hardship and social exclusion.

Other honorees are:

 -          Chuck Collins, a scholar, author, and recognized expert on wealth inequality and the economic crisis
 -          John Connors III, a philanthropic leader for Boston families in immediate need, and founder and president of Boathouse Communications 
 -          Julia Tripp, leader of the center’s Constituent Advisory Group and a pioneer in the application of lived experience to policy research methodology
 -          Elaine Werby, a UMass Boston scholar, activist, and humanitarian who has contributed a lifetime of public service to her field through teaching, research, and outreach.

Congressman Frank will also receive the UMass Boston Chancellor’s Medal for Exemplary Leadership. 

In conjunction with the anniversary festivities, the Center for Social Policy has set some ambitious fundraising goals to continue its important work. Funds for scholarships and internships will encourage young scholars to continue the center’s effective research approach. The money raised will also help establish the Elaine Werby Public Service Internship Fund, designed to help student research assistants who hail from the communities served by the center.

For more information, visit https://www.umb.edu/csp/events/anniversary

About the Center for Social Policy
The Center for Social Policy, founded in 1992, is a collaborative think tank providing expertise on policies and practices that aim to reduce or eliminate social and economic inequities. CSP researchers, evaluators, and policy analysts make critical assessments of low-wage jobs, barriers to housing affordability, unequal distribution of resources, and the impact of these patterns on families, communities, and society as a whole. CSP looks closely at the root causes of poverty and gives voice to those living in poverty in order to inform fundamental changes in policy design and service delivery. The center has had a significant impact at the local, state, and national levels. More recently, through its international partnerships and knowledge-sharing efforts, its expertise and influence have been put to use by organizations the world over.

About UMass Boston
With a growing reputation for innovative research addressing complex issues, the University of Massachusetts Boston, metropolitan Boston’s only public university, offers its diverse student population both an intimate learning environment and the rich experience of a great American city. UMass Boston’s nine colleges and graduate schools serve nearly 16,000 students while engaging local, national, and international constituents through academic programs, research centers, and public service activities. To learn more about UMass Boston, visit www.umb.edu.