Press release

Center for Poverty Research Hosts Former White House Advisor
February 13, 2013

DAVIS, Calif. — Dr. Ron Haskins, the former White House and congressional advisor who was instrumental in the 1996 overhaul of national welfare policy, is the Center for Poverty Research Winter Distinguished Visiting Scholar at UC Davis this February.

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Dr. Haskins will meet with key California legislative staff at a UC Davis Sacramento Center event co-sponsored by the Western Center on Law & Poverty on February 21. The following day he will give a talk at the main UC Davis campus for faculty and graduate students called, “Fighting Child Poverty: Spending So Much; Getting So Little.”

“Haskins’ contributions to national welfare reform and career-long commitment to developing thoughtful policies to address poverty demonstrate the value of supporting high quality research and delivering that research to policy-makers–both of which are central to the mission of the Center for Poverty Research” said Ann Stevens, Director of the Center for Poverty Research and Chair of Economics at UC Davis.

An expert on preschool, foster care, and poverty, Dr. Haskins testified before the U.S. House of Representatives Budget Committee this past April. In June he testified before the U.S. Senate Committee on Finance about major causes of poverty in the U.S. and strategies the federal government can adopt to reduce it.

“Poverty has shown great if unfortunate staying power, but we have learned useful lessons about how to fight it,” he said.

Dr. Haskins is the author of Work over Welfare: The Inside Story of the 1996 Welfare Reform Law (2006), and is a senior editor of The Future of Children, a journal on policy issues that affect children and families. His articles and editorials that have appeared in The Washington Post, New York Times, Wall Street Journal, and many others.

Dr. Haskins currently co-directs the Brookings Center on Children and Families and its Budgeting for National Priorities Project, and is a senior consultant at the Annie E. Casey Foundation. Prior to joining Brookings and Casey, he spent 14 years on the staff of the House Ways and Means Human Resources Subcommittee, first as welfare counsel to the Republican staff, then as the subcommittee’s staff director.

About the Center for Poverty Research

The Center for Poverty Research at the University of California, Davis is one of three federally designated centers whose mission is to facilitate and disseminate non-partisan academic research on poverty in the U.S. and to train the next generation of poverty scholars. Our research agenda focuses on labor markets and poverty, children and intergenerational transmission of poverty, the non-traditional safety net, and immigration.

The Center was founded in September, 2011 with core funding from the Office of the Assistant Secretary for Planning and Evaluation in the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services.

For more information, email us at or visit the Center online at:

For Media Inquiries Contact:
Lupe Sanchez, Center for Poverty Research Manager
(530) 752-4024