Newsmakers for June 2005

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Perhaps no program in youth work draws adulation and criticism in equal measure as much as the Children’s Aid Society’s Adolescent Pregnancy Prevention and Human Sexuality Program (née the CAS-Carrera Program). Supporters tout the New York-based program, a wrap-around approach, as proof that spending on youth services is the answer when done right. Detractors (led by Wade Horn, assistant secretary for children and families at the U. S. Department of Health and Human Services) attribute the program’s stellar results to the fact that it doles out the birth control patch Depo-Provera.

Now, Atlantic Philanthropies (assets: $3.9 billion) has taken sides by giving the program a whopping $10 million, possibly moving it from a locally rooted practice to a nationally influential program.

Among other things, the grant will pay for five new replications in New York City (there are 10 sites now), each of which will probably include 60 youth. It will also more than double the number of national Carrera replications (from nine to 21), and will add three national training sites to the one in New York.

Program founder and director Dr. Michael Carrera says it was “stunning” when Charles Roussel, Atlantic’s disadvantaged youth program director, and Dr. Paula Elbirt, its youth program director, indicated how substantial the support might be.
“For a foundation to even suggest that they’d entertain a proposal of that amount,” Carrera says. “I mean, we’re like everyone else. We line up, wait for our turn, we’re happy to get a $50,000 grant.”

That said, he isn’t surprised that the time has arrived for the program to proliferate. “This model is a good idea, and good ideas get money,” he says. “Many youth programs provide at a cost per kid much less than ours. But we have data that shows when you look at the yield of the investment, it pays off.”

It doesn’t hurt when one of the principal evaluators of the program – in this case, former Philliber Associates researcher Jackie Kay – is on staff at a funder the size of Atlantic.

Carrera acknowledges that the program’s high cost (more than $4,000 per teen per year) is usually the main point of concern for potential funders. But he believes data have replaced cost as the primary consideration for many in the foundation world.
“If you want to reduce sexual tragedies among teens, it isn’t free, and it’s not cheap,” Carrera says. “We’re learning that many donors are understanding there is a price tag associated with programs that deliver results.”

Actually, Atlantic’s main concern was how long Carrera would stay at the program. He has been overseeing both programming and resource development throughout. But, after sealing the deal on a grant that will keep the program vital for years to come, he acknowledges that the added stability is his cue to slowly decentralize authority.

“There was a sincere concern on their part about my succession plan,” he says. “I’ve been working 46 years, so in their judgment, a lot of this work is tied to me.”

Carrera has no plans to move on soon, but concedes that to expand as much as the foundation indicated it was willing to support, he would need a larger executive staff, which, it is hoped, would produce a prospective successor. This year, he plans to add associate directors of national implementation, development, advocacy, policy and research, and financial management. Contact: (212) 949-4800,

Attorney Patty Puritz has run the American Bar Association’s (ABA) Juvenile Justice Committee since 1985, building a body of work that recently garnered her the 2004 Champion of Indigent Defense Award from the National Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers.

Now, Puritz has broken out on her own to run the National Juvenile Defender Center (NJDC). The operation began in 1999 at the ABA, but this year became its own entity. The center’s longtime primary funder, the Chicago-based MacArthur Foundation, has provided more than $1 million over the past few years, and foundation staffers indicate that the center will receive continued support as an independent nonprofit.

NJDC says its mission is to give “juvenile defense attorneys a more permanent capacity to address practice issues, improve advocacy skills, build partnerships, exchange information, and participate in the national debate over juvenile crime.” Contact: (202) 452-0010,

After a national search, the D.C.-based Afterschool Alliance has hired Capitol Hill veteran Jodi Grant as its new executive director. Grant most recently served as director of work and family programs for the National Partnership for Women & Families. Her career includes stints as the staff director for the Democratic Steering and Coordination Committee, chaired by Sen. John Kerry (D-Mass.), and as Democratic general counsel for the Senate Budget Committee. Contact: (202) 347-1002,

Kansas City, Mo.- based Camp Fire USA has replaced its former government relations director, the well-regarded Phillip Lovell, with Kelita Svoboda Bak. Bak filled the same role for another major youth policy institution, the D.C.-based Youth Service America, where she recently helped draft and promote the bipartisan Federal Youth Coordination Act (see “Youth Advocates Vie for Attention,” March).

Lovell was hired away by America’s Promise, based in Alexandria, Va., to head its public policy department. Contact: Camp Fire (816) 756-1950,

After 42 years in the youth services field, Donald M. Loving has retired from the Communities in Schools-Central Texas office, where he has served as CEO for the past 18 years. During his tenure, he expanded the staff from eight to 139, while its programs spread from five schools to 144. Loving is a former board chairman for the D.C.-based National Network for Youth. Contact: (512) 462-1771,

The D.C.-based American Academy of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry named Kristin Kroeger Ptakowski as its deputy executive director. She had headed the academy’s divisions of government affairs and clinical practice. Contact: (202) 966-7300,

The After School Corporation (TASC) named Charissa Fernandez, formerly head of strategic partnerships for the New York City Department of Education, to serve as its new chief operating officer. Contact: (212) 547-6951,

Jonathan Green was hired by the Milwaukee-based Alliance for Children and Families to head its Value Added Partners Program. Green previously served as program director at the Milwaukee chapter of Project Seed, which partners with school districts to provide advanced mathematics lessons to low-achieving students. Contact: (414) 359-1040,

The National Youth Employment Coalition’s board of directors elected Howard Knoll of Arbor E&T to a two-year term as chairman. Knoll served as director of youth services for the Stanley Isaacs Neighborhood Center in New York before joining the U.S. Labor Department in 2000. There, he helped open the New York regional office of youth services and oversaw implementation of the $260 million Youth Opportunities Grant program. He succeeds Steve Trippe of New Ways to Work, who has been chairman since December 2000. Contact: (202) 659-1054,

The Rockville, Md.-based National Association for Children of Alcoholics (NACoA) elected George Bloom to serve as its board chairman. Bloom, CEO of the Minneapolis-based Industrial Relations Associates, takes over for the outgoing Julie Fisher Cummings. NACoA calls itself the voice for children and adults affected by parental alcohol and drug addiction. Contact: (301) 468-0985,

The Baltimore-based International Youth Foundation (IYF) appointed a new member to its board, from Australia. Adam Smith is the founder of “Directing Potential,” a 4-year-old business enterprise program that IYF says has served more than 10,000 youth. Contact: (410) 951-2328,

After spending three years steadying the ship at the Portland, Ore.-based Friends of the Children (FOTC), President Catherine Milton will leave when her contract expires this summer.

The mentoring program, founded by Duncan Campbell in 1993, operates in nine cities. Milton helped temper the organization’s desire to expand with a pragmatic financial strategy. (See “So Many Friends, So Fast” page 1.) She previously served as executive director of the U.S. branch of Save the Children, and as senior vice president of the U.S. Corporation for National and Community Service. The board of directors is conducting a national search to replace her. Contact: (503) 281-6633,


The Denver-based Daniels Fund (assets: $1.1 billion) hired Linda Childears to be president and CEO. Childears leaves as CEO of the Young Americans Center for Financial Education, also in Denver. Childears is a former chairwoman of the National Human Services Assembly’s board of directors. She will replace former U.S. Sen. Hank Brown, who will take over the presidency at the embattled University of Colorado in August. Contact: (877) 791-4726,

The Flint, Mich.-based Charles S. Mott Foundation (assets: $2.5 billion) named Maureen Smyth, a 21-year veteran of the foundation, to be its first vice president of communications. (Mott has had a communications staff in place since the 1960s.) Smyth doubles her jurisdiction in the Mott management sphere: She has been vice president of programs since 1991.
The impetus for creating a new vice president, says Mott spokeswoman Marilyn Lefeber, was the need for consolidating the communications and program staff members under one leader as the foundation continues to integrate its program areas.
Mott also tapped nine-year program staffer Kevin Walker to be an associate vice president of programs, heading the Flint Area and Pathways Out of Poverty programs. Walker serves on the boards of the Afterschool Alliance and Grantmakers for Children, Youth and Families. Contact: (810) 238-5651,

The California Wellness Foundation (assets: $950 million) has reassigned Nicole Jones, its program director for grant-making in mental health and violence prevention. Jones will now oversee grant-making in the prevention of teenage pregnancy and violence. Contact: (818) 593-6600,

M. Christine DeVita, president and 18-year employee of the New York-based Wallace Foundation (assets: $1.3 billion), was elected chairwoman of the board of trustees for the Foundation Center, also based in New York. She has been on the board of the center, the principal online disseminator of foundation-related news and trends, since 2003. Contact: (212) 251-9700,


Former U.S. Education Deputy Undersecretary Eric Andell pleaded guilty on April 29 to using federal funds for personal expenses.

A former Texas appeals court judge and former chairman of the Texas Juvenile Probation Commission, Andell made a name for himself by allowing cameras into his courtroom for the TV show “Juvenile Justice,” which aired in 1993 and 1994. A Democrat, he was appointed to his Education Department post by another Texan, Education Secretary Rod Paige, in September 2002.
He oversaw the department’s funding from the Office of Safe and Drug-Free Schools and for character education.

But within a month after Andell took the job, according to a statement he signed, he began collecting federal reimbursements for personal travel expenses. He also worked as a visiting judge in Texas while on paid sick leave from the department.

The statement says he took 14 trips during his federal tenure, charging the government for $8,600 in expenses that should not have been reimbursed. Among the events he was essentially paid to attend: a Broadway show in New York City, a football game in Detroit, and a Peter, Paul and Mary concert in Columbus, Ohio.

Andell, whose sentencing is scheduled for July 29, has been ordered to repay the travel expenses. His sentence could include up to a year in prison or a $100,000 fine, followed by a three-year probation. During the probation, he could not hold an elected or appointed government office.

“I take full responsibility for the violation of the conflict-of-interest statute, having already reimbursed the department for the expenses,” Andell said in a prepared statement. “I regret the trouble this will cause the people I love most – my family, friends, colleagues and the community.”

At least he took the money while there was still some left. President Bush’s fiscal 2006 budget proposal calls for eliminating the $437.4 million Safe and Drug-Free Schools program. Contact: Department of Education (800) 872-5327,


Helen Jackson Wilkins Claytor, 98, the first black board president of the national Young Women’s Christian Association (YWCA). A member of the YWCA since childhood, she worked for the organization’s sites in Trenton, N.J., and Kansas City, Mo., as far back as the late 1930s, when the group’s facilities were still racially segregated. She became president of the Grand Rapids, Mich., chapter of the YWCA in 1949, and served two terms as president of the organization’s national board from 1967 to 1976.