Our Mission and Goals
The mission of the Social Work Research Center is to create university-community partnerships that bridge the gap between research and practice in social work. Specifically, SWRC conducts applied research in areas such as child maltreatment prevention, child well-being, and youth-at-risk. SWRC is uniquely qualified to study social work interventions while promoting evidence-based research, practice, and policy. SWRC provides training, evaluation, and program development services to human services providers, governmental entities, and community partners. SWRC also collaborates with social work faculty and other interdisciplinary programs across the university on research and evaluation initiatives.
- Make a difference in the lives of children, youth, and families by using evidence to promote best practices and policies in child welfare, education, health/mental health, and juvenile justice systems
- Contribute high quality research to the knowledge base through peer-reviewed publications and conference presentations
- Build research and evaluation capacity of community partners through trainings, workshops, and dissemination of findings and lessons learned
- Develop process, outcome, and cost measures to be used in evaluation, policy analysis, and program improvement activities
- Provide opportunities for graduate students to participate in all aspects of social work research
Who We Are
Marc Winokur, Director
Dr. Winokur joined the School of Social Work faculty at Colorado State University in fall 2004. He received his Ph.D. in Education and Human Resource Studies with a specialization in Research Methods and Program Evaluation from CSU. Dr. Winokur has 14 years of applied research experience in child welfare that has influenced policies, practices, and procedures at the international-, federal-, state-, and county-levels.
Dr. Winokur has conducted randomized controlled trials on differential response and home visitation programs, and systematic reviews on kinship care and juvenile sexual offender treatment outcomes. Dr. Winokur also has conducted evaluations on foster care, adoption, family preservation services, child maltreatment prevention, child welfare caseworker retention, and family treatment drug courts. Additional research interests include family engagement practices, trauma-informed interventions, child well-being measures, and risk and safety assessment in child protective services.
Lauren Alessi, Research Associate
Lauren Alessi has a Masters in Sociology with a background in criminology and criminal justice. Her research interests include alternative justice programs, prison education, and services for youth in need. Lauren has been working in program evaluation since 2014, focusing on child welfare, criminal justice, intimate partner violence, and youth transitioning into adulthood. At the Social Work Research Center, Lauren will be supporting projects related to foster and kinship care, homelessness, human trafficking, and adoption.
Courtney Everson, Research Associate
Dr. Courtney L. Everson joined Colorado State University in January 2019 as a Research Associate with the Social Work Research Center, School of Social Work, College of Health and Human Science. Dr. Everson brings over twelve years of experience in research, community engagement, teaching, and leadership in health and human services, nonprofit management, and higher education. She holds a Ph.D. in applied medical anthropology from Oregon State University with doctoral-level minors in public health and women, gender, and sexuality studies.
As a mixed methodologist, Dr. Everson uses biosocial health frameworks and community-based approaches to study maternal-infant health, child well-being, child maltreatment prevention, youth development, and family functioning. At SWRC, she engages in team-based science to help transform the child welfare landscape and strengthen families through meaningful research-practice partnerships.
Dr. Everson is also the Co-Editor of NEOS, the official publication of the American Anthropological Association children and youth interest group; a Research Working Group member of the Academic Collaborative for Integrative Health; an Editorial Board member for the Journal of Alternative and Complementary Medicine; Co-Chair of the Family Voice & Choice Committee for the Colorado Collaborative Management Program; and a strategic consultant to higher education entities, governmental agencies, and nonprofit organizations on issues of equity, complex systems evaluation, and anti-oppression.
Luke McConnell, Research Associate
Luke has a bachelor’s degree in economics from the University of Maryland-College Park. Prior to CSU, he worked at the Federal Reserve Board of Governors in Washington D.C. where he managed data and assisted economists in conducting macroprudential analysis.
Sue Tungate, Researcher
Dr. Tungate has worked with the School of Social Work since 1994. Her current role with the Center is a welcome return to evaluation research. During her time at CSU, she has been involved with teaching, directing the field education program, human services systems change, and program evaluation with regional nonprofit and government organizations, NIOSH Agricultural Centers, and CSU Extension. Tungate’s interests also include cross-system collaboration, and the contexts of poverty and social justice.