Skip to main content
News Release

Brookings Senior Fellow Ron Haskins Joins White House Welfare Reform Effort

Brookings Institution Senior Fellow Ron Haskins, co-director of the Brookings Welfare Reform & Beyond initiative and former staff director of the U.S. House Ways and Means subcommittee that oversees welfare, has accepted a position in the White House to coordinate the Bush administration’s efforts on this year’s reauthorization of the 1996 welfare reform law.

“While Brookings is sorry to lose Ron’s real-world experience and scholarly insights for a time, we are pleased that his new White House affiliation will allow him to play a more direct role in shaping this year’s debate on reauthorizing the 1996 welfare reform laws,” said Brookings President Michael H. Armacost. “Ron thus continues the rich tradition of Brookings ‘scholar-practitioners’ who apply both academic analysis and active political involvement to solving our society’s pressing challenges.”

While Haskins will be a senior adviser for welfare policy at the White House, he will not join the administration full-time. He will become an unpaid guest scholar at Brookings and retain his affiliation with the Baltimore-based Annie E. Casey Foundation, but will relinquish his role as co-director of the Brookings welfare reform project.

Before joining Brookings, Haskins was staff director of the House Subcommittee on Human Resources, where he served as welfare counsel to the Republican staff before becoming staff director in 1994. His research at Brookings has focused on his areas of expertise-welfare reform, day care, child support enforcement, foster care, unemployment, and budget issues. He is the author of numerous books, monographs, and articles on welfare reform and related topics.

“While Brookings is sorry to lose Ron’s real-world experience and scholarly insights for a time, we are pleased that his new White House affiliation will allow him to play a more direct role in shaping this year’s debate on reauthorizing the 1996 welfare reform laws,” said Brookings President Michael H. Armacost. “Ron thus continues the rich tradition of Brookings ‘scholar-practitioners’ who apply both academic analysis and active political involvement to solving our society’s pressing challenges.”

The Welfare Reform & Beyond initiative, launched in 2000, is aimed at synthesizing and disseminating research to Congress, advocates, and the public to inform the debate over reauthorization of the 1996 welfare reform law, which must be completed by October. The project, which continues under the leadership of Brookings Senior Fellows Isabel V. Sawhill and Kent Weaver, aims to foster an informed and civil dialogue among state and federal policymakers, the research community, and advocacy groups. The project issues regular policy briefs and other publications and holds frequent policy roundtables on the range of issues that will emerge during this year’s debate.

About Brookings

The Brookings Institution is a nonprofit organization devoted to independent research and policy solutions. Its mission is to conduct high-quality, independent research and, based on that research, to provide innovative, practical recommendations for policymakers and the public.

Get daily updates from Brookings