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Key Staff

From Syracuse, Harvard, and Rutgers Universities, the DIEP RRTC brings together a consortium of nationally recognized and synergized researchers from multiple disciplines including economics, psychology, law and public policy, business management and health.

Peter Blanck

Peter Blanck, Burton Blatt Institute Principal Investigator

Dr. Blanck is University Professor at Syracuse University, which is the highest faculty rank granted at the University, and Chairman of the BBI. Previously, Blanck was Kierscht Professor of Law and director of the Law, Health Policy, and Disability Center at the University of Iowa. Blanck received a J.D. from Stanford University, where he was President of the Stanford Law Review, and a Ph.D. from Harvard University in Social Psychology, and serving as a Post-Doctoral Fellow at Harvard University.

Doug Kruse

Doug Kruse, Rutgers Principal Investigator

Dr. Kruse is a Distinguished Professor in the School of Management and Labor Relations at Rutgers University, a Research Associate at the National Bureau of Economic Research in Cambridge, MA, and a Research Fellow in the IZA Institute of Labor Economics in Bonn, Germany. He served as Senior Economist at the White House Council of Economic Advisers in 2013-2014. He received an M.A. in Economics from the University of Nebraska-Lincoln and a Ph.D. in Economics from Harvard University. His research has focused on the employment and earnings effects of disability, and the causes, consequences, and implications of employee ownership and profit sharing.

Lisa Shur

Lisa Shur, Rutgers Co- Principal Investigator

Dr. Schur is Professor and Chair of the Department of Labor Studies and Employment Relations at Rutgers University, where she teaches employment law and labor studies. She received a Ph.D. in Political Science from the University of California-Berkeley and a J.D. from Northeastern University. Her research focuses on the economic, political, and social inclusion of people with disabilities, particularly their political participation and employment experiences and outcomes.

Nicole Maestas

Nicole Maestas, Harvard Principal Investigator

Nicole Maestas, Ph.D. is an Associate Professor of Health Care Policy at Harvard Medical School and a Research Associate of the National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER), where she directs the NBER’s Retirement and Disability Research Center. She studies the economics of disability insurance, labor markets, health care systems, and population aging. Her research studies how the health and disability insurance systems affect individual economic behaviors, such as labor supply and the use of medical care.

Ari Ne’eman

Ari Ne’eman, Harvard Senior Researcher

Ari Ne’eman is a doctoral student in Health Policy at Harvard University. He is also a Senior Research Associate at the Harvard Law School Project on Disability and a Visiting Scholar at the Lurie Institute for Disability Policy. Prior to those roles, he served as co-founder and executive director of the Autistic Self Advocacy Network from 2006 to 2016 and as one of President Obama’s appointees to the National Council on Disability from 2010 to 2015, where he chaired the Council’s Committee on Entitlements Policy.

Meera Adya

Meera Adya, Burton Blatt Institute Senior Researcher

Dr. Adya serves as the Senior Director of Research and Evaluation at BBI. She is currently PI of a five-year, US Department of Labor’s sub-contract evaluating Onondaga Community College’s Pathways to Careers program, a five-year, Rehabilitation Services Administration subcontract from San Diego State University’s Workforce Innovation Technical Assistance Center to provide comprehensive evaluation services, and a NIDILRR funded subcontract to the National Disability Institute, leading the design and analysis of a RCT-based investigation of financial counseling in improving asset accumulation and community participation.

Michael Morris

Michael Morris, Knowledge Translation & Utilization Director

Michael Morris has over thirty (30) years of experience in research, knowledge translation, and systems change activities advancing employment and economic self-sufficiency for youth and adults across the full spectrum of disabilities. Morris received his J.D. degree from Emory University School of Law and has served as a policy expert staff member for a state elected Representative in Georgia and for a U.S. Senator from Connecticut. He is a former legal counsel for the U.S Senate Subcommittee on Disability Policy and the U.S. Senate Small Business Committee.

Mary Killeen

Mary Killeen, Burton Blatt Institute Senior Research Associate

Ms. Killeen is a Senior Research Associate at the Burton Blatt Institute with 20 years of experience in the field of disability research. She has a broad research background in disability and employment. In her previous research at CESSI in McLean, VA, Ms. Killeen was the PI on a NIDILRR-funded three-year field-initiated research project focusing on the strategies people with psychiatric disabilities use to maintain employment and build careers. Ms. Killeen’s research has also focused on workplace accommodations, workplace diversity, and disclosure issues. She is trained in both qualitative and quantitative research design with special expertise in qualitative methods and data analysis as well as survey development and quantitative data collection.

Yana van der Meulen Rodgers

Yana van der Meulen Rodgers, Rutgers Principal Investigator

Dr. Rodgers is Faculty Director of the Rutgers University Center for Women and Work, and Professor in the Labor Studies & Employment Relations Department and in the Women’s and Gender Studies Department. Rodgers is a PhD economist who specializes in using quantitative methods and large data sets to conduct research on women’s health, labor market status, and well-being.