Welcoming Three New Members to the William T. Grant Scholars Selection Committee

We are pleased to announce three new members of the William T. Grant Scholars Selection Committee, a dedicated group of academics who are committed to the Scholars Program’s priorities of career development, mentoring, and the bold pursuit of new research challenges. Dolores Acevedo-Garcia, Cynthia Coburn, and David Takeuchi began their term in July 2020. We are also honored that that Lawrence Palinkas, a member of the Committee since 2011, has agreed to serve as Chair, also to commence in July 2020. At the same time, we want to extend our gratitude to Elizabeth Birr Moje who is stepping down from the Committee after serving her full 10-year term and as Chair from 2015-2020.

The William T. Grant Scholars Program supports career development for promising early-career researchers. The program funds five-year research and mentoring plans that significantly expand junior researchers’ expertise in new disciplines, methods, and content areas. We recognize that early-career researchers are rarely given incentives or support to take such risks, so this award includes a mentoring component, as well as an emphasis on collaboration within a supportive research community.

Selection is based on applicants’ potential to become influential researchers, as well as their plans to expand their expertise in new and significant ways in order to tackle the most pressing social problems facing young people. Scholars Selection Committee members review applications before choosing ten finalists, who are then invited to New York City to interview with the Committee. Following the interviews, the Selection Committee ultimately selects four to six William T. Grant Scholars.

About the newest members of the Scholars Selection Committee

Dolores Acevedo-Garcia is Samuel F. and Rose B. Gingold Professor of Human Development and Social Policy, and Director of the Institute for Child, Youth, and Family Policy at the Heller School for Social Policy and Management, Brandeis University. Her research focuses on the social determinants of racial/ethnic inequities in health, the role of social policies in reducing those inequities, and the health and wellbeing of children with special needs and their families. Acevedo-Garcia is Project Director for, a comprehensive research program and indicator database on child wellbeing and opportunity by race/ethnicity across multiple sectors (e.g., education, health, housing and neighborhoods) and geographies, funded by the W.K. Kellogg Foundation and the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation. In 2017-19, she was a member of the congressionally-mandated National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine Committee on Building an Agenda to Reduce the Number of Children in Poverty by Half in 10 Years. She received her B.A. in Public Administration from El Colegio de Mexico (Mexico City), and her MPA-URP and Ph.D. in Public Policy with a concentration in Demography from the Woodrow Wilson School of Public and International Affairs at Princeton University.

Cynthia Coburn is Professor of Human Development and Social Policy, and Professor of Learning Sciences at the Northwestern University School of Education and Social Policy. She specializes in policy implementation, the relationship between research and practice, data use, and scale-up of innovation. She has studied research use in schools and districts since 2002, including co-directing a six-year cross-case study of innovative approaches that reconfigured the relationship between research and practice for educational improvement (with Mary Kay Stein) and a study of research-practice partnerships in three urban districts (with William Penuel). She recently received funding from the US Institute for Education Sciences as co-Principal Investigator of The National Center for Research in Policy and Practice. In 2011, Coburn was awarded the Early Career Award from the American Educational Research Association in recognition of her contributions to the field of educational research in the first decade of her career. Since then, she has been elected a Fellow for the American Educational Research Association and a Member of the National Academy of Education. Coburn has a B.A. in Philosophy from Oberlin College, an M.A. in Sociology, and a Ph.D. in Education from Stanford University.

David Takeuchi is a professor and Associate Dean in the Office for Faculty Excellence at the University of Washington School of Social Work. He is a sociologist with postdoctoral experience in epidemiology and health services research. Takeuchi has written extensively on issues related to the unequal distribution of health and illness in society, particularly around race, ethnicity, and socio-economic status. He is an elected member of the Washington State Academy of Sciences, the Sociological Research Association, and the American Academy of Social Work and Social Welfare. He has received the Legacy Award from the Family Research Consortium and the Innovations Award from the National Center on Health and Health Disparities. In 2011, he received the UW Marsha Landolt Distinguished Mentor Award. He is also a recipient of the Leonard Pearlin Award for Distinguished Contributions of the Sociological Study of Health from the American Sociological Association (ASA) and the ASA Distinguished Contributions to the Study of Asian American Communities. Takeuchi received his Ph.D. from the University of Hawaii.

Related content

Subscribe for Updates