News Release

The Frank R. Breul Memorial Prize

Grant and Award Announcement

University of Chicago Press Journals

We are pleased to announce that the 2024 Frank R. Breul Memorial Prize has been awarded to Jessica Pac, Sophie Collyer, Lawrence Berger, Kirk O'Brien, Elizabeth Parker, Peter Pecora, Whitney Rostad, Jane Waldfogel, and Christopher Wimer for their article “The Effects of Child Poverty Reductions on Child Protective Services Involvement,” which appears in the March 2023 issue. The prize pays tribute to Professor Breul’s career as an educator, administrator, and editor of the Social Service Review (SSR) while on the faculty of the Crown Family School of Social Work, Policy, and Practice at the University of Chicago. The Breul Prize is awarded annually for article judged by the editor, after seeking input from the editorial board, to be the best published in SSR in the preceding year.

Pac and colleagues’ timely article uses microsimulation methods to show that the implementation of certain policy packages from a recent National Academy of Sciences report, intended to reduce child poverty, could also reduce investigations by child protective services (CPS) by as much as 19.7 percent. Moreover, such policies could particularly improve the lives of Black and Hispanic children, helping to reduce the entrenched racial disparities that plague CPS systems. The SSR editorial board was effusive in its praise of the piece, citing the way the rigor of its methods undergirds its strong argument about how we could substantively improve child well-being in the United States, should we choose to so.   

Jessica Pac, PhD, is an assistant professor at the Sandra Rosenbaum School of Social Work at the University of Wisconsin–Madison. Sophie Collyer is a doctoral student at the Center on Poverty and Social Policy at the Columbia University School of Social Work. Lawrence Berger, PhD, MSW, is a Vilas Distinguished Achievement Professor at the Sandra Rosenbaum School of Social Work at the University of Wisconsin–Madison. Kirk O’Brien, PhD, is a research/evaluation consultant with the Georgia Family Connection Partnership. Elizabeth Parker, PhD, is a senior service fellow at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Peter Pecora, PhD, is a professor at the University of Washington School of Social Work. Whitney Rostad, PhD, is a senior public health researcher at the American Institutes for Research. Jane Waldfogel, PhD, is the Compton Foundation Centennial Professor of Social Work for the Prevention of Children’s and Youth Problems at the Columbia University School of Social Work. Christopher Wimer, PhD, directs the Center on Poverty and Social Policy at the Columbia University School of Social Work.

Recent Recipients of the Frank R. Breul Memorial Prize

2023 “To ‘Elevate, Humanize, Christianize, Americanize’: Social Work, White Supremacy, and the Americanization Movement, 1880–1930,” vol. 96, no. 4 (December 2022)

2022 Aaron Gottlieb and Kalen Flynn, “The Legacy of Slavery and Mass Incarceration: Evidence from Felony Case Outcomes,” vol. 95, no. 1 (March 2021)

2021 Sandra Leotti, “The Discursive Construction of Risk: Social Work Knowledge Production and Criminalized Women,” vol. 94, no 3 (September 2020)

2020 Sanders Korenman, Dahlia K. Remler, and Rosemary T. Hyson, "Medicaid Expansions and Poverty: Comparing Supplemental and Health-Inclusive Poverty Measures," vol. 93, no. 3 (September 2019)

2019 Sarah K. Bruch, Marcia K. Meyers, and Janet C. Gornick, "The Consequences of Decentralization: Inequality in Safety Net Provision in the Post-Welfare Reform Era," vol. 92, no. 1 (March 2018)

2018 Dimitris Pipinis, "Punitive White Welfare Bureaucracies: Examining the Link between White Presence within Welfare Bureaucracies and Sanction Exits in the United States," vol. 91, no. 1 (March 2017)

2017 Eve E. Garrow and Yeheskel Hasenfeld, “When Professional Power Fails: A Power Relations Perspective,” vol. 90, no. 3 (September 2016)

2016 Melissa Hardesty, “Epistemological Binds and Ethical Dilemmas in Frontline Child Welfare Practice,” vol. 89, no. 3 (September 2015)

2015 Nathanael J. Okpych and James L-H Yu, “A Historical Analysis of Evidence-Based Practice in Social Work: The Unfinished Journey toward an Empirically Grounded Profession,” vol. 88, no. 1 (March 2014)


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