Bio of Lisbeth B. Schorr
Lisbeth B. (Lee) Schorr is a Senior Fellow of the Center for the Study of Social Policy, where she works with colleagues on efforts to broaden the understanding of evidence as applied to the design and evaluation of complex initiatives, and to promote a results orientation to the reform of social policies and programs
She is also Lecturer in Social Medicine at Harvard University and a member of the Executive Committee of the Aspen Institute's Roundtable on Community Change. She has woven many strands of experience with social policy, community building, education, and human service programs together to become a national authority on “what works” to improve the future of disadvantaged children and their families and neighborhoods. She has held leadership positions in many of the major national efforts on behalf of children and youth, including the National Center for Children in Poverty, City Year, the National Academy of Science's Board on Children and Families, the ECS National Commission on Governing America’s Schools, and the Foundation for Child Development. From 1965 to 1967 she headed the health division of the OEO’s Community Action Program, when the original Neighborhood Health Centers were developed and funded.
Lee is a member of the Institute of Medicine of the National Academies, a member of the Board of the SEED Foundation, and was on the National Selection Committee of the Ford Foundation/Kennedy School Awards for Innovations in American Government from 1998 to 2006. She has been awarded honorary doctorate degrees from Whittier College, Lewis and Clark College, Wheelock College, the University of Maryland, Bank Street College of Education, and Wilkes University.
Her 1988 book, WITHIN OUR REACH: Breaking the Cycle of Disadvantage, analyzed social programs that succeeded in effectively combating serious social problems. In her 1997 book, COMMON PURPOSE: Strengthening Families and Neighborhoods to Rebuild America, she explored why it was so difficult to spread and sustain successful programs.
Lee founded and directed the Pathways Mapping Initiative (PMI), supported by the Annie E. Casey Foundation and the W.K. Kellogg Foundation, to develop new approaches to building a stronger knowledge base about “what works” and to provide a broad array of actionable information to communities seeking to improve outcomes for vulnerable children, youth, families, and neighborhoods.