The Judith Rothbaum
Recognizing excellence in using social indicators
Given in memory of Judith Rothbaum
About Judith Rothbaum, her work, and the award
2012 criteria and call for nominations
2012 - Mary Dodd
(Community Action Network - Austin, TX)
2011 - Joe Ahern
(The Center for Community Solutions - Cleveland, OH)
Claudia Gooch (The Planning Council - Norfolk, VA)
2009 - Jan
Figart (Community Service Council - Tulsa, OK)
Katrina Middleton (Community Services Planning Council -
presented to Mary Dodd
May 5, 2012
Video of the presentation and Mary's response
NAPC Board member Kathy Schlather
presented the award, saying:
am honored to have been asked to present this year’s Judith
Rothbaum Award on behalf of the awards committee, Claudia Gooch,
Joe Ahern and myself, and to be a stand- in for committee chair
Karen Wulfkuhle who could not be here this year but deserves the
credit for actually doing the work leading up to this award.
This is the fifth time the award has been given out. NAPC
established this award in 2008 to honor Judith Rothbaum who was
a leader in the field of social indicators and to emphasize the
importance of the gathering and tracking of sound indicators to
all of the work that we do. Our honoree this year joins past
recipients, Katrina Middleton, Jan Figart, Claudia Gooch and Joe
Ahern who set the gold standard in demonstrating how sound data
can inform policy and decision making in a community.
this esteemed group is 2012 honoree Mary Dodd.
Mary has served as the Assistant Director of the
Community Action Network in
Austin Texas since 2008. She has over 25 years of experience
in the nonprofit community. Before she came to CAN, she worked
as the Director of Development at the University of Texas
Elementary School, Director of Development and Communication for
the Austin Project, Industry Liaison for the Capital Area
Training Foundation, and Executive Director of the Austin Area
Research Organization. She also has been both a news reporter
and anchor. All of this experience gives Mary a rare combination
of analytical and communication skills indispensible in helping
CAN be so successful in coalition-building in the Austin area.
Mary enjoys bringing together people and organizations with
diverse interests to identify common goals and concrete
strategies to achieve those goals.
Under Mary’s guidance, Austin’s Community Action Network
developed a Community Dashboard. The Community Dashboard tracks
16 socio-economic indicators and provides a framework with a
common language for better understanding what collaborative
attention and action is needed to move those indicators in the
right direction. The community then can work together to achieve
a vision of equity and opportunity for all people. Unlike so
many reports that end up on the shelf, Mary is now preparing the
third report to the community on the progress attributed to the
planners, we all know that numbers and indicators are one of our
most important tools. We also know how hard it is to make those
numbers come alive for those we continuously struggle to keep at
When I asked her nominator Vanessa Sarria (CAN Executive
Director) to tell me a little about Mary, she said that Mary
grounds her. She makes data accessible to everyone. She takes
Vanessa's ideas and puts them into a common language and
presents them in a way that makes people understand how the data
can be useful in facilitating coordination and collaboration to
move the community together in a common direction.
Mary Dodd exemplifies a professional who uses her gifts and
expertise to carry on Judith Rothbaum’s work of using social
indicators to mobilize community action. I am delighted to
present this award to Mary. As part of the award, Mary will be
the guest of NAPC at next year’s conference.
Download Mary's PowerPoint about CAN's Community Dashboard
presented to Joe Ahern
April 16, 2011
Watch the video of the award presentation and Joe Ahern's
Pictured below, left: Karen
Wulfkuhle (NAPC Awards Committee Chair) and Joe Ahern
Below, right: Karen Wulfkuhle, Joe Ahern, John Begala (The
Center for Community Solutions), Carolyn Ahern
Third row, right: Suzanne Puryear (NAPC President) with
View, download, and
order all the award photos here
Joe Ahern is Policy and Planning Associate at The
Center for Community Solutions in Cleveland, Ohio.
The Judith Rothbaum Award was presented to him by Karen
Wulfkuhle, Chair of NAPC's Awards Committee, at the NAPC Annual
Meeting, April 16, 2011 in Alexandria, Virginia. Karen
Rothbaum Award was established in 2008 through a partnership
between the United Way of Central Oklahoma and NAPC. The award
is named in honor of Judith Rothbaum who was a leader in the
field of social indicators. Three individuals have been
recognized with this award for their professionalism and
dedication to the use of social indicators for community
action. Information is in your packet about Judith and the
recipients – Katrina Middleton, Jan Figart and Claudia Gooch.
colleague joins these outstanding individuals as the recipient
of the 2011 Judith Rothbaum Award. The honoree was selected by
the Award Committee that includes Blair Schoeb, Martha Blaine,
and Claudia Gooch.
We begin a new
tradition this year. This year’s honoree was informed in advance
of the conference and will make a few remarks after I tell you a
little about their accomplishments.
successful, it’s not enough to have high level analytical and
data skills – which our honoree has. It also requires a
curiosity about what can be learned from data and an interest in
a wide variety of topics – also true of our honoree. And, it
helps to have a degree in mathematics and expertise with
statistical and mapping software – which our honoree has put to
good use for the past 25 years.
From the first
day 25 years ago that our honoree started at their planning
council as a student intern to the present, our honoree has been
a major contributor to the production, explanation, presentation
and publication of social and community indicators.
Our honoree has
been the lead author of community reports, as well as a
contributor to dozens of their planning council’s projects. The
body of work includes inventories of services, needs
assessments, and analysis of specific issues such as health
disparities, education, and workforce development. Working with
colleagues, the honoree is currently helping develop a set of
quality of life indicators for a 16-county region.
A robust body of
work and positive results over the span of 25 years led to the
selection of Joe Ahern, Policy and Planning Associate, The
Center for Community Solutions, as the 2011 recipient of the
Judith Rothbaum Award.
Dr. Mark Salling,
Research Director at the Center for Community Solutions, said
this, “Joe Ahern has had an exemplary year and continues to
prove that his work has a significant impact on the region’s
human services community and the people it serves. His
excellent writing and analytical skills are a foundation for the
work of the research team at Community Solutions.”
to Joe Ahern.
Publications - Joe Ahern, lead author or analyst
Indicators 2003-2005: Community Health
Summit County Early Child Development Inventory of Resources and
Early Childhood Services Survey
Cuyahoga County Alcohol and Drug and Mental Health Board of
Cuyahoga County Needs Assessment
An Analysis of Health Disparities in Northeast Ohio Using the
2008 Ohio Family Health Survey
Ohio Family Health Surveys, 1998, 2004 and 2008
Workforce Development Indicators, 2008
Community Health Needs Assessment, 2007
April 18, 2010
(right, below), Chair of the
Awards Committee, presented the award:
The Award being
presenting today is named for Judith Rothbaum. Judith was among
those who set the standard for social indicator work. To honor
her passion for community service and leadership in the social
indicator movement, the United Way of Central Oklahoma has
partnered with NAPC since 2008 to recognize an individual who
exemplifies professionalism and dedication to the use of social
indicators for community action. Thank you to United Way and
Blair Schoeb for providing the funding for this award.
recipient of the award was Katrina Middleton, Vice-President,
Information Research and Planning at the Community Services
Planning Council in Sacramento. Last year’s recipient was Jan
Figart, Associate Director and Senior Maternal-Child Health
Planner at the Community Service Council of Greater Tulsa. Both
Katrina and Jan demonstrate the individual excellence that
benefits the community, and serves as an example to all of us.
This year’s recipient demonstrates that same level of
The selection of
the award recipient is kept secret until now – so I’ll offer a
few hints before revealing the person’ name.
recipient of the Judith Rothbaum Award is a familiar face at the
annual NAPC conference, and a colleague I always look forward to
seeing. She served along side Judith Rothbaum on the initial
NAPC Social Indicators Committee. The planning council where
she works is a long-time member of NAPC, and the council’s
director serves on the NAPC board.
Our honoree has
spent her professional career in the field of planning; and
joined her current employer in 1991. By now, if she really is
any good at analyzing data, our honoree will know who she is.
But so there is no confusion, it’s my pleasure to announce the
recipient of the 2010 Judith Rothbaum Award is Claudia Gooch.
as Vice President of Community Planning at The Planning Council
in Norfolk, VA. Claudia’s interest and commitment to social
indicators led to the publication in 2000 of the first edition
of Visions and Indicators: An Investment in Priorities for
South Hampton Roads. The report has been regularly updated
in 2003, 2006 and 2009, with Regional Report Cards issued in the
This report has
been used as a model by other communities across the country.
But, what makes this document and Claudia’s work most
significant is the measurable impact on the community. Suzanne
Puryear, the Planning Council CEO, nominated Claudia and
identified three outcomes from the landmark report
Visions and Indicators.
First, the work
has led to the establishment of community priorities. Prior to
the publication of the first document, the area’s foundations
had not engaged in discussion of community needs. With
leadership from Claudia, data is now a part of decision-making
and attention is given to the big picture. As one example:
an analysis by Claudia of funding patterns, led to increased
interest in funding early childhood programs and community
foundations have supported major new initiatives to address
comprehensively the region’s needs in the early childhood
outcome: the Visions and Indicators report is used
by six partner organizations to direct their allocations –
applicants must tie their requests to one of the indicators in
the report. As a result, funding is channeled into identified
outcome: educating community leaders. The data in the
document is used to lead discussion on community problems and
inform policy and decision-making. These discussions are
not just between the community’s human service organizations,
but extend to the business community and local government.
Claudia uses the data to tell the story, not just present
and Indicators report is not the only example of Claudia’s
use of social indicators for community action. Claudia has
worked with particular passion on the issue of homelessness.
She helped convene a regional housing task force to analyze the
needs of families and individuals who were experiencing
homelessness. She documented the gaps in services for single
individuals who were homeless and researched studies of
successful programs. According to Suzanne, Claudia’s steadfast
attention to this issue, coupled with her skillful and
unrelenting use of data to drive decision-making, culminated in
2006 with the opening of the first regional Single Room
Occupancy project for single and disabled homeless adults in the
nation. A second project was opened in 2008 and a third is now
Suzanne wrote about why she nominated Claudia:
for advancing the work of social indicators,
for using data to inspire ideas and produce
for dedication to positive community change.
Rothbaum Award is presented to Claudia Gooch for an exemplary
body of work and positive results encompassing her nearly 20
years at the Planning Council.
March 3, 2009
Jan Figart with Karen Wulfkuhle,
Chair of the Awards Committee, and with
Dessauer, Executive Director, Community Service Council (Tulsa,
Committee Chair Karen Wulfkuhle presented the award:
If you’ve been
to NAPC’s website, this language will be familiar — “Today’s
councils are guided by an informed perspective on their
communities’ social assets, resources, and needs. This
perspective comes from their wide and varied research and
information gathering activities — the unique council asset
which guides all their other actions.”
research takes the form of social indicators. Many of us have
learned about the importance of social indicators from our
colleagues at NAPC member organizations.
was one of our colleagues who set the standard for social
indicator work. Judith passed away in 2007. To honor her
passion for community service and leadership in the social
indicator movement, the United Way of Central Oklahoma partners
with NAPC to recognize annually an individual who exemplifies
professionalism and dedication to the use of social indicators
for community action. Thank you to United Way for providing the
funding for this award. Blair Schoeb and Heather Elmenhorst are
here representing the United Way.
2008 was the
inaugural year for the Judith Rothbaum Award. The first
recipient was Katrina Middleton, Vice-President, Information,
Research and Planning at the Community Services Planning Council
in Sacramento. Katrina was unable to be here this year — but
like Judith, Katrina demonstrates individual excellence that not
only benefits her community, but serves as an example to all of
For 2009, NAPC
solicited nominations from member organizations. The award
committee was greatly impressed by the accomplishments of all
the nominees. NAPC is fortunate to have such outstanding
individuals among our membership. It was a difficult decision
to select just one person to honor this year.
collecting and analyzing the data available to us — we selected
a nominee who we believe exemplifies all of the award criteria.
has been a secret until this moment, when it’s my pleasure to
announce that this year’s recipient of the Judith Rothbaum Award
is Jan Figart. Jan is Associate Director and Senior
Maternal-Child Health Planner at the Community Service Council
of Greater Tulsa. Many of you are familiar with her work on The
Perfect Storm. This work is just one example of Jan’s
vision and skills for how to engage and empower people to
understand and use indicator data.
nominated by Phil Dessauer, Executive Director of the Community
Service Council – and I’d like to read from the section of the
nomination form where he discusses why he believes Jan should
receive the award…..
Jan’s work has been characterized by her
commitment to the importance of this work, her intelligence and
analytical skills, her strong work ethic and high level of
productivity in completing projects, and her ability to
motivate, lead and manage teams to accomplish results.
Along with technical expertise related to
identifying, collecting, analyzing, and presenting social
indicator data, Jan also excels in using data as a tool to
stimulate and inform positive community action.
which sets Jan apart is her ability to see the big picture of
the convergence and interrelatedness of many complex factors,
and how one indicator needs to be understood in a broader
context involving several other indicators. She has the ability
to explain this in such a way that even non-data people see the
patterns and can grasp the importance.
I believe Jan Figart’s combination of
perspectives, skills, and accomplishments exemplifies the unique
contribution that planning councils can make in the social
indicators field. She is well qualified to be honored with the
Judith Rothbaum Social Indicators Award.
committee agreed; Jan is well qualified to be honored with the
Judith Rothbaum Award.
May 8, 2008
Ed Pulido - United Way of Central Oklahoma (sponsor of the
Nancy Findeisen - Executive Director, Community Services
Ben Warner - President, National Association of Planning
Katrina Middleton - the 2008 Judith Rothbaum Award Honoree
Ed Pulido spoke about Judith Rothbaum, long-time indicators leader and creator of
Choosing Our Future, one of the nation's first community
indicators reports, leading to Oklahoma City's Vital Signs.
started our indicators movement, establishing a legacy for our
community and for the country on the importance of measuring
indicators and planning and acting together to address them.
She was a beacon of light, in our community and nationally."
In memory of her life and work, the United Way of Central
Oklahoma has underwritten an award which NAPC will present each
year to honor Judith's memory and to recognize outstanding
in using indicators as a tool for community improvement.
Katrina Middleton described Judith's valuable contributions to
NAPC's indicators initiatives in the early years, resulting in
the identification of a set of leading indicators and stories of
how they have shaped communities' actions to address social and
health problems effectively. Katrina spoke of Judith as a
long-time colleague and friend.
"She was bold. She stood tall. She was
intelligent...extremely practical...clear, direct, and
fearless…and had the most delightful wry sense of humor.
Judith understood that indicators are about people and their
collective story. Her leadership allowed people [doing
indicators work in many communities] to understand what they had
in common, and work together to make change happen."
Then NAPC President Ben Warner
surprised Katrina with the announcement that she had been
selected to receive the first annual Judith Rothbaum Award, in
recognition of her years of excellent work on social indicators
in the Sacramento region as a staff member of the Community
Services Planning Council (CSPC), and through NAPC as leader of
NAPC's indicators initiative and author of NAPC's community
indicators report, "From the Bottom Up." An
engraved crystal vase and a cash award were presented.
Katrina received congratulations
from Nancy Findeisen, CSPC Executive Director (above), who spoke
about her fine work in Sacramento. "Her
focus is on making sure that data is used in a
constructive and positive way. It is not about the data
itself, but about using the data in a productive and rewarding
way--taking data from dull to changing the fabric of the work of
Katrina was congratulated by many long-time
NAPC colleagues and friends, including (below) Ed Pulido, David
Swain, Ben Warner, (Katrina), Nancy Findeisen, and Caroline