People

Crystal Coles, Ph.D.

Senior Research Associate

Crystal Coles has nearly 15 years of experience in applied social science research and evaluation in child welfare and maternal child health, including more than 10 years of direct practice experience as a child welfare social worker. She brings to JBA technical expertise in research design and methods, quantitative and qualitative analysis, and anti-racist and racial justice approaches to research implementation science.

Coles serves as an evaluation technical assistance specialist for the Technical Assistance on Evaluation for Discretionary Grant Programs and the Cross-Center Evaluation of the Child Welfare Capacity Building Collaborative projects. She is on the analysis team for two projects: Prenatal Alcohol and Other Drug Exposures in Child Welfare and Identification and Care of Children With Prenatal Alcohol and Other Drug Exposures: Prevention Strategies.

Prior to joining JBA, Coles worked as a social work professor and served as lead evaluator of state, county, and community-based projects in Kansas, Michigan, Virginia, and Maryland. Her past work included several statewide initiatives to improve public child welfare systemic efficiency and effectiveness, and the impact of foster care system operations on ethnic minority communities.

Coles is a licensed clinical social worker and received a Ph.D. in social work from Virginia Commonwealth University.