Tammy Richards has more than 20 years of experience in program evaluation, applied social science research, evaluation training, and technical assistance. Her areas of expertise include the intersection of child welfare and substance abuse, child abuse and neglect court processes, and organizational capacity. Her work includes leading structured literature reviews to inform conceptual frameworks and research design, mixed methods analysis, policy review, and instrument development. Richards has provided evaluation technical assistance to 18 state and tribal child welfare agencies engaged in efforts to improve practice. In the past 5 years, she has written 19 publications, including 3 peer-reviewed articles for which she was the lead author, and 1 of the top-downloaded research briefs within the Office of Planning, Research, and Evaluation publication library.
At JBA, she is a team lead for several projects—Prenatal Alcohol and Other Drug Exposures in Child Welfare, Cross-Center Evaluation of the Child Welfare Capacity Building Collaborative, Understanding Judicial Decision-Making and Hearing Quality in Child Welfare—and for a subcontract to the American Bar Association Center on Children and the Law to help develop national performance measures for child welfare courts, judges, and attorneys.
Previously, Richards was a research associate and analyst for the University of Southern Maine, Muskie School of Public Service, directing and conducting program evaluations of child and family services. Before her positions in research and evaluation, she provided direct services to adolescents, youth in foster care, adults with dual diagnoses, and domestic violence survivors. Richards received an M.Ed. in psychology from Antioch University New England.