From the CHRR Director’s Desk, Issue #2
By Stephen M. Gavazzi, Ph.D.
The Latest News, Views, and Announcements
What’s New at CHRR
It has been one month since I wrote to you on my first day as CHRR’s newest fulltime Director, and quite a bit has happened over the last 30 days. Perhaps most importantly, we have hired our new Business Operations Manager, Brittany Poast, who you will read more about in the Leadership Team section below.
This newsletter is one day later than usual out of respect for observation of the Juneteenth holiday. I hope that everyone enjoyed the extra day off while taking some time to reflect on our nation’s commemoration of the ending of slavery in the United States.
CHRR’s Leadership Team: Our Newest Member
Brittany Poast joins the CHRR with over 16 years of experience at The Ohio State University. Over the past four years she has served as the Department Manager for Molecular Genetics in ASC, managing the day-to-day financial administration, grant management and human resource activities. Previously Brittany has managed earnings units in the Office of Research, and she was a grants and contracts specialist for Chemistry and Biochemistry. Brittany also has a diverse educational background with degrees in both chemical engineering and social work and says that she uses some aspect of each degree every day!
Brittany lives in Hilliard with her husband, Steve, their daughter, Kyra, and their cat, Louie. If she is not starting an overly optimistic home project or singing her daughter’s favorite song for the twenty-sixth time in a row, you might find Brittany picking out a record to play from the 70’s, watching her favorite binge show, or sipping coffee on the front porch. Her favorite things are playing board games and puzzles with friends, learning a new fun fact or skill, or designing t-shirts for her husband’s brass street band.
Brittany is thrilled to join the CHRR (her start date is July 11th), and she can’t wait to meet everyone!
Things You Might Want to Know
Ohio State Trustee Visits CHRR
Jeff Kaplan, Ohio State University Board of Trustee member and former long-time employee of OSU, paid a visit to the CHRR this month and spent some time with our Leadership Team. Because we continue to look for ways to increase the visibility of our center, we have offered CHRR space for a future Board of Trustees meeting. We hope Mr. Kaplan and colleagues take us up on this offer sometime in the not-too-distant future!
RFI for NLSY26 Released
The Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) has released a request for information from potential vendors regarding the launch of a new national longitudinal survey of youth (NLSY). As the first round of data collection is scheduled for 2026, BLS is referring to this survey as the NLSY26. Many employees and friends of the CHRR know that our center already handles both the NLSY79 and NLSY97 cohorts.
Because we wish to become the federal government’s choice to manage this newest NLSY cohort, you can expect that our NLS Team will be hard at work over the next several months to respond to all BLS requests.
1994-1862 Land-Grant University Partnerships
Prior to my having taken the helm as CHRR Director, I had been the recipient of several university grants designed to support my work on the historic and contemporary relationships between The Ohio State University and Native American Tribal Nations whose land was taken and sold in service to the establishment of our university. My Ohio State research team was fortunate to have partnered with First Nations Development Institute (FNDI), the largest Indigenous-led economic development center in the United States. You can read more about the work we have accomplished to date through two recent Tribal College Journal articles that I co-authored:
In turn, the internal OSU funding led to the acquisition of two additional external grants aimed at developing and strengthening partnerships between 1862 land-grant universities such as Ohio State and our sister 1994 land-grant Tribal Colleges that exist throughout the country.
The first of these grants from the National Institute for Food and Agriculture (NIFA is part of USDA) supports the addition of a post-conference day to the First Americans Land Grant Consortium (FALCON) conference in October 2022.
The second grant comes from the North Central Regional Center for Rural Development (NCRCRD) and is designed to capture comprehensive information on past and present 1994-1862 land-grant partnerships.
Together, these grants are allowing CHRR Special Projects Team members to provide direct support to the NIFA/USDA and NCRCRD funded efforts. A website featuring information on this work and a related survey tool designed to capture information on 1994-1862 partnerships will be launched early next month.