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Virginia G. Piper Charitable Trust Names New Research and Evaluation Officer

November 20, 2012

Virginia G. Piper Charitable Trust Names New Research and Evaluation Officer

Clarin Collins PhotoPHOENIX, Ariz.—Virginia G. Piper Charitable Trust has appointed Clarin Collins, Ph.D., as research and evaluation officer. Collins is responsible for analyzing and evaluating Piper Trust’s initiatives and grantmaking activities, and developing measurement and assessment plans for select grantee organizations.

“Clarin’s rich expertise in academic research and evaluation will be highly beneficial,” said Wayne Parker, Ph.D., director of research and evaluation for Virginia G. Piper Charitable Trust. “Her comprehensive training in research methods will greatly enhance evaluations that Piper Trust conducts.”

Most recently, Dr. Collins served as a graduate research assistant at the Center for the Future of Arizona where her research contributed to the design of Arizona’s “Move on When Ready” legislation (H.B. 2731); the legislation allows districts to adopt a performance-based high school education model intended to increase students’ academic achievements and their readiness for college and careers. She also conducted research for the Center’s Beat the Odds Institute. The Institute is an initiative designed to improve individual student achievement and align student performance with national and global standards.

“As an ASU research assistant, Dr. Collins compiled and analyzed data that is so important to our work at the Beat the Odds Institute. A consummate professional, we were fortunate to have her as part of our team and know that her expertise will add tremendous value to the mission of Piper Trust,” said Marjorie Kaplan, Ph.D., director of Beat the Odds Institute at the Center for the Future of Arizona, Arizona State University.

Throughout her graduate career, Dr. Collins held multiple research positions and examined a range of issues spanning Arizona’s education pipeline. She recently served as a consultant to the National College Access Network assessing the strengths and weaknesses of college and career readiness in Arizona.

“The environment at Virginia G. Piper Charitable Trust emanates support for quality research and evaluation. I see evaluation as a vehicle to drive improvement and am deeply encouraged by the innovative and progressive nature of Maricopa County’s nonprofit sector,” said Collins.

“Few graduate students with whom I have worked exemplify the desire to impact change like Clarin—she effectively gives voices to those who are often marginalized as a result of large-scale policies, and she enlightens others about how such policies translate into practice,” said Audrey Amrein-Beardsley, Ph.D., associate professor at Mary Lou Fulton Teachers College, Arizona State University. “Clarin accordingly exceeded all others when it came to her doctoral and research work—she will be a dynamic asset to Piper Trust.”

Dr. Collins’ dissertation work examined teachers’ perceptions and experiences with a high-stakes evaluation used to determine tenure and merit pay. Her work translated into a highly-regarded, co-authored article published in a peer-reviewed journal.

Collins earned bachelor’s degrees in marketing and Spanish from Minnesota State University, Mankato. She holds a master’s degree in education and a doctorate in educational policy and evaluation from Arizona State University.


About Piper Trust:
A private independent foundation, Virginia G. Piper Charitable Trust honors Virginia Galvin Piper’s philanthropic commitment to changing lives and strengthening community in Maricopa County (Arizona). By investing in nonprofits and encouraging strategic planning for the future, Piper Trust strives to make Maricopa County a stronger, more nurturing, and vibrant community. Since it began awarding grants in 2000, Piper Trust has invested more than $300 million in local nonprofits and programs. The Trust had total grants paid of $21.9 million in fiscal year 2012. Piper Trust grantmaking areas are healthcare and medical research, children, older adults, arts and culture, education and religious organizations. For more information, visit Follow us on Twitter @PiperTrust / Like us on Facebook.



Karen Leland, 480-556-7125 / [email protected]
Director, Communications and External Relations
Virginia G. Piper Charitable Trust
1202 East Missouri Avenue
Phoenix, Arizona  85014