by Travis Mateer
When I read that Missoula’s 10 year plan to end homelessness would get some analysis from an outside firm, I had to laugh. What kind of damage control plan is being cooked up to focus attention AWAY from the enriching schemes of our local cabal?
Before I take a look at the innocuous sounding JG Research & Evaluation firm located in Bozeman, I have to give some space to Martin “Gomer” Kidston’s helpful depiction of this 10 year plan. Because it’s funny (emphasis mine).
While the plan’s title has been maligned over the past decade for its lofty pledge of ending homelessness, the work has born successes and changed how the city and its partners approach the issue.
Now, the city wants to take stock in that work and identify the path forward.
“We’re doing a retrospective evaluation,” said project director Brandn Green with JG Research. “We want to understand the drivers of success and any of the barriers related to the goals of the 2012 plan. We want to be efficient and not reproduce things that are already done or already known.”
What Gomer leaves out is WHO maligned the plan’s title because he wants readers to imagine it was just the haters when, in reality, the first sucker hired to implement this plan–former Missoulian reporter, Michael Moore–often mocked the “lofty pledge” he was getting paid to make a reality.
Anyway, I’ve written plenty about this plan over the years from my unique perspective of having been actually quoted in its pages due to my work as a homeless service provider from 2008-2016, but today’s post is going to take a quick look at JG Research & Evaluation.
After poking around I think the most interesting thing about JG Research is its staff and the focus they are bringing, like co-owner and principal researcher, Brandn Green (that’s not a misspelling).
Here’s a little background info on Brandn:
Brandn’s integration of rural sociology with social epidemiology began in his first professional appointment at Bucknell University, where he directed a program focused on the social dimensions of the environment. As a Service Fellow in the Center for Behavioral Health Statistics and Quality at the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration, he continued with this transition while working on an interdisciplinary research team. After working for SAMHSA, he moved to Montana to lead the Behavioral Risk Factor Surveillance System (BRFSS) for the State of Montana. Leaving the state to work for the DC-based contracting firm, Development Services Group while continuing to live in Montana.
Another person at JG Research with an interesting pedigree is Frances Kim, a Research Manager. Here’s a little on Kim’s background (emphasis mine):
Frances is still early in her career, but has worked in various capacities with a major focus on equity in everything she does. While in graduate school at Columbia University, she conducted her thesis project with a New York-based infectious disease research center studying global trends in coronavirus discovery. After graduating with her MPH in epidemiology and applied biostatistics in May 2017, she moved to Bozeman and worked with a community-based participatory research center as a research project manager. There, she worked on various public health projects in partnership with different tribes across the state of Montana. She has also founded an organization nonprofit to equity in the outdoors and worked at a MT state-wide nonprofit mental health agency.
I don’t know why, but for some reason “studying global trends in coronavirus discovery” jumps out at me.
When Frances Kim isn’t studying global trends in coronavirus discovery, she’s advocating to see black people in the wild places of Montana. Or disabled people. Or really anyone who can make a beautiful diversity rainbow.
I’m not sure if Kim’s efforts include teaching young black men to avoid combining meth and machetes when recreating in the woodland/urban interface of Montana’s rural splendor, but here’s a little taste of her outdoor diversity schtick from a March, 2019 op-ed in the Bozeman Daily Chronicle, titled Conservation community has a diversity problem:
Earthtone Outside MT formed out of a love for Montana’s beautiful landscapes and the desire to elevate the visibility of people of color in the outdoors by promoting historically marginalized populations to have more equitable access to the outdoors. We are entirely organized and led by people of color with intersecting identities and varying backgrounds, abilities, experiences. I, along with the coordinators of Earthtone Outside MT, all based in Bozeman, have been working hard to develop a community for people of color to tackle issues of representation in our beautiful public spaces and #DiversifyBigSky. However, the outdoor industry and conservation community has a history of exclusivity and erasure by promoting and privileging certain identities over others and it disheartens us to see this happen within the community we love and reside in. People of color are too often overlooked and driven away as a result and this needs to change.
After reading this woke trash, I wonder how much cognitive dissonance Frances Kim experiences when confronted with the reality this guy is her boss at JG Research:
I also hope Frances Kim, or ANYONE working at JG Research, don’t feel any misgivings about having clients like USAID and Oxfam.
Here’s a screenshot of the client page:
And here’s what some Oxfam staff were getting into after the Haitian earthquake:
Oxfam has been severely criticised by the Charity Commission for the way it dealt with claims of serious sexual misconduct by its staff in Haiti.
The commission said there was a “culture of poor behaviour” at the charity, and issued it with an official warning over its “mismanagement”.
Last year Oxfam was accused of covering up claims staff sexually exploited victims of the 2010 earthquake.
Oxfam accepted the findings, saying what happened in Haiti was “shameful”.
I don’t know about you, dear reader, but my confidence level is pretty high right now.
Actually, no, after doing some research and evaluation, I have discovered my confidence level is just stoned on Cannabis.
Is it the weekend yet?