Public Policy Institute
Since joining the Center for Urban Policy and the Environment, now a part of the IU Public Policy Institute, as a policy analyst in October 1992, Drew Klacik's principal areas of work have included economic development, state and local taxation, and affordable housing and neighborhood development policy. Much of his work is focused on Indiana and trying to understand how these issues interact and affect the quality of life and economic vitality of metropolitan areas.
Prior to joining the Institute, Klacik was a principal planner for the city of Indianapolis Division of Economic Development. His work projects included the development of Circle Centre Mall, the attraction of the United Airlines maintenance facility to Indianapolis, the designation of the Indianapolis Enterprise Zone, the Eli Lilly Corporate Center and Harding Street expansions, and retention of the Fort Harrison Finance Center.
He earned his bachelor's from Purdue University and holds a master of urban and regional planning from Ball State University.
Years with Indiana University: 23 years
Laura Littlepage, a senior researcher with the IU Public Policy Institute, is also a member of the faculty at the School of Public and Environmental Affairs and Lilly School of Philanthropy at IUPUI.
Previous projects have included serving as co-investigator of several national evaluations for the Points of Light Foundation. She has designed and conducted evaluations of all stages of programs, from needs assessments to process evaluations to outcome evaluations for clients that include several state and city agencies as well as several nonprofits.
Littlepage is the principal author of numerous institute publications and several journal articles, and she has presented her work at national and international meetings and conferences. She holds a master of public affairs degree from New York University and a bachelor’s degree in public affairs from the School of Public and Environmental Affairs at IU Bloomington.
Jamie L. Palmer, AICP, is a professional planner and researcher. She joined the Center for Urban Policy and the Environment, now part of the Institute, in May 1993. In addition to her work at the IU Public Policy Institute, Palmer serves as the Director for the Indiana Advisory Commission on Intergovernmental Relations. She manages the commission's research and periodic surveys of local governments. Most recently, the advisory commission studied 911 services and made recommendations to the Indiana General Assembly.
Palmer's research is focused largely on state and local government, land use, and water infrastructure issues. In 2007, she served as the project manager for the Indiana Commission on Local Government Reform. Led by former Governor Kernan and Chief Justice Shepard, the commission released its recommendations in December 2007. She has provided information and technical assistance to legislators and various groups interested in this work. In 2009-10, Palmer led a study of state structural and administrative court reform completed for the Indiana Supreme Court, Division of State Court Administration and the Strategic Planning Committee of the Indiana Judicial Center.
Palmer holds a bachelor's degree in political science and a Master of Planning degree from Indiana University. Palmer is a member of the American Institute of Certified Planners. She is a member of the board of the Indiana Chapter of the American Planning Association. She is chair of both the Indiana Land Use Consortium and the Indiana Rural Wastewater Task Force.
Years with Indiana University: 22 years
Dona Sapp joined the IU Public Policy Institute as a senior policy analyst in 2000, working primarily within the Center for Urban Policy and the Environment, which is now a part of the institute. During her tenure, she has assisted government agencies and nonprofit organizations with program evaluations, survey design and analysis (including web-based surveys), and GIS-based spatial analysis. Sapp also served as chief administrative officer from 2005 to early 2007, and continues to assist with the Institute's administrative functions, including proposal development, research compliance with university human subjects' procedures, and web-content updates.
As project manager on the annual traffic safety research project with the Indiana Criminal Justice Institute, she oversees the Institute's traffic safety research teams' analyses of Indiana motor vehicle crash data and the production of a series of annual publications on various aspects of traffic collisions, including alcohol-related crashes, light and large trucks, dangerous driving, children, motorcycles, occupant protection, and drivers.
Sapp also serves as a member of the Indiana Traffic Records Coordinating Committee. In her role, Sapp is responsible for improving Indiana traffic-related data collection and sharing and developing linkages between stakeholder data sets that can be used to support efforts to reduce death and injury on Indiana roadways. Her focus over the past few years has been in criminal justice and public safety. However, Sapp has worked on several Quality of Life projects, including arts and culture, housing and community development, and land use and environment.
Prior to joining the Institute, Sapp served as the Director of Planning to Indianapolis Public Schools, where she was responsible for enrollment projections and worked with district officials, school administrators, parents, and community groups to create and implement plans for school redistr11icting.
Sapp holds a Master of Planning degree and a bachelor's degree in science from the School of Public and Environmental Affairs at IUPUI.
Years with Indiana University: 20 years
Since joining the IU Public Policy Institute (formerly Center for Urban Policy and the Environment) in 2000, Rachel Thelin has assisted a variety of nonprofit organizations and governmental agencies with program evaluation, survey design and implementation (including online surveys), and primary and secondary data collection and analysis. She has applied her research skills in a number of areas, including traffic safety, quality of life issues, criminal justice program assessment, reentry program evaluation, the impact of faith-based organizations, and civic literacy.
Agencies and organizations she has worked with while at the Institute include the Indiana Criminal Justice Institute, Indiana Department of Education, Project Safe Neighborhoods, City of Indianapolis, Indiana Latino Institute, Ford Foundation, Indy Reads, and Young Audiences.
Thelin holds a bachelor’s degree in sociology from Goshen College and a master's degree in international studies from the University of Denver.
Years with Indiana University: 15 years
Joti Kaur began working for the Institute as a Graduate Research Assistant in January 2015 prior to becoming a Program Analyst. Since joining the Institute, Joti has contributed to a number of projects, including the two-year Thriving Communities, Thriving State project, the annual Homeless Count, Crime in Indianapolis: Trends, Sources, and Opportunities for Change, and many more. She has assisted staff with a range of services, from spatial and statistical analyses to data management and collection.
Joti holds a Bachelor of Science in Public Safety Management and a Master of Science in Criminal Justice and Public Safety, both from the School of Public and Environmental Affairs at IUPUI.
Katie Bailey joined the IU Public Policy Institute in January 2017 as a Program Analyst. Her role involves working with Institute clients to conduct qualitative and quantitative research--including data and spatial analysis--and assisting in project management.
Prior to joining the Institute, Katie worked as a Research Analyst for the Indiana Department of Child Services where she evaluated the effectiveness of child welfare programs and services. Katie also spent a summer in 2014 interning for the National Immigration Forum in Washington, D.C., examining and supporting immigration advocacy efforts.
Katie holds a Bachelor of Arts in Political Science and International Studies from Saint Louis University and a Master of Public Affairs in Policy Analysis from the School of Public and Environmental Affairs at IU Bloomington.