Callie Freitag

Ph.D. Candidate
Callie Freitag is a mixed-methods policy researcher whose work focuses on policies that address poverty and inequality among older adults and people with disabilities. Her most recent published report, co-authored with an interdisciplinary team of UW researchers, examines the early effects of the COVID-19 pandemic on senior services organizations in Washington state and the populations they serve.

Callie's dissertation explores the question "What precedes poverty in later life?" The first chapter looks at the extent to which labor force exits among older workers are associated with income changes and entries into poverty and material hardship, and how those relationships have changed during the pandemic. The second chapter uses nationally representative qualitative interview data from the American Voices Project to explore older adults' experiences of poverty and material hardship, the life events that lead to these experiences, and the strategies older adults use to make ends meet. The third chapter draws on theories from critical disability studies and critical gerontology to motivate an examination of longitudinal patterns and predictors of SSI use across Washington State using novel administrative data. Callie's work has been supported by the UW Retirement Association and the Social Security Administration's Retirement and Disability Research Consortium.

Callie began the Ph.D. program at the Evans School of Public Policy and Governance in 2018 and is a trainee with the Center for Studies in Demography and Ecology. Prior to the program, Callie spent three years as policy analyst in Sacramento, California, most recently for the County Welfare Directors Association of California (CWDA). At CWDA, Callie led the advocacy efforts to establish Home Safe, a grant program to prevent homelessness among older adults who have experienced abuse and neglect. Prior to her advocacy role, she worked at the nonpartisan Legislative Analyst's Office in California and in the budget office of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services in Washington, D.C.

M.S. Public Policy and Management, University of Washington, 2021
M.A. Social Service Administration, University of Chicago, 2015
B.S. Mathematics, The George Washington University, 2012
Income Support Policy
Aging, Disability, and the Life Course
Poverty and Inequality
Mixed-Methods Policy Analysis
Social Demography

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