Chair of Department of African American Studies
Associate Professor of African American Studies & Sociology
African American Studies
1860 S. Campus Dr.
Evanston, IL 60208-2209
Department of Sociology
1810 Chicago Avenue
Evanston, IL 60208
Phone: 847-491-4805 (AFAM), 847-467-7768 (Soc)
formal organizations (non-profit & government)
Race, class, and gender
AFAM 101-6 Freshman Seminar: Race, Poverty, and Public Policy in America (Click here to view syllabus)
AFAM 215 Introduction to Black Political and Social Life
Ph.D. Sociology, Harvard University, June 2003
M.A. Sociology, Harvard University, June 2000
B.A. Multi/Interdisciplinary Studies (sociology, economics, & education), Spelman College, May 1996
Health, Hardship, and Renewal: A Study of Economic Survival Strategies Among Women Living with HIV/AIDS
This study explores the economic and social experiences of a racially, ethnically, and socioeconomically diverse group of Chicago-area women living with Human Immunodeficiency Virus (HIV). By exploring the acquisition and utilization of economic resources, the study seeks to specify some of the ways in which HIV/AIDS (Acquired Immune Deficiency Syndrome) impacts women's daily living, health management strategies, and social well-being. The research also includes an examination of local AIDS Service Providers to determine how these organizations are responding to the financial challenges of women living with HIV/AIDS. This project is funded by the National Science Foundation and the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation. Data collection for this project is currently underway.
The New Welfare Bureaucrats: Entanglements of Race, Class, and Policy Reform
This is an ethnographic analysis of the implementation of welfare reform on the front lines of service delivery. It investigates how the professional, racial, class, and community identities of welfare caseworkers and supervisors shape the implementation of policy and other organizational dynamics. Study findings indicate that while welfare reform changed the job descriptions of front-line staff members (from eligibility-compliance claims processors to welfare-to-work caseworkers), these agencies were largely unable to undertake the steps necessary to change employees' professional identities. As a result, welfare reform did not unfold as many policy makers had imagined it, and a piecemeal system of service-delivery is now underway. While we have witnessed caseload reductions and increased work among low-income mothers, inequalities abound in how clients receive the services most likely to influence their abilities to sustain economic self-sufficiency. This incomplete revolution has also solidified many of the long-standing tensions around race, class, and community belonging in these offices in ways that have direct and indirect effects on service-delivery and other organizational dynamics. The book, The New Welfare Bureaucrats: Entanglements of Race, Class, and Policy Reform, was released in 2009 by the University of Chicago Press. In order to complete this project, Dr. Watkins-Hayes received support from The National Science Foundation (Grant No. 0512018), The Brookings Institution, and the National Poverty Center at the University of Michigan – Ann Arbor.
Finalist, C. Wright Mills Book Award, Society for the Study of Social Problems, 2009.
National Science Foundation Early CAREER Award. $411,473. Funding period: 9/1/09-8/31/14.
Robert Wood Johnson Foundation Investigator Award in Health Policy Research. $323,526. Funding period: 7/1/09-6/30/14.
National Science Foundation Post-Doctoral Fellowship, 2005-06 & 2007-08 (2-year award served consecutively)
Center for AIDS Prevention Studies, HIV-Prevention Research in Minority Communities Collaborative Program Pilot Study Grant, 2004-2008
Department of African American Studies Distinguished Service Award, Northwestern University, 2010
Honoree, YWomen Leadership Awards, YWCA Evanston/North Shore, 2010
Honoree, Chicago's Top 40 Game Changers Under 40, Ariel Investments and WVON Urban Business Roundtable, 2010
Honoree, New Vision of Hope Foundation Annual HIV/AIDS Benefit Gala, 2010
Blue Diamond Woman of Excellence, Spelman College National Alumnae Association, Chicago Chapter, 2009
Department of African American Studies Teaching Award, Northwestern University, 2004, 2007
Watkins-Hayes, Celeste. 2009 The New Welfare Bureaucrats: Entanglements of Race, Class, and Policy Reform. Chicago: The University of Chicago Press.
Articles and Book Chapters
Watkins-Hayes, Celeste, Courtney Patterson, and Amanda Armour. 2011. "Precious: Black Women, Neighborhood HIV/AIDS Risk, and Institutional Buffers." The DuBois Review 8(1): 229-240.
Watkins-Hayes, Celeste. 2011. "Race, Respect, and Red Tape: Inside the Black Box of Racially Representative Bureaucracies." Journal of Public Administration Research and Theory 21: i233-i251.
-Reprinted: Work and the Welfare State: The Politics and Management of Policy Change. Evelyn Brodkin and Greg Marston (Editors). Washington, DC: Georgetown University Press. Expected 2012.
Watkins-Hayes, Celeste. 2009 "Race-ing the Bootstrap Climb: Black and Latino Bureaucrats in Post-Reform Welfare Offices." Social Problems. 56(2): 285-310
Watkins-Hayes, Celeste. 2009 "Human Services as 'Race Work'? Historical Lessons and Contemporary Challenges of Black Providers." In Human Services as Complex Organizations, 2nd edition. Yeheskel Hasenfeld (Editor). Sage Publications.
Watkins-Hayes, Celeste. 2008 "The Social and Economic Context of Black Women Living with HIV/AIDS in the US: Implications for Research." In Sex, Power, and Taboo: Gender and HIV in the Caribbean and Beyond. Rhoda Reddock, Sandra Reid, Dianne Douglas, and Dorothy Roberts (Editors). Kingston, Jamaica: Ian Randle Publishers.
Domínguez, Silvia and Celeste Watkins. 2003. "Creating Networks for Survival and Mobility: Social Capital Among African-American and Latin-American Low-Income Mothers." Social Problems. 50(1): 111-135.
-Awards: Finalist, Rosabeth Moss Kanter Award for Excellence in Work-Family Research, Center for Families at Purdue University and the Boston College Center for Work and Family, 2005. Honorable Mention, Section on Race, Gender, and Class Distinguished Contribution to Scholarship Article Award, American Sociological Association, 2005.
Watkins, Celeste. 2001. "A Tale of Two Classes: Socio-Economic Inequality Among African-Americans Under 35." The State of Black America 2001. New York: National Urban League.
Watkins, Celeste. 2000. "When a Stumble is Not a Fall: Recovering from Employment Setbacks in the Welfare to Work Transition." Harvard Journal of African American Public Policy. 6(1): 63-84.
Trustee, Spelman College Board of Trustees, 2009-present
Advisory Editor, Social Problems, 2011-present
Secretary-Treasurer, Community and Urban Sociology Section, American Sociological Association, 2008-2011
Member, National Advisory Board, Women's Research and Resource Center, Spelman College, 2008–present
Member, Power Girls Advisory and Mentoring Council, Johnnetta B. Cole Global Diversity & Inclusion Institute, Bennett College for Women, 2007–2011
Member, Board of Directors, Test Positive Aware Network, an HIV/AIDS service and advocacy organization, 2007–2010
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