Faculty and Staff

Director: Michael J. Scicchitano, Ph.D.

Picture of Dr. Michael ScicchitanoMichael J. Scicchitano is an Associate Professor of Political Science and the Director of the Florida Survey Research Center (FSRC) at the University of Florida. As Director of the FSRC he has implemented hundreds of survey research and program evaluation projects in the past ten years including dozens of projects for the public sector. He has extensive knowledge of the implementation of telephone, mail, and in-person surveys, including expertise in survey design, sampling, and data analysis.

Dr. Scicchitano earned a BA in Political Science and a Masters in Public Administration from Pennsylvania State University. He received his Ph.D. in Political Science from the University of Georgia in 1984. Since 1984 he has been on the faculty at West Virginia University, the University of Connecticut and the University of Florida. In addition to his work with the FSRC, he is director of the Masters Program in Public Administration for the Department of Political Science. He is also Editor of State and Local Government Review, which is the official journal for American Society for Public Administration’s section on intergovernmental management. His research on issues related to public policy and public affairs has been published in Journal of Politics, Publius, Legislative Studies Quarterly, Policy Studies Journal, Administration and Society and many others. He has taught courses on public budgeting, computer applications, and public policy and administration to graduate and undergraduate students at the University of Florida.

Research Director: Tracy L. Johns, Ph.D.

Picture of Dr. Tracy JohnsTracy Johns holds a special faculty appointment as an ‘Assistant In’ in Political Science and is the Research Director at the Florida Survey Research Center (FSRC) at the University of Florida. Dr. Johns earned a B.A. and M.A. in Sociology from the University of Florida, and completed her Ph.D. in Sociology at the University of Florida in 2001. Dr. Johns has published in journals such as Journal of Research in Crime and Delinquency and Security Journal, and presented papers on a variety of topics, including: crime and deviance on college campuses, shoplifting, disaggregated homicide results, racism in America, and survey methodology. She has taught courses in data analysis, research methods, computer applications, deviant behavior, and general sociology at the University of Florida.

As Research Director of the FSRC, she has designed and overseen the implementation of hundreds of research projects. Dr. Johns is responsible for the creation and design of survey instruments and focus group protocols; population sampling; managing survey implementation; overseeing the collection of quantitative and qualitative data; conducting and supervising data analysis; and, writing reports that present the results of research conducted by the FSRC. She has an extensive background in conducting mail, telephone, and in-person surveys and focus groups, as well as secondary data analysis and program evaluations.

Director of Field Research: Kenneth K. Lowman, Ph.D.

Dr. Lowman received his B.S. in Psychology, M.A. in Counselor Education and Ph.D. in Higher Education from the University of Florida. He was Program Evaluator and Coordinator for Partnership Development, 21st CCLC at the University of Florida College of Health and Human Performance from April 2007 to November 2009. He was Principal Investigator of The EdVenture Group Research Grant for the Department of Tourism and Sports Management at the University of Florida from August, 2007 to April, 2009. Dr. Lowman has served in various positions for Santa Fe College in Gainesville, Florida, and as Interim Executive Director of The American Red Cross of North Central Florida from May 2004 to August 2004.

Dr. Lowman possesses extensive supervisory field research experience. He has successfully managed many field research projects including resident surveys and intercept polling for the Florida Survey Research Center.  This includes supervision of household in-person surveys for an evaluation of the Palm Beach Weed and Seed Program; household in-person surveys of neighborhoods for Lee County FL; intercept surveys of fishermen at Lake Charles, LA for CH2MHill; and, a year- long intercept survey of visitors to Marion County, FL, in conjunction with the UF Center for Tourism Research and Development. Dr. Lowman has earned a reputation for collecting verifiable data that produces reliable results and accurate information.

Research Coordinator: Janet G. Heffner

Janet Heffner is the Research Coordinator at the Florida Survey Research Center at the University of Florida (FSRC). As Research Coordinator she is responsible for the implementation of surveys and focus groups. This includes training interviewers, coding and testing survey instruments, supervising the data collection process, checking data and performing data analysis.

Janet Heffner earned her B.A. in Political Science from Grove City College in Pennsylvania and her M.A. in Political Science with a Certificate in Public Affairs from the University of Florida in 2002. She had been a secondary social studies teacher for 18 years. She also served as Dean of Students at Palmer Preparatory School in Tampa, FL and Director of Student Activities at Saddlebrook Preparatory School in Wesley Chapel, FL.

Research Associate: Read Hayes, Ph.D., CPP

Read Hayes has conducted independent research and consulting since 1984. A graduate of the University of Florida (B.A.), and the University of Leicester (Ph.D.), Read has completed the ASIS Assets Protection I, II and III courses, the Crime Analysis & Mapping, Crime Intelligence, and Criminal Profiling course series, and the Kinesic, John E. Reid, and Wicklander and Zulawski interview courses. He has over 30 years hands-on crime and loss control experience and is a Certified Protection Professional (CPP), Certified Security Trainer (CST) and a Certified Fraud Examiner (CFE) and has provided forensic/expert support to companies, attorneys, and insurance groups nationwide. Dr. Hayes’ research focus includes supply chain protection and premises security.

Dr. Hayes has been quoted in and had articles published in business, security, and refereed academic journals around the world and is a frequent speaker before national associations and corporations. He is the author of Retail Security & Loss Prevention published by Butterworth/Heinemann Publishing, Inc., Retail Security and Loss Prevention, 2nd Edition, Macmillan Publishing, Shoplifting Control and Employee Theft Control. Read also co-authors and consults for the annual University of Florida National Retail Security Survey, the National Shopping Center Security Report and the Retail Theft Trends Report.

Senior Research Associate: Anne Williamson, Ph.D.

Anne Williamson

Anne Williamson

Dr. Anne R. Williamson is an expert in Public Sector Research. She has served as Director of the Office of Research & Analysis for the Georgia Department of Community Affairs. She also has experience as the Associate Director of the Shimberg Center for Affordable Housing at the University of Florida. Her expertise covers a wide range of issues, including HOPE VI, the Low Income Housing Tax Credit and other multifamily housing programs, Housing Choice Vouchers, neighborhood revitalization, Fair Housing choice, collaborative networks, strategic planning in public and nonprofit organizations, and other administrative and policy topics. Her involvement in these activities spans more than 25 years.

Dr. Williamson regularly presents papers at national conferences such as the Urban Affairs Association, the Association for Budgeting and Financial Management, the American Society for Public Administration and the American Political Science Association. Her research on housing and community issues has been published in Urban Affairs Review, International Journal of Public Administration, Housing and Society, Journal of Poverty, The Social Science Journal, and Journal of Community Practice. She has written more than 20 monographs and reports dealing with housing and community issues. She has also provided expert testimony in U. S. Federal Court on Fair Housing issues and is an expert in the preparation of the federal Analysis of Impediments to Fair Housing Choice.