The Institute for Veterans and Military Families at Syracuse University (IVMF) has appointed Vivian Greentree, Ph.D., Director of Research and Policy for Blue Star Families (BSF), as a Senior Research Fellow of the IVMF.
Greentree’s research expertise is focused on public policy, military families, community engagement, and veterans’ issues. Greentree’s research on civic engagement and public policy has been published in Public Administration Review and American Review of Politics, and also routinely highlighted by media outlets that include the Atlanta-Journal Constitution, PBS’s This Emotional Life, and the Department of Defense’s Family Matters Blog.
“This is a wonderful opportunity to synergize efforts around utilizing research and data to support our military community and inform our policy-makers. I’m honored to be given this opportunity by IVMF and eager to begin,” says Greentree.
As an IVMF Fellow, Greentree will have the opportunity to leverage the IVMF’s resources and national platform to develop original research and disseminate her scholarly work across the academic and stakeholder communities focused on the social, economic, and policy concerns impacting veterans and military families. She will also play a critical role in advising the IVMF leadership team, with regard to the institute’s research and programmatic agenda.
“We are excited to have a world-class scholar and thought leader like Vivian join the IVMF team as a research fellow. As the institute moves toward developing a more defined and purposeful agenda of research and programming focused on military families, Vivian’s expertise will play a critical role with regard to informing that effort,” says Mike Haynie, IVMF executive director and founder.
In 2008, Greentree played a central role in founding BSF, a national nonprofit organization focused on supporting, connecting, and empowering military families across the globe. Today, BSF has a membership that exceeds 45,000 families that represent all ranks and services, including the National Guard and Reserve. As the Director of Research and Policy at BSF, Greentree not only coordinates the organization’s research agenda, but also promotes and conducts policy training for community organizations, lawmakers, and other interested stakeholder groups related to military family and community issues.
Greentree helped to create and now oversees BSF’s groundbreaking Military Family Lifestyle Survey, currently in its fourth iteration, which examines a broad spectrum of issues affecting modern-day military families. The 2010 survey was referenced in Presidential Directive-9 “Strengthening Our Military Families,” the precursor to the Joining Forces initiative. Greentree also led BSF’s efforts to develop a toolkit designed to support military family members through the stages of deployment and reintegration. This toolkit, “Everyone Serves: A Handbook for Family and Friends of Service Members During Pre-deployment, Deployment and Reintegration,” addresses the full spectrum of emotions that accompany a military deployment for the family and friends of service members.
Before joining BSF, Vivian served as a Supply Corps officer in the U.S. Navy, both on active duty and in the Reserves. After completing her military service, she used her G.I. Bill to earn her Ph.D. in public administration and urban policy from Old Dominion University. Greentree also holds a master’s degree from the University of Maryland University College and undergraduate degrees in journalism and political science from the University of Georgia. In 2012, Greentree was named a Daily Point of Light by the Points of Light Institute, and a “Top 40 Under 40” by the University of Georgia’s alumni association.
A proud military spouse, Greentree is married to a naval officer who is currently on his fifth deployment in their eleven-year marriage. They have two little boys, ages 9 and 6.