Senior Extension Associate,Principal Investigator/Director, Military Projects
Bronfenbrenner Center for Translational Research

1st Fl., Beebe Hall



Brian D. Leidy, Ph.D. is a Senior Extension Associate and the Principal Investigator for the Military Projects in the Bronfenbrenner Center for Translational Research. This work is funded primarily through grants from USDA/NIFA. He originally began work at the Center in 1995 as a Senior Research Associate and the Evaluation Manager for the Military Projects. Prior to this, he worked as a managerial consultant for social service agencies and educational institutions evaluating training, social service programs, and policy initiatives.  From 1989 to 1993, he was a Senior Extension Associate at Cornell University doing training in supervision and administration with adult protective service supervisors and adult home administrators throughout New York State. Prior to coming to Cornell, he worked in public child welfare and mental health programs for children and adolescents. He has held positions as a child protective service caseworker, child protective supervisor, and director of child welfare services. He has also administered children and youth day treatment programs and psychiatric partial hospitalization programs for children and adolescents. He is a member of Pi Alpha Alpha, Honorary Society for Public Affairs and Administration, and the American Evaluation Association.  



US Army Family Advocacy Program – We are currently completing a study of the effect of child abuse treatment on reducing the risk for future child abuse and neglect using a risk assessment protocol pre and post treatment.  We are also conducting a review of the characteristics of families presenting for child abuse treatment and the treatment protocols that are developed to meet their needs.  Previous work involved research reviews of family violence prevention practice and policy, the development of multiple on-line training for professional staff, and outcome evaluations of ongoing programs.


US Army Reserve Headquarters Family Programs - Developing process and outcome metrics for Army Reserve Family Programs to evaluate the reach and effectiveness of their training, information and referral, intake and service planning, and ongoing non-clinical case management.



 Army Reserve Family Programs (ARFP) Needs Assessment Report: This was a summary of needs assessment data collected from Soldiers, Civilian Employees, Family Members, and volunteers across four Commands of the Army Reserve on their need for family support services, where they turn for family support services (ARFP, full service military installation, Veterans Administration, local civilian programs and services), and their assessment of the ARFP services they have used. Responses were analyzed by a variety of demographic and situational characteristics provided by respondents and a report was submitted to Army Reserve Family Programs Headquarters staff in November 2016.

Ready and Resilient Portfolio Capabilities Assessment (R2 PCA): This project was a review of the Army’s Ready and Resilient Portfolio Capabilities Assessment. It entailed a review of the evaluation plan to assess 120 different Army programs in four portfolios that addressed health promotion and risk reduction for Soldiers, Civilian Employees, and their Family Members. It also included a review of the first four implementations of that plan in 2011, 2012, 2013, and 2014. The final report was submitted to the Office of the Assistant Chief of Staff for Installation Management (OACSIM) in March 2016.



 Command Support Study: This study summarizes findings from the most recently iteration of the Command Support Study (2015) and compares the latest findings with those from the first two iteration of this study which were completed in 2010 and 2005. Both of the earlier studies strongly validated the Command Support Model which states that if Commanders are briefed by the Family Advocacy Program (FAP) Manager, they will be more likely to attend the Case Review Committee (CRC) meeting that is held when an incident of child or domestic abuse occurs involving a Soldier under their command. The program logic further states that if the Commander attends the CRC, he or she is more likely to endorse the offender and victim treatment plans, and if the Commander endorses the treatment plans it is more likely that the offender and victim will complete treatment and that the family will not experience a subsequent incident of abuse. This latest iteration of this study confirmed all of the earlier findings except for the relationship between treatment completion and subsequent incidents of abuse. The final report was submitted in May 2016.

Dr. Leidy is the Principal Investigator and Director of the Military Projects in the Bronfenbrenner Center for Translational Research in the New York State College of Human Ecology. Since 1991, the Military Projects have been engaged in many extension and research activities for the United States Army Family Advocacy Program and the Army G9 Family Programs, the United States Marine Corps Community Service Programs, the Army Reserve Family Programs, the United States Air Force Family Advocacy Program, and Military Community and Family Policy at the Department of Defense. The Military Projects have developed outreach and public awareness materials, identified evidence based resources for programs and services, developed training and educational materials for professional development, and conducted needs assessment and program evaluation during the 25 years they have been working with military family support programs. 

In 2016, the Military Projects were engaged in conducting three studies for the Army Family Advocacy Program. The studies include an evaluation of the role of Command support in child and spouse abuse cases, and two efficacy studies of the services provided to victims of domestic abuse through the Victim Advocacy Program and child abuse and neglect treatment services provided by the Medical Command Social Work Services.  The Command Support Study and the Victim Advocacy Study were both completed in 2016.

In 2016, the Military Projects continued their work with the Army Reserve Family Programs with the two main areas of support helping obtain community input for Family Programs needs assessment and the developing outcome metrics for the training and outreach programs and services they offer.  This work was being done in partnership with Cornell’s Office for Research on Evaluation. 

In 2016, the Military Projects also completed their work with the Office of Community Support for Military Families with Special Needs and submitted a final report on the development of a set of common process and outcome metrics that were piloted at two locations in each branch of the military.

Also completed in 2016 was the review of the Army Ready and Resilient Portfolios Capabilities Assessment which is the program evaluation the Army has carried out for the last four years on up to 120 programs delivered by six different Army proponents that address health and well-being promotion and suicide prevention.



Army Family Advocacy Program: The newest project for the Army Family Advocacy Program is the Victim Advocacy Program Self-Guided TutorialThese resources will be used for staff development in the Victim Advocacy Program.

Army Reserve Headquarters Family Programs: We completed the development of the needs assessment survey instrument and in the coming year we anticipate assisting the various Commands of the Army Reserve  with needs assessment using the survey instrument we developed to obtain community input about their Family Programs. The survey ask Reserve soldiers and family members to describe what services the needed in the previous year, which military or civilian services they used, the quality of the military services they used, and what services they anticipated needing in the year to come. Needs assessment will be carried out by individual commands in preparation for the Army Reserve Family Programs tri-annual accreditation process.

1991 Ph.D., Human Service Studies, Cornell University, Ithaca, NY
1985 Master of Public Administration, Marywood College, Scranton, PA.
1972 Bachelor of Arts, Psychology, Mansfield State University, Mansfield, PA.

 As the Principal Investigator and Director for the Military Projects in the Bronfenbrenner Center for Translational Research, Dr. Leidy has the overall administrative responsibility for the Military Projects including proposal and grant preparation, fiscal management, hiring and supervising staff, and administrative oversight of all the project work. In 2016, he provided the primary supervision for all the projects’ program evaluation and research activities which included three research studies for the Army Family Advocacy Program, a project assisting the Department of Defense Exceptional Family Member Program with the development of common process and outcome metrics to be used across the four Services, the development of a survey instrument to gather community input for needs assessment for Army Reserve Family Programs (ARFP) and a set of outcome metrics to evaluate ARFP training and outreach programs for Reserve soldiers and their families, and a review of the program evaluation the Army has carried out for the last four years on up to 120 programs delivered by six different Army proponents that address health and well-being promotion and suicide prevention.  Dr. Leidy has taken a major role in helping client organizations clarify their evaluation and research goals and objectives, designing evaluation and research projects to meet those needs, and leading the team of Cornell and client organization staff in data collection, analysis, and interpretation of findings.   


In 2016, Dr Leidy completed his second year and started his third year providing evaluation support for the Inclusive Fitness Project, a study being carried out in ILR that looks at the capacity of fitness programs to include individuals with disabilities, particularly developmental disabilities. He also speaks at conferences and workshops about military and veteran families and military family support programs. 

View all people