About Us

Infrastructure to Connect

About Us

Infrastructure to Connect

Home / About

Home / About

Infrastructure to Connect

A bridge metaphor is frequently used to describe attempts to connect the disparate worlds of research and policy. A trestle is a brace that supports a connecting structure, which we believe rests on linking people in service of the public good.


Effective policies are critical for delivering on government officials’ promise to make prudent decisions for the common good. Scientific research yields a return on investment if it improves lives. Harnessing research and data about policy problems and solutions has the power to represent thousands of voices and provide lasting benefit to our communities.


TrestleLink provides nonpartisan services that expand and develop infrastructure to connect research and policy communities. This includes proven, politically-neutral research translation models that increase the value of research for policymakers and efficient pathways for scholars to engage legislatures without lobbying.


We harness evidence for action as a throughline critical to our mission. The field studying how policymakers use research evidence was shaped by Carol Weiss and Nathan Caplan who wrote in 1979 that policymakers’ use of research evidence was hindered by a lack of interpersonal connections with researchers despite the promise of research for shaping how policymakers think about timely and critical issues.

Inspired by this fundamental research, Theodora Ooms created the Family Impact Seminar model in 1988, which was subsequently brought to a national scale under Karen Bogenschneider’s fearless leadership. The Research-to-Policy Collaboration model was similarly inspired by theoretical research and launched in 2015 by Taylor Scott and Max Crowley within the National Prevention Science Coalition. Following an experimental trial that demonstrated the value of the RPC model for lawmakers, TrestleLink was created as a home for expanding the availability of infrastructure that connects researchers and policymakers and officially incorporated on June 16, 2021.

Core Principles

Nonpartisan Honest Brokerage

We do not lobby – We adapt to policymakers’ existing policy priorities by providing research evidence on the consequences of various policy options.

Researcher-Policymaker Partnerships

Making evidence more useable requires relationships to facilitate the sharing of mutual expertise.

Timely and Relevant Evidence

Making policies more effective whenever opportunity windows open.

Face-to-Face Dialogue

Brainstorming, finding common ground, and talking through implications can foster mutually beneficial partnerships between policymakers and researchers.

High-Quality Communication

Succinctly clarifying the bottom line without jargon.

Continuous Quality Improvement

We harness an internal data infrastructure to improve research translation practice, public service, and policymaking.


TrestleLink is currently operated by a dedicated Board of Directors and delivers its services via contracts with skilled consultants.


Taylor Scott, PhD

Taylor Scott, PhD Directs the Research Translation Platform in Penn State’s Evidence-to-Impact Collaborative.


Max Crowley, PhD

Max Crowley, PhD directs the Evidence-to-Impact Collaboration as a Professor of Human Development, Family Studies, and Public Policy at Penn State.


Karen Bogenschneider, PhD

Karen Bogenschneider, PhD is the Former Director of the Family Impact Institute and Professor Emeritus of Human Ecology at the University of Wisconsin–Madison.


Tom Hall, PhD

Tom Hall was one of the inaugural members of the 2023 Kauffman Foundation’s Research-to-Policy Ambassador program, and serves as Associate Professor of Finance and Economics at Christopher Newport University.


Dr. Apryl Alexander, PsyD

Dr. Apryl Alexander, PsyD, is the Director of the UNC Charlotte Violence Prevention Center, as well as the Metrolina Distinguished Scholar of Health and Public Policy and Associate Professor at UNC Charlotte.


Itzhak Yanovitzky, PhD

Itzhak Yanovitzky, PhD is Professor of Communication and Public Health at Rutgers University. He is an expert in the areas of behavior change communication, public policymaking, translational research, and program evaluation.


Lauren Supplee, PhD

Dr. Lauren Supplee is a senior leader of a federal research, evaluation and data office. Previously, she worked as a senior program officer at the William T. Grant Foundation, leading initiatives to approaches for improving the use of research evidence in policy and practice, as well as the institutional challenge grants program. 


Ryan Martin

Ryan is the Deputy Director of the National Governors Association’s Center for Best Practices, where he assists in the Center’s work to help states develop effective solutions to public policy challenges. Previously, Ryan spent 10 years working with members of the U.S. House Committee on Ways and Means and U.S. Senate Finance Committee to develop and advance legislation to reduce poverty, protect children, improve maternal and child health, and ensure social programs achieve results.

Get Started

To contact us, please complete the contact form below. We look forward to answering any questions you may have and working with you in the future.