Robert Travis Scott
Robert Travis Scott became President of PAR in January 2011. He has 30 years of experience dealing with public policy issues as a journalist, researcher, commentator, analyst and nonprofit manager. His work has received national and regional recognition through numerous awards for investigative reporting projects, business coverage and writing.
Prior to joining PAR, Mr. Scott was based in Baton Rouge for eight years as Capital Bureau Chief for The Times-Picayune, the New Orleans metropolitan newspaper. He was a contributor of stories and videos to its associated web site, Nola.com. He previously served as Editor of the prize-winning Money section for the Picayune and as a business editor and columnist for The Greenville News in South Carolina. In the 1980s he was an Associate Director and Editor for a bipartisan, nonprofit organization in Washington, D.C., dealing with nuclear arms control. He has lived in Italy and Guatemala.
Mr. Scott is an honors graduate of the University of South Carolina’s Department of Government and International Studies, where he was named outstanding senior. He has a certificate in international studies from the Johns Hopkins School of Advanced International Studies – Bologna Center in Italy.
Steven Procopio, Ph.D.
Steven Procopio joined the Public Affairs Research Council of Louisiana after serving as Chief of Staff at the Louisiana Division of Administration where he worked on a number of fiscal and budgeting issues. Prior to working at the Division, Dr. Procopio was the Director of Research and Accountability for former Lt. Gov. Mitch Landrieu. In that role he was responsible for research on Louisiana’s cultural economy and legislative initiatives.
Dr. Procopio is also the original Director of the Louisiana State University Public Policy Research Lab where he worked on a variety of policy issues for state agencies, nonprofits and academic researchers.
Steven is an Alexandria native with undergraduate and graduate degrees in Political Science from LSU. His doctorate in Political Science is from Indiana University. He has expertise in statistical techniques, mathematical modeling and survey analysis.
Steven is a former university instructor and lecturer who has produced a number of professional papers and publications in academic journals. For his work with the Student Government Association on hurricane response efforts, he earned the 2005-2006 LSU SGA Faculty of the Year Service Award.
Research Project Director
Criketa Matlock joined PAR as the Research Project Director to further develop the growing portfolio of PAR’s policy and research agenda. She is a highly talented and resourceful professional with broad based experience in state, legislative, and federal policy research; as well as in program development and administrative support.
Criketa comes to PAR from the Orleans Public Education Network (OPEN), a New Orleans-based nonprofit, where she served as the Policy and Research Analyst. In that role she was responsible for providing strategic leadership in guiding and crafting OPEN’s policy agenda and conducting research and analysis on educational issues, local, state and federal laws, and the state’s Board of Elementary and Secondary Education policies to develop proposed legislation impacting education.
She brings several years of experience in public policy, external relations and research with other employers such as Public Affairs Research Council of Louisiana (PAR) as a policy intern and Girl Scouts of the USA Public Policy and Advocacy office in Washington, D.C. Prior positions include: Government Affairs Specialist/Administrative Assistant at Professional Insurance Agents of Louisiana and Site Coordinator of Capitol Middle School (Baton Rouge, LA) at Applied Literacy and Learning, host of the 21st Century Community Learning Center Program.
Criketa holds a Bachelor of Arts degree in Political Science from Southern University A&M College in Baton Rouge, LA. She also holds a Master’s of Public Administration in public policy from Louisiana State University (LSU). She is very committed to a career in public interest.
Susan Mintz Kantrow
Director of Development
Susan Mintz Kantrow has been Director of Development for PAR since 1999. Prior positions include: Director of Development and Public Affairs, Odyssey House, Louisiana (New Orleans); Development Director, Lake Pontchartrain Basin Foundation (New Orleans); and Coordinator of Volunteer Services and Director of the Parkway Partners Program, New Orleans Parkway and Park Commission.
Ms. Kantrow served as Vice- President of the Greater New Orleans Chapter of the Association of Fundraising Executives (AFP) and was named Outstanding Fundraising Executive by the Greater New Orleans Chapter. She was also named a YWCA Role Model and a Young Leadership Council Role Model. She served as President of the Greater Baton Rouge Chapter of AFP and received the Brother Donnan Berry Award from the Greater Baton Rouge Chapter. She is a member of the Planned Giving Council of Greater Baton Rouge, Rotary Club of Baton Rouge and Capital Area Network.
Ms. Kantrow is a Phi Beta Kappa graduate of Newcomb College of Tulane University and has attended numerous professional seminars and workshops, including a symposium on public/private partnerships at Harvard’s John F. Kennedy School of Government.
Julie Mascarella serves as office manager and oversees various programs and projects. She is responsible for organizing PAR’s annual conference and supervises PAR’s standing committees. She also manages PAR’s database of over 3,500 members.
In addition, Ms. Mascarella serves as bookkeeper and publications manager. She maintains records for all project grants as well as PAR’s financial records. She is also responsible for the final layout of all PAR publications.
Ms. Mascarella has over 25 years in various office management roles prior to joining PAR in 2004. Additionally, she worked with several professional associations in administering and coordinating their membership management, administrative and event-planning projects.
Connie McClendon joined the PAR staff in 1993. She serves as Administrative Assistant and is responsible for maintaining PAR’s database, which consists of over 3,500 members throughout the state. In addition, she is responsible for all membership correspondence and billing. Ms. McClendon also assists with PAR’s publication orders and bulk mailings.
Consultant for Healthcare Research
Don Gregory is a native of Louisiana and graduated from Louisiana Tech University in 1973 with B.S. in Management. He was a career employee with over 36 years of service to the Department of Health and Hospitals (DHH). He retired from the position of Medicaid Director on June 30, 2012. Previously he was appointed to the position of Deputy Assistant Secretary in the Office of Aging and Adult Services. Prior to this, he served in several positions within Medicaid including among others Deputy Medicaid Director, Director of Field Operations and as the Program Integrity Section Chief for ten years.
In addition to his duties at DHH, Mr. Gregory served for nine years as chairman to the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services’ (CMS) Fraud and Abuse Control Technical Advisory Group (TAG), having been appointed to this position by the National Association of State Medicaid Directors. This TAG exists to advise the Medicaid directors and CMS on matters related to fraud and abuse control.
Mr. Gregory is the past President of the National Association of Program Integrity Officials, now named the National Association for Medicaid Program Integrity (NAMPI). This is a national association of state Medicaid program integrity officials.
He has been married for 40 years to the former Vickie Wyatt. They reside in Baton Rouge and have two grown daughters, Angela and Julie.
James “Jack” Richards became an intern with PAR in August 2016, after graduating from Louisiana State University with a B.A. in Mass Communication, with a concentration in Political Communication and a minor in Philosophy.
Prior to joining PAR he reported on the three Louisiana legislative sessions with Manship School News Service. His areas of reporting included tax policy, retirement, state contracts and criminal justice. Before then, he served as an editor and reporter at LSU’s student newspaper The Daily Reveille. He is a native of New Orleans, Louisiana.
Anne Gunther joined the PAR team in August 2016 as an intern. She is currently completing her bachelor’s degree in International Trade & Finance at LSU. A native of Baton Rouge, she is committed to her community. Anne is a volunteer at the Missionaries of Charity in downtown BR and an active member of Alpha Kappa Psi business fraternity at LSU.