Ellen Pence (1948-2012) was a scholar and a social activist. She co-founded the Duluth Domestic Abuse Intervention Project, an inter-agency collaboration model used in all 50 states in the U.S. and more than 17 countries. A leader in both the battered women’s movement and the emerging field of institutional ethnography, she was the recipient of numerous awards including the 2008 Society for the Study of Social Problems Dorothy E. Smith Scholar Activist Award for significant contributions in a career of activist research.
Known for her generosity, quick wit and sense of humor, Ellen learned from battered women and has worked with and trained thousands of professionals in the domestic violence field. Her work with men who batter is the basis of DAIP’s Creating a Process of Change for Men Who Batter.
Born in Minneapolis, Minnesota, Pence graduated from St. Scholastica in Duluth with a B.A. She was active in institutional change work for battered women since 1975, and helped found the Domestic Abuse Intervention Project in 1980.
She is credited with creating the Duluth Model of intervention in domestic violence cases, Coordinated Community Response (CCR), which uses an interagency collaborative approach involving police, probation, courts and human services in response to domestic abuse. The primary goal of CCR is to protect victims from ongoing abuse.
Pence received her PhD in Sociology from the University ofToronto in 1996. She used institutional ethnography as a method of organizing community groups to analyze problems created by institutional intervention in families.
She founded Praxis International in 1998 and was the chief author and architect of the Praxis Institutional Audit, a method of identifying, analyzing and correcting institutional failures to protect people drawn into legal and human service systems because of violence and poverty.
Ellen died of breast cancer on January 6, 2012.
Reprinted From: Domestic Abuse Intervention Programs