2001 Scott Greer Awards
David Halbrooks, a 1982 graduate of the Urban Affairs Program was Assistant City Attorney with responsibilities for prosecution, coordination of the Nuisance Abatement Team and enforcement of the building code. His major contributions include preserving the City's housing stock and encouraging neighborhood efforts by working with residents and the Milwaukee Police Department to eliminate drug houses and other nuisance activity. As a consequence, many troubled areas within the community were rescued and revitalized.
Among the many courageous steps he has taken to make Milwaukee neighborhoods safer and quieter, some of the most notable include actions which brought the crime infested North Meadows Condominium into city receivership, leading a team that has brought many of the most serious problems that had affected this site including thousands of crimes. He has acted against a notorious late hour nuisance club, and to protect neighbor hoods from prostitution and related drugs and crime. In at least two areas, his actions have propelled Milwaukee to the national forefront. These include his spotlighting of the problem of real estate "flippers" who use fraudulent mortgage schemes to artificially inflate property values for their own gain while destroying neighborhoods. A second area of national attention involves his use of a novel legal approach to sue landlords who allowed their premises to be used by tenants with illegal CB radio booster equipment, delivering profane broadcasts which could be heard through area residents' television sets, radios, and telephones, even when they were not in use. Halbrooks appeared with an affected resident on the national television program, the Leeza Gibbons Show, to discuss this problem which plagues communities throughout the country.
In addition to his graduate degree from UWM, Halbrooks has both an undergraduate and a law degree from the University of Wisconsin at Madison. He serves on the State Elections Board, having chaired that body in 1997 and 1998. Among many honors for neighborhood and community group service, he was named in the Business Journal's 40 Under 40, a description of Milwaukee's leaders for the new millennium.
Postgraduate Achievement in Advancing Understanding of Urban Social Institutions
Dr. Arachchige Don, Professor of Sociology as Anoka-Ramsey Community College in Minnesota, brings qualitative depth to research on globalization, illuminating both the effects of global transformation on communities in the developing world and to potential means and levels of social and political re-integration. As the founder and chief executive of The International Research Foundation for Development, he and that organization foster international research collaboration, communication and policy advice on subjects of community development. IRFD has emerged as an impressive vehicle linking research to policy and has been accorded "special consultative status" as an advisory resource of the United Nations. He has published widely and is editor of Contemporary Development Analysis: An International Journal. He earned a doctorate in the Urban Social Institutions Program at UWM in 1990 with the publication of his dissertation, Patterns of Urban Community Structure in Colombo, Sri Lanka: An Investigation of Contemporary Urban Life in South Asia. Among scholars, writers and leaders of many developed and developing countries of the world, he is well known for his research and leadership skills.