Delbert S. Elliott

Distinguished Professor Emeritus
Department of Sociology
University of Colorado
483 UCB
Boulder, CO 80309
Phone: (303) 492-1032

Founding Director
Center for the Study and Prevention of Violence
Institute of Behavioral Science
University of Colorado
483 UCB
1440 15th Street
Boulder, CO 80302
Phone: (303) 492-1032
Phone Direct: (303) 735-2146

Educational History

  • Ph.D.  1961, Sociology, University of Washington, Seattle, WA
  • M.A.   1960, Sociology, University of Washington, Seattle, WA
  • B.A.   1955, Sociology, Pomona College, Claremont, CA

Professional History

  • Distinguished Professor Emeritus, Department of Sociology, University of Colorado, 2004 - Present.
  • Research Professor, Institute of Behavioral Science, 2004 - Present.
  • Director, Center for the Study and Prevention Violence, Institute of Behavioral Science, University of Colorado, 1993 - Present.
  • Director, Program on Problem Behavior, Institute of Behavioral Science, University of Colorado, 1997-Present; Associate Director, 1985 - 1997.
  • Professor, Department of Sociology, University of Colorado, 1985 - 2004.
  • Director, Behavioral Research Institute, Boulder, CO, 1973 - 1985.
  • Professor Adjoint, Department of Sociology, University of Colorado, 1975 - 1985.
  • Professor, Department of Sociology and Project Director, Institute of Behavioral Science, University of Colorado, 1967 - 1975.

Publications (Partial List: Solo or First Author)

  • Good Kids from Bad Neighborhoods with S. Menard, B. Rankin, A. Elliott, W.J. Wilson and D. Huizinga, Cambridge, UK: Cambridge University Press, 2006.
  • Blueprints for Violence Prevention Series (Editor), Boulder, CO: Center for the Study and Prevention of Violence, 1996 -
  • Violence in American Schools: A New Perspective with B. Hamburg and K. Williams (eds.), New York, NY: Cambridge University Press, 1998.
  • Youth Violence: Children at Risk with J. Hagan and J. McCord, Washington, DC: American Sociological Association, 1998.
  • Multiple Problem Youth: Delinquency, Drugs, and Mental Health Problems with D. Huizinga and S. Menard, New York, NY: Springer-Verlag, 1989.
  • Explaining Delinquency and Drug Use with D. Huizinga and S.S. Ageton, Beverly Hills, CA: Sage Publications, 1985.
  • Delinquency and Dropout with H. L. Voss, Lexington, MA: Lexington Books, 1974.
  • Serious Violent Offenders: Onset, Developmental Course and Termination, Criminology, 32(1), 1-22, 1994.
  • The Effects of Neighborhood Disadvantage on Adolescent Development, with W. J. Wilson, D. Huizinga, R.J. Simpson, A. Elliott, and B. Rankin, Journal of Research in Crime and Delinquency,  33, 389-426, 1996.
  • An Overview of Youth Violence. Congressional Program, Children and Violence, 9, 15-20, 1994.
  • Health Enhancing and Health Compromising Lifestyles. Pp. 119-145 in S.G. Millstein, A.C. Petersen, and E.O. Nightengale (Eds.), Promoting the Health of Adolescents. New York, NY: Oxford University Press, 1993.
  • Self Reported Violent Offending: A Descriptive Analysis of Juvenile Violent Offenders and Their Offending Careers with B. Morse and D. Huizinga, Journal of Interpersonal Violence, 1(4), 472-514, 1987.
  • Longitudinal Research in Criminology: Promise and Practice. Pp. 189-202 in E. Weitekamp and H. Kerner (Eds.), Cross-National Longitudinal Research on Human Development and Criminal Behavior.  Dordrecht, The Netherlands: Kluwer Academic Publishers, 1993.
  • Implementing and Evaluating Crime Prevention and Control Programs and Policies. Crime, Law and Social Change, 28, 287-310, 1998.
  • Delinquent Friends and Delinquent Behavior. Temporal and Developmental Patterns, with S. Menard. Pp. 28-67 in D. Hawkins (Ed.), Delinquency and Crime: Current Theories. New York, NY: Cambridge University Press, 1996.
  • Youth Violence, Prevention, Intervention and Social Policy, with P. Tolan. Pp. 3-46 in D. Flannery and R. Huff (Eds.), Youth Violence: Prevention, Intervention and Social Policy. New York, NY: American Psychiatric Press, 1998.
  • Violent Offending Over the Life Course: A Sociological Perspective. In N. Krasnegor, N. Anderson, and D. Bynum (Eds.), Health and Behavior. Behavioral and Social Science Seminar Series, Vol. 1, Washington, DC: NIH, 2000.

Grant Supported Studies (Partial List: Principal Investigator)

  • "Diversion--A Study of Alternative Processing Practices," NIMH, DHEW, MH 26141, June 1974-June 1977. $460,380.
  • "The Dynamics of Delinquent Behavior - A National Survey," NIMH, MH27552 and MH41761, June 1975-December 1996. $9,804,040.
  • "National Evaluation of the Diversion Initiative." LEAA, U.S. Dept. of Justice 78-JN-AX-0037, October 1978-May 1980. $561,336.
  • "Assessing the Deterrent Effects of Arrests on Criminal Behavior and Career Patterns." NIJ, U.S. Dept. of Justice 82-IJ-CX-0011, April 1982-July 1983. $126,947.
  • "The Denver Neighborhood Study," MacArthur Foundation, Research Program on Youth at Risk: Promoting Successful Adolescent Development in High Risk Areas. January 1989-January 1997. $441,811.
  • "In-Vehicle BAC Test Devices as a Deterrent to DUI," NIAAA, DHHS, AA08203. July 1, 1989-June 1992. $392,956.
  • "Center for the Study and Prevention of Violence," The Carnegie Corporation. June 1, 1992-May 30, 2000. $2,450,000. (Director)
  • "Blueprints for Violence Prevention/Reduction," State of Colorado, Division of Criminal Justice; Pennsylvania Commission on Crime and Delinquency; Centers for Disease Control. May 1996- June 1998. $200,000.
  • "Blueprints for Violence Series. (11 Volumes)." 1996-Present. (Editor)
  • "Blueprints for Violence Prevention: Technical Assistance and Evaluation." U.S. Department of Justice (OJJDP). September 1998-August 2001. $5,000,000.
  • "Blueprints for Violence Prevention: Drug Program." U.S. Department of Justice (OJJDP). October 1998-September 2001. $4,999,963.
  • "Safe Community - Safe School Initiative." The Colorado Trust. October 1999-September 2003. $2,200,000.
  • "NYS Family Study: Problem Alcohol Use and Problem Behavior." NIAAA/BSSR. September 2000-August 2005. $6,924,274.
  • "Blueprints for Violence Prevention - Drugs II." U.S. Department of Justice (OJJDP). March 2000-February 2003. $4,964,110.
  • "Scientific Editing and Writing of the Surgeon General's Report on Youth Violence." June 2000-June 2001. $100,000.
  • "The Continuity of Violent Offending." Office of the Surgeon General. September 2001-August 2002. $100,000.
  • "The Challenge Newsletter." U.S. Department of Education, July 2005-2010.
  • "Dissemination and Replication of Violence Prevention Programs." Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, November 15, 2006-November 14, 2010.
  • "Colorado Schools Safety Program." Office of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention. May 2008-April 2009. $312,550.
  • "Dissemination of Life Skills Training Program." Altria Client Services, Inc. , March 1, 2009-June 1, 2012. $7,242,351.
  • "Blueprints for Violence Prevention." Annie E. Casey Foundation. July 1, 2010-December 31, 2010. $60,060.
  • "Blueprints for Violence Prevention." Annie E. Casey Foundation. January 1, 2011- December 31, 2016. $2,211,569.
  • "Academic Center of Excellence for Violence Prevention." Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. September 30, 2011- September 29, 2016. $6,500,000.
  • "Shakespeare and Anti-Bullying: Twelfth Night." University of Colorado Outreach Award. July 1, 2011 - June 30, 2012. $8,000.00.

National Panels (Partial List)

  • National Panel on Criminal Behavior and Drug Use, NIDA, 1975-1976.
  • Member, National Research Council Panel on Research on Criminal Careers, 1983-1985.
  • Chairman, Criminal and Violent Behavior Review Committee, NIMH, 1984-1986.
  • Chair, Adolescent Violence Research Workshop, The Carnegie Foundation, 1989.
  • Member, Social Science Research Council, Working Group on Communities and Neighborhoods, Family Processes and Individual Development, 1989-1993.
  • Member, Advisory Board, MacArthur Foundation/National Institute of Justice Program on Human Development & Criminal Behavior, 1990-1993.
  • Member, National Education Goals Panel, Resource Group on Goal Six: Safe and Drug Free Schools, 1991-1992.
  • Member, National Task Force for an NIMH Violence Initiative, 1992.
  • Member, Council of the Independent Television Violence Assessment Study. MediaScope, Studio City, CA, 1992-1996.
  • Member, Committee on Youth Development, Board on Children and Families, National Research Council, 1995-1997.
  • Member, Advisory Board, National Consortium for Violence Research Advisory Board. University of Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, 1997-1998.
  • Member, Robert Wood Johnson Foundation Juvenile Justice Planning Committee. 1998-1999.
  • Member, Scientific Advisory Board, National Media Campaign to Prevent Violence, 1999-Present.
  • Member, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Advisory Committee for Injury Prevention and Control. 1999-2002.
  • Steering Committee, Violence Prevention Technical Assistance Coordinating Center, The National Mental Health Association, 1999-2002.
  • Member, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Science and Program Review Subcommittee, Advisory Committee for Injury Prevention and Control, 2000-2002.
  • Member, Violence Prevention Task Force, Colorado Medical Society, 2000-Present.
  • Member, Colorado Attorney General’s Interagency Task Force on School Violence, 2000-2001.


  • Testified, Select Committee on Children, Youth and Families, U.S. House of Representatives, "Down These Mean Streets: Violence By and Against America's Children,” 1989.
  • Qualified as Expert Witness, U.S. District Court, Denver, CO, September, 1989, U.S. vs. Lewis Laymon.
  • Testified, Colorado Senate Bill 95-11, January 29, 1995 (Interlock Ignition Bill for DUI).
  • Testified, California Task Force on Juvenile Crime and Juvenile Justice, September 7, 1995, Los Angeles, CA.
  • Testified, Subcommittee on Youth Violence Judiciary Committee, May 8, 1996, U.S. Senate Hearing on the Reauthorization of the 1994 Juvenile Justice Act.
  • Testified, Interim Committee on Dropout Rates, Colorado State Legislature, August 24, 1998.
  • Testified, Joint Committee of the Judiciary, Colorado State Legislature, January 26, 1999.
  • Testified, Columbine Review Commission, Denver, January 12, 2000.
  • Testified, Joint Committee of the Judiciary, Colorado State Legislature, February 1, 2000.
  • Testified, Florida Bar Commission, Effective Violence Prevention Programs, Tampa, Florida, Sept. 15, 2000.
  • Testified, Columbine Review Commission, Jefferson County, October 27, 2000.
  • Testified, Senate Education Committee, Colorado State Legislature, March 20, 2001.
  • Testified, House Education Committee, Colorado State Legislature, March 21, 2001.
  • Testified, Senate Education Committee, Colorado State Legislature, February 17, 2004.
  • Testified, Committee of the Judiciary, Subcommittee on Crime, Terrorism and Homeland Security, "Making Communities Safer: Youth Violence and Gang Interventions That Work," February 15, 2007.

Awards and Honors

  • SaveCo Lecturer, School of Social Work, University of Washington, 1986.
  • Outstanding Faculty Researcher Award, University of Colorado, Golden Key National Honor Society, 1987.
  • Fellow, American Society of Criminology, 1990.
  • President, American Society of Criminology, 1992-1993.
  • Third most frequently cited scholar in American Criminology Journals - 1995. Fourth most frequently cited in Criminology, 1986-1995.* Seventh most frequently cited in International Criminology Journals, 1991-1995.
  • Edwin L. Sutherland Award. Outstanding North American Criminologist. American Society of Criminology, 1995.
  • Invited Lecture-NIH, Behavioral and Social Sciences Research Seminar Series. “Violence: A Sociological Perspective," July 25, 1996.
  • Invited Lecture, “Youth Development and Violence Over the Life Course.” The Sydney S. Spivack Program in Applied Social Policy. American Sociological Association Congressional Fellowship Briefing. Youth Violence: Children at Risk, Washington DC: June 17, 1997.
  • Office of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention (U.S. Department of Justice) Outstanding Achievement Award. 1998.
  • Invited Briefing: “Violence Over the Life Course: Implications for Interventions.” Personal briefing for Dr. Harold Varmus, Director, NIH, September 30, 1998.
  • Invited Participant (by President and Mrs. Clinton), White House Conference on School Safety: Causes and Prevention of Youth Violence. Washington, D.C., October 15, 1998.
  • Paul Tappan Award for Fundamental Contribution to Knowledge of Youthful Offenders and Domestic Violence. The Western Criminological Society. February 2000.
  • Institute of Medicine (IOM), Distinguished Lecture, “Violent Careers: A Life Course Perspective,” Denver University Law School, Denver, Colorado, April 5, 2000.
  • Research to Practice Award, Society for Prevention Research. “For outstanding efforts to identify and disseminate empirically supported interventions to prevent crime and delinquency.” May 2000.
  • Invited Presentation, U.S. Congress, Congressional Breakfast. Preventing School Violence, Washington, D.C., May 11, 2000.
  • Invited Lecture, NIH Distinguished Lecture Series “Violence Prevention Research and Practice: Knowing What Works is Not Enough.” May 25, 2000. Rockville, MD.
  • Senior Scientific Editor, Surgeon General’s Report on Youth Violence. Released January 17, 2001.
  • Public Health Service Medallion for Distinguished Services. Awarded by Dr. David Satcher, U.S. Surgeon General, November 30, 2001.
  • August Vollmer Award, American Society of Criminology, November 2003.
  • Fellow, Academy of Experimental Criminology, 2005.
  • Invited Panelist, White House Conference on School Safety, October 2006.

Media Presentations

  • Invited Guest. The McNeil-Lehrer News Hour. Segment on Youth Violence. 1994.
  • Lecture Series, “ACT Against Violence.” KRMA TV, Channel 6. Denver. Three 20-minute presentations on Youth Violence aired initially and several times thereafter in 1996 and 1997.
  • Interview. Dateline, “Cold Blooded Kids” (NBC), September 25, 1998.
  • Interview. World News with Peter Jennings, “Boot Camps” (ABC), July 20, 2001.

*As cited in Cohn, E.G. and Farrington, D.P., 1998. Changes in the most-cited scholars in major international journals between 1986-1990 and 1991-1995. British Journal of Criminology 38:153-167; Cohn, E.G. and Farrington, D.P., 1999. Changes in the most-cited scholars in twenty criminology and criminal justice journals between 1990 and 1995. Journal of Criminal Justice 27:345-359.

Revised: February 10, 2012