Jacqueline vanWormer

Assistant Professor of Sociology, Whitworth University

Areas of Expertise

  • Drug courts
  • Drug outcomes
  • Juvenile justice
  • Court models
  • Detention alternatives
  • Treatment for offenders

Key Findings

  • The dog handler program was a significant predictor of future infractions. MORE
  • Participants in the program were less likely to be associated with serious or violent infractions in the future compared to the control group. MORE
  • Compared to the control group, inmates that participated in the dog handler program were also less likely to file grievances in the future. MORE
  • Drug courts with high levels of member collaboration are more likely to follow the standards of drug court models, which are thought to effectively treat substance abuse. MORE
  • Collaboration in drug courts allows less arbitration on judges, increases trust in other drug court members, and also increases the drug court’s ability to achieve their goals. MORE


Jacqueline vanWormer, Assistant Professor of Sociology at Whitworth University, is an expert in juvenile justice, court models, detention alternatives, treatment for offenders and criminal justice reform.

VanWormer serves as a technical adviser and provider to the National Association of Drug Court Professionals and National Council of Juvenile and Family Court Judges. She also is an active member on the Board of Trustees for the National Center for Juvenile Justice. VanWormer has received several honors and awards for her work, including the 2017 Washington State University Woman of Distinction award and the 2017 Spokane County Bar Association “Liberty Bell” award for her work in criminal justice reform.

She has been published in various journals, including Criminal Justice and Behavior, Journal of Juvenile Justice and the Journal of Offender Rehabilitation.

VanWormer earned her Ph.D. and M.A. in criminal justice at Washington State University.