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Bess Welch

Pronouns: She/Her

Vice President
Bess manages and administers social science surveys for governmental agencies, academic institutions, and foundations.

As vice president on the Public Health department, Bess also collaborates with department leadership to facilitate and direct department functions including recruitment and staffing, business development, and financial management.

With a doctorate in Applied Social Psychology, Bess has over 20 years of experience leading multidisciplinary teams in the design, development, and delivery of complex survey data and analytic products used by policy makers and researchers in the public health arenas. 

Bess currently serves as the project director (PD) for the National Immunization Surveys (NIS). The NIS is the one of largest random-digit-dial telephone surveys, with more than 25 million yearly sampled telephone lines, providing ongoing surveillance of immunization coverage for children and teenagers in the U.S. As PD, she oversees all aspects of the NIS-Child, NIS-Teen, and NIS-Flu surveys, as well as any additional Task Orders awarded under the NIS IDIQ. This includes working with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) to refine research objectives and design options, developing cost estimates, directing the development of survey instrumentation, supervising data collection activities, managing data review and other quality checks, and ensuring that cleaned and weighted data are delivered to the CDC. Bess has also served as project director for other large and small survey projects including telephone, web, and mixed-mode surveys.  

Prior to joining NORC, Bess worked at other survey and market research organizations, conducting in-depth telephone and in-person individual and group interviews, analyzing qualitative and quantitative data, and preparing comprehensive reports of findings as well as conclusions and recommendations. She additionally served as a part-time instructor for Loyola’s Psychology Department where she taught Statistics, Social Psychology, Research Methods, and Laboratory in Social Psychology. 



Loyola University Chicago


Loyola University Chicago


Marquette University

Appointments & Affiliations


American Immunization Registry Association

Project Contributions

National Immunization Surveys (NIS)

One of the nation’s largest phone surveys and the gold standard for data on U.S. immunization rates


Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s National Center for Immunization and Respiratory Diseases