Bruce has been a professor of applied economics at Oregon State University since the 1970s, where he teaches courses on rural community economics and policy on rural poverty. He is also the director of the OSU Rural Studies Program and does applied research on rural poverty and the U.S. social safety net. He has been connected to the work and mission of RUPRI since the mid-1990s, serving on several panels with special interest in rural poverty, welfare reform, and human services.
Bruce has recently researched economic inequality in rural and urban areas, rural-urban economic interdependence, and impacts of changes in social safety net programs. Bruce states, “These are some of the most critical social issues facing the nation today and this research can help those in policy leadership positions better understand the social/economic context in which their decisions will be implemented.” Because of his work with RUPRI, Bruce is connected to both colleagues across the country doing relevant research and policy-makers who benefit from the findings of this research. This connection is something he continues to appreciate and value.
After over forty years of full-time work in academia, Bruce is planning to transition to part-time, freeing himself to enjoy a slower pace of life and more time with his bass fiddle. He is also looking forward to taking on a new challenge as he becomes a 4-H volunteer to spend some time exploring the wonders of the natural world with his grandson. Bruce lives in Corvallis, Oregon with his wife of 50 years.