NASW Foundation National Programs
NASW Social Work Pioneers®
Ada McCrakan Allen (1902 - 1996)
Pioneering Contributions: Ada McCrakan Allen served as a high-level public welfare administrator during the 1930’s, 1940’s, and 1950’s. She was field representative, Supervisor of Standards and Procedures in the Division of Public Assistance, and Director of Field Services for the State Board of Public Welfare in North Carolina. Additionally, she served on the Governor’s Commission on Migratory Labor and testified before President Truman’s Commission on Migratory Labor. The Commission was held in December, 1950 and included 6,000 representatives from around the country and 200 delegates from overseas. She was appointed a representative to the mid-century White House Conference on Children and Youth.
Career Highlights: McCrakan Allen taught high school for seven years in Whiteville, NC. She then worked for the State Board of Public Welfare in Raleigh, North Carolina from 1938 until her retirement in 1959. During her public service career she specialized in children’s health and welfare and migratory labor issues. She was also a member of the North Carolina Prison Commission. She was an active member and held offices in APWA and NASW.
Biographic Data: Ada McCrakan Allen was born in Whitesville, North Carolina. She received her AB degree from Flora McDonald College, Red Springs, North Carolina, and her MSS from the State College at Raleigh, North Carolina. She did additional studies at the University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill. McCrakan Allen was married to Edgar Fullwood Allen. They retired to Lenoir, North Carolina in 1959. She died on July 17, 1996 in Richland, South Carolina.