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Katherine Briar-Lawson

Since 1964, Katharine Briar-Lawson has been a social worker, starting as social work intern and then becoming a researcher, practitioner, professor, state official, editor, Department Chair, Dean to President of the National Association of Deans and Directors of Schools of Social Work.       

Dean Briar-Lawson has co-edited 9 books, authored 51 book chapters and refereed 29 publications. She has given more than 100 addresses, workshops and presentation at local, state, national international venues. She has received nearly $50 million for social work grants and has been a co-editor for a number of social work related journals, most recently being appointed to the Editorial Board of Social Work.

She has worked and/or consulted in every region of the country, with culturally diverse populations addressing family, community, gender, aging, poverty, economic, health, addiction/recovery, urban/rural, funding streams, community building and social work issues as well as international social work development and cross-cultural issues.

Dean Briar-Lawson is a caring human being, who is engaging and comfortable with public officials, agency CEOs, social work students, community leaders as well as an unwed mother living in a poor neighborhood, family members struggling with addiction or an adolescent living in foster care. A rare professional, she strives to expand and deepen our social work knowledge base, develops successful collaborations and cross system initiatives (both micro and macro) and is always working to improve the conditions, life chances and opportunities of the most vulnerable.

Her depth of knowledge, wisdom, compassion, concern for social justice and humor were clearly evident during her Keynote presentation "On the Future of Social Work" at the 2008 NASW Pioneers Luncheon. She has been a tireless, competent, caring, champion for the profession, for social workers and for those who social work serves. Dean Briar-Lawson's career, scholarship and service uphold the finest qualities of Social Work's Code of Ethics and the Values, Principles and Standards therein.

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