NASW Foundation National Programs
NASW Social Work Pioneers®
Ronald Feinstein (1930 - 1992)
Ronald Feinstein was a passionate advocate for the needs of students at Community College of Philadelphia, where he was a professor from 1970 to 1992. He was founder and director of STEP-UP, a program that earned national recognition as an alternative program introducing welfare recipients to higher education and helping them step out of the cycle of dependency. He was recognized by the Philadelphia County Assistance Office as a true advocate for the poor and was remembered by his colleagues for his willingness to make a personal commitment to change.
Ronald Feinstein’s early career included casework and supervisory positions in the Illinois Solders’ and Sailors’ Children’s School, Chicago Jewish Family and Community Services, and Main Line Family Service in Pennsylvania.
He also served as an assistant professor of social work at Bryn Mawr College from 1967 to 1970 and as an assistant professor of social work at the University of Wisconsin, Milwaukee, from 1967 to 1968.
Feinstein earned his PhD from the University of Pittsburgh in 1972. He received his MSW from the University of Illinois School of Social Work in 1957 and his BA from Roosevelt University in Chicago in 1955.
He suffered a fatal heart attack while lobbying Pennsylvania legislators in the state capitol.