NASW Foundation National Programs
NASW Social Work Pioneers®
Ella Harris, in her capacity as a state public servant, has been responsible for the development, oversight, and quality improvement of 110 licensed mental health programs for New York City and the state of New York.
Ella Harris served at the New York State Office of Mental Health as a standards and compliance analyst specialist from 1970 until 2008. She was responsible for coordinating the inspection and certification of public and private facilities, including licensed outpatient mental health clinics, psychiatric emergency programs, inpatient psychiatric services, and housing programs. Harris also organized, conducted, and developed training and workshops.
Harris concurrently served as a mental health program specialist at the New York City Regional Office of Mental Health in the certification and residential services unit. She developed and implemented management plans for onsite reviews of multifaceted treatment programs for the mentally disabled and assisted in the promotion and development of community residential/housing programs.
In the aftermath of the September 11, 2001 tragedy, Harris offered her clinical services at a major volunteer site and in September of 2003 was featured in a special report from the New York Times regarding her service.
Harris received her MSW from Hunter College in 1974 and her BS from St. Augustine’s College in 1970.
Significant Achievements and Awards
2013: Received the Dr. James R. Dumpson Chapter Service Award – NASW, New York Chapter. Award received at the Annual Meeting’s “Poverty and Inequality: Opportunities, Challenges, and a Critical Analysis of the Obama Administration”
2010: Selected as NASW Pioneer
2005-2008: Secretary, NASW, New York State Chapter Board of Directors.
Ella Harris has also received awards from the Brooklyn Women’s Anti-Rape Exchange (Founder Recognition Award); a recognition award from the East Brooklyn Lioness Club and a leadership award from St. Augustine College. She is a member of the Association for the Advancement of Social Work with Groups, the American Group Psychotherapy Association, the Coalition of Concerned Medical Professionals and the New York City Coalition for the Elderly Black City as well as a long-standing member of NASW and NABSW.
Harris, E.L. (2012). Social work and psychiatric medication: A dual collaboration and partnership role. Social Work, Private Practice Section Connection. Washington, DC: NASW.