NASW Foundation National Programs
NASW Social Work Pioneers®
Edward F. Krise (1924 - 2003)
Edward F. Krise, Ph.D., ACSW (a.k.a. Colonel Edward F. Krise, USW (Ret) has been a trailblazer, problem-solver and leader in his military career, and in civilian life. He seeks knowledge appropriate to the solution of the problem or crisis at hand, and looks for ways to support improved inter-personal relationships within difficult situations.
Ed Krise was born in Detroit, Michigan and went to school in Detroit and Washington, D.C. In WWII, he enlisted in the Rangers, saw combat in North Africa, Sicily and Italy, and was taken prisoner of war on Anzio Beachhead. Several months later he escaped and returned to Allied control. He received many awards and decorations for this period of military service including a Silver Star for "Gallantry in Action", a Bronze Star and a Purple Heart.
After leaving military service, Ed Krise went to Brown University where he received a Bachelor of Arts Degree. Then he enrolled in the School of Social Service Administration at the University of Chicago where he received an M.A. in 1950. While at SSA, Ed Krise and his wife lived at Hull House and participated in community activities there. His first social work position was as Executive Secretary, North Dakota Youth Council and representative to the Mid-Century White House Conference on Children and Youth.
With the advent of the Korean Conflict, Krise returned to active duty with a commission in the Army Medical Services Corps as a psychiatric social worker. He was one of the first social work officers in the newly established Military Social Work program. For fifteen years, he helped to develop social work roles and programs in various military mental health settings. He also participated in the evaluation of behavioral science programs in Vietnam for the Walter Reed Army Institute of Research. Along with his military assignments, Krise made contracts with mental health and social agencies in the communities where he was located and did part time work in selected agencies and supervised social work students. He took advantage of many continued education opportunities and in 1958 returned to the University of Chicago where he earned a Ph.D. in Social Service Administration.
Beginning in 1965, Lt. Colonel Krise was given a series of important assignments in which he used his inter-personal skills and his knowledge and experience in clinical practice, administration, research and human relations. His duties took him away from clinical practice and research and gave him responsibilities for work on significant issues which were important to all servicemen and their families. Initially, he was assigned to develop the Army Community Service Program for the continental United States. These duties included the development of the Army Equal Opportunity program. In 1969, Colonel Krise was transferred to the Army Surgeon General's Office as Chief of the Office of Patient Care Administration which include staff supervision of CHAMPUS and Chair of the Interdepartmental Committee on Medical Care.
In 1970, Col. Krise chaired a committee made up of representatives of each of the Armed Services to evaluate a special report on "Education in Race Relations" The evaluation committee became an implementation committee and in 1971, he was appointed the first Commandant of the Department of Defense Race Relations Institute. In 1972, Col. Krise was transferred to Europe as Chief of the Equal Opportunity/Race Relation Office. During these years, he received a Certificate of Achievement for "exceptional professional ability in Social Work", two Legion of Merit Awards and a Meritorious Service Medal. His articles and presentations about various aspects of military social work, mental health, community service, and race relations have been published in conference proceedings and journals.
Col. Krise retired from the military in 1973. For two years he was Assistant Dean and Associate Professor, University of Maryland School of Social Work. Then, from 197581, he used his social work skills in an unusual setting — as owner/master of a sailing yacht on charter service in the West Indies. Since 1981, Ed Krise and his wife have lived on Hilton Head Island, South Carolina. Their interests include travel, education, veterans' affairs, and the careers and well-being of their two children. He is past Chapter President of the Retired Officers Association and past National President of the Ranger Battalions Association of WWII. He also keeps in touch with local and national developments in mental health and social work.