Barbara Bryant Solomon received the BS degree in Psychology from Howard University, magna cum laude and was elected to Phi Beta Kappa. She received the MSW from University of California at Berkley and the Ph.D. from the University of Southern California. Her primary practice experience included Adoptions Worker in the
California StateDepartment of Social Welfare and Clinical Social Worker in Alameda County Medical Institutions and VA Hospitals in Houston, TX and Los Angeles, CA.
In more than 50 years as a social worker and an academic, she has focused on social service delivery systems, especially to underrepresented minority families. Solomon joined the USC faculty where she served as an assistant, associate and full professor of social work from 1966 to 1988. She taught courses in Human behavior and the social environment, research methods, social service delivery systems in health and mental health settings; program evaluation; family empowerment and family preservation in ethnic minority communities.
At USC, her ideas about how to increase minority students on campus led to the formation of the Neighborhood Academic Initiative, a widely praised program that prepares local secondary school students for higher education.
Solomon was named vice provost for graduate and professional studies and dean of the Graduate School in 1988; the post of vice provost for minority affairs was added to her duties in 1993. In 1994, she was named vice provost for faculty affairs and vice provost for minority affairs in order to focus on the hiring and retention of minority faculty members. In 1998, she returned to the School of Social Work to hold the endowed David Lawrence Stein/Violet Goldberg Sachs Professor of Social Work chair. She also served a three-year term as Visiting Examiner for the Department of Social Work, Chinese University of Hong Kong. She has served o the Board of Directors of numerous community organizations including Drew Child Development Corporation, Partners in Care Foundation and Walden University. She retired from USC in 2004 and has since served on the Board of Directors of the Retired Faculty Association;
Solomon has won the “Faculty Who Make a Difference” Award from the American Association of Higher Education; the Social Work Educator of the Year Award from the California chapter, National Association of Social Workers; a USC Associates Award for Teaching Excellence; Rosa Parks Award from the Los Angeles Chapter of the Southern Christian Leadership Conference; Distinguished Faculty Award from the School of Social Work support group Los Amigos de la Humanidad; Lifetime Achievement Award, University of Southern California; Doctor of Humane Letters, Walden University.