To mark 50 years of striving toward "peace and justice for all," the University of Maryland School of Social Work (SSW) honored 50 outstanding alumni at an anniversary celebration at the American Visionary Art Museum. Held April 28, the event capped a series of observations of the School's founding in 1961.
Senator Barbara A. Mikulski, MSW '65, received the Dean's Medal for Distinguished Service, the School's highest honor. A member of the Senate Appropriations Committee and chairwoman of the Subcommittee on Commerce, Justice, Science, and Related Agencies. Mikulski earlier this year became the longest serving woman in the history of the U.S. Congress.
Yet the senator was deferential as she spoke of the accomplishments of her fellow honorees, the remaining 49 alumni selected as Heroes for Justice.
"I know most of you professionally because your work is well known and well respected," Mikulski said, praising them for having devoted their lives to public service. "You've been duty driven; you've been unflagging and unfaltering in your devotion to the career that you've chosen. You've really made change."
She singled out her classmate and friend, Geraldine "Gerry" Aronin, MSW '65, retired Maryland Department of Human Resources deputy director, and brought greetings from Washington on behalf of Ambassador Wendy Sherman, MSW '76, undersecretary of state for political affairs, who was unable to attend. Sherman at one time served as Mikulski's chief of staff and has risen to the position of third ranking official at the U.S. State Department.
Dean Richard P. Barth, PhD, MSW, who presented Mikulski with the medal, said of all of the honorees: "The heroes represent some of what the School has accomplished. The heroic careers represented here are filled with impressive titles of employers served, positions held, and books written." Yet, he said, "the basis of their recognition is their impact on lives - lives improved, advanced, turned toward success, and literally, saved."
University President Jay A. Perman, MD, and his wife, Andrea Perman, attended the event as well as Barbara Brody, clinical instructor at SSW, and her husband, Ed Brody, SSW board of advisors vice chair; and Meadow Lark Washington, incoming board chair, and her husband, Joe Washington, former Washington Redskin and Baltimore Colt.
One of the 50 SSW heroes, Stanley Weinstein, PhD, MSW '68, president and chief executive officer of Woodbourne and the School's board of advisors chair noted during the event that the board has created 50 scholarships in honor of the 50 years.
Honorees who were present included Gayle Johnson Adams, MSW '74, ACSW, LCSW; Michelle Alvarez, MSW '86, EdD, C-SSWS, LICSW; Imam Hassan Amin, MSW '00; Donna Leigh Bliss, PhD '05, MSW '91; Elizabeth "Libby" Bowerman, MSW '86, LCSW-C, NHA; Eloise A. Bridges, PhD '83, ACSW; Pamela Block Brier, MSW '95; Iris Carlton-LaNey, Ph.D. '82; Vanessa Chappell-Lee, PhD, MSW '83, LCSW-C; Carine Chen-McLaughlin, MSW '76; Sharon Einbinder Friedman, MSW '90; Sue Futeral PhD, '93, MSW '82; David Guttmann, MSW '71; Gordon Hay, MSW '73, MPA; John D. Herron, MSW '75, MBA, LCSW-C; Lynn Koshland, MSW '92, LCSW; E. Virginia Sheppard Lapham, PhD '84, MSW, MEd, ACSW; Judith Levy, MSW '71; and Peter F. Luongo, PhD '90.
Also present were Robin McKinney, MSW '01; Carole Norris-Shortle, MSW '74; Jeff Richardson, MSW '92, MBA; Ilene Wexler Rosenthal, MSW '78; Judith Schagrin,
MSW '79, ACSW, LCSW-C; Jean Stokan, MSW '82; Carrie Vick, MSW '79; Jane Andrews Walker, MSW '86; Loretta Y. Wall, MSW '74; Joan C. Weiss, MSW '81, LCSW-C; Carnitra White, MSW '99; Alice Williams, MSW '67; Susan Williams, MCP '79; Susan Wolman, MSW '79; James Zabora, ScD, MSW '75; and Joan Levy Zlotnik, PhD '98, ACSW.
Other honorees are Betsy Dunklin, MSW '81; Benjamin Gidron, DSW '76; Paul Lurz, MSW '66; Curtis McMillen, PhD '94; Richard Norman, MSW '74; Ann Sherrill, MSW '82; Lauren Siegel, MSW '84; Jeff Singer, MSW '85; Mary Slicher, MSW '75; James Ward, MSW '68; and Andrew Weissman, DSW '79.
The anniversary event, which included a reception, a dinner, the program, and music, culminated a series of special activities held during the 2011-12 academic year.