CSWE Commemorates the Accomplishments of Congressman Ciro Rodriguez, Barbara White, and Alberta Elle

Published on : May 17, 2010

For Immediate Release
Carrie Murdock deGuzman
Marketing and Communications Manager
1.703.519.2057, [email protected]

May 17, 2010 – ALEXANDRIA, VA––CSWE honors Congressman Ciro Rodriguez (Texas, 23rd Congressional District), Barbara White (University of Texas at Austin), and Alberta “Bert” Ellett (University of Georgia), respectively, for their outstanding contributions to social work education with this year’s PresidentialSignificant Lifetime Achievement in Social Work Education, and Distinguished Recent Contributions in Social Work Education Awards

“The leadership that these individuals have demonstrated in their immediate social work education communities is an inspiration,” said CSWE Executive Director Julia M. Watkins. “They have helped guide the profession in directions that will have a lasting, positive impact on higher education and future generations of social workers.”

The awardees for the Significant Lifetime Achievement in Social Work Education and Distinguished Recent Contributions in Social Work Education Awards were selected from a pool of peer-generated nominations throughout the United States.Presidential Award recipients are appointed by the CSWE president.

Ira C. Colby, CSWE’s current president, presented Congressman Rodriguez with the Presidential Award at CSWE’s Spring Governance Meeting on March 25 in recognition of his tireless advocacy on behalf of individuals at a disadvantage. A former social worker, Congressman Rodriguez has demonstrated his commitment to education and its link to policy by supporting loan forgiveness, health care reform, and behavioral health initiatives. Most recently, he introduced the Veterans Health Professionals Education Assistance Act of 2009, which contains an array of educational benefits for social work within the veterans’ affairs system. The Act also would expand two existing programs administered by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services—loan repayment for professionals from underserved backgrounds and the National Health Service Corps Scholarship Program.

Barbara White and Bert Ellett will be presented with their awards at the Opening Ceremony of CSWE’s 2010 Annual Program Meeting on October 14 in Portland, OR.

Barbara White is being recognized for her entrepreneurship over the course of her distinguished career. Appointed University of Texas at Austin School of Social Work dean in 1993, White was president of CSWE from 1998–2001 and previously held the same position with the National Association of Social Workers. She has also served on the International Association of Schools of Social Work’s Board of Directors and was previously director of Florida State University’s MSW program. An enthusiastic public speaker, White holds the Centennial Professorship in Leadership and is an accomplished scholar in the areas of cultural diversity, women, and domestic violence.

Renowned in the child welfare field, Bert Ellett has excelled at research, grantsmanship, teaching, and service in this social work specialty area. Ellett was the principal investigator of a recent statewide study in Georgia investigating child welfare staff retention and turnover, which lead to development of an employee selection protocol and a U.S. Children's Bureau grant in child welfare. She has been the principal investigator of the Title IV-E Child Welfare Education Program since 2001 and is currently coeditor of the Journal of Public Child Welfare. She chairs the Child Welfare Track at the CSWE Annual Program Meeting.

The Council on Social Work Education (CSWE) is a nonprofit national association representing more than 3,000 individual members, as well as graduate and undergraduate programs of professional social work education. Founded in 1952, this partnership of educational and professional institutions, social welfare agencies, and private citizens is recognized by the Council for Higher Education Accreditation as the sole accrediting agency for social work education.


Learn more about these three CSWE Awards and how awardees are nominated.