NASW Executive Director Elizabeth J. Clark, PhD, ACSW, MPH, and association staff travelled to Seattle, Washington to present the 2007 International Rhoda G. Sarnat Award on April 22, 2008 to William C. Bell, MSW, President and CEO of Casey Family Programs. Social Work leaders and allied professionals from NASW, NASW Washington Chapter, Casey Family Programs, Marguerite Casey Foundation, Department of Health and Human Services Administration for Children and Families, University of Washington School of Social Work, Eastern Washington University, the Clinical Social Work Association and local service providers attended.
The award presentation and reception was held at FareStart Restaurant, a Seattle non-profit providing intensive food-service training, classroom instruction, individual case management and job placement services for homeless and disadvantaged men and women to prepare them for jobs in the restaurant and hospitality industry.
Mr. Bell is the 15th recipient of the Rhoda G. Sarnat Award, which is given to an individual, group, or organization that has significantly advanced the public image of professional social work. This monetary prize is made possible from an endowment fund established by a generous contribution in 1996 from Mrs. Rhoda Sarnat, LCSW and her spouse, Bernard Sarnat, MD. Rhoda G. Sarnat is a retired clinical social worker, former faculty member at the University of Southern California Graduate School of Social Work, and a member of NASW who is committed to improving the public perception of professional social work. The purpose of the Sarnat Award is to increase public awareness and recognition of the value of professional social work.
The evening opened with welcoming remarks from NASW Executive Director and NASW Foundation President Elizabeth J. Clark, followed by remarks from William Bell in which he described his path to a career in social work, and outlined some of the principles behind Casey Family Programs’ ambitious challenge to reduce the number of children in foster care by half by 2020.