NASW Foundation National Programs
NASW Social Work Pioneers®
Fedele F. Fauri (1909 - 1981)
Fedele Fauri was an outstanding pioneer in public welfare services and in social work education for public practice. He was dean of the University of Michigan School of Social Work from 1951-1970, when he became vice president of the University for state relations and planning. During these years, he was the president of the National Conference of Social Welfare from 1961 to 1962. He also served as president of the American Public Welfare Association in the Council on Social Work Education. He served as chairman of the Advisory Council on Public Welfare which submitted its report "Having the Power We Have the Duty", to the Secretary of Health, Education and Welfare in June 1966. During his long career, Fedele Fauri served at various times as adviser on social security to the U.S. Senate, Committee on Finance and the Committee on Ways and Means of the U.S. House of Representatives.
Fedele Fauri was born in Crystal Falls,Michigan in the western Upper Peninsula. He received his bachelor of arts and law degrees from the University of Michigan. He entered private practice in Crystal Falls. In 1934 he became adviser and general assistant to the Iron County Relief Administrator on a part-time basis. He was involved in world resettlement in the Upper Peninsula until 1935 and for the following two years was a supervisor for the Michigan Welfare Department in the Upper Peninsula. His Lansing experience began in 1937when he served as legal counsel to the Michigan State Welfare Department. In 1939, he became Deputy Supervisor of the State Bureau of Social Security in Lansing. Two years later, he became supervisor of the Bureau. In 1943 he was named director of the Michigan Department of Social Welfare, a post he held for four years.
Then Michigan governor, Romney called on Dean Fauri in 1968 to serve on the Governor's Special Commission on Juvenile Delinquency. Later, Governor Milliken appointed him to the Governor's Welfare Study Commission in 1969.
In 1955, he was given the National Conference of Social Worker Award "for his contributions in social administration as a State Director of public welfare in social work research and development of social legislation as a specialist in legislative reference service of the Library of Congress and trusted adviser to the Congressional Committees regardless of political party and in social work education as the dean of the school's social work of the University of Michigan and is current president of the Council on Social Work Education."
Upon his retirement, from the University of Michigan in the late 1970s, he became Racing Commissioner of the State of Michigan and served in that capacity until 1980. This was a natural appointment for him since his hobbies for some time had been that of racing horses. After his death, a concurrent resolution offered as a memorial to Fauri and adopted by the Michigan State Legislature on October 27, 1981, referred to him as being "emblematic of that elite corps of individuals who consistently give of themselves to the benefit of others. His devotion to duty, his diligence and his competence will undoubtedly be a source of inspiration and a standard by which future public servants will be measured".
Fedele Fauri died as a result of meningitis.