Lawanna R. Barron, BCD, ACSW, LCSW, served 33 years with the federal government as a Social Worker in the acute psychiatry ward at the Tuskegee, Alabama Department of Veteran Affairs and as a military social worker with the Family Advocacy Program. Prior to these appointments she served as Chief Social Worker at the Medical College of Georgia, Department of Pediatrics Children and Youth Project in Augusta, Georgia.
Barron worked in private practice and as an instructor for Park University. She is a Board-Certified Diplomate in Clinical Social Work and a Licensed Clinical Social Worker through the Georgia Composite Board of Professional Counselors, Social Workers, and Marriage and Family Therapists. She is also a member of the Academy of Certified Social Workers.
As a subject matter expert (SME) in preventing and treating child and partner maltreatment with military families, Barron was selected to be a member of many task forces through the Headquarters Air Force Medical Operation Agency. In addition, she served as the Equal Employment Opportunity (EEO) Chief Counselor (collateral duty) and later as an EEO Counselor (collateral duty).
Recently, as her commitment to the profession of social work and desire to support future social workers in the profession she raised $150,000 through the establishment of endowments with several universities and NASW.
Barron recently retired after 29 years with the Moody Air Force Base Family Advocacy Program in Georgia. She served as the Family Advocacy Treatment manager from 1993-2000, Family Advocacy Outreach manager from 2000-2019, and Family Advocacy Intervention Specialist from 2019-2022.
Prior to these appointments she served as Chief Social Worker at the Medical College of Georgia, Department of Pediatrics Children and Youth Project in Augusta, Georgia. She also worked in private practice and as an instructor for Park University. Barron is a Board-Certified Diplomate in Clinical Social Work and a Licensed Clinical Social Worker through the Georgia Composite Board of Professional Counselors, Social Workers, and Marriage and Family Therapists. She is a member of the Academy of Certified Social Workers.
Recently, she was the recipient of the Tuskegee University College of Arts and Sciences Department of Social Work – Social Work Excellence award for her contributions to military families, rural communities, and social work education and students through her volunteer work on various boards and mentorship of aspiring social work students.
Barron was a founder of the NASW South Georgia Unit and served as the Past President of the NASW Georgia Chapter. She was a trustee to the NASW Legal Defense Fund and an NASW Foundation Awards Committee member. Barron served two terms on the NASW Board of Directors. She served as Region VI Representative for chapters in Georgia, Alabama, Florida, South Carolina, North Carolina, and Mississippi from 2005-2008. Barron served as National Secretary from 2010-2013 when she was involved with initiating Assurance Services Insurance Company, where she currently serves as Secretary.
In 2015, she was awarded the NASW Distinguished Social Worker Award. Barron continues serving as the NASW ASI Secretary and is a Valdosta City Schools Foundation member. Along with her mother, they provided an Annual Claydon Haywood Barron Memorial Scholarship to a Valdosta High School Graduating Senior since 2002. Also, they select scholarship recipients for the Claydon Haywood Barron Endowment, established in 2003 at the Valdosta State University African American Studies Program. Barron owns Hope Counseling and Mediation Services, LLC, where she plans to provide clinical social work supervision. Barron has traveled to Johannesburg and Cape Town, South Africa; London, England and Paris, France. She looks forward to an upcoming trip to Ghana.
Ms. Barron was born in Valdosta, Georgia to the late Mr. Claydon Hayward Barron, a prominent insurance man and businessman, and Mrs. Mary Alford Barron, a retired Valdosta State University Administrator and businesswoman.
After graduating from Valdosta High School in 1985, Ms. Barron attended Valdosta State College and graduated with her BA in Sociology. Following in the footsteps of her maternal aunt, the late Mrs. Mae Ellen Alford Douglas, a licensed clinical social worker, Ms. Barron received her MSW from the University of Georgia in 1991.
Ms. Barron’s maternal grandparents were the late Mr. Elco and Mrs. Pearlene Walker Alford of Adel, Georgia. Mr. Alford lived to be the oldest and only African American Farmer in Cook County, Georgia. Her paternal grandparents were the late Mr. Haywood Barron and Mrs. Pearl Holmes Barron. Ms. Barron is the 5th Generation Descendant of the late Mr. Ben Alford, a slave.
Significant Recognition and Awards
Barron was named Moody Air Force Base Civilian of the Year in 1994. On numerous occasions, she was named Civilian of the Quarter. In 2003, she was named the NASW Georgia Chapter Social Worker of the Year. She has received numerous awards: National Council of Negro Women Community Award, Omega Psi Phi Businessperson of the Year, Valdosta-Lowndes County Martin Luther King, Jr. Humanitarian Award, and Valdosta Businessperson Woman of Achievement Award.