Winter 2021
School Updates

Faculty and Staff News

Read about the new faculty and staff, promotions, faculty awards, and faculty retirements.

New Faculty

  • Alicia Johnson joined the school as clinical assistant professor and Child Welfare Education for Leadership academic coordinator.
  • Misha Zorich was named the University of Pittsburgh at Johnstown MSW program coordinator.

New Staff


  • Jaime Booth has been promoted to associate professor with tenure.
  • Catherine Greeno joined the leadership team of Pitt’s Center for Interventions to Enhance Community Health as its deputy director.
  • Toya Jones is the new BASW program director.
  • Elizabeth Mulvaney has been promoted to clinical assistant professor.
  • Christina Newhill is the new doctoral program director.
  • Jessalynn Oliver has been promoted to recruitment and enrollment manager.
  • Helen E. Petracchi has been named acting associate dean for academic affairs.
  • Mary Elizabeth Rauktis has been pro­moted to research associate professor.
  • John Wallace, David E. Epperson Endowed Chair, has been named Pitt vice provost for faculty diversity and development.

Faculty Awards

  • Jaime Booth received the 2020 Deborah K. Padgett Early Career Achievement Award from the Society for Social Work and Research. The award recognizes Booth’s innovative scholarship, rigorous approach to social work research, and emerging influence in the field.
  • Professor Valire Copeland and Shaun Eack, James and Noel Browne Endowed Chair and associate dean for research, received a $25,000 prize from the 2020 Pitt Innovation Challenge for their project, Thinking in Speech.
  • Larry Davis, dean emeritus of the school and founding director of the Center on Race and Social Problems, was honored with the Phyllis Black Lifetime Achievement Award at the National Association of Social Workers Pennsylvania Chapter 2020 Annual Conference.
  • Dean Betsy Farmer was selected as a fellow of the American Academy of Social Work and Social Welfare. The Society for Social Work and Research held a virtual induction ceremony at its 2021 annual conference.
  • Mary Ohmer, chair of the Community, Organization, and Social Action spe­cialization, and her research team were honored at the 2020 Pitt Community Engaged Scholarship Forum with a Senior Vice Chancellor for Engagement’s Partnerships of Distinction award.

Faculty Retirements

  • Cynthia Bradley-King, former clinical assis­tant professor and academic coordinator for the Child Welfare Education for Baccalaureates program, retired in August 2020.
  • Hidenori Yamatani, former director of strategic planning and quality assurance, retired in December 2019.