Dr. Clark will highlight the role of social work in helping communities deal with both the positive and negative impacts of economic development. She will offer a contextual view of the profession as it navigates the nationwide economic downturn which has resulted in cutbacks to funding at the same time the need for service provision has increased. Dr. Clark will also offer insight into ongoing safety concerns for the profession and highlight trends in occupational risks for social workers. She will offer suggestions for social workers and agencies in addressing these concerns.
Elizabeth J. Clark, PhD, ACSW, MPH: Executive Director of the National Assoication of Social Workers (NASW). Dr. Clark is a member of the Academy of Certified Social Workers and of the National Academies of Practice. She sits on the Board of Directors of C-Change, Collaboating to Conquer Cancer, the Luekemia and Lymphoma Society, and the Foundation for Hospices in Sub-Saharan Africa. She is the co-principal investigator of the National Study of Licensed Social Workers Project. Dr. Clark has a background in health care with a specialization in oncology. She has worked in direct clinical practice; has held several academic positions including an Associate Professorship in Medical Oncology; has been a hospital administrator; has conducted research and published in areas such as the social work workforce and social work policy, as well as clinical areas such as illness and loss, hope and survivorship. She also consults with the People to People Ambassador Program, and has lead delegations to China, Cambodia, South Africa, Egypt, Russia, and Brazil. Dr. Clark will lead social work delegations to India and Kenya in 2012.
Distinguished Alumni Award
Carenlee Barkdull, PhD, LCSW: Carenlee is an Associate Professor and the Director of the MSW Program at the University of North Dakota, Department of Social Work. She studied at the University of Utah for her MSW and PhD in Social Work. She has been teaching at the University of North Dakota since 2005, and has fourteen years of social work practice experience. Dr. Barkdull has years of social work experience in the public and nonprofit sectors ecompassing policy advocacy, nonprofit administration, and direct practice with children and families and the homeless. She has numerous services and research grants to her credit, and has also helped to develop university-community partnerships in the Great Basin region and the Southwest in both rural and reservation communities. Her research is focused on Native American communities, Muslim populations, and distance education, and she has several publications in these areas. She is also the Board President of Third Street Clinic, a unique partnership of nonprofits providing medical and pharmaceutical "safety net" services to the Grand Forks community.
Shirley Dykshoon: Shirley is the Director of the Lutheran Social Services Disaster Response in Minot, ND. Shirley is a graduate of the University of North Dakota with a Masters degree in Public Administration and also has a BA from Jamestown College. She has been with Lutheran Social Services for the past 8 months, previously having worked in state government for 20 years. Prior to that she worked in non-profit for 10 years as ED for Habitat for Humanity and working in multi-state domestic violence prevention through NDCAWS. She also worked for Fannie Mae for 8 years leading up to the multi-state housing effort. Her efforts in Minot with Lutheran Social Services Disaster Response now involve the rebuilding of homes in the Minot area after the Level 5 flooding occured over one year ago.
Thomasine Heitkamp, MSW, LICSW: Thomasine is a Licensed Independent Clinical Social Worker in North Dakota and a Professor and Chair of the Department of Social Work at the University of North Dakota. She has served as Chair for the department forthe past six years. Professor Heitkamp has also administered numerous grant funded research projects through the University of North Dakota. Most recently she has worked with the Government Rurual Outreach Project through the College of Business and Public Administration to assist Native American communities in five states. Professor Heitkamp has also worked as a consultant on a variety of projects including raising funds to assist in the establishment of a treatment facility for women with addictive disorders.
Dheeshana Jayasundara, PhD, MSSW, MA, LMSW: Dheeshana comes to the University of North Dakota from a multi-disciplinary academic background. She completed her undergraduate degree in sociololgy from the University of Delhi, Hindu College in 1998, completed her MA in criminology and criminal justice from teh University of Missouri-St. Louis in 2003 and a MS in social work fro mteh University of Texas-Arlington in 2008, and her PhD in social work from the University of Texas-Arlington in 2009. Dr. Jayasundara has been trained in both quantitative and qualitative research methods. She has applied these skills toward her research interests that examine violence again women, the repoductive health of women, and development through microfinance and capability building both developing and developed countries. Dr. Jayasundara is currently in the process of collaborating with a South Asian regional agency operating from Sri Lanka. Her teaching experience also reflects her knowledge of research methodology. She has taught graduate level research classes and practicum courses in stress, crisis, and coping and violence in families. Dr. Jayasundara has applied her research training toward assisting agencies that serve minority populations through grant writing and project development endeavors.
Charell Schillo: Charell received her Masters degree in Social Work from the University of Utah and her BA from Minot State. She is a long time resident of North Dakota and has lived in "Boom Town" most of her life. She lived in Williston during the boom times of 1950; in Gillette, Wyoming during the oil boom there; and while working on her MSW in Utah she worked with communities that were experiencing exponential growth due to rapid energy development. Returning to Williston in 1978, she gathered data for research on Boom Towns that was conducted by Joseph and Judith Davenport and later published. A member of the original Williams County Planning and Zoning Board, Charell once again joined that board in September 2011, following her recruitement as clinical supervisor for the Northwest Human Service Center in Williston, ND. Her career as a social worker has included work as a County Social Worker, Program Manager and Psychiatric Social Worker.
Bret Weber, PhD, MSW, LCSW: Bret is an Assistant Professor at the University of North Dakota, Department of Social Work. He earned his PhD at the University of Utah and his MSW from the University of North Dakota with field placements at the local Housing Authority and Child Protection. He was a founding member of the Grand Forks Community Land Trust and currently serves as President of its Board of Directors. He also serves as an advisor to the Grand Forks Energy Alliance and to the PLUS Program. His current major research activities include completion of "Victories in the War on Poverty: the Denver Model Cities Program," work with Sandi Marshall, Executive Director of Development Homes, Inc., on a history of North Dakota and the process of deinstitutionalization for persons with developmental disabilities. He is also conducting interdisciplinary research on the impacts of the North Dakota oil boom on human services and vulnerable populations. He was also elected to the Grand Forks City Council in June, 2012.