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Ten professors join School of Social Work this academic year; six fill newly created positions

The School of Social Work welcomed ten new faculty members, including two who are returning to the School after brief absences, the dean announced recently. Several of the faculty positions were created this year.

Dr. Katherine Sanchez returns to the School as an associate professor. She left in 2017 to become a research investigator at Baylor Scott & White Research Institute. Before leaving the School of Social Work, she had served as an assistant and, later, an associate professor.

Dr. Sanchez has research interests in Social Work in medical settings, disease management, Social Work in chronic disease care, among other areas.

Dr. Donald Schuman also returns to the school as an assistant professor in practice. He previously worked in the same position from 2014 to 2017.

Dr. Schuman left to become a lecturer at the University of Kentucky’s College of Social Work.

Dr. Schuman’s interests are in addictive behaviors, health care management and military Social Work. He is a Licensed Clinical Social Worker and a Licensed Clinical Dependency Counselor who has worked at various U.S. Army installations across the country.

Meanwhile, eight other scholars and clinicians also joined the School’s faculty this fall, Social Work Dean Scott Ryan announced. The new faculty includes the following:

Dr. Catherine LaBrenz joins the faculty as an assistant professor. She completed her Ph.D. studies at the University of Texas at Austin’s Steve Hicks School of Social Work in 2019. Her interests include child welfare and family engagement.

 

Karen Magruder joins the School as an assistant professor in practice. She earned a Master’s in Social Work at UTA and later worked as a clinical therapist in private practice. Her research interests include healthy aging, dementia and sustainability.

 

Dr. Ashley Palmer joins the school as an assistant professor. She previously worked as an assistant researcher for the School of Social Welfare at the University of Kansas.

Dr. Palmer’s research interests are transitions from adolescence to adulthood and housing policy, among others.

 

Dr. Sophia Fantus joins the School of Social Work as an assistant professor. Dr. Fantus previously worked as a clinical ethics fellow and post-doctoral associate at Baylor College of Medicine’s Center for Medical Ethics and Health Policy.

Dr. Fantus sits on Houston Methodist Hospital's biomedical ethics committee and medical review board for heart and lung transplantation.

Among her interests are reproductive ethics, LGBTQ advocacy and inclusivity and moral distress.

 

Dr. Micki Washburn joins the faculty as an assistant professor. She previously worked as a mental health and substance abuse counselor to individuals, couples and families. She earned a Ph.D. in Social Work at the University of Houston.

Her research Interests include mental health disparities and substance use in historically underserved communities.

 

Dr. De’An Olson Roper, joins the SSW faculty as an assistant professor in practice. She earned a doctoral in health studies at Texas Woman’s University.

Dr. Roper previously worked more than 20 years as a Social Worker in various settings. Her research interests include sexual and gender issues, minority health disparities and substance abuse.

 

Dr. Allison Tomlinson joins the faulty as an assistant professor in practice. She previously worked as a dissertation and doctoral fellow with the Association of Marriage and Family Therapy Minority Fellowship Program at Texas Woman’s University.

Dr. Tomlinson’s research Interests include maternal incarceration and couple and marriage dynamics in African-American families among other areas. She earned a doctorate in family therapy at Texas Woman’s University.

 

Dr. Saltanat Childress joins the School as an assistant professor. She previously worked as a post-doctoral researcher in the Office of Gender-Based Violence at Arizona State University’s School of Social Work.

Dr. Childress’ research interests include understanding and reducing gender-based violence around the world and evaluating policies to address violence against women. She earned a doctorate in Social Work at the University of Maryland.

News Topics: Faculty