5 Social Workers Who Are Making A Difference In Their Communities in 2018

5 Modern Social Work Heroes

  • Tamara Grigsby
  • Mariko Yamata
  • David Crampton
  • Darrell Wheeler
  • Georgette Mulheir

Social work is a dynamic, emotional grueling, and intensely rewarding field of occupation. Social workers are everyday, real-life heroes and heroines. They dedicate their careers to helping those who need it most. These five social workers are renowned for making a difference in their communities every day.

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1. Tamara Grigsby

As a social worker in her local community, Tamara Grigsby tackled the tough issues of racial minority, female, and child welfare. Tamara was not content to stop at her own community, however. She became a professor of social work, and she even served for the Democratic Party as the Wisconsin State Assembly Member. To maintain her local and national influence, she served on the Milwaukee Child Welfare Partnership Council, the Wisconsin Women in Government Board, and the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People. Sadly, Tamara Grigsby recently passed away at the age of 41, but her memory lives on through the Wisconsin Chapter of the National Association of Social Workers.

2. Mariko Yamata

Over in California, Mariko Yamata is another driven and successful social worker who has made her way in to the Democratic Assembly. Mariko began her life as a young girl attending inner-city schools, following her parents' captivity in World War II Japanese internment camps. Fueled rather than foiled by her rough beginning, she has culminated her social work career with by serving as an investigator with the Civil Rights Division of the United States Department of Commerce.

3. David Crampton

David Crampton has devoted his social work career to the classroom. He teaches and researches at the Mandel School of Applied Social Sciences, a department of Case Western Reserve University. He is also an influential member of the Annie E. Casey Foundation's Family-to-Family Initiative. He devoutly focuses his work on the areas of child and family welfare.

4. Darrell Wheeler

Darrell Wheeler is another social worker who has created great movement through the academic arena. He serves as not only a professor but also Dean at the Loyola University Chicago School of Social Work. He also serves on the Council on Social Work Education and President of the National Association of Social Workers. His passion centers on the fight for HIV prevention among the African American and LGBT communities.

5. Georgette Mulheir

Most people know Harry Potter. Few people know that in 2005, author of the series, J.K. Rowling, established Lumos. Lumos is not only a spell for casting light; it is a nonprofit organization for casting light on the issue of worldwide childhood orphanages. Social worker Georgette Mulheir is the Chief Executive of Lumos. This is just one way in which she has applied her social work background to aid orphaned children.

These five incredible individuals represent the cream of the crop of the social work field. They are well known and successful only because of their long hours and exhaustive efforts towards bettering the lives of people who face unimaginable challenges. They are living proof that even those with the humblest beginnings can make a difference in communities large and small.