Social Work School Names Assistant Dean for Diversity and Inclusion

Image of Adrianne M. Fletcher, PhD

The Jack, Joseph and Morton Mandel School of Applied Social Sciences is proud to announce Assistant Professor Adrianne M. Crawford Fletcher, MSSA, PhD, has been appointed the school’s inaugural assistant dean for diversity and inclusion.

“I am thrilled to see Dr. Fletcher take on this important leadership position,” says Grover C. Gilmore, PhD, Jack, Joseph and Morton Mandel Dean in Applied Social Sciences. “Her personal, professional and scholarly interests are perfectly aligned with the goals of advancing the school’s daily efforts in diversity and inclusion.”

In this position, Fletcher will lead the Mandel School’s efforts to ensure the school provides a welcoming, safe and productive environment for all students, faculty and staff. Fletcher says a critical examination of issues of diversity and inclusion is especially important for a school of social work.

“In the social work field, we are so immersed in social justice it can lead to an illusion that we get it right and that we are immune to biases,” she says. “There’s an assumption of social justice, which can make it even harder for us to be intentional about topics of diversity and inclusion even as they relate to our own school.”

In her role, Fletcher will serve on a university-wide Committee on Minority Affairs as well as the Faculty Senate’s Committee on Women Faculty. She will also create a school committee on diversity and inclusion composed of students, staff and faculty.

Fletcher holds a Master of Science in Social Administration from the Mandel School and a PhD from Loyola University Chicago. She has been a practicing social work professional for two decades with work experience in child welfare, foster care, psychotherapy, Indian child welfare, court appointed special advocates and veterans. Her research specialty seeks remedies for the malady of negative implicit attitudes among service professionals working with individuals who are often marginalized, poor, physically exhausted and emotionally challenged.

Fletcher joined the Mandel School faculty in 2017 and was previously an assistant professor at the University of Wisconsin Green Bay. She teaches courses in social policy service and delivery; theory and practice approaches in direct practice social work; social work practice in mental health with children and adolescents; and theories of oppression and social justice.