Rutgers School of Social Work is pleased to announce the promotion of five faculty members. Emily A. Greenfield, Patricia A. Findley, and Michael C. LaSala have been promoted to full professor, and Mariann Bischoff and Natalie Moore-Bembry have been promoted to assistant professor of teaching.
Read on for more about their illustrious careers.
Emily A. Greenfield
Emily A. Greenfield, PhD, is a Professor at Rutgers School of Social Work. She is an internationally recognized scholar of community gerontology—a new development in the field of aging that aims to understand and improve community environments for increasingly long and unequal lives. Her pioneering research on community initiatives in aging strengthens efforts to modernize supports for people remaining in their own geographic communities as they progress through later life. She also studies how life course social inequalities stemming from childhood influence later life cognition and well-being. Across her research, teaching, and service, Dr. Greenfield encourages others to view themselves as leaders for an aging society and to use research and theory as tools for improving policies and practices of importance to them.
Patricia A. Findley
Patricia A. Findley, Dr.PH, MSW, is a Professor of Social Work, Director of the MSW program, and Special Assistant to the Dean for Interprofessional Health Initiatives. Her research interests include chronic illness, physical disability, interprofessional health education, disaster preparedness and response, and cancer survivorship. As a research scholar in the Veterans Administration she explores both physical and mental health issues, as well as trauma issues within the Veteran population. Past projects included examining a Medicaid Traumatic Brain Injury Waiver through an NIH K-Award grant and validation of the Medical Listings and program reform of the Social Security Disability Determination Process through a collaborative agreement with the Social Security Administration. She has a long clinical history of working with those with disabilities in medical rehabilitation settings, and co-authored a book, The Cancer Survivor Handbook: The Essential Guide to Cancer Survivorship. With funding from USAID, she has collaborated with American, Israeli, and Palestinian colleagues on educating students and mental health professionals on disaster preparedness and response. More recent work has her exploring the impact of Hurricane Sandy on both individuals in New Jersey as well as the state behavioral health system response to the storm. She has been a co-investigator on several HRSA grants focused on interprofessional health education across Rutgers. Her research appears in peer-reviewed rehabilitation, public health, and medical journals including Archives of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation, Women's Health Issues, Preventive Medicine, and Journal of General Internal Medicine. She serves a senior associate and managing editor for the Journal of Occupational Rehabilitation. She is a board member of Rutgers Health, the university's first healthcare system, and the co-chair of the Rutgers Health Council.
Michael C. LaSala
Michael C. LaSala, PhD, LCSW is Professor and Director of the Doctorate of Social Work (DSW) Program at Rutgers University and where he has also served as MSW Director. During his tenure at Rutgers, Professor LaSala has won several awards for innovation in teaching. He has been a practicing family therapist and teacher/trainer for over 35 years, and his research and clinical specialties are the couple and family relationships of gay men and lesbians and the role of family influences on the sexual behaviors of gay and bisexual youth. Professor LaSala’s book entitled: Coming out, coming home (Columbia University Press) describes the findings and practice implications of a National Institute of Mental Health funded qualitative study of 65 gay and lesbian youth and their families. Other examples of Professor LaSala’s work can be found in over 30 journal articles and his blog for Psychology Today. He is also a recipient of the American Family Therapy Academy’s 2017 Distinguished Contribution to Social Justice Award.
Mariann Bischoff serves as an assistant professor of teaching and management and policy field education coordinator at the Rutgers University School of Social Work. In this position, she works to facilitate field placements for MSW students in the management and policy specialization. She also serves as off-site field instructor.
Since 2015, Mariann has served the School of Social Work in the areas of field education, developing new internships, placing students, providing off-site field instruction to BASW and MSW students, and teaching BASW and MSW courses. Mariann co-developed and teaches the School’s environmental justice course with faculty colleague Christine Morales, with whom she has delivered continuing education seminars and professional presentations on the critical work of environmental justice and decolonization. Mariann also served as a co-author on the CSWE Curricular Guide for Environmental Justice.
Mariann is a licensed clinical social worker, certified clinical supervisor and certified social work supervisor in the state of New Jersey. Mariann maintains a private practice, providing clinical supervision and teaching mindfulness.
She earned her MSW at Monmouth University with a concentration in international and community development. She earned her MS at Cornell University in soil and water engineering and international development, where she completed research in the Middle East examining the interconnections between water use and gender relations. She earned her BS at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute in mechanical engineering with a minor in German, studying one year as a matriculated student in Germany.
Prior to joining the faculty at Rutgers, Mariann served as clinical supervisor at Catholic Charities in Hunterdon County, where she oversaw clinical operations for family preservation services, in-home clinical programs and outpatient services. She reported monthly and quarterly outcome statistics, administered performance reviews, and ensured proper clinician training. She increased referral sources by developing relationships with community partners.
Previous to that work, Mariann held positions at Carrier Clinic, including acting lead clinical case manager and admissions clinician. She was awarded “Above & Beyond” for developing a proposal to implement an electronic hospital census “bed board,” which increased revenue. She trained new clinical case managers and supervised interns. Mariann assessed and counseled patients with psychiatric, substance abuse and dementia diagnoses, developed treatment plans, implemented discharge plans and obtained insurance authorizations. She facilitated family meetings and psychoeducational groups.
Mariann began her social work career as executive director of Meals on Wheels of Greater New Brunswick, where she managed a budget of $173,000, wrote a yearly grant application to Middlesex County Office on Aging, ran the board of directors’ meetings and published a monthly newsletter. She was solely responsible for billing, staffing, scheduling, and bookkeeping and prepared monthly schedules for 120 volunteers to deliver meals to 55 clients daily.
Dr. Moore-Bembry earned her doctor of education from Rowan University. She has a BSW and MSW from Monmouth University. She is a Licensed Social Worker and a Certified School Social Worker in the state of New Jersey. She has a wide range of experience in the field of Social Work, including working with the Mentally Ill Chemically Addicted (MICA), the developmentally disabled, and Child Welfare. With over 15 years of experience within the field of child welfare, Dr. Bembry has held positions such as: a child welfare worker, school social worker, and finally as a child welfare trainer. As a child welfare trainer, she developed and trained many courses during her tenure. These courses include but are not limited to: Engagement and Trust Building Skills, Structured Decision-Making, Pre-Service Training, Car Seat Safety, CPR and First Aid, and Defensive Driving. Dr. Moore-Bembry also served as the primary trainer for the Department of Children and Families Office of Resource Families. She is a nationally certified Child Passenger Safety Technician and Instructor through SafeKids Worldwide and a CPR/First Aid/AED Instructor through the American Red Cross.
Dr. Moore-Bembry is passionate about educating social workers. She has taught at the undergraduate and/or graduate level at the following institutions: Monmouth University, St. Joseph’s College, and Delaware State University. At Monmouth University she taught Social Work Practice with Communities, Field Practice in Social Work and Advanced Field Practice in Social Work for in the undergraduate program where she also served as a field instructor and mentor for senior BSW field students. In the MSW Program, Dr. Moore-Bembry taught Advanced Clinical Practice with Children, Social Welfare Policy and Services I, and Social Work Practice in Groups. At St. Joseph’s College she designed and instructed an online undergraduate Human Behavior and Social Environment course that focused on racism, oppression, discrimination, and the use of cultural humility. Dr. Moore-Bembry also designed an online graduate level Social Welfare Policy and Services I course at Delaware State University.
At Rutgers University School of Social Work, Dr. Moore-Bembry has provided instruction at both the BASW and MSW levels. In the BASW program, she has taught Generalist Practice I and Groups at Risk. In the MSW program she teaches Psychopathology, Social Work Practice I, and Social Welfare Policy and Services I.