Established in 2018, the annual SP2 Alumni Hall of Fame celebrates outstanding social work, social policy, and nonprofit leaders who took up the calling to advance social justice and equity at Penn’s School of Social Policy & Practice (SP2). At this year’s induction ceremony, the impressive group of 2019 inductees—Julie Hutton (NPL ’14), Joseph Crumbley (DSW ’82), Herb Whren (MSSP ’10), and Chad Dion Lassiter (MSW ’01)— were recognized for their many career achievements, and their ongoing dedication to affecting social change, both locally and worldwide.
The honorees were selected through a nomination process that included submissions from SP2 faculty, staff, alumni, and students across all five of the School’s degree programs. Whether through providing kinship care expertise, anti-racism and violence prevention leadership, advocacy for immigrants and refugees, or working to improve policies around mass incarceration, this year’s inductees demonstrated that SP2 alumni are at the very forefront of helping to address and solve today’s most pressing social issues.
Following opening remarks from SP2 Dean Sara S. Bachman and Kevin Gary, associate director of Alumni Relations and Student Engagement, each of the honorees took to the podium to accept their awards. They shared heartfelt sentiments about the issues and injustices that moved them to become social change agents, their respective professional triumphs and challenges, and the supportive loved ones and teachers who provided encouragement at every step. The inductees’ family members, mentors, former students, SP2 faculty and staff, members of the Dean’s Alumni Advisory Board, and the individuals who nominated them were also present to share in the well-deserved celebration.
While the festivities lasted just a few hours, the SP2 Alumni Hall of Fame inductees’ legacies will be carried forward for generations to come, both through the communities they tirelessly serve and the countless people they have inspired along the way.