The Silver School of Social Work at NYU is proud to announce the honorees of the first annual Student and Alumni Awards. These individuals represent the ideals and mission of the School and we are honored to recognize their contributions.
There are four award categories, two for alumni, and two for students: Distinguished Alumni; Outstanding Recent Alumni; the Innovation in Social Work Practice Student Award; and the Silver Spirit Award for Outstanding Social Work Students. Please see below for a list of the honorees and an abbreviated description of their achievements.
Second Annual Student Awards Nominations
Nominations for this year's Student Awards are currently open. Please click here for a list of awards and for instructions on how to nominate student candidates.
Distinguished Alumna Awards
Dr. Gladys González-Ramos (MSW '77, PhD '85), is an Associate Professor at
the New York University Silver School of Social Work and Adjunct Associate Professor
of Neurology at the New York University School of Medicine. She received her
Master's and Doctoral degrees in Social Work from NYU. She holds a certificate
in psychoanalytic psychotherapy with adults from The Institute for Mental
Health Education and a certificate in psychoanalytic psychotherapy with
children and families from The Postgraduate Center for Mental Health.
Dr. González-Ramos is a consultant to the National Parkinson Foundation (NPF) on national educational and outreach initiatives. Along with Ruth Hagestuen (RN, MA), she serves a co-director of Community Partners for Parkinson Care (CPP), a national community outreach program that seeks to form national and community-based partnerships to raise awareness and help medically underserved families to access specialty medical care. She has received awards for her work from the NYC chapter of the NASW/Latino Social Work Task Force, the Florida Movement Disorder Society and the Puerto Rican Family Institute.
Mary Pender Greene (MSW '74) is an Assistant Executive Director at the Jewish
Board of Family and Children's Services (JBFCS), the largest voluntary mental
health and social services agency in the country. The JBFCS serves 70,000
families of diverse racial and ethnic backgrounds each year in 160 programs
with a staff of 3,400. She joined the JBFCS in 1984 and has been Chief of
Social Work Services and the Director of Group Treatment since 1993. She was
appointed Assistant Executive Director and a member of the Executive Management
Team in 2007.
Ms. Pender Greene is being honored for her years of service at JBFCS, and her work to enhance our profession, including leadership in NASW-NYC and for her work in family and group therapy, multiculturalism and antiracism efforts. Ms. Pender Greene is the co-editor of Racism and Racial Identity: Reflections on Urban Practice in Mental Health and Social Services (Dec. 2006) and the author of Beyond Diversity and Multiculturalism: Towards the Development of Anti-racist Institutions and Leaders, article in The Journal of Non-Profit Management (2008).
Outstanding Recent Alumna Awards
Teresa Bennett-Pasquale (MSW '07) works at the Department of Veterans Affairs
at the Secaucus Vet Center. The Vet Center program focuses on the treatment of
Combat Veterans and survivors of Military Sexual Trauma with Post Traumatic
Stress Disorder. At the Vet Center, Ms. Bennett-Pasquale created a Multimedia
Group entitled "Telling Stories" which incorporates various mediums of creative
expression as a means of clients processing and healing from trauma. She has
also launched a pilot yoga program at the Vet Center which she is analyzing for
an academic article on the use of yoga as a therapeutic treatment.
Ms. Bennett-Pasquale is currently working on a model for training in PTSD and holistic treatment modalities. She recently gave a training session on trauma at Restore, an organization that works with women who are survivors of sex trafficking.
Donna Demetri Friedman (MSW '93, PhD '05)
received Master's degrees in Social
Work and Psychology, as well as her PhD in Social Work, from NYU. In 2006, Dr.
Friedman was named Deputy Executive Director of Riverdale Mental Health
Association, an outpatient mental health facility in the Bronx where she
started in 1992 as a social work student at NYU.
In 2005, she completed her dissertation entitled Four-month Infant Vocal Quality in Face-to-Face Interaction: Postpartum Depressive Symptomatology and Infant Gender. She continues to conduct infant research with Dr. Beatrice Beebe at New York State Psychiatric Institute, and also is part of the September 11, 2001 Mothers and Young Children Project: A Longitudinal Primary Prevention Project for Mothers Pregnant and Widowed in the World Trade Center Tragedy of September 11, 2001, and Their Children. Dr. Friedman is also an Assistant Adjunct Professor at the Silver School of Social Work at NYU.
Innovation in Social Work Practice Student Award
Jennifer Applegate is a graduating MSW student, born and raised in Seattle, Washington. She received her
Bachelor's degree in Psychology from Whitworth University in Spokane,
Washington. After a study tour to Northern Ireland, where she witnessed the
effects of political oppression and racism, she decided to pursue a career in
social work. Jennifer's comprehensive literature review of community gardens
examines how the gardens have been shown to lessen violent crime, improve health
outcomes, and facilitate social participation in neighborhoods. She proposes a
five-year, longitudinal study comparing neighborhoods with and without community
gardens in the city of Newark, New Jersey.
Her overarching career goal is to promote social justice and work towards equality, respect, and peace. Community gardens and the "green" movement have become topics of great interest to Ms Applegate. Especially in times of economic instability, she believes that communities must work together and build relationships in order to flourish. Through her experience with community gardens she is able to serve and work alongside marginalized populations, and work towards her vision that human dignity and love will bring us together in respect and peace.
Kate Price Segedy is a first-year MSW student at NYU. Her field placement is
located at the Brooklyn Treatment Court (BTC), an alternative to incarceration program
that provides addiction treatment to nonviolent felony and misdemeanor
offenders in lieu of jail time. At the Center, Ms. Segedy helped to create
"Parents with a Story," a restorative program that provides BTC residential
participants with an opportunity to connect with their children through
audio-video recorded storytelling while in treatment.
In addition to her work at BTC, Ms. Segedy is a rape crisis and domestic violence advocate at Beth Israel Hospital. She also volunteers at Restore, a nonprofit agency that combats sex trafficking in New York City, and with the Community Friends Project at the Jewish Board of Children and Family Services. In the future, she hopes to maintain a private practice in which she works with female survivors of trauma.
Silver Spirit Award for Outstanding Social Work Students
Lisa Bednarz (BS '08) is a graduating MSW student from the Silver School of Social
Work's Advanced Standing program, and an alumna of the SSSW's Bachelors of Science in Social
Work program. Always committed to the field, Ms. Bednarz has spent much of her
time at NYU immersing herself in the Silver community. From her position as a
School of Social Work Student Blogger to her contributions on the Department
Chairs Committee, Ms. Bednarz demonstrates her pride in NYU and the school of
social work in everything she does.
She is a Catherine B. Reynolds Scholar in Social Entrepreneurship and a StartingBloc Fellow in Social Innovation; she believes in modernizing social services through cross-sector collaboration and entrepreneurial principles. She is especially passionate about social epidemiology and working with older adults, and is a student in the inaugural year of the Integrated Geriatric Mental Health program at the Silver School. She looks forward to building on the invaluable foundation that the school has given her.
Karalyn Shimmyo is a graduating MSW student at NYU's Silver School of Social
Work, where she founded the NYU Student Committee on LCSW Licensing Issues
(October, 2008), the leading student group advocating for positive change in New
York State licensing requirements. She received her B.S. in Experimental
Psychology from the City University of New York. She also serves as a current
board member for the New York State Coalition of LMSWs.
Ms. Shimmyo, a longtime resident of Brooklyn, NY, serves as co-chair of the Development Committee for the Brooklyn Community Pride Center. In 2003, she co-founded and incorporated the arts-based nonprofit Artists Paint for Peace, Inc., where she held the position of Development Director for four years. She offers consultation on nonprofit organizational development, as well as grant and report writing services.