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Mark Fraser to retire in June

Mark W. Fraser, the John A. Tate Distinguished Professor for Children in Need, will retire at the end of June. Fraser leaves having served 42 years in the field of social work and a quarter of a century at the UNC School of Social Work.

“It has been great fun, and I’m very proud of our School. Please take care of it!” Fraser noted in a brief announcement to faculty, staff and students about his retirement.

Fraser, who served as the School’s associate dean for research for 14 years and three years as the director of the Jordan Institute for Families, is known internationally as a leader in the field of social work research. Over the years, his work has focused on risk and resilience, child behavior, child and family services, and research methods. Especially noted for his work in intervention research, Fraser has delivered presentations across the globe, including at conferences in Australia, China, Denmark and Sweden. A prolific writer, he has authored, co-authored or edited 16 books, four dozen book chapters and more than 100 journal articles.

“Mark is a disciplined social scientist and a person with a deep and enduring commitment to the profession of social work and its core values,” said Dean Gary L. Bowen. “His rigorous work in the areas of risk and resilience and intervention research has lead the way for a generation of social work scholars.”

In 2011, a study in the British Journal of Social Work identified Fraser as among the 100 most influential social work journal authors. Five years later, in a study published in the journal, Research on Social Work Practice, he was named among the country’s most prominent social work scholars. Fraser’s career includes numerous awards for research and teaching, including the Aaron Rosen Award and the Distinguished Achievement Award from the Society for Social Work and Research. From 2007 to 2010, he was named a Fellow of the National Academies of Practice, the American Academy of Social Work and Social Welfare, and the Society for Social Work and Research.

Most recently, Fraser was selected for the 2016-2017 University Faculty Mentoring Awards. Sponsored by the Carolina Women’s Leadership Council, the awards recognize outstanding faculty members “who go the extra mile to guide, mentor and lead undergraduate students, graduate students, or junior faculty as they make important career decisions, embark on innovative research challenges, and enrich their lives through public service, teaching, and meaningful educational opportunities.”

Bowen also praised Fraser’s valuable mentorship of the School’s junior faculty members, many of whom secured grant support for their research under the distinguished professor’s guidance.

“Simply put, Mark does it all well–a great teacher, a great scholar, and a person who consistently puts the School of Social Work ahead of his own personal agenda,” Bowen said. “He is truly a servant leader, and it has been my honor and privilege to have been his colleague for the past 25 years.”