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Tamara H. Norris

Clinical Associate Professor
Director, Family Support Program

Tamara Norris



Suite 571

100 Europa Drive

Campus Box 5220

Chapel Hill, NC 27599

O: 919-923-1087

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Tamara Norris is a clinical associate professor and director of the Family Support Program and Family Support Network™ of North Carolina (FSNNC) University Office. Ms. Norris has more than 25 years of experience developing innovative approaches to advance the health and well-being of families and children, in particular promoting services and support for families with children who have disabilities. Her passion is building the capacity of communities, organizations, and families to enable children who have special healthcare needs, rare diagnoses and disabilities to grow to live the lives they envision.

Ms. Norris has presented extensively on topics relating to supporting families and has recently provided leadership in initiatives relating to alternatives to guardianship, work/life issues for parents with children who have disabilities, service navigation for families, statewide information and referral, and child welfare workforce development. As principal investigator on the Supporting Families with Children who have Special Needs project funded by the N.C. Division of Social Services, Ms. Norris directs funding and technical assistance to regional FSNNC affiliates providing family support services in North Carolina communities.

With expertise in program development and management of complex social change initiatives, Ms. Norris enjoys serving as a Community Management and Policy Practice Concentration field instructor for master’s in social work students. She is a fellow at the Frank Porter Graham Child Development Institute and a member of multiple state level committees tasked with improving outcomes for families and children.

Degrees and Licenses

MSSW, Columbia University in the City of New York
MPA, Columbia University in the City of New York
BA, University of Washington

Primary Program

Family Support Program


Mental Health First Aid
Safe Zone

Research and Professional Interests

Families with Children who have Special Needs/Disabilities
Family Support for Individuals who have Rare Diseases
Work/Life Issues
Community Engagement and Collective Impact

Principal Investigator

Supporting Families with Children who have Special Needs


Developmental Transitions for Children who have Special Needs: Identifying Family Demands and Impact on Parental Well-Being and Workplace Attitudes among Physician Scientists
Rethinking Guardianship: A Person-Centered Approach, Investigator

Other Projects

Center for Aging Research and Educational Services (CARES), Investigator

Presentations, Workshops and Media

Norris, T. & and Leach, B. “Supporting Military Families with Children who have Special Needs Living in North Carolina Communities”. Eastern AHEC. May 2019 and Southern AHEC. January 2018.

Norris, T. & Leach, B. “Keeping Children with Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities Safe: The Role of Family Support and Evidence-Based Strategies in Improving Outcomes”. Eastern AHEC. August 2018.

Norris, T. & Leach, B. “Integrated Care for Co-Occurring Behavioral Health and Developmental Disabilities in Youth: A Case Study”. Greensboro AHEC. May 2018.

Norris, T. & Leach, B. “Rethinking Guardianship and Less Restrictive Alternatives: Transition to Adulthood”. 67th Eastern AHEC. May 2019 and Conference on Exceptional Children, NC Department of Public Instruction, Exceptional Children’s Division. Greensboro. November 2017.