Schnavia Smith Hatcher

Dr. Schnavia Smith Hatcher. Image from the University of Alabama. 

The University of Alabama (UA) has selected Dr. Schnavia Smith Hatcher, who is a Selma native, to lead its School of Social Work on Aug. 1 in 2021. 

Hatcher comes from School of Social Work at the University of North Carolina at Charlotte. According to a press release from UA a national search was conducted before choosing Hatcher. 

“Dean Hatcher’s outstanding educational background and experience in social work, her commitment to student success, and her dedication to addressing critical issues in the community make her an ideal leader for UA’s School of Social Work,” said UA Executive Vice President and Provost Dr. Jim Dalton.

Hatcher holds degrees from several universities, including a doctorate in social work from the University of Kansas, a master of social work from the University of Georgia, and a bachelor of psychology degree from Spelman College. 

She founded the Center for African American Studies at the University of Texas at Arlington and was an associate professor of social work and criminology and criminal justice there. 

Afterwards she joined the University of North Carolina at Charlotte where she was the inaugural director of the School of Social Work, director of the Race and Social Equity Academy. 

“I am honored to join UA because of the stellar faculty, staff and alumni committed to preparing social workers to be social change agents who will promote individual and societal wellbeing,” she commented in the press release.

“The School of Social Work is highly visible for fostering student success and responding to critical challenges facing our most vulnerable in the region, nation and globe. I appreciate its unique history and distinctive strengths, and look forward to continuing the momentum of education, research and service.”

She replaces Dr. Lesley Reid, who has served as interim director before Hatcher arrives next year. 

“I want to thank Dr. Reid for her dedicated and committed leadership,” Dalton commented in the release. “She has and will continue to provide steady guidance through the transition, and her hard work is appreciated.”

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