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Class Notes

Promotion? New Grandchild? Published a book? Honored with an award? You can share your news and updates with fellow alumni in the Class Notes section of the SSW website.

  • John Paul Tuanqui Abenojar, MSW '05

    SWWLHC Award for Social Work Leadership in Clinical Practice has been awarded to John Paul Tuanqui Abenojar, Social Services Manager at Arleigh Burke Pavilion - Vinson Hall Retirement Community. He has consistently exemplified the qualities that made Ida Cannon, an iconic figure in health social work leadership. His career dedicated to improving the lives of older adults in long term care settings has called attention to the critical importance of psychosocial care, for both the patient and family.

    October 10, 2023
  • Sadé Richardson, MSW '18

    I am humbled to be selected as an honoree for the de Beaumont Foundation’s 40 Under 40 in Public Health Class of 2023. This is an accomplished group of professionals striving to bring healthier solutions to communities across the nation.

    September 7, 2023
  • Sara Thane Milam, MSW '18

    Sara Thane Milam, LCSW opened her private therapy practice Steadfast Living Therapy, LLC in July 2023. Her practice provides individualized and actionable mental health therapy for adults in Nashville, TN. Sara is an EMDR Certified Therapist and specializes in trauma and grief therapy. Visit her website at to learn more.

    August 2, 2023
  • Mike Trepper, MSW '99

    Mike assumed the President/CEO position at Pasco Kids First in February of 2023. Pasco Kids First is a Child Advocacy Center working to prevent child abuse and neglect, providing medical assessment and forensic interviews when abuse occurs as well as therapy and healing services for survivors. Visit for more information.

    July 13, 2023
  • William Cabin, MSW '04

    I have been awarded the 2023 Joseph Gittler Award by the Society for the Study of Social Problems (SSSP). The award is in recognition of a SSSP member for their significant scholarly achievements on the ethical resolution of social problems.

    GO BLUE!

    June 19, 2023
  • William Cabin, MSW '04

    Hi. I was just appointed to the Editorial Board of PLOS ONE, a multidisciplinary peer-reviewed journal.


    May 12, 2023
  • Meggie Royer, MSW '22

    Meggie Royer, MSW class of 2022, won third place for her poem "Impostor Syndrome" in the 2023 University of Iowa School of Social Work Annual National Poetry Contest for Social Workers.

    May 8, 2023
  • William Cabin, MSW '04

    My most recent publication in the peer-reviewed jounal, Home Health Care Management and Practice, is about a new version of a nationally-mandated assessment tool used in all Medicare-certified home health agencies. I interviewed a convenience sample of 36 home care social workers from 5 different home health agencies in the New York City metropolitan area between August 1, 2022, and November 30, 2022 about their views on the new required assessment. Four themes emerged from the study, namely that social workers believe the OASIS-E revisions: are an improvement over prior OASIS versions; are cumbersome and do not require administration by a social worker; do not impose specific guidance requirements on using new measures scoring results in making care decisions; and do not address coverage of specific interventions that address patients with significant mental health issues.

    April 30, 2023
  • Ngozi Eke, LCSW-S, BCD, MSW '15

    Ngozi Eke, MSW 2015, received board certification in Clinical Social Work from the American Board of Clinical Social Work and also published a children’s book titled: The Adventures of Ikemba: Ikemba’s Secret. Additionally, Ngozi received supervisor designation (Social Work) for both Michigan and Texas and also received
    Childcare Director certification and is working on her PhD. Ngozi really appreciated all of the support and education she received at the the University of Michigan School of Social Work.

    March 22, 2023
  • Elizabeth Tebo, MSW '01

    Last year I completed and published my first children's book, The Elephant on Aaron's Chest. It's the story of a boy who is struggling with the weight of his emotions. His emotions take on the form of a cumbersome elephant. With little success, Aaron tries to get the elephant to leave. When Aaron decides to befriend the elephant, things start to change for the better.
    Over the past year, I've been reading my book to elementary school students throughout California and Michigan.

    March 20, 2023
  • Morrie ONeil, MSW '89

    Morrie O'Neil is a Senior Technical Writer for the Federal Aviation Administration in Washington, DC. He lives in Arlington, VA.

    March 19, 2023
  • Lacea Zavala, MSW '07

    After working 20 years in the field of child welfare, Lacea Zavala, MSW, LMSW made a career switch to instructional design and is now back at the U-M SSW as a Learning Experience Designer in the Online MSW Program. In addition, in January of 2023, Lacea and colleague Jamie Garrison launched the non-profit Rising Sage with the mission to assist single mothers in SE Michigan to overcome barriers to access of wellness practices such as yoga, mindfulness, and mental health support.

    March 1, 2023
  • Stephanie Chang, MSW '14

    State Senator Stephanie Chang, MSW/MPP ‘14, has received the Ford School’s Neil Staebler Distinguished Service Award for her dedication to excellence in public service. She will be honored during a Policy Talks @ the Ford School event in which she will discuss environmental justice with U.S. Congresswoman Rashida Tlaib and newly appointed Director of the Wayne County Health, Human & Veterans Services Department Abdul El-Sayed.

    February 10, 2023
  • Taylor Bonner, MSW '19

    During her time at the University of Michigan's School of Social Work, Taylor specialized in Management of Human Services and Community and Social Systems while accepting a field placement at the State Appellate Defender's Office in their Juvenile Lifer Unit supporting their resentencing Work. Currently, Taylor is working in Atlanta, Georgia with the Southern Center for Human Rights as a Civil and Human Rights Investigator on their Impact Litigation Unit. Here, Taylor is successfully challenging the conditions of confinement across the deep south through prison and jail investigations, parole advocacy, resentencing work, and promoting policies that advance decarceration and racial justice.

    February 3, 2023
  • Maureen Tyra, MSW '82

    Maureen Dolan Tyra, LCSW, MSW '82 is the Director of Social Support Services at VyncaCare, a palliative care organization providing care via telehealth for patients in CA, OR and WA. She is also a Respecting Choices® certified Advance Care Planning instructor and facilitator. She educates her staff in the nuanced skills around engaging patients in end-of-life planning conversations, and won't rest until all adults everywhere have their Advance Health Care Directive completed.

    January 22, 2023
  • William Cabin, MSW '04

    I have been re-appointed to a two-year term as a member of the Editorial Board of the Journal of Evidence-based Social Work. In addition, I have the following recent publications:

    Cabin, W. (2022). “What Were They Thinking?”: The Exclusion of Medicare Home Health from Providing
    Supplemental Social Needs Benefits. Home Health Care Management and Practice.

    Cabin, W. (2022). “It’s Just Too Much”: The Financial Calculus in Hospice. Home Health Care
    Management and Practice. Published online June 8, 2022:

    Cabin, W. (2022). The Hospice Algorithm: Capitalizing on Death and Dying. Home Health Care
    Management and Practice, 35(1): 3-12.

    January 11, 2023
  • Dr. Brittany Davis, MSW '08

    Dr. Brittany Davis (formerly Byers), MSW '08, recently completed her PhD in social work at the University of South Carolina. Her dissertation research examined longstanding Black residents' meanings of place identity and gentrification-induced social and cultural displacement, and their actions against such displacement. Additionally, she utilized a secondary analysis and introduced an integrated, innovative way to examine gentrification-induced social and cultural displacement. This involved the integration of photovoice data into a GIS Story Map. The photos and Story Map will be utilized by the community to support their efforts to maintain the historic identity of their neighborhood. As a result of her innovative, and impactful research, Dr. Davis is a recipient of the 2023 Society for Social Work and Research Outstanding Social Work Doctoral Dissertation Award.

    Dr. Davis' new adventures will be serving as an Online Assistant Social Work Professor and a Senior Analyst.

    December 22, 2022
  • Jun Sung Hong, MSW '06

    Dr. Jun Sung Hong (MSW 06) was named one of the top 100 contributors to the social work journal scholarship, according to an article entitled, "Who are the Top 100 Contributors to Social Work Journal Scholarship? A Global Study on Career Impact in the Profession", which was featured in the Research on Social Practice journal.

    December 9, 2022
  • Karen Gordon, MSW '92

    Karen Faith Gordon, MSW '92 is the founder and owner of Karen Faith, LLC, a mental health practice focused on the journey of aging. Scope of practice centers around counseling individuals, couples, and families as they navigate the myriad changes that accompany the aging process. Primary themes include caregiver stress, grief & loss, coping with diagnosis, hospice & end-of-life, depression, anxiety, loneliness, and isolation. To further address these issues in a collective space, Karen created Elements Every Day, housed within the Karen Faith, LLC space, to create community engagement. Offerings include affinity/support groups, educational opportunities, gentle & adaptive yoga, mindfulness practices, culinary workshops, and art therapy. Karen earned her Specialist in Aging certificate with her MSW, and her passion for working within this demographic has continued to deepen throughout her personal and professional life.

    November 24, 2022
  • Meredith Mason-Ramler, MSW '11

    Dr. Meredith Mason-Ramler, MSW 2011, has been recently promoted to an Associate Professor of Human Services and Social Work at the Gateway College. In addition to serving as the Program Coordinator of these subjects, Dr. Mason-Ramler has been promoted to Assistant Dean of the Allied Health Professions Division, also as Gateway College. Furthermore, Dr. Mason has received a renewal of her Ohio Social Work License (LISW) in clinical mental health practice.

    November 17, 2022


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