The National Executive Committee
consists of the National
President, National Vice President, National Secretary, National Treasurer, Two
(2) Members-at-Large, Office of Student Affairs President, and the Immediate Past President, who serves for a
one-year term. This Committee is responsible for the implementation of
policy formulated by the National Steering Committee and carrying out its
responsibilities as indicated by the Constitution and By-Laws.
J. Toni Oliver is the 12th National President of NABSW. Ms. Oliver served for 18 years as the Founder, President and CEO for ROOTS…planting seeds to secure our future, Inc., the only adoption agency in Georgia and one of a very few in the country to focus solely on improving adoption opportunities for African American children. As an independent contractor and expert in the field of child welfare, Ms. Oliver provides training and consultation to public and private child welfare agencies throughout the United States and abroad. Ms. Oliver received her BA from Bennett College in Greensboro, NC and her MSW from Temple University in Philadelphia, PA where she was selected as the Temple University School of Social Administration’s Alumni Fellow in 2006.
National Vice President
Roxanne Ellis-Denby LCSW, LPN is a Licensed Clinician employed as an outpatient therapist, by the State of Connecticut Department of Mental Health & Addiction Services (DMHAS). She has been employed by the State of Connecticut for 16 years. Prior to her position at DMHAS, Roxanne worked as a clinician and correctional nurse in the prison setting for 11 years. Roxanne is a part of the State of Connecticut’s Critical Incident Stress Management (CISM) and the Disaster Behavioral Health Response Network (DBHRN). Roxanne received her Bachelor’s Degree at the University of Saint Joseph in West Hartford Connecticut and her Master’s Degree in Social Work from Fordham University in New York. She is also a Licensed Practical Nurse, Clinical Director for a Home based clinical agency and Adjunct Lecturer at the University of Saint Joseph. Roxanne has been a member of NABSW since 2004. She is the President of the Greater Hartford ABSW. Roxanne served as National Membership Co-chair, Disaster Preparedness/Trauma Response Co-chair; co-authored NABSW Disaster Manual and Crisis Plan; assisted in the development of National’s new website; Health & Wellness Committee.
Watson is the national treasurer. Ms. Watson has been a member of
NABSW for over ten years and has served on the Membership Committee as
well as the Finance Committee. She resides in Los Angeles, CA where she
also serves as treasurer of the Association of Black Social Workers of
Greater Los Angeles. Ms. Watson earned her Bachelors and Masters
degrees in Social Work from California State University – Los Angeles.
She is the Executive Director of People Who Care Youth Center, a
non-profit youth and family services agency. With expertise in program
design, Ms. Watson has developed programs to reduce child abuse, gang
involvement, and dropouts in the South Los Angeles area.
National Recording Secretary
Traci Lewis is the National Recording Secretary. She began her journey in NABSW as a student by joining Mwanafunzi, The Ohio State University ABSW Chapter, in 1985. Traci has been a continuous member of NABSW since 1990. She is currently Vice-President and National Steering Committee Representative for the chapter and humbly served as the student chapter advisor to Mwanafunzi for 17 years. Traci has held appointments as the National Student Advisor for the Office of Student Affairs (OSA) and the National Membership Co-chair. She is the Mid-West Regional Liaison, has worked on the national website and is a member of the Disaster Preparedness and Emergency Response Committee. She has also developed or assisted in the development of several handbooks and manuals to assist in documenting policy, procedures and transitions within the organization. Traci is Director of the Access Collaborative Program at The Ohio State University. A native of Columbus, Ohio, Traci is the very proud mother of two beautiful girls ages 17 and 7.
National Corresponding SecretaryMs.
Sondera Malry is the National Corresponding Secretary, serving since
2011. She has been a member of NABSW since 1974, joining as a student
while in the Graduate School of Social Work at the University of
Houston. As an active member of NABSW for over 40 years, Ms. Malry has
served on the Nominating Committee, served as the Presidential Affairs
Coordinator for the 10th National NABSW President, has been Co-Chair of
the Harambee Rituals and Ceremony committee, and serves as the Sankofa
Mentorship Project Consultant. Ms. Malry has also served as advisor to
several Houston area student chapters. Ms. Malry obtained her MSW, with
a specialty in Administration and Planning from the University of
Houston in 1976, and has been a Licensed Clinical Social Worker since
1989. She recently retired from the State of Texas' Protective Services
for Children after over 35 years of service. Ms. Malry continues to
provide approved State Supervision to social work practitioners and
trainees seeing licensure in her private practice, Malry &
Angela Washington serves as the National Member-At-Large. She currently resides in Connecticut where she is Vice-President and Steering Committee Representative of the Greater Hartford ABSW. Ms. Washington has been an active member of the National Association of Black Social Workers since 2004. She currently serves as Co-Chair of the Disaster Preparedness/Trauma Response Task Force and is a member of the National Health and Wellness Committee and former member of the Membership Committee. Ms. Washington has Co-authored a manual titled, "A Prepared People: National Association of Black Social Workers’ Cultural Approach to Disaster Readiness and Response”. Ms. Washington earned her Bachelor’s degree in social work from the University of St Joseph and her MSW from Fordham University. Ms. Washington is a faculty member and coordinator of field education at the University of St. Joseph. Also, she continues to work as a LCSW with agencies that provide supportive counseling to assist family/client with coping and adjustment to illness, families at risk and provides clinical supervision for MSW licensure candidates.
O. Yvonette Powell serves as the National Member-At-Large. She is a
native of San Diego, CA. Dr. Powell received her Bachelor's Degree in
Human Development and Family life in 1970 and went on to receive her MSW
in 1976 from San
Diego State University. Dr. Powell completed her Doctorate in
Education at the University of San Diego in 2001. Dr. Powell began her
involvement with NABSW in 1973 while a graduate student at San Diego
State University. She attended her first National Conference in 1977
and has been an active member ever since. Dr. Powell has served as the
Co-Chair for the National Membership Committee, and as a local and state
ABSW Officer. She currently serves as the West Regional membership
liaison and as a Steering Committee Representative and is the student
advisor for the Southern California student chapter. Dr. Powell is the
Director of Education for the California Association of Black Social
Workers. Dr. Powell has over 40 years experience working with families
and youth with social, educational, and developmental issues.
Office of Student Affairs President
A native of Greenville, North Carolina, Walter Raleigh Higgs, III is a graduate of North Carolina Central University where he holds a Bachelor of Science degree in Mathematics with a minor in Business. He obtained triple master degrees: Master of Divinity/Master of Arts in Church Music from Morehouse School of Religion at the Interdenominational Theological Center (the ITC) and a Master of Public Health from Morehouse School of Medicine, part of the joint master’s programs within the graduate schools of the Atlanta University Center (the AUC). While pursuing his degree programs, Walter took all of his applied and theoretical classes in music at Morehouse College. Currently, he is pursuing a Master of Clinical Social Work with an Urban Leadership Certificate at Simmons College School of Social Work in Boston, MA where he plans to one day be a practicing psychotherapist and a program director or CEO for a non-profit organization. Walter currently serves as the President of the Office of Student Affairs of NABSW.
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