Ira Colby to deliver address at VCU School of Social Work commencement
By Adam Caldwell, VCU School of Social Work
The Virginia Commonwealth University School of Social Work is pleased to announce that Ira Colby, Ph.D., will be the featured speaker for the May 2017 VCU School of Social Work commencement ceremony.
Colby, a VCU School of Social Work M.S.W. alumnus, has had an exciting 45-year career in social work. It allowed him to travel nationally and internationally where he learned from and worked with leading scholars and practitioners, passionate advocates, government officials and Nobel Peace Prize laureates.
His work began in the mid-1970s, having held a variety of administrative positions in baccalaureate and graduate social work programs in public and private settings, and culminating in a 15-year tenure as dean of the University of Houston Graduate College of Social Work. Throughout his career, Colby has held numerous national and international leadership positions, including president of the Council on Social Work Education, co-chair of the Advocacy Network for Social Work Education and Research, chair of the CSWE-NASW Congressional Fellows Committee, as well as a board member of both the Hong Kong, China Social Work Registration and the International Association of Schools of Social Work.
Colby has authored more than 79 articles, book chapters and books and has presented 110 papers and invited speeches worldwide. Oxford University Press will publish his latest text, “Handbook for Policy Practice,” later this year. He has been recognized by a number of universities, honor societies and state legislatures, including honorary professorships in China and Wales and is a recipient of an Honorary Doctorate of Humanics from Springfield College. He is most proud of his Distinguished Alumni Award from the VCU School of Social Work. Today, with his wife and best friend of nearly 48 years — a VCU M.S.W. alumna — he lives in southern Vermont where they are volunteer ski instructors with AbilityPLUS Adaptive Sports, as well as ski coaches with the Vermont Special Olympics.
Today, with his wife and best friend of nearly 48 years — a VCU M.S.W. alumna — he lives in southern Vermont where they are volunteer ski instructors with AbilityPLUS Adaptive Sports, as well as ski coaches with the Vermont Special Olympics.