WASHINGTON, D.C. –
The National Association of Social Workers (NASW) is pleased to announce Mayor
Madeline Rogero is the NASW National Public
Elected Official of the Year for making Knoxville, Tenn. a better and safer
place to live, especially for at-risk populations such as people who are
homeless, LGBTQ, children and young men of color.
“Mayor Rogero has devoted her life to public service and improving
the conditions of others,” said NASW CEO Angelo McClain, PhD, LICSW. “In these
divisive political times, Mayor Rogero serves as an example to all with her compassion,
stellar leadership abilities, and willingness to work with all sides to find a
solution to pressing social issues.”
The NASW National Public Elected Official of the Year award
recognizes outstanding service and contributions of an elected official who has
shown leadership in the formulation of public policy, particularly policies that
affect social justice, health care, education, civil and human rights, and the
protection and advancement of social work practice.
Mayor Rogero is an ideal recipient for this award. As mayor
she fostered a Roundtable on Homelessness that brings together people who are
homeless, faith leaders, service providers and community officials to find
reasonable solutions to homelessness in Knoxville.
Mayor Rogero took an active role in the design and
development of a Save Our Son project aimed at reducing violence and increasing
educational and employment opportunities among boys and young men of color in
Knoxville. And she extended employee benefits to same-sex and opposite-sex
domestic partners and expanded Knoxville’s employee nondiscrimination ordinance
to include sexual orientation and gender identity.
In addition, the mayor has worked with elementary students
in an impoverished community to design safer pathways for the children to
travel and supported the Knoxville Extreme Energy Makeover (KEEM) home weatherization
project to help residents make their homes more comfortable and save energy.
“NASW is proud to honor Mayor Rogero with this award,”
McClain said. “Her policies and initiatives exemplify and demonstrate the values and ethics held so dearly by the social work profession.”