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Dr. S. Megan Berthold Recognized as 2009 NASW Social Worker of the Year

Washington, D.C. – The National Association of Social Workers (NASW) is pleased to name S. Megan Berthold, LCSW, Ph.D., the 2009 Social Worker of the Year. Dr. Berthold is a dedicated therapist, providing service to refugee survivors of torture from around the world.

As a clinical social worker and the director of research and evaluation at the Program for Torture Victims (PTV) in California, Dr. Berthold has contributed to and supported the recovery of hundreds of refugees at the clinical, social, and legal levels. Her collaborative research efforts dedicated to this population have contributed to the knowledge base about the consequences of torture and the recovery process.

“Social justice is the cornerstone of the social work profession,” notes Dr. Elizabeth Clark, executive director of NASW. “Dr. Berthold has touched the lives of many through the broad reach of her work with victims and her deep commitment to social justice, and is a deserving recipient of our recognition.”

Dr. Berthold earned a Master of Social Work from the University of Utah and a Ph.D. in social welfare from the University of California, Los Angeles. She has had multiple papers published in peer-reviewed journals and books focused on consequences of trauma and the difficulties refugees face.

Recognizing the increasing demand for outcome data, Dr. Berthold designed a research project that allows for a deeper understanding of the impact of political torture on individuals, as well as the outcome of clinical efforts to treat and serve those individuals. She has extensive knowledge and experience in research and has been co-investigator or principal investigator on numerous research initiatives funded by the National Institute of Mental Health. 

In addition to her clinical work at PTV, she is also a field supervisor, providing MSW interns from local universities with rich, well-rounded macro internships that will enhance their development as social workers.

It is with great honor that NASW recognizes S. Megan Berthold, LCSW, Ph.D. as 2009 Social Worker of the Year.

For more information about Dr. Berthold, or to set up an interview, please contact NASW Communications at or 202-336-8212.

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The National Association of Social Workers (NASW), in Washington, DC, is the largest membership organization of professional social workers with 132,000 members. It promotes, develops, and protects the practice of social work and social workers. NASW also seeks to enhance the well-being of individuals, families, and communities through its advocacy.