Bringing his vast experience in fund development, community relationships and brand management, Brian Williams, MSW, is the new acting assistant director for the NASW Foundation.
“It has been a long interest of mine to work for NASW in some capacity,” said Williams, who recently completed a term as president of the NASW Tennessee Chapter.
“I have been a volunteer at the Tennessee Chapter for years. I have been attracted to working for the organization because I am a social worker, a member, and I am proud of what we do as a profession. I am proud of what NASW does as an organization. To be a part of that and to be a part of a national impact was attractive to me.”
“There was a tremendous amount of alignment with my experience as well,” he added.
His experience includes:
- Chief Business Development Officer with Easter Seals in Tennessee where he identified and implemented business lines resulting in more than $3 million in new revenue. He led a team of 225 employees across the state that provided residential services, employment services, behavioral health services and nursing services.
- CEO of Hands On Nashville, where he directed a staff of 20, a membership of 400 nonprofits, and a volunteer base of 120,000. As CEO he created and implemented an award-winning, nationally recognized volunteer program in the areas of food security, youth leadership development, energy savings, and corporate engagement. Williams created and cultivated relationships with dozens of private companies, public departments and mayors’ offices, and nonprofit organizations locally and at the national level.
- Director of Development for Exchange Club Family Center in Nashville where he increased all aspects of fundraising for an $850,000 child abuse prevention agency. Williams was responsible for communications, fund development, and grant management.
As a consultant, Williams has provided executive coaching for nonprofit CEOs, and also led strategy and implementation of a fund development and communications platform that resulted in a multimillion-dollar investment and 40% growth in revenue generation from private donors.
“Part of my attraction to working on the business side of the nonprofit sector was creating relationships that we might not otherwise have,” he said.
“That leads itself to fund development, business development and corporate partnerships and things of that nature. In many ways, it is relationship-building. It’s social work in its own way.”
Williams pursued an MSW because, “That was the area I wanted to be in because of it being strength-based, meeting people where they are and being inclusive. That resonated with me. So, getting a master’s degree (in social work) was a good alignment with what I believed in and with my skill set.”
Plans for the Future
Williams said there are opportunities for the NASW Foundation to focus on its areas of strength.
“Our grants, scholarships, the events, the awards — those are areas we can highlight and build upon,” he explained.
“They are good vehicles for fund development, program development and for people to invest in the profession. We need to develop and move in the direction of greater partnerships.”
“In addition, we have a real opportunity to utilize the Foundation as a vehicle to communicate with a variety of people in a variety of fields about what the profession does, and what NASW does specifically,” he said.
“To me, one of the most attractive things about the Foundation is that social work may not resonate with everybody, but everyone has a basic understanding of how money works. Our vehicle about raising funds is a good vehicle to communicate about the profession.”
Williams said leading the dialogue of how the profession shows up in communities is also vital.
The NASW Foundation can serve as a force for external communications with a variety of partners, he said.
“It is about fundraising and generating revenue, but it is also about partnership creation, through grants and scholarships, etc. I think foundations at their best are doing that on behalf of the organization. It’s important NASW have a foundation — to be that driving force in those areas moving forward.”
Learn more about the NASW Foundation and ways to donate at NASWFoundation.org.
The NASW Foundation extends its thanks to all NASW members and friends who lend their financial support,
with special thanks to the following for their contributions of $100 or more from Oct. 17, 2022 through Jan. 25, 2023.
All donors are listed at naswfoundation.org.
We appreciate all donations, including those donated through a Donor Advised Fund or a Retirement Fund.
NASW Foundation General Fund
Anthony Bibus in honor of Angelo McClain
Lisa and Donald Burch
Patricia Cuff in honor of Angelo McClain
Suzanne Dworak-Peck in honor of Angelo McClain
Ethel Hansan via The Hansan Family Foundation Inc.
Joanne Cruz Tenery (monthly)
Kathleen Waugh in honor
of Angelo McClain
Joan Zlotnik in honor
of Angelo McClain
Mildred (Mit) Joyner via Fidelity Brokerage Services LLC
NASW Public Education Campaign
Joanne Cruz Tenery (monthly)
Professional SW Pins
Eastern Kentucky University
Saint Mary’s University
Southeastern Louisiana University
University of Arkansas
Social Work Disaster Assistance Fund
NASW Social Work Pioneers® Fund
Karen Franklin in honor of Angelo McClain
Evelyn Kays-Battle in memory of Mark G. Battle
NASW Memorial and Tribute Fund
Richard Barth in honor of Sarah Butts and in honor of Angelo McClain
Gail Woods-Waller in honor of Angelo McClain
NASW Foundation Verne LaMarr Lyons MSW Scholarship Fund
Tamara L. Harris
Morgan and Walter Hecht – Morgan Hecht Scholarship Fund via Ameriprise Financial – American Enterprise Investment Services, Inc.
NASW North Carolina Chapter Fund
Toby Brown Scholarship Award - Gay Jordan and G. Miller via Robert W. Baird & Co. Incorporated
NASW New Jersey
Jeffery Dickert - Harriet Bloomfield Memorial Scholarship