UAB names chair of Social Work

David Pollio, Ph.D., is the new chair for the Department of Social Work.

David Pollio, Ph.D., has been named chair of the University of Alabama at Birmingham Department of Social Work. Pollio comes to UAB from the University of Alabama, where he served as the Hill Crest Endowed Chair in Mental Health in the School of Social Work.

pollioawakePollio is a senior scientist for the Center for AIDS Research in the UAB School of Medicine. He also serves on the editorial boards for “Research on Social Work Practice” and “Social Work with Groups.” He received a bachelor’s degree in psychology from the University of Virginia, a Master of Social Work degree from Virginia Commonwealth University, and a doctorate in psychology and social work from the University of Michigan.

“I am delighted to welcome Dr. Pollio to the College. Given his record of scholarship in the field of social work and his expertise in medical and public health arenas, he is an ideal person to lead the department while building interdisciplinary strength across the various schools at UAB,” said UAB College of Arts and Sciences Dean Robert Palazzo, Ph.D. “I am confident that his record of leadership, expertise, passion and collaborative instincts will benefit our faculty and students, and the Birmingham community.”

Pollio said he is equally excited.

“The high quality of the faculty and students, the innovative approach to instruction, and the overall strength of the College of Arts and Sciences present tremendous potential for growth and continuing development for the department,” he said. “I am also extremely pleased by the opportunities to continue my own work at a world-class institution. Although I have long involvement with institutions at UAB such as the Center for AIDS Research, the ability to work more closely with other researchers here opens a world of exciting collaborations.”

Pollio’s areas of interest and expertise include mental health and addiction services as well as homelessness, runaway and street youth, evidence-based practice, and group interventions. He has an extensive list of publications in peer-reviewed journals as well as numerous successfully funded grants and pilot projects. In addition, Pollio has a strong commitment to community service, volunteering in various capacities for nearly 20 years.

“This is a time of great possibilities for the field of social work,” Pollio continued. “Rapid improvements in instructional technology and the incorporation of evidence into our teaching create momentum for more effective training of social workers who can help advance practice and promote social justice.”