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Whitton, Charlotte  

Allan Moscovitch

Charlotte Whitton (1896–1975) was a woman of enormous energy, personal ambition, and drive. She had essentially three careers: as a social worker who was the guiding force behind the ascendency of the Canadian Council on Child Welfare, as a journalist and campaigner on child welfare and other social service issues, and as a municipal politician who rose to be the first woman mayor of a major Canadian city.

Article

Wickenden, Elizabeth  

Eric R. Kingson

Elizabeth Wickenden (1909–2001) was a social work administrator and advisor, policy writer, and advocate. In the 1950s, she launched an effective coalition of social welfare and labor organizations, known as the “Wicky Lobby.” A pioneering legal rights advocate, she advanced legal services and class action strategies on behalf of public assistance and child welfare clients.

Article

Wiley, George  

Jean K. Quam

George Wiley (1931–1973) was a reformer, organizer, and social activist. He is credited with organizing poor people into a significant political force in the United States during the late 1960s and early 1970s. He founded the Poverty/Rights Action Center in Washington, DC.

Article

Wilkins, Roy  

Wilma Peebles-Wilkins

Roy Wilkins (1901–1981) was a writer and national civil rights spokesperson. He was assistant executive secretary and executive director of the NAACP for 46 years, during which time he struggled for justice and civil rights in all aspects of American life.

Article

Williams, Anita Rose  

Wilma Peebles-Wilkins

Anita Rose Williams (1891–1983) was a social worker and supervisor. She was the first Black Catholic social worker in the United States and the first Black supervisor employed by a Baltimore, Maryland, agency. She co-organized District Eleven of the Baltimore Emergency Relief Commission.

Article

Witte, Ernest Frederic  

John F. Longres

Ernest Frederic Witte (1904–1986) was an educator and administrator. His work in the social welfare field, particularly during World War II, was influential both in the United States and internationally. He was among the first to deal with survivors of the Nazi death camps.

Article

Wittman, Milton  

Ruth Irelan Knee

Milton Wittman (1915–1994) was a social worker, writer, and leader in social work, public health, and mental health. He played a key role in the expansion of opportunities for social work education and for the involvement of social workers in the provision of mental health services.

Article

Wood, Gertie  

Dionne V. Frank

Gertie Wood (September 18, 1892–August 26, 1976) was a Guyanese social worker, music teacher, women’s rights activist, and the first female political candidate in the British West Indies. She is most often described by Caribbean historians, gender and development scholars, and supporters of the women’s movements as a pioneer women’s rights activist. However, Wood also made an invaluable impact on social work in then British Guiana during the 1930s and 1940s, articulating the plight of women and children in the former British colony. She found fame with the Circle of Sunshine Workers, the Second Inter-Colonial Conference of Women Social Workers, and her amplification of the need for social welfare workers and programs to the Royal West Indian Commission in 1939. Wood’s activism chartered the path for establishing the British Guiana League of Social Services, a trajectory that created a model for national and transnational collaborative work. Wood was honored for her self-sacrificing service as a recipient of the King’s Silver Jubilee Medal—an Order of the British Empire.

Article

Yamamuro, Gunpei  

Yasuhiro Kuroki

Yamamuro (1872–1940) was one of Japan’s leading popular evangelists. He contributed to the founding and development of the Salvation Army in Japan. During his lifetime, he also established various social welfare facilities and played a major role in improving social welfare activities in Japan.

Article

Yeh, Chu-Sheng  

Juei-king Lee

Chu-Sheng Yeh (1915–2008) promoted the well-being of children and youth in the areas of education, health, and social welfare. Professor Yeh established two programs related to social administration and social work for two universities. As a female scholar, she made a valuable contribution to the early stage of social work development in Taiwan.

Article

Young, Alma T.  

Sadye L. M. Logan

Alma T. Young (1930–2012) was employed in 1960 by Mount Sinai’s Department of Social Work and worked as the director of quality assurance until her retirement in 1998. Her unwavering dedication, vision, commitment, and astute leadership gave rise to programs and services such as New Alternatives for Children (NAC). She was also the founding member of the social work section of the American Public Health Association.

Article

Youngdahl, Benjamin Emanuel  

Jean K. Quam

Benjamin Emanuel Youngdahl (1897–1970) was a public welfare administrator, educator, and lecturer. He influenced the social work profession during his career as president of the American Association of Schools of Social Work, the American Association of Social Workers, and the National Conference on Social Welfare.

Article

Younghusband, Dame Eileen  

Jean K. Quam

Dame Eileen Younghusband (1902–1981) was an international educator and scholar who influenced the development of social work around the world. She helped transform the International Association of Schools of Social Work from a predominantly Western organization into a worldwide, United Nations-linked body to establish schools of social work in developing countries.

Article

Young, Whitney Moore, Jr.  

Wilma Peebles-Wilkins

Whitney Moore Young, Jr., (1921–1971) was a social work educator, civil rights leader, and statesman. He worked to eradicate discrimination against Blacks and poor people. From 1961 until his death he was executive director of the National Urban League.

Article

Yuichi, Nakamura  

Tatsuru Akimoto

Yuichi Nakamura was a university professor who brought and held together the social welfare/social work field and community in Japan for over half a century between the 1950s and the 2010s. The foundation and framework of the present Japanese social welfare/work owe much to his theoretical, organizational, and practical contribution. He also functioned as a communicator and mediator between the mainstream social work in the world and the domestic social work in Japan.

Article

Zucconi, Angela  

Marilena Dellavalle and Carlotta Mozzone

Angela Zucconi (1914–2000) was an expert in community social work and social work training. For many years, she directed the Centro di Educazione Professionale per Assistenti Sociali, a social work education center in Rome. After an early life devoted to literature, she embraced social and political commitment after World War Two.

Article

Zvereva, Iryna  

Tetyana Semigina and Tetiana Basiuk

Dr. Iryna Zvereva (1952–2013) was one of the prominent founders of social work and social pedagogy in Ukraine. From 1992 through to 1998 she worked at the State Center of Social Services for Youth, the first professional public social work organization in Ukraine. She became a professor at the Taras Shevchenko National University of Kyiv and the Borys Grinchenko University of Kyiv. She led the development and international recognition of the Ukrainian professional community: under her leadership the Ukrainian Association of Social Educators and Social Work Specialists had joined the International Federation of Social Workers (IFSW) in 1994. She initiated the elaboration of the National Code of Ethics for Social Workers in accordance with international standards. She worked for the Ukrainian and international organizations that had introduced innovative, pioneer social work practices in Ukraine, and she authored over 200 publications on social work and social pedagogy.