Dr. Karen Bullock (MSW ‘92) Announced as 2023 Graduation Speaker

May 9 @ 6:44 pm

The Columbia School of Social Work is excited to announce that alumna Dr. Karen Bullock will give the keynote address at this year’s graduation on Tuesday, May 16. 

“I am thrilled and grateful to welcome Dr. Bullock back home to CSSW as our 2023 commencement speaker,” said Melissa Begg, Dean of the School of Social Work. “I have had the pleasure of meeting Dr. Bullock on several occasions, and each time I am in awe. Her commitment to equity and passion for social justice are remarkable, and I know her words at commencement will resonate deeply with everyone in our community.”

Dr. Bullock is the Louise McMahon Ahearn Endowed Professor at Boston College School of Social Work. She is a licensed independent clinical social worker with mental health practice experience and expertise in health disparities, health equity, serious illness care, aging and gerontology, hospice, palliative care, and end-of-life-care decision making. She has served as principal investigator and/or co-investigator for many federal grants focused on equity and inclusion for workforce development, aging, and health network sustainability.

Dr. Bullock received her bachelor’s degree in social work from North Carolina State University, her MSW from Columbia (1992), and her PhD from the Boston University School of Social Work. Before her recruitment to the faculty at Boston College, Dr. Bullock served as Professor and Head of the School of Social Work for her alma mater, North Carolina State University. In fact, she is responsible for leading the transformation from a department to a stand-alone school of social work – a significant undertaking and outstanding achievement.  

Throughout her career, Dr. Bullock’s leadership and impact has always extended far beyond her own institution. She has served on a number of national boards and committees, including as a member of the NASW National Committee on Racial and Ethnic Diversity, as chair of the Oncology Social Work Research Peer Review Committee for the American Cancer Society, and as a member of the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering and Medicine Roundtable Committee on Quality Care for People with Serious Illness. Her important work not only appears in traditional academic journals but reaches wider audiences through publications in the Washington Post, USA Today, and the Los Angeles Times

The 2023 School of Social Work graduation will take place at 10 a.m. on Tuesday, May 16, in the Francis S. Levien Gymnasium, 3030 Broadway, New York. The wider community and members of the public can watch the ceremony via livestream. Dr. Bullock’s remarks will also be published on our website shortly after graduation.