The National Association of Social Workers (NASW) named Sherry M. Parrish, MSW, ACSW, LCSW-C, as a Social Work Pioneer for 2012.
The professional achievement honor was presented at the NASW Foundation awards luncheon in Washington, DC.
Throughout her career of more than thirty-six years, Ms. Parrish has worked to improve geriatric social work and interdisciplinary care. Since 1996, she has been Director of Resident Life at Charlestown retirement community in Catonsville.
In its statement of recognition, the NASW Foundation lauded Ms. Parrish for her "pioneering spirit, vision, and exuberance that have not only been demonstrated in her clinical and administrative responsibilities, but also demonstrated by her television roles around retirement adjustment issues."
The NASW also described Ms. Parrish "as an aging expert who has been an innovative, articulate, and passionate social work clinician and administrator using strength-based and persons-centered approaches, long before these concepts became national long-term care and government benchmarks and standards. Ms. Parrish is both a local and regional leader in all aspects of long-term care and a national media leader in retirement adjustment and health issues, especially for the baby boomer generation."
At Charlestown, she is responsible for daily operations of the Resident Life Department and the administration of the Home Care Unit. She develops programs that directly impact the social, intellectual, physical and spiritual welfare of residents, managing 126 employees.
She hosted twelve episodes of "What's Next?," a nationally syndicated program about the life transition from work to retirement that received a regional Emmy Award in 2008.
Her geriatric expertise has resulted in national network television appearances on the Today Show and Good Morning, America and on Retirement Living Television (RLTV) programs including Health Living, Healthline, Taking Care with Joan Lunden, and the Daily Apple.
Since 1994, Ms. Parrish has been a field instructor at the University of Maryland, School of Social Work. She was appointed as an Adjunct Faculty from 1997-2000 because of her outstanding teaching and conceptual skills as a field instructor.
Ms. Parrish holds degrees from Mary Washington University, Virginia Commonwealth University and the University of Maryland School of Social Work. She resides in Howard County with her husband and daughter.