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Starting 2023 with new ideas and new faces

The SSWAA Board of Directors has welcomed 4 new Board Members who were elected last Fall to serve during 2023. We are excited to introduce them to you!

Dr. Marina Badillo-Diaz is an experienced school administrator with a demonstrated history of working as a social worker in community mental health and education. She completed her doctorate in social work at New York University’s Silver School of Social Work in April 2021 completing a capstone on Social Work Practice in Charter Schools. She is presently a Schools Ambassador Fellow with the US Department of Education conducting research with New Visions for Public Schools on the 21st Century Skills Advisory Program in Transfer Schools. She is also an Adjunct Professor at Hunter Silberman School of Social Work.

Before these roles, she has experience working as a Youth Development Director in a transfer high school overseeing social-emotional learning programs, post-secondary planning, recruitment, attendance, school culture & climate, crisis intervention, school counseling services, and restorative justice practices. In addition, she has experience in direct practice as a school social worker for grades K to 8 providing mental health counseling services, family engagement, community referrals, classroom interventions, and school staff training. One of her passions is clinical supervision and support of school social work interns and school social workers. She completed a Post Graduate Clinical Supervisory Certification from Smith College School for Social Work. She obtained her LCSW from New York State in 2015 and has over 8 years of experience providing clinical supervision for social workers and social work interns. Her area of interest includes child & adolescent mental health, school social work practice, community partnership development, social-emotional learning programming, 21st-century skills, school leadership, clinical supervision for social workers, and policy & advocacy. Overall she is very excited to bridge the work with SSWAA and advocate for the organization at the federal level with the US Department of Education. Marina is serving as the Northeastern Regional Representative on the SSWAA Board. She is also open to networking and connecting on LinkedIn.


My Name is Mary C. Boyd, and I’m a graduate of Ohio State University and Youngstown State University. I have worked in Mental Health agencies for over fifteen years, specializing in severe mental health issues, as related to Children and Families such as grief and trauma, PTSD, suicide, depression, and building community resources for a support system. I have received several proclamations from the City of Youngstown for outstanding services in my community. I’m presently employed at the Youngstown City School District. I’m working at Choffin Career & Technical Center as a Licensed School Social Worker. My professional role is to help eliminate the barrier that would prevent our scholars and their families from getting a good education. These barriers could be age, race, socioeconomic status, ability, gender identity, and sexual orientation. I serve as an advocate for our scholars and families, and as they say, I would leave no stone unturned to assist them in their time of need.

I have been employed with Youngstown City School District for eighteen years in various positions. I never knew I would be part of such a wonderful organization. God is good all the time. I believe like Esther that God has brought me to the kingdom for such a time as this. One of my main goals as the Midwest Representative for SSWAA is to encourage communication, networking, and relationship building. I want to make sure that we are constantly pursuing and promoting the involvement of other states in my district, in hopes that more engagement will be seen with them in the SSWAA.


My name is Brandy Hall. I am an online graduate student at Boise State University and I am in the Master's of Social Work program. I intend to obtain my LMSW after graduation. Currently, I work for an non-profit outreach program in Arkansas that works with youth, ages 8-18, in the juvenile justice system. We provide mentoring, anger management, therapy, vocational/educational and intensive services. When I am not doing school work or working with youth at risk, I am home with my young daughter, who inspires every ounce of my will and motivation. I enjoy creating art, participating in roller derby, and attending conventions. I've been given an amazing opportunity to continue advocating for the well-being of children through board membership with the SSWAA. Here, I hope to contribute to the cause for social workers and children in schools through my board role by supporting inclusion of public and professional members in the SSWAA cause, and I hope to obtain skills that I will need beyond school and my position with the SSWAA for a lifetime of advocacy.


My name is Maria Huber (she/her), and I’m excited and honored to serve the School Social Work Association of America as the new Standards and Practice Representative. My vision for my work on the SSWAA Board is to systematically enhance, clarify, and disseminate best practices for the school social work profession and school social work training programs.

Over the course of my career as a direct practice school social worker and most recently in a leadership role with Denver Public Schools, the gaps and inconsistencies in school social work standards and practice have become increasingly apparent.

In the role of Standards and Practice Representative, I hope to focus collaborative, committee-driven work in the following areas:

  1. Clear guidance and best practices for school social work practicum/field experiences and early career experiences,

  2. Stronger standards around best practices for administering and interpreting social/emotional and behavioral assessments, and

  3. Enhancing the guidance to address the overlap and nuances of clinical services versus tiered social/emotional intervention within educational programming.

I am a systems-thinker with a deep understanding of the challenges and opportunities presented by our layered local, state, and national systems. I am an organized, reliable, responsive, and clear communicator. I am committed to incorporating diverse stakeholder input, particularly from historically marginalized groups, into decision-making. I am passionate about burnout prevention through ensuring our practitioners, across all career stages but particularly in early career, are prepared to do their work effectively and efficiently.

I am a proud Indiana Hoosier. I was born and raised in the Indianapolis area. I received both my Bachelor’s degree in psychology and my MSW degree, with concentration in school social work, from Indiana University. I began my career in Indianapolis Public Schools, where I was an MSW practicum student, then was employed as a school social worker for two years.

I relocated to Denver, CO in summer 2018. I served as a school social worker in Denver Public Schools from August 2018 through December 2021 before transitioning to work for the Colorado Department of Education as an MTSS Specialist. I returned to Denver Public Schools in September 2022 to accept my current position as Manager of Social Work and Mental Health. I now humbly and fervently co-lead a department of 400+ school social workers and school psychologists in both day-to-day management and long-term strategy.

I have been a SSWAA member since 2016 and have held dual memberships in both Indiana and Colorado. I have served in the role of President for the Colorado School Social Work Association since September 2020. I am passionate about connecting with mental health professionals across Denver, the state of Colorado, and the U.S. in order to learn, implement, and advocate for school social work best practices.

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