Tennessee Chapter of NASW Honors Memphis Social Workers

May 2, 2016 - The Tennessee Chapter of the National Association of Social Workers (NASW) recently honored three Memphians for their significant accomplishments in improving the lives of ofters. The individuals recognized were June Averyt, Roxanne Lemmon and Stephen Bush.

Averyt has spent her career working to end homelessness in Memphis. She founded two nonprofits: Door of Hope and Outreach, Housing, & Community Inc. Averyt has touched the lives of many people who have experienced homelessness as well as many volunteers, staff and student interns for the two agencies. She was given the Lifetime Achievement Award.

Lemmon, a senior social work major at the University of Memphis, received the BSW Social Work Student of the Year Award for her long record of community service advocating for people in need. As a non-traditional student, Lemmon is new to the field of social work. She has worked for many years as a professional musician, singer and recording artist. Lemmon is enthusiastic about combining her musical background and new social work skills in working with future clients. "Music is a universal language that is therapeutic for individuals from the time they are inside the womb to the end of life," she said.

Bush is chief public defender for Shelby County and a graduate of the University of Memphis School of Law. He was recognized as the Public Official of the Year for his role in creating the Jericho Project and his support of social work as a key component of client-centered defense.

"Social work is a profession that is committed to improving people's lives, and we are proud that the Tennessee Chapter of NASW recognizes the amazing work of social work and community leaders in Memphis through these state awards," said Dr. Robin Lennon-Dearing, UofM assistant professor of Social Work.

The West Branch of NASW-TN also recognized Dr. Altha Stewart as the local Public Citizen of the Year and Rosa Mena as the local MSW Student of the Year.

Robin Lennon-Dearing