Faculty and Leadership
Interim Dean Rebecca Gomez
Rebecca Gomez, Ph.D., LCSW, is serving as interim dean of the VCU School of Social Work after nearly two years as associate dean for academic and student affairs. Before joining VCU, Dr. Gomez served as a faculty member in academic leadership roles at Our Lady of the Lake University (2013-2020), and as a postdoctoral research fellow for the Child and Adolescent Policy Research Institute at the University of Texas at San Antonio (2012-2013).
Meet Our Online M.S.W. Faculty
Frank R. Baskind
Frank Baskind, Ph.D., is dean emeritus and professor in the School of Social Work at Virginia Commonwealth University. He served as dean of the School of Social Work (1992-2008) and University ombudsman (2008-2013). Baskind is currently a member of United Way of Greater Richmond Community Building Committee, past member of Connecticut and Tennessee State NASW Board of Directors, and a former president of the Council on Social Work Education. His creation and coordination of Help-Line of Central Connecticut, a crisis intervention and suicide prevention telephone network for a six-town region in Connecticut, launched his career in professional social work practice and education.
Jamie L. Cage
Jamie L. Cage, Ph.D., is an assistant professor in the VCU School of Social Work. Dr. Cage teaches research courses in both the B.S.W. and M.S.W. programs. She is committed to supporting students’ growing knowledge of research methods and analyses through traditional, course-based teaching, and through non-traditional independent guided research projects.
Stevara Haley Clark
Stevara Haley Clark, Ed.D., associate professor in teaching, serves as director of online education. She was previously M.S.W. Program assistant director (online). Stevara is committed to making the social work profession and field education experiences available to students more broadly and resourcefully. Through the experiences of being a field instructor, field liaison and classroom instructor, she has learned and researched best practices to develop, implement, instruct, evaluate and support the social work curriculum.
Kimberly Compton, Ph.D., is assistant director of the M.S.W. Program and an assistant professor in teaching at the VCU School of Social Work. Compton has developed a range of teaching experiences since 2013: online, face-to-face and as a field instructor. Her teaching philosophy centers compassion and creativity. As a practitioner, instructor and researcher, Compton seeks out unexpected intersections of social work with other fields. In practice, Compton was executive director of ReEstablish Richmond, a refugee-focused nonprofit, and program director at an urban farm in Richmond’s East End that provided fresh vegetables to corner stores.
Carrie Hartwell, Ph.D., LCSW, is a VCU School of Social Work faculty member and licensed clinician. Her primary interests include trauma, traumatic brain injury, anxiety and mood disorders, empowerment-based practice, and risk and resiliency among refugees, asylum-seekers, and survivors of human trafficking. She has over 21 years of experience as a mental health practitioner in the U.S. and abroad.
Nicole L. Lee
Nicole “Nicki” Lee, Ph.D., is director of the M.S.W. Program and an associate professor in the VCU School of Social Work. An experienced social work educator, Dr. Lee has spent over a decade teaching in the M.S.W. and B.S.W. programs. Her scholarly interests include social work teaching pedagogy, program evaluation, intimate partner violence in communities of color, and the impact of health on the psychosocial functioning of individuals and communities.
Nicole O-Pries, LCSW, associate professor in the VCU School of Social Work, is a licensed clinical social worker in Virginia and a certified family trauma practitioner. She is a certified practitioner in Trauma-Focused Cognitive Behavioral Therapy and Level 1 Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing Therapy. O-Pries brings nearly 20 years of nonprofit experience, much of which has focused on developing effective services for youth and families who have experienced trauma.