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GWSCSW is a community of highly trained clinicians committed to maintaining standards of professional education and practice in clinical social work
Greater Washington Society for Clinical Social Work is authorized by the Board of Social Work Examiners in is DC, Maryland and Virginia to sponsor social work educational events and offer continuing education credit.
Welcome, students and new professionals, and retirees! GWSCSW offers professional development programs for all our members.
GWSCSW is not just here to help you navigate your career, we are a community supporting one another grow, connect, and encourage self-care.
GWSCSW works with state lobbyists to keep you updated on all state level issues. GWSCSW also advocates on the national level through our affiliation with the CSWA.


MD Bill HB 871  

On April 24, 2023, Maryland Governor Wes Moore signed HB 871 - Social Workers - Sunset Extension, Notification of Complete Application, and Workgroup on Social Worker Requirements for Licensure. A requirement of the Bill is to establish a Workgroup to determine several issues including:

  • Whether to continue to use examinations developed by the Association of Social Work Boards (ASWB) as a requirement for a bachelor social worker license or a master social worker license.
  •  Whether to establish a temporary license for applicants for a bachelor social worker license or master social worker license, who, except for passing the required examination, meet the education and  experience requirements for licensure.
  • How supervision may be provided to bachelor social worker licensees and master social worker licensees at no cost to the licensees; and
  • If the workgroup determines that the ASWB examination should not be used or that temporary licenses should be established, whether additional experience or education requirements are necessary.

HB 871 specified the makeup of the Workgroup which includes one person from the GWSCSW chosen by the President. I have had a request by leadership to serve as a member of the Workgroup. As a Black female Social Worker over the age of 50, I am honored to represent the GWSCSW. I ask a few things of members. Please read the final version of HB871 and the requirements for the Workgroup and provide me with your thoughts, questions, and suggestions for possible discussion during Workgroup meetings.

As there is the possibility of the formation of subgroups, or the need for an Alternate GWSCSW member, I ask anyone interested in serving, especially anyone from the groups adversely affected by the ASWB exam (e.g., African Americans, Persons over 50, the Deaf Community, and the ESL Community) to contact me a let me know of your interest.

As always, please feel free to contact me directly.

Karla J. Abney, MSW, MSN, LMSW    
President - GWSCSW    

Steve Szopa, LCSW is Karla's Abney's Co-President and can be contacted as well. Steve has served in a variety of Society roles including Vice-President (2014-2016), President (2016-2018) and is currently the Communications Branch Director. Steve is pleased to support Karla in the busy position of presiding over our large and active Society.

Low Cost Therapy for MSW Students

GWSCSW's low-cost therapy program to help MSW students who cannot afford therapy at usual rates to get therapy while they are still in school. 

Social Justice Branch

How has systemic racism impacted your clinical practice? How do you measure up as an anti-racist clinician? How often do you consider the effect of systemic racism on the issues bringing your clients to therapy?  Racism is but one important force that has shaped all of our lives, whether we realize it or not. Thus, in order to cultivate emotional intimacy with our clients, we must, as clinicians, first be willing to engage with the insidious nature of racism and sit with a great deal of discomfort. We must be willing to enter a brave space within ourselves before we can foster one with our clients. 

Social Justice Announcements

mentoring program

The purpose of the Mentor Program is to provide a link between a Mentor, who is an established member of the profession, with a graduating social work student, a recent graduate, a social worker re-entering the field or one new to the area. The program is open to all GWSCSW Members no matter what area of concentration or special interest he or she has in the field of social work.

Click here to learn about GWSCSW's Mentorship Program  

Study Groups for Members

Study Groups promote ongoing social work education, collaboration, peer leadership, and the exploration of a wide range of clinical interests. The GWSCSW Continuing Education Committee has developed procedures to make it possible for GWSCSW members in Study Groups to be granted Continuing Education Units (CEUs).


Episode 6: Welcome to Our Wisdom -- Robert Taibbi: How Clinicians Evolve Over Time - As we change and develop as clinicians, our practices often mirror our shifting directions. Meet Bob Taibbi--clinician, professor, author of 11 books (!), workshop presenter and respected thought leader. During his 46 years in practice, he has shifted his methods to reflect a changing client caseload and meet the needs of who his clients are today. In this episode, Bob explores the flexibility and fluidity of our profession as he traces his experience from community mental health to teaching, writing and working in private practice. He is a popular CE presenter at GWSCSW and shares his innovations in working with individuals, couples and families.


News & Updates

Upcoming events

GWSCSW Committees

The Greater Washington Society of Clinical Social Work is run by committees of volunteers who offer their time and professional expertise. In return they receive opportunities to develop professional connections and visibility and to have interesting and fun interactions with colleagues. We all receive the many benefits that the society provides through their generosity. The following offers brief descriptions of the committees. Please think about volunteering!


Benefits of Membership

GWSCSW . . . Advocates for YOU - Provides educational events for licensure renewal - Connects you with peers - Provides professional support for your career

GWSCSW is a very active organization. As a member, you have the opportunity to:
  • Exchange views and obtain information through our interactive listserv
  • Promote your practice through our Therapist Finder - an online listing of fully licensed members searchable by the public
  • Receive our lively and informative quarterly newsletter, (News & Views) and even become a published author by contributing an article
  • Be informed about the current legislative issues affecting the mental health field through our Legislative Program
  • Attend (or host) Wine & Cheese networking events
  • Access the members-only sections of the website - including the member directory, professional resources 
  • Participate in the Mentoring Program
  • Join a committee that fulfills your interests (a great way to meet fellow professionals and to quickly feel connected)
  • Attend Continuing Education events at discounted member rates, present continuing education workshops; and track your CEU attendance through the website
Best of all, you will network with a region-wide community of social workers who demonstrate professionalism and expertise in a wide range of practice areas.



GWSCSW advocates for the profession in all three jurisdictions and is part of the national efforts with the Clinical Social Work Association (CSWA).



Join this active community and 

meet and engage with peers and colleagues.



GWSCSW offers professional education to help clinicians meet their continuing education requirements.



Stay up to date on everything GWSCSW and learn about everything available to you with our outreach team.

PO Box 711 | Garrisonville, VA  22463 | 202-478-7638 | admin@gwscsw.org

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