King's appoints new director of social work


King’s University College has appointed Dr. Peter Donahue as the new director of King’s School of Social Work.

Donahue’s term will begin on July 1, 2015, after Dr. Barbara Decker Pierce, the current director, completes her nine-year term.

For Donahue, a sense of community played an important role in enthusiasm to fulfill this new position.

“I was just really delighted to know that I was going to be able to be working at an institution that offered a world class education while still maintaining a real sense of community, both within Kings and within the greater community of London,” Donahue said. “That’s something that is quite rare in academe.”

Donahue is currently an associate professor at Renison University College at the University of Waterloo and serves as chair of the department of social development studies.

He acquired a PhD and master of social work from the University of Toronto, as well as bachelor of art in gerontology and bachelor of science in biography from McMaster University.

He said he believes that his leadership skills have been an asset in his acquisition of his new position at King’s.

“I don’t believe in top-down leadership. I think leadership starts with your community and working with your community,” he said.

Dr. David Sylvester, King’s principal, said that after an extensive search to fill the position, he is very pleased that Donahue will be joining King’s.

“He struck me as a very collegiate and collaborative leader and we’re looking forward to his work leading the school that is already well established,” Sylvester said.

Sylvester applauds Donahue’s extensive background in research and teaching and added that Donahue comes to King’s with a well-informed background on gerontology, which he said complements the staff’s educational expertise well.

Although Donahue is happy to be starting a new chapter at King’s, he said he was especially impressed after meeting members of student body, knowing they will be future leaders in the social work profession.

“For me, I’m really excited to be assuming this new role because I think we’re going to be doing some really great things both at King’s and in the community of London,” Donahue said.


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