University of Massachusetts Amherst

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Ruth McRoy, Ph.D.

In 2009, Ruth G. McRoy became the first holder of the Donahue and DiFelice Endowed Professorship at Boston College Graduate School of Social Work. Prior to joining the Boston College faculty, McRoy was a member of the University of Texas at Austin School of Social Work faculty for 25 years and held the Ruby Lee Piester Centennial Professorship. A practitioner, academician, researcher, trainer, and lecturer in the field for over 30 years, her work has focused on such topics as open adoptions, birthmothers, kinship care, adoptive family recruitment, minority recruitment, racial identity development, transracial adoptions, older child adoptions, family preservation, adolescent pregnancy, and post adoption services. Since the 1980s she and Harold Grotevant have conducted longitudinal research on outcomes of openness in adoption for birthmothers, adoptive parents, and adopted children.

She and her team at the University of Texas at Austin currently serve as evaluators for AdoptUSKids, a service of the U.S. Children’s Bureau. McRoy has published over 100 journal articles and book chapters and ten books, including: Transracial and Inracial Adoptees: The Adolescent Years (with L. Zurcher), Special Needs Adoptions: Practice Issues, and Openness in Adoption: Exploring Family Connections (with H. Grotevant). In 2010 McRoy was selected as a fellow in the American Academy of Social Work and Social Welfare and also was named the recipient of the St. John’s 2010 Outstanding Scholar in Adoption Award. She also received the 2013 U.S. Children’s Bureau’s Adoption Excellence Award and the 2014 North American Council on Adoptable Children (NACAC) Child Advocate of the Year Award. McRoy recently completed her term as a member of the Society for Social Work and Research (SSWR) Board, and as board member and president of the North American Council on Adoptable Children (NACAC) Board.