Richard Dickens, Director of Client Advocacy, Receives 2017 AOSW Leadership Award in Oncology Social Work
CancerCare is pleased to share that our Director of Client Advocacy Richard Dickens, LCSW-R, has been recognized with the 2017 AOSW Leadership Award in Oncology Social Work. This competitive award recognizes an exceptional member of AOSW who, in the day-to-day delivery of compassionate service, is a model for the profession.
The award was presented at the 33rd Annual Association of Oncology Social Work (AOSW) Annual Conference, which took place May 31-June 1 in Denver, Colorado.
“My work and the work of all of us can be distilled down to two words: humble and fierce,” Mr. Dickens said, upon accepting the award.
“We are a unique profession that values professional humility, mandating that we connect to those we serve where they are at, on their level, respecting that we are all people, equal, and entitled to respect and dignity in pursuit of equitable and unbiased care. We believe that in forming relationships, we build trust so we can foster change. This is what calls us to be fierce and advocate for good people who are marginalized, whose inabilities deem them as less than, but whose spirit and resiliency inspire us in our tireless efforts to affect change and enact justice."
As director of client advocacy at CancerCare, Mr. Dickens serves as a liaison for the patient voice in policy discussions on health care and works with stakeholders to broaden CancerCare's services. He also serves as an oncology social worker, providing counseling to people coping with cancer, caregivers and people who have experienced the loss of a loved one. In addition, Mr. Dickens manages CancerCare's Mind-Body-Spirit Workshops, and serves as a valued member of the Men’s Cancers Program team.
Mr. Dickens is a member of the Association of Oncology Social Work (AOSW) and the National Association of Social Workers (NASW). He is a mentor in the Zelda Foster Studies Program in Palliative and End of Life Care at New York University (NYU) School of Social Work, and has taught in the Weissman Center for Social Administration at Hunter College. Mr. Dickens was a Guest Lecturer in Social Work at Columbia University and a supervisor and teacher in the Smith College End of Life Program. He has presented on numerous health care topics in North America, China, Australia, Ireland and South Africa.
“Richard is an invaluable member of the CancerCareteam, and we are thrilled that his contributions to the growing field of oncology social work have been recognized,” said Patricia Goldsmith, CEO of CancerCare. “Richard plays a unique role in advocating for the concerns of people with cancer and their loved ones, and is poised to become a leader in psychosocial oncology care.”
Mr. Dickens joined CancerCare 20 years ago as an oncology social worker. He is a survivor of non-Hodgkin lymphoma since 1994.