Raised by a police officer and a federal agent, the importance of service was instilled in Kimberly Hardy from a young age. Before she even knew what social workers did, she knew that she wanted to dedicate her life to helping those who struggle. She volunteered at shelters and ran community service projects helping the homeless, with a particular focus on homeless children and families. She still runs regular food drives.
Dr. Hardy earned her BSW in social work from Morgan State University and her MSW from The Ohio State University. She earned her PhD in social work as a member of the inaugural doctoral cohort at the Morgan State University School of Social Work. Her dissertation was titled "An Exploratory Analysis of Religious Help-Seeking Behavior Among African-American Christians." Dr. Hardy's research continues to focus on the intersection of social work and faith with a particular emphasis on African-Americans and the institution of the Black Church in both a historical and contemporary context. Her current research focuses on breast cancer and breast health awareness models in urban Black Churches. Dr. Hardy has written and presented extensively in the area of religion, spirituality, and social work and currently serves as the Board Secretary for the North American Association of Christians in Social Work (NACSW). Dr. Hardy was a co-guest editor for a Special Issue of the NACSW journal Social Work & Christianity that focused on the Black Church in a sociopolitical context.
Dr. Hardy has taught across the MSW curriculum at her previous institutions with a focus on clinical social work practice. She was on the Casework faculty at the UConn School of Social Work where she was also Chair of the Black Studies Curricular Area and a founding member of the Black Studies Project. She was also advisor for the Organization of Black Social Work Students. Dr. Hardy was also a founding member of the MSW program at the University of Saint Joseph helping to develop the curriculum and other programmatic elements leading to the program's initial accreditation. Prior to entering academia Dr. Hardy was a school social worker in Baltimore, Chicago, and Washington, DC. She specialized in direct clinical practice with adolescents in under-resourced, urban schools and provided individual, group, and family therapy. Dr. Hardy's work in Washington, DC focused on juvenile justice-involved youth in a year-round charter school environment which required extensive brokering and negotiation with the DC and Maryland court systems.
Dr. Hardy ran for election to the North Carolina House of Representatives to represent District 43. She lost in the general election on November 3, 2020.
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