Marcia Ford’s career has been devoted to improving the quality and accessibility of behavioral health treatment for children and youth. She has local, state, and national expertise in behavioral health policies and services, specifically policies and services reflective of the existing community mental health systems of care. Her organization and leadership expertise include risk management, strategic planning, change management, mentorship, and trauma-informed care.
Prior to joining the Brown School community, Ford held significant clinical and leadership roles with the Missouri Department of Mental Health. During her tenure, she provided direct services to youth and their families as a clinical social worker and held management positions in residential, acute and outpatient settings. As the Chief Operating Officer of Hawthorn Children’s Psychiatric Hospital, her focus on improving patient safety outcomes and quality of treatment led to the facility’s recognition as a Joint Commission Top Performer. Ford also spearheaded Hawthorn’s efforts to become a Sanctuary Certified, trauma-informed treatment organization. As the Children’s Director for the Department of Mental Health, she provided oversight for all children’s behavioral health services funded by the department and strived to enhance collaboration among youth-serving agencies.
Ford is a graduate of the Brown School and is a licensed clinical social worker. She supported students as a field instructor and adjunct faculty member before joining the school full-time. She teaches in the MSW curriculum, and, as director of the Part-Time MSW Program, oversees the implementation and growth of the MSW Part-Time Program.
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