UW Today

June 29, 2011

Florence Ray Stier, UW School of Social Work pioneer faculty member, dies at 93

News and Information

The UW School of Social Work lost a dear friend and pioneering faculty member, Florence Ray Stier (1917 – 2011), who passed away on June 15 at the age of 93. Florence began her dedicated and lengthy career in social work education at the University of Washington in 1964. At that time, Florence, who held a doctorate in social work from Columbia University, was hired as part of a larger effort to expand the number of PhD faculty members.

Florence Stier (left) began her social work education career in 1964.

Florence Stier (left) began her social work education career in 1964.UW

At the School of Social Work, she played a major role in developing the Community and Organizational Services track, which greatly distinguished the School for its innovative curriculum linking community development, planning and organizing. For a period of time, she was the only woman faculty in that track.

The national Council on Social Work Education recognized Florence for her luminary role as a mentor to social work students and graduates. Known for her remarkable warm and caring spirit, she quickly connected with the people she met, never forgot a name, and always engaged others in a thoughtful and generous way.

Florence retired in 1986 after 22 years of service. In retirement, she was an active member of the Senior Caucus in Olympia and traveled extensively with her late husband Don Stier, whom she married in 1967.

Her memorial service is planned for Friday July 8, 2011 at 10:30 a.m. at University Presbyterian Church, 4540 15th Avenue NE, Seattle, WA 98105 and at 12:00 Rainier Club, 820 Fourth Avenue, Seattle, WA 98104. Please email tracygarland@comcast.net if planning to attend.

In honor of her remarkable life and her commitment to the social work profession, the Florence Stier Memorial Fund has been established at the University of Washington School of Social Work. To support this fund, remembrances may be sent to:

University of Washington
School of Social Work
Florence Stier Memorial Fund
Box 354900
Seattle, WA 98195-4900
Check is payable to the UW Foundation

If you have questions about the memorial fund, please call 206-543-7704.