William C. Bell became president and chief executive officer of Casey Family Programs in January 2006. He chairs the Executive Team, and is ultimately responsible for the vision, mission, strategies and objectives of the foundation.
Dr. Bell has more than 30 years of experience in the human services field. Prior to becoming president and CEO of Casey Family Programs, he served as the foundation’s executive vice president for child and family services, providing strategic direction to nine field offices and leading a staff working directly with young people from the public child welfare system.
Prior to joining Casey, he served two-and-a-half years as commissioner of the New York City Administration for Children’s Services (ACS). There, he managed child welfare services – including child protection, foster care, child abuse prevention, day care and Head Start – with a staff of more than 7,000 and a budget of about $2.4 billion.
From 1996 to 2001, Dr. Bell was deputy commissioner of ACS’s Division of Child Protection. From 1994 to 1996, he was deputy commissioner of field services and contract agency case management for the New York City Human Resources Administration. In the early 1990s, Dr. Bell was associate executive director for Miracle Makers, a private sector minority-owned, not-for-profit child and family services organization in New York City.
Dr. Bell earned his Ph.D. in Social Welfare and his Master’s of Social Work degree at Hunter College School of Social Work. He received a Bachelor’s in Biology and Behavioral Science degree from Delta State University.
Public service, honors and professional affiliations
Dr. Bell is a trustee for America’s Promise Alliance, chair of the board of directors of the Association of Black Foundation Executives, and a member of the Delta State University Foundation Board of Directors. He also is a member of the board of Grantmakers for Children, Youth & Families, the National Council on Crime and Delinquency, and United Way of King County.
Dr. Bell previously served as a member of the American Bar Association’s Commission on Youth at Risk, the Pew Commission on Children in Foster Care, and the executive committee of the National Association of Public Child Welfare Administrators.
He also has served on the board of directors of the Council on Social Work Education and the Marguerite Casey Foundation, and as co-chair of the board of directors of the Jim Casey Youth Opportunities Initiative.
Dr. Bell was named the 2012 Outstanding Alumnus of the Year by Delta State University and was inducted into its Alumni Hall of Fame and into Omicron Delta Kappa, a national leadership honor society. The Robert F. Kennedy Children’s Action Corps awarded Dr. Bell its 2012 Embracing the Legacy Award for his tireless work to prevent child abuse and neglect and build communities of hope for America’s vulnerable children. He was honored in 2010 by New York City’s CASA (Court Appointed Special Advocates) for his contributions and lifelong commitment to improving the lives of children in foster care.
Dr. Bell’s many other awards and honors include: the Vincent de Francis Award from the American Humane Association, recognizing him for his vision and commitment to improve child welfare systems on a national level, and the Lifetime of Service Award from City Year Seattle/King County – both awarded in 2009; the 2007 International Rhoda G. Sarnat Award from the National Association of Social Workers Foundation, recognizing his contribution to advancing public awareness and recognition of the value of professional social work; the 2005 Valeria Bullard Black Administrator of the Year Award from the Black Administrators in Child Welfare; and the 2004 Betsey R. Rosenbaum Award for Excellence in Public Child Welfare Administration from the National Association for Public Child Welfare Administrators. In 2003, he was inducted into the Hunter College Alumni Hall of Fame.