Faculty and Staff Profiles

Steven Soifer
Office Location:
  • Ph. D. Social Welfare - Brandeis University - 1988
  • MSW Social Work - Washington University - 1980
  • B.S. Psychology - Denison University - 1976

Work Experience

  • Professor and Chair, Department of Social Work - University of Memphis - 2012 - 2016
  • Associate Professor, School of Social Work - University of Maryland at Baltimore - 1994-2012
  • Adjunct Assistant Professor, Department of Social Work - University of Vermont, Burlington, Vermont - 1994
  • Director of Community Organizing,   - Central Vermont Community Action Council, Barre, Vermont - 1992-1994
  • Assistant Professor, School of Social Work - University of Washington, Seattle, Washington - 1988-1993
  • Adjunct Faculty Advisor,   - Goddard College, Plainfield, Vermont - 1987-1988
  • Lecturer, B.S.W. Program, Basic and Applied Social Sciences Department. - Trinity College, Burlington, Vermont - 1986-1988
  • Milieu Therapist,   - Elmhill Group Home, Plainfield, Vermont - 1983
  • Statewide Coordinator,   - Vermont Food Coalition, Montpelier, Vermont - 1982
  • Instructor,   - Community College of Vermont, Montpelier, Vermont - 1981-1982
  • Statewide Director,   - Vermont Alliance, Montpelier, Vermont - 1980-1982
  • University of Maryland School of Social Work Community Service Award - University of Marlyand School of Social Work - 1999-2000
  • Nominated for Richard Lodge Prize for outstanding contributions to the development of social work theory for article on Social Work: A Profession in Search of a Paradigm" - Adelphi School of Social Work - 1999
  • Co-winner of the 1999 Late Dr. B.H. Mehta Award for article "Social Work: A Profession in Search of a Paradigm" - Tata Institute of Social Sciences, Indian Journal of Social Work - 1999
  • Nominated for University Teacher of the Year - University of Washington School of Social Work - 1997

Teaching Experience

  • SWRK 7033: Advanced Community Practice with Adults and Families - University of Memphis
  • SWRK 7004: Cognitive-Behavioral Intervention - University of Memphis
  • SWRK 3906: Practice with Communities and Organizations - University of Memphis
  • Social Work Macro Practice II - University of Vermont
  • Contemporary Social Problems, Development of the U.S. Welfare State, Introduction to Sociology, Race and Class - Trinity College
  • Introduction to Counseling Theories, Re-evaluation Counseling - Goddard College


  • Affordable Housing Opportunity Audit - Baltimore Community Foundation - $130,000 - Spring 2003
  • Graduate School Research Fund - University of Washington - $7,681 - Spring 1991
  • School of Social Work Research Development Fund - University of Washington - $1,410 - Spring 1991
  • University of Memphis - CAS Chair's Leadership Group - Sept. 2012 - present
  • University of Maryland - Management and Community Organization (MACO) group member - 1994- 2012.
  • University of Maryland - Master's Program Committee (MPC) member - 1995-1998, 2004-2012
  • University of Maryland - Faculty Review Committee - 2004 – 2012
  • University of Maryland - Social Work Outreach and Community Service (SWCOS) Faculty Advisory Committee - 2004 – 2006
  • University of Maryland - Faculty Senate - 1995-1997, 2001-2003
  • University of Maryland - Tikkun, Jewish Social Workers' Group, Co-founder - 1996-2001
  • University of Maryland - American Association of University Professors (AAUP) chapter co-founder - 1996-present; President-elect: 1999
  • University of Maryland - University Representative and Neighborhood Consultant, Baltimore West Empowerment Zone District - 1995-1998
  • University of Washington - Executive Committee, Faculty Senate - 1991-1992
  • University of Washington - Jewish Faculty Group, Co-founder - 1989 1992
  • University of Washington - Admissions Committee - 1989 1991
  • University of Washington - Bertha Capen Reynolds Society Chapter. Co-founder - 1989
  • University of Washington - Bertha Capen Reynolds Society Forum, "From Ideals to Action: Progressive Social Work in our Community," Co Organizer - 1990
  • University of Washington - Community and Organizational Services Concentration Group - 1988 1991
  • University of Washington - Community and Organizational Services Concentration Practicum Committee - 1989 1990
Books Published
  • Soifer, S.D. (2016). The Secret Phobia: Shy Bladder Syndrome or Paruresis. Baltimore, MD: The International Paruresis Association.
  • Soifer, S. D. (2013). Paruresis or Shy Bladder Syndrome : A Weekend Workshop. In J. Clements & L. Grobman (Eds.) Groupwork : New Days in the Lives of Social Workers, Harrisburg, PA : White Hat Communications. 113-116.  
  • Soifer, S. D. (2012). Community land trusts. In A. T. Carswell (Ed.) Encyclopedia of Housing, 2nd Ed., Vol. 1. Thousand Oaks, CA : Sage Publications. 70-73. 
  • Soifer, S. D. (2012). Limited equity cooperatives. In A. T. Carswell (Ed.) Encyclopedia of Housing, 2nd Ed., Vol. 1. Thousand Oaks, CA : Sage Publications. 425-427.
  • Soifer, S.D. (2012). Shy Bladder Syndrome: An Update. Baltimore, MD: The International Paruresis Association.
  • Moyer, B., McAllister, J., Finley, M. L., and Soifer, S. D. (2002). Doing democracy: The MAP model for organizing social movements. Gabriola Island, B.C., Canada: New Society Publishers Soifer, S. D., Zgourides, G., Himle, J, and Pickering, N: (2001).

  • Soifer, S. D., Zgourides, G., Himle, J, and Pickering, N: (2001). Shy bladder syndrome: Your step-by-step guide to overcoming paruresis. Oakland: New Harbinger.
  • Soifer, S.D. (2001). Overview of community economic development in social work. In A. Roberts & G. Greene (Eds.) Social Workers� Desk Reference, New York: Oxford University Press. 557-562.
  • Soifer, S. D. (2001). Mobile home park lot "rent control": A successful rural legislative campaign. In J. Rothman, J. Erlich, & J.E. Tropman (Eds.) Strategies of community intervention: Sixth edition. Itasca, IL: Peacock. 394-403.
  • Soifer, S. D.  (2000). The evolution of the bathroom and its implications for paruresis. Baltimore: The International Paruresis Association, Inc.
  • Soifer, S., Zgourides, G., and Himle, J. (2000).  Do you suffer from shy bladder syndrome? Baltimore: The International Paruresis Association, Inc.
  • Soifer, S. D. (1997). Racism and social welfare. In W. Devore and Fletcher, B.J. Human diversity content in social work education: A collection of course outlines with content on racial, ethnic, and cultural diversity. Alexandria, VA: CSWE.
  • Wenocur, S. & Soifer, S. D. (1997). Prospects for community organization. In M. Reisch & E. Gambrill (Eds.), Social work in the 21st century, pp 198-208. Thousand Oaks, CA.: Pine Forge Press. 
  • Bradshaw, C., Soifer, S. D., Gutierrez, L. M. (1994). Toward a hybrid model for effective organizing in communities of color. In A. Faulkner, M. Roberts DeGennaro, and M. Weil (Eds.), Diversity and development in community practice (pp. 25 41). Binghampton, N. Y.: The Haworth Press. 
  • Soifer, S. D. (1991). The socialist mayor: Bernard Sanders in Burlington, Vermont. New York: Bergin & Garvey (an imprint of the Greenwood Publishing Group, Inc.) 
Journal Articles
  • Abefa-Gyan, T., Barrett, J. & Soifer, S.  (2012). Virtual organizational development and the history of the internet: A case study of parallel evolution.  International Journal of Humanities and Social Science, 3(2), 295-301. 
  • Soifer, S., Himle, J., & Walsh, K.  (2010). Paruresis: (Shy Bladder Syndrome - A Cognitive-behavioral treatment approach. Social Work in Health Care, 49(5), 494-507. 
  • Soifer, S., Nicaise, G., Chancellor, M. & Gordon, D.  (2009). CNE - Paruresis or shy bladder syndrome: An unknown urologic malady? Urologic Nursing, 29(2): 87-93.
  • Hammelstein, P. & Soifer, S.  (2006). Is shy bladder syndrome (paruresis) correctly classified as a social phobia?  Journal of Anxiety Disorders, 20(3): 296-311.
  • Vythilingum, B., Stein, D. J., Soifer, S. (2002).  Is “shy bladder syndrome” a subtype of social anxiety disorder? A survey of people with paruresis.  Depression and Anxiety, 16(2): 84-7.
  • Soifer, S.D. & Ziprin, R. (2001, January). Paruresis or shy bladder syndrome: The little known social phobia. The Behavior Therapist.
  • Gutierrez, L., Fredricksen, K., and Soifer, S. D.  (1999): Perspectives of social work faculty on diversity and societal oppression content: Results from a national survey.  Journal of Social Work Education, 33 (3), 409-419.
  • Soifer, S. D. & Singer, J.  (1999).  The campaign to restore the Disability Assistance and Loan Program (DALP) in the state of Maryland. Journal of Community Practice, 6(2), 1-10.
  • Soifer, S. D.  (1999).  Social work: A profession in search of a paradigm.  Indian Journal of Social Work, 60(1), 37-55.
  • Soifer, S. D.  (1998).  Mobile home park lot "rent control": A successful rural legislative campaign.  Journal of Community Practice, 5(3), 25-37.
  • Soifer, S. D. (1998).  A rural tenant organizing model: The case of TUFF-Vermont.  Journal of Community Practice, 5(2), 1-14.
  • Bradshaw, C., Soifer, S. D., & Gutierrez, L. M.  (1994).  Toward a  hybrid model for effective organizing in communities of color.   Journal of Community Practice, 1(1), 25‑41.
  • Soifer, S. D. & Resnick, H.  (1993).  Prospects for social work cooperatives in the 1990s.  Administration in Social Work,  17(3), 99‑116.
  • Almeleh, N. S., Soifer, S. D., Gottlieb, N., & Gutierrez, L. M.   (1993).  Women's achievement of empowerment through activism  in the workplace.  Affilia: Journal of Women and Social Work,  8(1), 26‑39.
  • Soifer, S. D., Balassone, M. L., & Johnstone, J.  (1992). Prospects  for national health care in the United States.  Journal of  Health and Social Policy, 3(3), 1‑17.
  • Soifer, S. D.  (1991).  Infusing content about Jews and about  anti‑Semitism into the curricula.  Journal of Social Work  Education, 27(2), 156‑167.
  • Soifer, S. D.  (1990).   The Burlington Community Land Trust: A  socialist approach to affordable housing?  Journal of Urban  Affairs, 12(3), 237‑252.
  • Soifer, S. D.  (1990).  Socialism in Burlington, Vermont:  Implications for social welfare. Journal of Progressive Human  Services, 1(2), 43‑57.
  • November 2012-“Enabled Scholarship: Sustainable Collaboration as the Holy Grail of Social Work Praxis,” Council on Social Work Education, Washington, D.C.
  • April 2012-“Paruresis or Shy Bladder Syndrome: A Clinical Update,” Anxiety Disorders Association of America, Arlington, VA.
  • March 2010-“Shy Bladder Syndrome: Understanding the Mechanism of Paruresis,” Society of Urologic Nursing and Associates, Tampa, FL.
  • December 2003-Movement Action Plan (MA) Presentation at the Barbara Smith School for Social Change, Philadelphia, PA.
  • December 2003-Major Speaker at the Annual Association of Medical Review Officers, Las Vegas, NV on Paruresis. 
  • May 2002-“Results from Paruresis Workshops Around the World,” American Psychiatric Association meeting, Philadephia, poster session.
  • March 2000-“Paruresis: An Overview,” presentation at Masters’ Workshop on Social Phobias, 20th annual Anxiety Disorders Association of America conference (ADAA), Washington, D.C.
  • March 2000-Training for Clinicians working with Paruretics, ADAA, Washington, D.C.
  • November 1999-“Paruresis or Shy Bladder Syndrome: What Every Clinician Should Know,” Clinical Roundtable, at the 33rd Association for Advancement in Behavioral Therapy (AABT) Annual Conference, Toronto, Canada.
  • March 1999-“Community Building,” presentation to Social Work Caucus of Washington County, MD.
  • March 1999-"Treating Paruresis or Shy Bladder Syndrome: What Every Clinician Should Know," at the 19th annual ADAA National Conference, San Diego, CA.
  • July 1998-"The Need for a New World Order: A Case for World Federalism," at the Joint World Congress of the IFSW & the IASSW, Jerusalem, Israel. (Not presented due to lack of travel funds.) 
  • March 1998-"Working with Paruretic or Shy Bladder Clients: The Results of a Successful Workshop," Poster Session, ADAA 18th National Conference, Boston, MA.
  • November 1997-"Connecting with Communities: Guidance for Human Service Professionals," panelist at the University of Maryland School of Social Work, Baltimore, MD.
  • October 1997- "Community Organizing in the 21st Century,” luncheon speaker at the National Association of Social Workers Annual Meeting, Baltimore, MD.
  • October 1997-"Community Economic Development (CED): A New Tool for Social Work," co-presenter at the University of   Maryland School of Social Work, Baltimore, MD.
  • March 1997-"Paruresis (Shy Bladder Syndrome): The Little Known Common Social Phobia," at the ADAA 17th National Conference, New Orleans, LA.
  • February 1997-"Tenant Organizing: What Public Interest Lawyers Need to Know in Order to be Effective," Antioch Law School Clinic, Washington, D.C.
  • February 1996 -"Rural Community Organization Practice: A Case Example," at the Council on Social Work Education Annual Program Meeting, Washington, D.C.
  • June 1995-"Recovering from the Elections," strategy roundtable discussion at the National Bertha Capen Reynolds Society Conference, Philadelphia, PA.
  • January 1995-"Mobile Home Park Lot Rent Stabilization," public testimony before the Senate General and Housing Affairs Committee, Vermont State Legislature, Montpelier, VT.
  • July 1994-"Liberation/Oppression Theory and Practice,"  workshop co-leader at the National Bertha Capen  Reynolds Society Conference, Seattle, WA.
  • January 1994- "The Problems with Welfare Reform," written  testimony given to the House Health, Education, and Welfare Committee, Vermont  State Legislature, Montpelier, VT.
  • February 1993-"Social Work Educators' Attitudes, Knowledge, and  Teaching Practices About Infusing Content on Jews  and the Problem of Anti Semitism in Social Work  Curricula," at the Council on Social Work Education  Annual Program Meeting, New York, N.Y.
  • April 1991-"Hate Crimes at the University of Washington," to  the Puget Sound Task Force on Human Rights, Seattle,  WA.
  • March 1991-"Toward an Effective Organizing Model in Communities  of Color,"  Council on Social Work APM meeting, New  Orleans, LA. (Not presented because of participants'  scheduling conflicts.)
  • March 1990-"The Infusion of Content on Jews as a Minority Group  and the Problem of Anti Semitism into Social Work  Curricula," at the Council on Social Work Education  APM Meeting, Reno, NV.
  • October 1989- "The Relevance of Worker Cooperatives to Social Work," at the National Association of Social Workers Conference, San Francisco, CA.
  • April 1988-"The Burlington Community Land Trust," at a panel entitled The Possibilities and Limits of Municipal  Socialism/Populism, New York State Political Science  Association, Albany, N.Y.
  • March 1988-"From Personal Growth to Social Change,” colloquium presentation given to the faculty of Vermont  College, Montpelier, VT.
  • May 1987-"Social Change Through the Electoral Process,” colloquium presentation at St. Cloud State  University, St. Cloud, MN.
  • April 1987-"The Prospects of Socialism in Vermont," at a panel with Murray Bookchin and others, entitled Municipal Socialism: The Burlington, Vermont Experience, 5th  Annual Socialist Scholars Conference, N.Y, N.Y.
  • October 1986- "Current Socialist Experience in Vermont," given at  the 4th Session of the Democratic Socialist  Conference, Heller School, Brandeis University,  Waltham, MA.
  • April 1986-"Electoral Politics and Social Change," given at the  3rd Annual Social Change Conference, Heller School,  Brandeis University, Waltham, MA.
  • March 1986-"On a Resolution for a Constitutional Amendment to  Guarantee the Right to Employment at a Fair Wage,"  testimony given before the House Government  Operations Committee, Vermont State Legislature,  Montpelier, VT.
  • November 1985-"Is New England Telephone's 54 Percent Rate Hike  Justifiable,?"  testimony given before the Vermont Public Service Board, Barre, VT.