David Conley: PhD, MSW, Assistant Professor

David ConleyDr. David Conley’s teaching focuses on the intersections between policy practice, social welfare, political social work, and legislative advocacy, most notably the impact that social workers can have on creating and influencing policy and politics. His research focuses on the social and political determinants of the behavioral health policy process as well as evidence-based advocacy interventions.

Prior to joining UNCW, Conley worked for Tucker Psychiatric Pavilion at Chippenham Hospital, interned for a Virginia State Senator, and served as a Public Policy Manager and lobbyist for the Virginia Association of Community Services Boards. Through these experiences, Conley learned the behavioral health system of care through micro, macro, and political lenses as well as gained an understanding of the policy practices and political processes that shape behavioral health policy. It is this understanding that shapes his current research and teaching agendas.

David holds a Bachelor of Science from Virginia Tech as well as MSW/Ph.D. degrees from Virginia Commonwealth University in Richmond, Virginia.

Teaching Areas

  • Political Social Work
  • Policy Practice & Advocacy
  • Social Welfare Policy

Research Interests

  • Political Social Work
  • Social & Political Determinants of Health
  • Behavioral Health Structural Stigma
  • Evidence-based Advocacy Interventions