University of Calgary

Gayla Rogers

  • Professor Emerita of Social Work


Gayla Rogers is a professor and former dean of the Faculty of Social Work. 

Gayla began teaching in the Faculty of Social Work in 1978 on a part-time basis. In 1987, she became the director of field education and in 1998 became the faculty’s first female dean. Over a period of 12 years, Gayla led the faculty to become one of the largest and most reputable schools of social work in Canada. She was instrumental in the expansion of undergraduate and graduate social work education across Alberta, including First Nations and Métis communities. 

Research and Scholarly Activity

Gayla is well-published with numerous books (5), book chapters (18), journal articles (32), and conference presentations (83) in areas such as leadership, strategic planning, and social work education. Additional areas of expertise include child welfare, family violence, homelessness, poverty and diversity. She has held federally funded and external research grants and supports (19), and has provided consultation to social work programs in Canada, the United States, the United Kingdom, Australia and New Zealand. 


PhD in Social Policy (University of New Castle-Upon-Tyne)

MSW (Clinical) (University of Calgary)

BSW (Distinction) (University of Calgary)

BA (Distinction) in Sociology and Psychology (University of Alberta)

Professional and Community Associations

Gayla has served social work education and the social work profession in a variety of capacities including: the board of directors of the Canadian Association of Social Work Education (CASWE), the board of accreditation of CASWE, chair of the National Association of Deans & Directors of Schools of Social Work, and the Professional Social Work Education board of the Alberta College of Social Workers.

Gayla has served as director on numerous non-profit boards at the local, provincial and national levels. Current involvements include: Child & Family Services Council for Quality Assurance; the Alberta Centre for Child, Family & Community Research; Calgary Poverty Reduction Initiative; and, Sinneave Family Foundation. Past involvements include the Child Intervention Systems Review Panel; chaired an Expert Panel to review of child’s death; and, the boards of: Katimavik, HomeFront, YWCA, and Telus SPARK.


2014 Lecture of a Lifetime, University of Calgary
Woman of Influence (Calgary) by Deloitte
Woman of Vision by Global TV/Calgary YWCA
Distinguished Alumni Award
Order of the University of Calgary

Media Work

May 15, 2014, ffwd weekly, Slow change for children in care

April 23, 2014 UToday, 2014 Lecture of a Lifetime inspires with lessons from the heart

Feb. 18, 2014, UToday, 2014 Lecture of a Lifetime to be delivered by Gayla Rogers

Jan. 30, 2014, Alberta Primetime, Child death review system

Feb. 8, 2013, UToday, Academic leadership development

Nov. 10, 2010, UToday, Dr. Gayla Rogers honoured with the Order of the University of Calgary

Oct. 14, 2009, UToday, Social Work dean honoured

March 2007, On Campus Online, Social work dean wins national award

Publications from 2008-present

Rogers, G., & Bouey, E. (2008). Participant observation. In Richard M. Grinnell, Jr. & Yvonne A. Unrau (Eds.), Social work research and evaluation: Foundations of evidence-based practice (8th ed.) (pp.223-237). New York, NY: Oxford University Press.
Drover, G. & Rogers, G. (2008). Canadians and international social work. In Gilchrest James, G., Ramsay, R. with Drover, G. (Eds.), International Social Work: Canadian Perspectives (pp. 2-21). Toronto: Thompson Educational Publishing, Inc.

Finley, D., Rogers, G., Napier, M., & Wyatt, J. (2011). From needs-based segmentation to program realignment: Transformation of the YWCA of Calgary. Administration in Social Work, 35(3), 299-323.
Rogers, G. (2010). Leadership in social work education: The intersection of head, hands, heart and soul. Canadian Social Work Review, 27(2), 259-263.
Rogers, G. (2009). Spider webs, diversity and inclusion. Our Diverse Cities: Prairies Regions, 6, 142-144.
Hurlock, D., Barlow, C., Phelan, A., Myrick, F., Sawa, R. & Rogers, G. (2008). Falls the shadow and the light: Liminality and natality in social work education. Teaching in Higher Education Journal. 13(3), 291-301.

Este, D., Rogers, G., Matheson, J., & Lawson, A. (2010, June). Making sense of partnerships: Executive directors’perspectives. Associate for Nonprofit and Social Economy Research (ANSER-ARES) / Congress of the Humanities and Social Sciences, Montreal, Quebec.
Pierce, D., Marsman, V., Blais, L., & Rogers, G. (2009, May). Competencies and issues of accreditation and regulation. Canadian Association for Social Work Education / 2009 Congress of the Humanities and Social Sciences, Ottawa, ON.
Luan, J., Ladak, D., Branch, C., Rogers, G. (2009, March). Calgary: Issues and opportunities for newcomers. 11th National Metropolis Conference, Calgary, AB
Scarbeau, L. & Rogers, G. (2009, February). A plan for Alberta: Ending homelessness in 10 years. Growing Home: Housing and Homeless National Conference, Calgary, AB.

Rogers, G. (2014, April). On Learning and Leading: Lessons from the Heart. 2014 Lecture of Lifetime, University of Calgary, Calgary, AB.
Rogers, G. (2013, March). Getting to the Strategic Yes. Invited Address, Academic Women’s Association, University of Calgary.
Rogers, G. (2012, Oct.). Performing Change Gala. Invited Keynote Address, University of Calgary.
Rogers, G., Elliott, A., Sapsford, L., & Hrudy, K. (2012, Feb.) MissRepresentation. Panel. Juno House Foundation. Calgary, AB.
Rogers, G. (2011, June). Mentorship: Leading & Learning. Invited workshop (2 hours), Project Protege, City of Calgary. AB.
Rogers, G. (2011, May). Thriving in the New Frontier: The Imperative of Visionary Leadership. Closing Plenary, 2011 Association of Jewish Family & Children’s Agencies Annual Conference, Calgary AB
Rogers, G. (2010, November). A Hand Out, A Hand Up and Hands that Reach Beyond. Keynote Address, Salvation Army Kettle Campaign Kickoff, Calgary
Rogers, G. (2010, April). Paying it forward – Leadership, Learning & Legacy: Field instructors make a difference. Keynote Address. Inaugural Clarice Chodak/Gayla Rogers Field Instructor Recognition Event. April 15, Calgary; April 22, Edmonton; May 4, Lethbridge, AB.
Mulligan, D., Rogers, G. & Branch, C. (2008, May). People and Places: The triple bottom line case for urban sustainability. Gaining Ground: Sustainable Urban Development Leadership Conference, Calgary, AB.
Rogers, G. (2008, March). Social work: The heartbeat of health care or in need of resuscitation? Keynote Address, Calgary Health Region Department of Social Work, Calgary, AB.
Rogers, G. (2008, March). Leadership and social responsibility. Invited Speaker, Telus Governance Essentials Program: For Directors of Not-For-Profit Organizations, Calgary, AB.

Photograph of Gayla Rogers
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