Last updated June 10, 2015
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A Dream and a Plan

A Woman’s Path to Leadership in Human Services

A Dream and a Plan is an excellent book uniquely focused on encouraging women to become leaders in the human services field. Focus group data and journal entries from experienced women leaders generate important insights to guide the careers of current and future leaders. The authors are especially interested in helping women to confront and resist sexual and racial discrimination and to develop effective organizational and coping strategies. This clear and insightful book educates us about the obstacles women face in becoming leaders, about balancing personal and professional lives, about courage and resilience. I strongly recommend this book to women (and men as well) who aspire to leadership roles and to the educators who can inspire and support them in their quest.

Alex Gitterman, EdD

Professor of Casework, University of Connecticut School of Social Work


A Dream and a Plan provides a model for leadership grounded in social work values and ethics and based on the genuine experiences of women leaders in the human services. It is realistic about the societal, organizational, and personal barriers that women can face and provides strategies for resisting them. It is a very valuable addition to the work on leadership.

Lorraine M. Guitierrez, PhD

Professor and Director, Edward Ginsberg Center for Community Service and Learning, University of Michigan


A Dream and a Plan is not simply a book. It is an experience that all of us can share. It is about dreams and disappointments, role models and demons, being turned away and then creating and taking advantage of opportunities. It is about race, class, culture, sexual orientation, gender. It is about the joy of being a part of the community of women and the challenges of surviving and thriving within the larger community.

Ruth W. Mayden, MSW

Director, Programs for Families with Young Children, The Annie E. Casey Foundation


The paths that women follow to leadership positions in human services are often diverse and bumpy. With this encouraging and valuable new book, Gardella and Haynes make a major contribution to both the human services profession and to the women who aspire to leadership positions within them. They offer real insight and sustenance to women as they encounter the struggles and opportunities of moving ahead. A highly enjoyable and wonderfully instructive book, it is to be savored by all of us as we reflect on our personal and professional roles and responsibilities.

Julia M. Watkins, PhD

Executive Director, Council on Social Work Education