Kathy Bargar, MSW, LCSW


Kathy Bargar is a Licensed Clinical Social Worker with 18 years clinical experience in the field of child welfare and adoption. In the course of her career, Bargar founded and directed the domestic service arm of Partners for Adoption, an international adoption agency placing orphans from Eastern Europe, Haiti and Africa. She led a team of social workers from international health and human services delivery arms in organizing response efforts to the 2010 Haiti earthquake. Bargar has trained foreign government officials and health services organizations on the development of progressive models of domestic and international adoption. As the Director of Research for an international adoption agency Bargar’s research focused on sibling relationships and identity formation following adoption.

Bargar began her career in higher education with the University of Southern California, Suzanne Dworak-Peck School of Social Work. She taught foundational theory coursework and research methodology for the MSW program as well as all field coursework. Bargar also served as a Field Instructor to students placed worldwide. She enjoys working with students joining the field of social work from diverse backgrounds.


  • Social Work


University of Southern California
MSW - 1993

University of Southern California
BA, Psychology - 1991

Scholarly Activities

2019- Co-Presented, “Maximizing the Jump Start for Advanced Standing Students in Field: Unique Online Challenges.” Social Work Distance Education Conference. San Antonio, TX. April 2019.

2018- Presented, “It’s (fun)ny: Humor as an Effective Pedagogical tool in Social Work education.” Council on Social Work Education Annual Program Meeting, Orlando, FL. November 2018.

2017- Co-Presented “Shots Fired, Suspect Down: The Street Cop’s Experience and the Role of Social Work.” NASW-California Annual Conference. San Mateo, CA. 2017.

Professional Experiences

Adjunct Assistant Professor, Field Liaison & External Field Instructor
University of Southern California, Suzanne Dworak-Peck School of Social Work
Taught foundational courses and research coursework. Liaison and Instructor for all field coursework. Service as Lead faculty for foundational research course and host of special effort Lab for student support of foundational concepts.

Director of Social Services, Director of Research
Across the World Adoptions
Supervised and reviewed all statewide clinical staff in services to parents and children. Guided development and methodology of research to explore / improve the experience of the adoption triad.

Director of Social Services
Partners for Adoption
Developed new program offering international home study and adoption services. Supervised case assignment for social workers state-wide. Worked directly with United States Citizenship and Immigration Services (Immigration) and California Department of Social Services in development of service delivery model for adoption.

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