Dr. Michael Lawler is Dean and Professor at the School of Health Sciences at the University of South Dakota, and has more than 30 years of experience as a social work practitioner, administrator, and educator.

His area of research includes child welfare services, juvenile justice, foster care, parent-child relationships, forensic psychology, public health, child well-being, American Indian disparities, and professional education.  Dr. Lawler is the U.S. Principal Investigator for the International Survey of Child Well-Being, co-author of the Application Potential of Professional Learning Inventory (APPLI-33), and an appointed member of the American Psychological Association’s Committee on Children, Youth, and Families.

At the University of California, Davis, and the University of South Dakota, he founded/co-founded 7 interdisciplinary research and teaching centers, and has generated more than $130 million in extramural research, teaching, and service grants and contracts from public, private, and Tribal sources.