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This page exists to honor APSAC members, pioneers in child maltreatment, and friends and family of APSAC who have passed away. If you wish to submit a memorial to be included on this page, please click here.

David L. Chadwick


David L. Chadwick died peacefully Sunday, January 19th, 2020 surrounded by his loving family and wife, Michele, at their home in La Mesa, California.  David was a giant in the child maltreatment field and one of APSAC’s strongest champions and supporters.  He was one of APSAC’s core founders and served as APSAC’s second president.  He is the first former APSAC president to pass away.

Karen Saywitz


Dr. Saywitz was world renowned for her research on child forensic interviewing and a much-loved professor, child advocate, and friend. Dr. Saywitz spent her entire career as a successful scientist and practitioner working tirelessly to ameliorate the trauma of child maltreatment and its legal aftermath for children and their families. Dr. Saywitz educated and trained many students who have gone on to have successful careers themselves and who carry forward Dr. Saywitz's mission to contribute to scientific knowledge and advocacy for children. 

Mark J. Chaffin


Mark will be dearly remembered for knowing something about absolutely everything; conducting research that matters; his ability to take complex issues, reach the core of what really matters, and then effectively communicate the message to the public;  his thought provoking “rants”; his core ethics and need to do what is right; and his quick wit, including his opinions on sandals in the work place. Mark was the founding Editor-in-Chief of Child Maltreatment. Mark was the recipient of the following APSAC Awards: Outstanding Service to APSAC (2000), Outstanding Research Career Achievement (2015) (later named the March Chaffin Outstanding Research Career Achievement), and Child Maltreatment Article of the Year (2006 and 2009). 

Neal Snyder


As an attorney, Neil specialized in protecting children from abuse - an area he helped make a legal specialty - and became a role model for many others in the field He was a co-founder of CAPSAC, and continued to serve as a board member, supporter, and consultant to CAPSAC for the rest of his life. Neal was an intelligent, even- tempered, positive, athletic, and kind man who loved jazz, his wife, Yvonne Garcia, their annual visits to Thailand, his children and grandchildren.

Richard J. Gelles


Richard J. Gelles, whose pioneering research about family violence and child welfare helped shape government policy and social work practices nationwide, died June 26, of brain cancer at home. He was  the author or coauthor of 26 books and more than 200 articles and chapters on family violence. In 1999 Gelles received the “Award for Career Achievement in Research” from the American Professional Science on the Abuse of Children.

Ryan J. Morey


Ryan James Morey, 22, of Dallas passed away suddenly on Friday February 24, 2017 in New Orleans, LA, where he was a senior student at Tulane University. His goal was to attend law school and he worked as a forensic interviewer at the New Orleans Child's Advocacy Center (NOCAC), a group which provides investigation, intervention and treatment for child victims of sexual or physical abuse. The NOCAC staff shared that Ryan was a constant source of positivity and hope.

Sol Gothard


Sol Gothard, a lifelong child advocate and former APSAC board member, passed away on July 5. The Judge, as he was known, dedicated his professional life to pursuing justice for children, as a social worker, attorney, Juvenile Court Judge, and Court of Appeal Judge. Underprivileged as a child, he became a fierce advocate for the powerless, particularly abused children and animals. A prolific writer and speaker, the Judge lectured at conferences around the world.

Walter Mondale

1928 - 2021

Former Vice President Walter Mondale of Minnesota died on April 19, 2021, after a long career in public services. He will always be remembered by people working in child welfare as the author of the original Child Abuse Prevention and Treatment Act of 1974. He was particularly emphatic that child abuse not solely be seen as an issue of race and class, but one that impacted all spheres of society. “This is not a poverty problem; this is a national problem,” Mondale said, during the authorization hearings. 

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