Our History

Our History:

Social Work p.r.n. is a social work owned and operated company started in 1988 under the company name, Joan Upshaw and Associates. In 1992, we trademarked the name Social Work p.r.n. "p.r.n." is Latin for pro re nata or "under the circumstances". Hence, our name Social Work "as needed". Believing social work and business ideas make a great meld, Joan K. Upshaw, LSCW, developed Social Work p.r.n. as a demonstration project for the social work profession.

Celebrating 30 Years
Over 30 years ago, Social Work p.r.n. began as the vision of Joan Upshaw, a remarkable social worker recognized as a NASW Pioneer. Joan’s vision was to begin an entrepreneurial endeavor that would provide quality social work staffing services using the values and beliefs of the social work profession. Joan was the quintessential social worker who believed that social workers should have choice in their professional decisions regarding work/life balance. 
Social Work p.r.n. was founded on a set of values that have guided us over the years. We find these values to be paramount to our business and reputational success. They are: the importance of relationship building in business; people, specifically our employees and affiliate staff, are our most valuable resources; consistent validation of a person’s contributions helps a person feel valued; “growing people” is both good for the persons and the organizations for which they labor; persons are entitled to be “whole people” with “whole lives” even though they work at jobs; and, the concept of “fit” in relationships.
Today, these values are the pillars of Social Work p.r.n. and have allowed the organization to flourish for the past 30 years. Together with our dedicated team of professionals, Social Work p.r.n. continues to provide the highest quality social work staffing services. 
We would like to honor all our employees, both past and present; the hundreds of dedicated social workers who have worked with Social Work p.r.n.; and lastly, our client organizations that have trusted us as partners in care for their client populations. 

Core Values...

  • Businesses are built on relationships 
  • Relationship-building is paramount to the success of our business 
  • People, specifically, our employees and affiliate staff, are our most valuable resource 
  • Consistent validation of a person's contributions helps a person feel valued 
  • "Growing people" is both good for persons and for the organizations for which they labor 
  • Persons are entitled to be "whole people" with "whole lives" even though they work at jobs AND … 
  • The concept of "fit" holds that the relationship between employer and worker helps meet the needs of both parties and "fit" is vital in placing workers into jobs

Social Work p.r.n. was built as a social work business that could integrate these values and serve as a resource for both settings and social workers.

We have grown over 21 years to include 12 offices throughout the United States offering services in Atlanta, Baltimore/DC, Chicago, Florida, Houston, Jackson, Kansas City, New Jersey, New Orleans, New York, Philadelphia, and St. Louis.

To contact the office location nearest you, see our Locations page or call our Corporate Office at 800.595.9648 for more information.