College of Education and Human Development

Family Social Science

Even legends have to retire

After a long and storied career in academia, William Doherty will retire at the end of this academic year. 

He joined the Family Social Science faculty in 1986 and is among the pioneer researchers defining marriage and family therapy theories, innovating in citizen health care, and collaborating with colleagues and community to help couples better navigate decisions about divorce through discernment counseling. Doherty's research has empowered individuals, couples, families, and communities.

He has authored or co-authored more than 20 books and numerous publications and presentations, and served as co-editor of the National Council on Family Relations (NCFR) Sourcebook of Family Theories and Methods: A Contextual Approach

Doherty has served as vice-president and president of the National Council on Family Relations. He co-founded NCFR's Family and Health Section and the Men in Families Focus Group. He was named an NCFR Fellow in 2004, and was awarded the Margaret E. Arcus Award for Outstanding Contribution to Family Life Education in 2005. 

He has also been honored with the American Family Therapy Academy’s Lifetime Achievement Award, the Collaborative Family Health Care Association’s Don Bloch Award, and the U of M’s Outstanding Community Service Award.

He's taken his experience in family therapy to the next level to reduce political polarization and conflict as co-founder of Braver Angels, speaking to Congressional committees and conducting workshops across the country.

He will be honored at a reception at the Campus Club, Friday, May 17, 5-7 p.m. Refreshments will be served, a short program begins at 5:45 p.m. Please RSVP here

Help us honor Bill

Do you have a favorite Bill Doherty memory or story? Please share! We will be collecting them for a storybook for Dr. Doherty following the event. The RSVP form has a field where you can share your story (and even a photo) with us!