N. Eugene Walls

Eugene Walls

Professor; Assessment Director, Equity La

  • Faculty

What I do

For me, social work education, practice and research are all driven by a deep sense of commitment and passion to a vision of the world where justice is lived out in our day-to-day experiences. Challenging myself and my students to embody this call to justice excites me about this work and fills me with hope.


culturally responsive practice, gender, LGBTQIA, marginalized populations, quantitative research methods, social justice, justice oriented pedagogy

Professional Biography

Professor Eugene Walls' research, teaching and service converge around the goals of documenting and challenging marginalization in social work practice and education, and addressing and preventing negative outcomes for populations that experience marginalization. These goals have centered primarily on understanding the lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and queer (LGBTQ) community, but have also addressed issues of ableism, sexism, racism and, more recently, intersectional lived experiences.

While Walls is influenced by critical theoretical perspectives, including post-modernism, queer theory, feminist theory and intersectionality theory, and by a social constructivist approach to epistemology, he nonetheless uses primarily quantitative approaches to understanding the phenomena that he's examining. He seeks to understand how social facts map onto reality, even as he understands reality as contextually and culturally dependent and as situated within a specific historical time period.

Walls' teaching has addressed these overarching goals by teaching and developing courses focused on power, privilege and oppression, educating students on conducting research that attends to issues of multiculturalism, mentoring doctoral students who embody identities that are underrepresented in the social work professorate, and supporting doctoral students whose work centers on a critical approach to social justice.


  • Ph.D., Sociology, University of Notre Dame, 2005
  • MA, Sociology, University of Notre Dame, 2002
  • MSSW, Social Work, University of Texas, Austin, 1992
  • BA, Sociology, University of Arkansas at Little Rock, 1988

Professional Affiliations

  • Council on Social Work Education (CSWE)
  • Society for Social Work Research (SSWR)

Featured Publications

Kattari, S. K., Kinney, M. K., Kattari, L., & Walls, N. E. (Eds.). (2020). Social work and health care practice with transgender and nonbinary individuals and communities. New York: Routledge.
Kattari, L. P., Kattari, S. K., Kinney, M. K., & Walls, N. E. (2022). Matchmaking methodology for humanizing transgender and gender diverse health and wellness research. Progress in Community Health Partnerships: Research, Education, and Action.
Atteberry, B. E., Walls, N. E., & Holloway, B. T. (2022). Committed to the cause? Examining social work education's role in supporting ally behavior for transgender and nonbinary people and communities. Journal of Sociology and Social Welfare.


Holloway, B. T., Walls, N. E., & Atteberry, B. E. (2022). Predictors of transgender and nonbinary activism among social work students in the U.S. Annual Program Meeting. Anaheim, CA: Council on Social Work Education.
Park, I. Y., Speer, S. R., Christensen, C., Kattari, L. P., Whitfield, D. L., & Walls, N. E. (2022). Predictors of bullying, depression, and suicidality among youth: Intersection of race/ethnicity by gender identity. Annual Program Meeting. Anaheim: Council on Social Work Education.
Atteberry, B. E., Holloway, B. T., & Walls, N. E. (2022). Acknowledgement of cisgender and heterosexual privilege among social work students. LGBTQ Research Symposium. University of Kansas, Lawrence, KS: Center for LGBTQ Research and Advocacy.
Gerke, D. R., Call, J., Atteberry, B. E., Greenfield, J., & Walls, N. E. (2021). "We are doing the absolute most that we can and no one is listening": A qualitative exploration of the barriers and facilitators to enacted health literacy in a statewide sample of transgender and nonbinary individuals. Society for Social Work and Research. San Francisco, CA.
Begun, S., & Walls, N. E. (2014). Grappling with the complexities of beliefs about women and abortion: Does ambivalent sexism relate to abortion attitudes?. Society for Social Work & Research Annual Conference. San Antonio, TX: Society for Social Work & Research.


  • 2022 Council on Sexual Orientation, Gender Identity and Expression Scholarship Award, Council on Social Work Education
  • Best Scholarly Book Published Award, Honorable Mention, Society for Social Work and Research
  • Excellence in Mentoring Doctoral Students, Graduate School of Social Work/University of Denver
  • Office of Diversity and Inclusion Faculty Fellow, Office of Diversity and Inclusion, University of Denver
  • Ernest A. Lynton Award for the Scholarship of Engagement for Early Career Faculty, New England Resource Center for Higher Education