Feature Article

President's column

This column concludes 2013 and introduces what to expect in 2014.

By Christine L. B. Selby, PhD

Greetings, members of Div. 47. I am writing this during Game Six of the World Series. It's 6 to 1 in the bottom of the 8th. I think I may very well hear the celebration all the way up here in Maine.

On the heels of the 2013 convention in Honolulu, we are already planning the division's programming for the 2014 convention in Washington, D.C. My hope is that if you have not already done so you will consider submitting a proposal for the convention – instructions for which were distributed through the announcement list and can also be found in this newsletter.

At the convention in Honolulu now Past President Trent Petrie, acknowledged the service of the outgoing Executive Committee members. Gloria Balague ended her three-year service to the division as president and will take a well-earned spot on the Past Presidents Advisory Committee. Mark Aoyagi stepped down as senior member-at-large, and Senior Student Representative Justine Chatterton stepped down after effectively representing student members for two years. Finally, Doug Hankes stepped down from the position of secretary-treasurer after three years of effectively managing the division's finances. The contributions of each of these Executive Committee members will be missed.

With their departure, however, comes new energy and perspectives. At convention their successors officially took on the duties of the position to which they were elected. John Heil is serving as president-elect. Scott Goldman will be our junior member-at-large as Anthony Kontos moves into the senior member-at-large position. We welcomed Ryan Pittsinger to the Executive Committee as the junior student representative as Michelle Garvin began her role as senior student representative. And, the duties of secretary-treasurer have been successfully passed on to Cristina Fink. I look forward to working with these folks as well as all those returning for another year.

One of the responsibilities of the president is to appoint chairpersons as needed for standing committees. Three committees this year needed an incoming chairperson: Education, Membership and Public Interest. I am pleased to announce that the Education Committee is now chaired by Bruce Klonsky, PhD. Jessica Dale, PsyD, is chairing the Membership Committee, and Ariane Smith Machin, PhD, is chairing the Public Interest Committee. Each of these and the other standing committees has been working hard to effectively serve the interests of the division and its members. If you are interesting in knowing what each committee is up to and/or would like to get involved with the division via work on one of the committees please be sure to read each committee's report in the newsletter.

In addition to managing the transition of the various positions within the division, we have also navigated one of the primary initiatives of APA: collaboration between divisions. This has been done through convention programming which has undergone some significant changes in order to meet the goal of greater connectedness between divisions. Our program co-chairs, Jamie Shapiro and Courtney Albinson, have worked extraordinarily hard for the most recent convention and are working diligently for the upcoming convention to ensure that the division's programming reflects not only the division's interests but also the interests of other divisions and their respective members. In this way we hope to increase attendance at our convention sessions as well as to increase APA member's awareness of Div. 47 and what we do.

An additional element of interdivisional collaboration is APA's Interdivisional Grant Program. Div. 47 was a part of submitting two grant proposals with other divisions. We have worked with Divs. 17, 22 and 42 on a proposal related to exercise and mental health and Divs. 19, 22, 31 and 40 on a project to develop a Concussion Toolkit. As of the writing of this column both proposals were highly regarded by the Committee on Division/APA Relations (CODAPAR) and remain “in the running.” CODAPAR expressed a desire to fund both projects but asked for clarification and/or additional information to ensure that the projects are sustainable as proposed. We were notified that CODAPAR received four times as many projects as they can fund; thus, this is indeed a testament to the quality of the both projects submitted. Project leaders are working on replies to address CODAPAR's concerns by the Nov. 1 deadline. This is indeed exciting news and I hope either through the next column or, more likely, via an announcement on the email list to be able to let you know the final decision for both projects.

There are already a lot of exciting things happening with the division this year. Many thanks for the opportunity to be a part of these endeavors as well as those to come. I look forward to the upcoming year and welcome your comments, questions, and feedback via email .