Columns

President's column

Welcome message from new Division President Dr. Jean Keim discussing a new foundation with APF and two special celebrations at the 2011 APA convention.

By Jean Keim, PhD

Jean Keim, PhDHappy New Year! As I embark on my presidential year, I am encouraged by the strength of our Society, our great members, and devoted board of directors.We recently had ourWinter Board Meeting inAtlanta and I will use this column to update you on some matters of interest. Welcome to our new board members: Scott Conkright (Secretary), Dennis Kivlighan, Elaine Clanton-Harpine and Kevin Kulic (Members-at-Large), Gloria Gottsegen(Council Rep), and Nina Brown (President-Elect).

The board unanimously agreed to establish a foundation with American Psychological Foundation (APF). It will provide a lasting philanthropic legacy for our Society with ongoing funding of group psychology and group psychotherapy efforts within clinical practice, scholarly work, and service. Fund revenues will be targeted for grants, scholarships, and awards. I am very excited about the foundation and will be busy in the coming months completing the contracts. In the future, we will begin soliciting donations from members. In the meantime, please start to consider supporting the foundation with a monetary donation or gift from your estate. It will be critical that donations specify our Society of Group Psychology and Group Psychotherapy.

We are having two special celebrations at the 2011 APA convention in Washington, DC. You may not be aware but our Society is having its twentieth anniversary. The Society 49 Social will be a celebration of 20 years of Group Psychology and Group Psychotherapy. Be sure to watch the listserv for announcements regarding the evening. Secondly, we will have an event for the founding members to gather and catch up with each other. If you were a founding member or know someone who was, please email me, so I can keep you up-to-date.

Membership, under Elaine Clanton-Harpine’s leadership has gained some members, but we still would like more. Please sponsor a student or encourage a professional to join our group.

Our journal is reaching new heights in quality. I’m sure you saw it on the listserv, but, if you missed it, Group Dynamics has an impact factor over 1. Stated differently, it has the highest impact factor of any group journal in our field, which means that a large number of group writers are citing articles published in ourjournal at a higher rate than any other group journal. This important benchmark was reached during Craig Park’s tenure as editor. On behalf of the membership, a big “Thank you” to all the editors and reviewers who make our journal great. A big thank you also goes to past editorial staff and the authors who are choosing to put their high quality work in our journal. Lee Gillis has worked tirelessly updating the website and is now managing the listserv. Tom Treadwell continues to edit this newsletter, keeping us informed of Society business and providing articles to inform us. I
know he would love to have a submission from you.

Both the Fellows (Richard Hayes) and ABPP (Sally Barlow) chairs welcome new applicants. They are willing to guide you through the process and help you find a mentor. Be sure to consider pursuing these important professional achievements. While I am not a fellow, I am a diplomate and can comment on the ABPP process. I cannot say it was easy. In fact, the process was daunting at times which is probably why I cherish the accomplishment
so much. It provided me the opportunity to reflect on 20 years of work in group, to re-integrate my clinical teaching and supervision activities and to coalesce who I am as a group practitioner. Without question, it was a wonderful growth experience at this point in my career.

Maria Riva remains hard at work on the program for the August 2011 conference in Washington, DC. Thanks to Janice Delucia-Waack, cochair, and the rest of the program committee for their diligent work over the holidays on the convention program.

These are but a few of the items from the board meeting. The minutes contain much more information. I encourage you to read the minutes and consider how you might be more involved in 49.

Thank you for being part of group.