Veterans Affairs report

The chair highlights discussion points from the section meeting and the nominees for the Veterans Affairs awards

By Anne Klee, PhD

On June 20, 2011, the VA Section held our second Quarterly Conversation featuring a Conversation on Leadership with Drs. Toni Zeiss, Steve Holliday and Steve McCutcheon. Over 120 people participated in the call. All three speakers have graciously agreed to summarize the thoughts they shared for those who could not call in that day. These summaries will be featured in the Division 18 Winter Newsletter. Our next Quarterly Conversation is scheduled for Thursday, November 17, 2011 from 3 - 4 p.m. ET with Drs. Diane Elmore and Randy Phelps from APA. They will update us on what is going on at APA regarding Veterans issues and will talk about the roles and ways VA psychologists can get involved as advocates. Please join us on June 17, 2011 by dialing (800) 767-1750 code 34219.

It was wonderful to see many of you at APA this summer. Thank you to Linda Bodie, Tim Carmody and Dave Pilkey for helping with logistics and refreshments. We had a great turnout at our VA Section Meeting and heard an update from APA staffers Drs. Diane Elmore and Heather Kelly, a summary from Dr. Lisa Kearney on the VA Psychology Leadership Conference and had a meaningful discussion on recruitment and retention of early career psychologists. At APA, we also proudly honored our own. The awards committee–under the leadership of Dr. Dan Kivlahan and comprised of Drs. Karen Grantz, Lisa Kearney, Camilla Madden, Carey Pawlowski, Dolly Sadow and Melissa Wattenber--selected several deserving colleagues for VA Section awards. Thank you to our awards committee for all your hard work. Thank you also to many VA psychologists for nominating your colleagues.

Please join us in congratulating:

  • Outstanding Researcher – Miles E. McFall, PhD

  • Outstanding Administrator – Kathleen M. Lysell, PsyD

  • Outstanding Director of Training – R. Keith Shaw, PhD

  • Outstanding Director of Training – Anna Okonek, PhD

  • Outstanding Supervisor or Mentor – Linda R. Mona, PhD

  • Outstanding Contributions in Psychosocial Rehabilitation – Jay L. Cohen, PhD

  • Outstanding Psychology Trainee – Jennifer M. Craft, MA

  • James Besyner Lifetime Achievement – James K. Besyner, PhD, ABPP

The awards committee renamed the Lifetime Achievement Award the James Besyner Lifetime Achievement Award in memory of our dear friend, colleague and former awards committee member Jim Besyner. Dr. Jody Rubenstein accepted the award on behalf of the Besyner Family and shared some memories of Jim. Division 18 also honored two VA psychologists at APA for their accomplishments and contributions to public psychology. Dr. Dolly Sadow received the Michael S. Neale Award and Dr. Russell Lemle received the Harold Hildreth Award.

Last, as a result of our discussion on early career psychology at APA, Dr. Allison Aosved is developing a survey that will be used to create a new mentoring committee designed to match early career psychologists with mentors based on interests and characteristics that are of importance to the person. If anyone is interested in getting involved with the new mentoring committee or our recruitment committee chaired by Drs. Monica Roy and Ed Padin, please contact me.