In this issue

President's column

An overview of future division goals, including leadership development and committee involvement

By Femina P. Varghese, PhD

This is an exciting time for our division. Our student section is experiencing wonderful growth, cohesiveness, and organization. We have also begun re-connecting with past division leaders, such as through our past presidents breakfast held at APA this year. Meeting with members from both these groups has been refreshing. I look forward to the continued engagement of both young and old members in our various division initiatives.

Considering our past presidents, I am indeed grateful to those who have gone before me and worked tirelessly for the betterment of our division. I am especially thankful to Anne Klee, PhD, our immediate past president, for her leadership to our division in the last year. She is gifted with not only intelligence, but also with leadership marked by gentleness and grace. I have enjoyed collaborating with Anne and our current president-elect, Tim Carmody, and have valued their input.

This is an exciting time for our division, because it is also a time to plan future goals. As I stated at the Div. 18 business meeting, this year we intend for our division to complete a strategic plan. Such a plan would allow us to envision the future of Div. 18, and then take steps to make such a future a reality. We are very lucky that Rod Baker, PhD, a past president of Div. 18 and experienced in strategic planning, has agreed to facilitate the plan with a core group of current division leaders, including our student representative. To further develop leadership within our division, an early career professional, Abigail Bernett, has agreed to assist Rod. Along with hearing from our division leaders, I also want to hear from our members. Thus, I plan to send out a survey to solicit our members' perceptions that I would like every member of Div. 18 to complete.

Another goal for us this year is to begin the process of maintaining our division Listservs. Thank you to Linda Richardson and Layne Goble, our membership co-chairs, who are leading us in this initiative. We first need clean up the Listservs by removing emails from those who are no longer members. Therefore, now is the time to renew membership if you have let your membership lapse. Listservs are a valuable way to network with like-minded colleagues. Division membership also includes our journal, Psychological Services, as well as opportunities to earn CE credits through conferences and webinars. Membership to Div. 18 is just $25 for students and $49 for non-students. You can be a member without being a member of APA. So do join or renew. It is indeed worth it.

After joining as a member, you are free to join as many sections as you would like. Joining a section can be an even greater way to get the most from your membership. Our division is unique in its diversity of specialties and encompasses six sections representing these diverse areas. I enjoyed meeting with many of the section chairs at APA and hearing their exciting ideas to further engage members. I am especially excited to welcome our new section chairs: Shirley Glynn of the SMI/SED Section; Howard Steinberg of the VA section; and Will Newbill of the Community and State Hospital section. I also look forward to the continued leadership of section chairs Shelia Brandt for the Criminal Justice section; Virginia Hayes for the Police and Public Safety section; and Mike Tilus for the Indian Country Ssection.

A wonderful panel took place at APA in our hospitality suite that gave valuable insight to those new to the process of joining APA committees. A special thank you to Bob Ax and the “Committee on APA Committees” for organizing this event. Bob Ax continues to be a role model and mentor for our division, and I applaud his work as he nurtures future leaders of Div. 18.

I also want to thank our new newsletter editors Tiffanie Fennell and Paul Deal for their work on both the summer edition and now this fall edition. They are doing a tremendous service for our division. The newsletter not only provides current updates on our division, but it is also an historical document that tells the story of our division for years to come. Thanks also to our past newsletter editors, Victor Wolski and Marcia Baruch.

Please do check out our website, especially a new section, developed by Anne, called Members in Action, which includes interviews done by our student members to highlight the accomplishments of some of our prominent members.

Our new webmaster, Jack Tsai, is working with David Kazar, our member at large for Communications, to improve the website and make it more inviting. We want to thank to Lindsay Avritt for her work as our previous webmaster.

Looking forward to a wonderful year as we move forward as a division. Remember to renew your membership.