Div 42 Has Endorsed Diana for APA President!

Division 42, Psychologists in Independent Practice, has endorsed Diana for APA President!

Div 42 asked the candidates for APA President the questions below.

1. Please describe your contributions to the professional practice of psychology, including any positions held and past or current committee work in Division 42.

Division 42 has been my professional home for Practice. I have served as Federal Advocacy Coordinator for over 17 years, advocating for Practice issues on Capitol Hill, receiving the APA Practice Organization (APAPO) Federal Advocacy Coordinator award on March 12, 2012. I was elected to the APA Committee of State Leaders for the Practice Leadership Conference from 2011 to 2014 and was Chair-Elect in 2013. I was elected to the APA Board of Directors as Member at Large (2014-2016). I served on CAPP during 2017-2018. I was awarded Fellow status by MePA on November 17, 2017. While serving on the APA Board of Directors (as Member at Large and Recording Secretary 2019-2021), I was repeatedly chosen as Board Liaison to Practice (CAPP and BPA) and the Association of State and Provincial Psychology Boards (ASPPB). I have been a member of the Association of Practicing Psychologists (APP) Caucus for many years.

2. The reorganization of the Association into APA (c3) and APASI (c6) is a critical issue affecting the ability to advance, defend, and protect the practice of psychology. What concrete measure(s) would you implement to address the significant budget deficits at APA and to continue effective legislative advocacy that impacts practicing psychologists particularly in-light of the staff reductions made in June 2020.

I just reviewed the budgets of both APA and the APASI in our June Board meeting this weekend and was pleased to see the budgets continue to look much better than during any time I have served on the Board of Directors. The dues payment in our association more directly impacts the bottom line for APASI. With our older membership entering retired APA dues status, the contribution to the APASI budget is negatively impacted. However, we are attracting more younger members, which should be helpful to our bottom line in the future. I believe the allocation of the advocacy monies by the Advocacy Coordinating Committee (ACC) should continue to be weighted towards the APASI, and I will continue to strongly encourage this. I also will continue to specifically attend to how well-funded Practice and the APASI is, believing strength in our Practice community benefits APA and psychologists as a whole.

3. Please provide your position and how you intend to address each of the following APA governance concerns:

A) improved transparency of the APA Board of Directors (BoD) and staff leadership with APA Council, B) changes, if any, you would make to CLT to make it more effective for COR, C) the continued effects of the Good Governance Project, particularly:

a) the delegation of fiscal and other responsibilities exclusively to the APA BoD.

b) The possibility of Boards, Committees, Council, Convention, Practice Leadership Conference, etc. all going remote rather than meeting Face-to Face.

c) The possibility of re-sizing COR so that divisions and SPTA’s will no longer be represented.

The BOD is an Administrative Agent of COR. Council should know what is happening in Board meetings. The open component of the Board meeting could be viewed by COR members. Transparency in staff leadership regarding COR could be improved by flagging COR-related staff issues and reporting them regularly (COR Town Hall meetings, brief video, or e-mail summaries). The CLT should be organizing the work of COR and communicating with COR, Board, and staff. The GGP revealed we need to modernize and streamline our organization. Meetings need to be carefully assessed to determine which groups require face-to-face versus remote to do business. The states and divisions are critically important voices in our association and need representation. However, our Council needs to operate nimbly and effectively to position our discipline to advance with strength and unity in the face of external opportunities and threats to the profession.

4. How will APA's effort to accredit health services psychology programs at a master’s level and to license trainees from these programs impact the professional practice of psychology including current doctoral level psychologists?

A. How do you anticipate this will impact membership and governance structures of APA?

B. How would you distinguish between a doctoral level psychologist and a master’s level psychologist?

Accreditation will enable some of our colleagues who trained with us, as well as our students we train at the Master’s level, to obtain accredited training within psychology that reflects their level of skill and what they can offer to the public. The pandemic has revealed the critical need for psychology and the dearth of qualified providers. Inclusion of our Master’s level colleagues trained in psychology will increase our membership and potentially provide an increase in funding for the critically important work of the APASI. I believe a range of levels of “helpers,” from the paraprofessional to the doctoral level psychologist, is needed. The highly trained doctoral psychologist should supervise and provide mentorship to these teams of helpers. We need to defend the doctoral standard for entry into practice as a psychologist. Simultaneously, we need to establish evidence for improved efficacy in treatment by psychologists to defend the doctoral standard.

5. What do you see as additional vital area(s) facing the practice of psychology moving forward? How do you plan to address these areas during your presidency?

Quoting Dr. Bra Vada Garrett-Akinsanya, “Sistas need to get paid.” There is a lot of federal money available now for Practice, due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Practitioners are inundated with referrals, at a time when their active clients are struggling to cope and suffering due to both the COVID and racism pandemics. Telehealth has opened a window of opportunity for clients to be readily treated, which has benefitted many, including the underserved and those living in rural areas. PsyPact offers the possibility of more easily practicing across state lines. We need to position APA to funnel this money to our psychologists in independent practice. As President, I will put my energy into prioritizing the needs of practitioners, using my advocacy skills to obtain critically needed financial resources for Practice. It has been very difficult to practice self-care during the pandemic. APA should prioritize providing resources for self-care for practitioners.

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