Presidential Voice – Winter 2016

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Sustaining a Vibrant Trauma Psychology Community

While it’s important to recognize what has been done, it is equally important to recognize that much work remains. As we go forward in doing that work, we need to find ways to nurture and sustain a vibrant trauma psychology community. I can think of few better ways to do this than to bring additional strong, caring people to the leadership table, attract and welcome new members, and engage all in a respectful exchange of ideas.

This year, we were fortunate to have many people join our leadership. Individuals who have been leaders in other organizations or programs but had not yet engaged as actively with APA and particularly our division. People like Julian Ford, Carla Stover, Terri deRoon-Cassini, Sonya Norman, Jessica Hamblen, Bekh Bradley-Davino to name a few. I am grateful for their willingness to come to the table and contribute significantly to our mission. I am also incredibly grateful, as I am sure many of you are, for the continued loyalty and service from those of our leaders who have been with the Division from the very beginning.

Our theme this year was “Trauma Psychology: Getting the Word Out.” One of our greatest associated accomplishments this year was the creation of printable factsheets and YouTube videos on the impact of trauma in underserved priority populations. Through collaboration with various APA divisions, we were able to create factsheets and accompanying videos for the following populations: older adults, male survivors of sexual assault, veterans, traumatically injured, ethnic minorities, Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgendered, economically disadvantaged, children and adolescents, and those with intellectual disabilities. These resources will be made available on our Division website and shared with APA for consideration on their YouTube channel. Thank you to everyone involved including Charles Figley, Sonya Norman, Terri deRoon-Cassini, Christopher Anderson, Jasmin Llmas, Jan Estrellado, Julian Ford, Lesia Ruglass, Bekh Bradley-Davino, Amy Ellis, Robyn Gobin, and Nora Baladerian.

As this is my last presidential column, I’d like to extend a sincere thank you to all of you for giving me the honor of serving as president for 2016. Serving as president has been an extremely rewarding and enriching learning experience. Our Executive Committee includes deeply committed, intelligent people and it was a pleasure working with them this year. I particularly want to thank Drs. Amy Ellis and Vanessa Simiola for doing much heavy lifting this year — at Convention (from helping to review abstracts to arranging every detail of the program and hospitality suite presentations), through spearheading membership efforts including a survey of member needs (if you haven’t completed the survey, please do so!) and the coordination of the interdivisional factsheets and videos design. I also extend my best wishes and support to Drs. Elizabeth Carrll and Diane Castillo, who will serve as president of the Division of Trauma Psychology in 2017 and 2018, respectively.

May our trauma psychology division thrive for another 10, 20, 30 years and beyond!