It seems most appropriate to start my first column by saying how grateful and honored I am to be your SIOP president. Ill admit that looking ahead, the job seems daunting. The good news is that SIOP really works because of all the energetic people in leadership, administrative, and committee roles who contribute their time and talent. That brings me to the rest of this column, which has traditionally served as a vehicle for telling you about who these wonderful people are and about all the things theyve been doing. Ill also use this and future columns as a forum for keeping you informed about some of the emerging challenges and opportunities that might influence our future.
The Conference in San Diego
Im writing this after just having returned from our
16th Annual Conference in San Diego. For many of us, the Annual Conference is the baseline for how we think of our Society both in activity and name (How many of you refer to the Conference as simply SIOP?!). The Conference provides us the opportunity to keep abreast of developments within our profession, get some real work done in committees and meetings, see old friends, and make new ones as well. I always come back energized, tired, and wondering how it went so fast. This year was no exception.
Did you ever wonder how such a complex event like the Conference works so smoothly? Well, one of the answers is easy to find. Ron Johnson has just completed his second term as Conference chairthat represents 7 of the 16 SIOP Conferences held thus far (Lets see if I can remember thats Boston, Miami, St. Louis, Montreal, Atlanta, New Orleans, and San Diego). Ron has been a special SIOP friend to all of us for many years and has been a key driving force behind the success of both the Society and the Annual Conference. I simply dont have the capacity to say thanks in a way that can sufficiently convey my personal appreciation and gratitude.
Special thanks also go to Lee Hakel and the entire Administrative Office (Esther Benitez, Gail Nader, Larry Nader, Lori Peake, Gretchen Sommerfeld) for making the mechanics work (3,102 registrants this year!). Its a very big job and its done seamlessly. And its done, I might add, while never missing a beat on all the other day-to-day administrative tasks
that keep the Society running.
Karen Paul, Continuing Education and Workshop Committee Chair, deserves our thanks for 16 very well received workshops. Once gain, more than 500 of us (512 to be exact) participated. Thanks are also due the workshop presenters and coordinators. It takes year-long focus and effort to put on these workshops; with such great leadership and wonderful support, its no wonder that the workshops were so popular again this year! On the same day, the Doctoral Consortium was orchestrated by Martha Hennen and Donna Chrobot-Mason; 39 students benefited from the advice and counsel of the luminaries of our profession.
Talya Bauer took on the challenging task of creating a new program venue and created a new sense of excitement around the Conference. In addition to all the work in creating the program (with up to 20 concurrent sessions), Technology Showcase Sunday was by my observation a huge success (yesIm biased here). The Technology Pavilion was crowded to nearly overflow conditions on Sunday morning, and the sessions were well attended all the way through the remainder of the morning despite the west-coast location. I want to personally thank Talya and the Program Committee, and those who literally created Technology Showcase Sunday from scratch (Ken Brown, Steve Brown, Rick DeShon, Fritz Drasgow, Craig James, Nathan Mondragon, Jeff Stanton, Don Truxillo), for making the program such a huge success. Special thanks are also due to Larry Nader of the Administrative Office who kept everything running smoothly.
When I first arrived in San Diego on Wednesday afternoon of Conference week, I checked into my room and immediately went downstairs to see how things were coming along. Thanks to John Cornwell, and Lee and Milt Hakel, everything was already in place, with every t crossed and i dotted. John served as SIOP volunteer coordinator, and Milt was just, well Miltvolunteer extraordinaire as well as the genius behind SIOPs information technology infrastructure both back in the office and onsite at the Conference.
The Placement Center was again both popular and helpful to many. Linda Sawin and Earl Nason deserve the gratitude of many who found the job (and candidates) of their dreams (we hope).
The Executive Committee and Committee Chairs
I extend my congratulations to Ann Marie Ryan (president-elect) and Bob Dipboye (member-at-large) on their election to the Executive Committee. I also want to thank all those who willingly ran for office for their thoughtful consideration. Were fortunate that so many talented people graciously offer their time and talent. The election process will begin again in October with the call for nominations.
Returning elected officers include Janet Barnes-Farrell (secretary); Ray Johnson (financial officer); Mike Burke and Katherine Klein (members-at-large); Neal Schmitt, Mary Tenopyr, and Wayne Camara (APA council representatives). Neil Schmitt also serves as chair of the Organizational Frontiers Series. Kevin Murphy joined as APA council representatives this past January. Im particularly grateful that Nancy Tippins (past president) will still be there to provide guidance and support.
The Executive Committee has just undertaken a modest reorganization. The changes largely involve how committee work is integrated across committees. Committees have been grouped into four clusters, based on their potential synergies. The members-at-large will serve as cluster coordinators, each responsible for facilitating integration. Cathy Higgs will serve as an additional cluster coordinator.
New committee chairs include Jeff McHenry (SIOP Conference), Adrienne Colella (SIOP Program), Laura Koppes (Education and Training), Earl Nason (Placement), Kalen Pieper (Continuing Education and Workshops), Debra Major (TIP), Rosemary Hays-Thomas (2002 APA Program), Andy Vinchur (Historian) and Mike Coovert (APS Program). Continuing on in their roles as standing committee chairs are Tim Judge (Awards), Dana McDonald-Mann (Committee on Ethnic and Minority Affairs), Jan Cleveland (Fellowship), Irv Goldstein and Paul Thayer (Foundation), Irene Sasaki and Beth Chung (Membership), Wanda Campbell (Professional Practice), Eduardo Salas (Professional Practice Series), Janis Cannon-Bowers (2001 APA Program), Steve Brown (Scientific Affairs), and Mort McPhail (State Affairs). Also continuing in their current roles as Ad Hoc Committee Chairs are Heather Fox (APA/APS Relations), David Dorsey (Electronic Communications), Diane Brown Maranto (liaison from the APA Committee on Psychology in the Workplace), Dick Jeanneret (Principles Revision), Karen Barbera (Professional Development Workshops), and Gary Carter (Visibility).
This great group of people works hard throughout the year to both serve and represent your interests in SIOP. Please thank them personally the next time you see one of them. Speaking of conversation, dont hesitate to give me a call (e-mail works great, too) with your thoughts and ideas during the coming year.
I was looking back through some old copies of TIP and couldnt help but notice just how much our newsletter has grown in content as well as page count (the May 1984 issue had 68 pages; the April 2001 issue had 208). Weve been particularly lucky to have the benefit of some very engaged and gifted editors over the years. Id just like to extend one more round of thanks to Allan Church for his editorial leadership during the last 3 years. Allan comes from a publishing family so it runs in his blood. Were lucky that he was willing to share his editorial genes with us! Were fortunate as well that Debbie Major is taking us into the future. Good luck, Debbie!
More Conference Thoughts, Too
As the Conference has grown, so have the multiple needs and purposes of those attending. Unfortunately, some of those agendas may be in conflict with others. Recently, Ive been hearing complaints about the overcommercialization of the Conference, and frankly, Im concerned that weve gone too far with commercialization in some cases. Let me be clear that Im not talking about what goes on in the exhibit hall; were extremely grateful to our exhibitors and sponsors, who serve a valuable role in keeping us up-to-date on technology and other trends in our field. Rather, Im addressing the commercialization of Conference program events as evidenced in self- and/or company promotion during symposia, workshops, and so forth. The Executive Committee is going to be looking at this closely during the coming year. You could help us enormously by sharing your thoughts on this matter and how the issue should be addressed. Please forward comments directly to me at firstname.lastname@example.org.
On a more whimsical note, did you ever wonder about conference attire? I personally find it interesting that so many adhere to formal business dress throughout the Conference. Moreover, as business casual has become the norm elsewhere, our general concept of proper SIOP fashion seems unchanged. Maybe its because so many of us are involved in symposia and panel sessions that we feel it only appropriate to be conservatively attired. On the other hand, maybe its better that way because some wouldnt want to be conspicuous as they head to the placement center! Just a thought, but I wonder how many of us it would take to create a new, just slightly more casual, trend.
Executive Committee Matters
Some of the tasks facing the Executive Committee could be classified as maintenance duties. Other tasks arise out of the more ambiguous regulatory, societal, economic, and scientific challenges and opportunities facing the Society. Befitting its name, the Long Range Planning Committee (LRP) serves the purpose of putting some structure on that ambiguity and setting in motion the steps necessary to ensure the continuing viability of the Society.
Following the guidance of LRP, several recent decisions have been made by the Executive Committee to ensure administrative continuity of operations. These include the approval of various financial transactions whereby SIOP will directly acquire various physical assets (e.g., photocopiers) that previously would have been acquired by SIOPs management service provider (now ORD). This decision extends to purchase of certain existing ORD assets as well. Both decisions are consistent with SIOPs long-term plan to evolve from an outsourcing model toward an executive director administrative staffing model, where both physical and human capital assets become the direct responsibility of the Society. While the details of this model have yet to be fully determined, the Executive Committee has committed the financial resources for this transition to occur over the next 4 years.
Licensing Issue Update
Nancy Tippins updated us in the last issue of TIP on SIOPs Task Force on Licensure. You may recall that the Task Force has been asked to provide a definition of acceptable licensure requirements for I-O psychologists and to draft a corresponding implementation plan to evaluate which people and institutions meet those requirements. Recently, APA Council asked that SIOP (among other Divisions and parties of interest) review and comment on a draft report and recommendations of the Commission on Education and Training Leading to Licensure in Psychology. This set of recommendations has the potential to very significantly impact the practice of I-O psychology. The Task Force has adopted a very aggressive time line for responding to the draft and will prepare the comments to be forwarded to APA by early September. Ill let you know more in the next column.
Just In Case You Missed It
The Consultant Locator System was officially unveiled at the Conference (see the article on page 147). This system allows for anyone who might be seeking assistance from an I-O psychologist a means of finding a consultant who has the desired competencies. All SIOP Members and Fellows are invited to list themselves with the service. All consulting firms and institutes with SIOP Members in key principal, officer, or executive positions are also invited to list themselves and their organizations. Invitations were e-mailed in March. If you havent yet taken advantage of the invitation, visit the site at
Id like to thank Wanda Campbell, chair of the Professional Practice Committee and Dale Smalley, chair of the Consultant Locator System subcommittee for their significant effort in making this happen. It is an enormous contribution and couldnt have happened without their extraordinary tenacity and leadership. Larry Nader and Milt Hakel also deserve our thanks for making the technology work.
Feedback is a Gift
One final thought. This is your Society and the leadership of the Society is committed to making the Society work for you. Let us know how we are doing.