1997 Ain Roost, Ph.D.
The following goals were established for SDPA in 1997:
Maintain the financial health of our organization.
Increase the numbers and diversity of our organization.
Work closely with CPA on legislative advocacy issues.
Increase the visibility of the profession of psychology.
Address managed care concerns.
Strengthen our continuing education program.
Increase our interface with other professional Associations and community organizations.
Increase the active involvement of our membership in the organization.
The year will be reviewed in the context of these goals.
In 1997, for the first time in a number of years we achieved a balanced budget. In addition, our investments did very well, with a net growth of over $12,000, representing a return of over 24% for the year. Allison Ferch, Patricia Braden and Vic Frazao were largely responsible for this.
Under our Membership chair, Patricia Heras, our membership grew to 564 members, a healthy 6% increase over the previous year. However, there was still work to be done to increase our ethnic diversity, as well as our professional diversity, particularly in relation to the academic and research community.
Ann Carson, our GAC chair and Linda Charles, the CPA Federal Advocacy Coordinator, helped us strengthen our relationships with local legislators. We sent five SDPA representatives to the 9th Annual Leadership and Advocacy Conference in Sacramento. During the year, groups of psychologists had numerous face-to-face meetings with our legislators to educate them about the profession of psychology, mental health issues and our managed care concerns.
Psychology and SDPA assumed a high profile in San Diego in 1997, highlighting the importance of the work psychologists do. SDPA members participated in two events to educate the public, Anxiety Screening Day and Depression Screening Day. SDPA's newly instituted Community Mental Health Task Force, co-chaired by two of our most active members, Vicki DiCicco and Lori Futterman, represented the interests of psychologists and their clients in the ongoing mental health system redesign process. This included interfacing with decision makers and other mental health disciplines in groups such as the interdisciplinary Advisory Group for Behavioral Health, Project Heartbeat, TERM, the San Diego Mental Health Coalition and RIGS (the Regional Integrated Services System Planning Group). Vicki was subsequently appointed by Joan Friedenberg to chair the newly formed Managed Care Advisory Group to advise county administrators and oversee the implementation of the whole redesign process.
One of our former Presidents, Jon Nachison, was recognized by the Points of Light Foundation and President Clinton as one of the Citationists in the 1997 President's Service Awards. He was recognized for his work on behalf of San Diego's homeless veterans with the annual Stand Down, which he co-founded 10 years earlier. Gloria Penner interviewed Linda Charles on These Days in San Diego regarding SB1062, Steve Peace's Confidentiality bill. Our Annual Media were again a continuing example of activities that contribute to our visibility as a profession each year.
In addition, 18 of our members contributed to the visibility of psychology as published authors: Tracy Alderman, Clark Clipson, Lori Futterman, Masa Goetz, Gloria Harris, Dorothea Hover-Kramer, Rosalie Jesse, Mark Katz, Reid Meloy, Lucy Jo Palladino, Erv Polster, Miriam Polster, Deirdra Price, Randy Robinson, Leon Seltzer, Jim Spira, David Wexler and Gail White.
There were several breakfast meetings with legislators to discuss our concerns about managed care. These issues were also addressed in an Opinion article published in the San Diego Union Tribune about the Mental Health Bill of Rights.
The Professional Practice and Business Committee, chaired by Cheryl Martin, presented these issues to the public in two different formats. Michael Haley, the Executive Director of CPA and Russ Newman, the Executive Director of APA's Practice Directorate, along with a managed care representative, were interviewed by UCSD TV regarding managed care issues. That evening SDPA hosted a community Forum at Mercy Hospital moderated by Channel 8 reporter Chris Saunders and featuring Michael Haley, Russ Newman, Howard Wayne, Lucy Killea and Cindy Miller. APA videotaped the evening and planned to air the tape around the country to encourage other Associations to put together similar events.
Under the leadership of Brenda Johnson, our continuing education program grew in both quantity and quality. In addition to a broad slate of presentations on a variety of topics that did not offer MCE credits, such as another fine edition of the Odyssey series, featuring Tom McGee, we offered courses totaling 52.5 hours of MCE credits, enough to meet annual relicensure requirements three times over, and at rock-bottom prices. The year's highlight was the Third Annual Fall Conference, which included 4 half-day workshops in addition to our annual general business meeting and luncheon.
Our attendance at the CPA Leadership and Advocacy conference and the quarterly CPA Board and Committee meetings kept us in touch with state-level activities. We also attended and offered consultation to the annual Board retreat of the Los Angeles County Psychological Association as they organized the Psychology Regional Network, a coordinated marketing/public information/referral network uniting the resources of five local Associations in the Los Angeles area.
We maintained ongoing communication with the San Diego Psychiatric Society through bimonthly breakfast meetings with their leadership, attendance at each other's annual dinners and the development of joint projects such as the Opinion article in the San Diego Union Tribune, which involved collaboration with nine other health and mental health organizations.
The Psychopharmacology Committee, chaired by Christine Baser, established a liaison during the year with the leadership of the San Diego Alliance for the Mentally Ill and continued to work toward prescription privileges for psychologists. We placed two of our members, Hugh Pates and Nancy Acker, on the Citizens' Review Board on Police Practices, a crucial civilian oversight group that stands between the police and the public in San Diego.
Our ongoing liaison with the Board of Psychology was maintained by Kay DiFrancesca. Our Disaster Response Committee continued their work with the American Red Cross and other mental health professionals to provide services to disaster victims and the volunteers who work with them. The Community Leadership Task Force was established to make our expertise as psychologists more available to the community in a leadership capacity by facilitating our service on various Boards, committees and task forces in the community.
There were a number of additions to our usual slate of activities and services in 1997. The first of these, the SDPA Website, included an E-Mail Forum, and put us online with information about psychology and the activities of SDPA. We also conducted the most extensive membership opinion survey SDPA has ever done, receiving a 57% response rate, an indication of the level of our members' active involvement in SDPA. The results were published in our newsletter, as well as state and national level publications.
The Past Presidents' Council was established under the chairmanship of David DiCicco to offer SDPA the benefit of their in-depth knowledge of our Association based on their collective leadership experience and long-term perspective. During the year, David also organized and chaired Outdoor Adventures, a new service that organizes outdoor activities for SDPA members. The Colleague Assistance Committee, chaired by Steven Solomon, established an information and referral service together with CPA's Colleague Assistance Program (CLASP) and provided three continuing networking and support groups for SDPA members.
The year 1997 was a good year. Much of the credit for this goes to our Board members, Denruth Lougeay, Patricia Rose, Connie Brunig, Ann Carson, Bonita Hammell, Patricia Braden, Deborah Zambianco and Linda Charles, an well as James Rogers, our Association attorney, David Wexler, our newsletter editor and our administrator, Allison Ferch. The heart of our organization is our most active members, the ones that have been mentioned, as well as many others. It is they who make SDPA the fine organization that it is.