1984 Russell Gold, Ph.D.
We were still The Academy of San Diego Psychologists in 1984. It was a year of rebuilding for a number of reasons. Membership had fallen, although the number of licensed psychologists in the county had risen steadily. Our membership had no real sense of belonging or that the Academy was performing functions that were of benefit to them. There was a disconnect between the organization and those it was serving. This had worsened over a number of years and the effort to reverse this trend had started the year before under Jay Dess’ leadership.
We spent 1984 adding committees and encouraging participation. The functions of other committees were changed to be more inclusive. Our Board worked well and closely together, always with an eye toward including those who had felt somehow disenfranchised. Our Executive Director at the time, Barbara Severence, was pivotal in the effort and the best public relations person that we could have hoped for. Success was measured in two ways, the number of members participating on committees who had not done so before and the growth of the membership. All-in-all, we were pleased with the outcome as membership doubled over a two year period.