Norine G. Johnson

2001 APA President

Norine G. JohnsonNorine G. Johnson received her doctorate in clinical psychology in 1972 from Wayne State University and did her post-doctoral work in a two-year program sponsored by Harvard Medical School. Johnson created and directed the psychology department of Kennedy Memorial Hospital, later named the Franciscan Hospital for Children, in Brighton, Mass. She served as president of the Massachusetts Psychological Association. As APA’s president in 2001 (she was the ninth woman to hold that post), she was the association's spokesperson on the 9/11 tragedies.

Johnson, who died in 2011 at age 75, was the owner of four psychology businesses, authored three professional books, including a cutting-edge look at treating adolescent girls through the lens of strength rather than dysfunctions and integrating psychology into all health care, written scores of articles and hundreds of presentations in areas of child, adolescent, women's issues and health psychology. Johnson also consulted with Kartequin Films on "Five Girls," a documentary on the contemporary experiences of adolescent girls. Among her last accomplishments was a work of  historical fiction called “An American Family Myth,” based on the life of her grandmother.

Raised in the suburbs of Indianapolis, she earned a bachelor’s degree from DePauw University where she fought gender discrimination as a leader of the student senate.

In 2000, Johnson was co-chair of APA's Commission on Education and Training Leading to Licensure in Psychology, which looked at issues of doctoral training and readiness to practice. She also led a successful effort to include the word "health" in APA's mission statement. That change, she said, would aid psychologists' inclusion in mainstream health care and help them be better heard in deliberations about what would be a new health-care system.

Johnson fought to give women and minorities more power in APA governance. In 1993, she co-chaired a conference on feminist issues in psychology. From 1995 to 1998, she co-chaired the APA Presidential Task Force on Adolescent Girls.