Candidates for APA President
Given that there is only so much that an incoming APA president can do during his or her 12-month presidency, state and then discuss the one issue about which you feel most passionate and will pursue with vigor if you are elected.
There is no single issue more deserving of psychology's attention than that of our prison system. The United States incarcerates a higher percentage of its population than any nation in the world. More than 1 percent of the entire U.S. population, a number equal to that of every person in the three states of North Dakota, South Dakota and Delaware, is behind bars. Psychologists, the experts in human behavior, should be leading us toward new answers to the problem of crime and punishment. As APA president, I will convene a national conference at our headquarters to address this social crisis.
The APA Council of Representatives has named membership recruitment and retention as a major initiative for the association. What proposals do you have in this area?
Membership will always ultimately depend on our organization's relevance. The more APA promotes useful and rigorous psychological research, the more APA provides clinicians the tools psychologists need to practice their profession, the more APA does to end the foolish folly of managed care, the more likely that psychologists will see membership as integral to their professional lives. But, if APA focuses on internal, petty politics, if the organization encourages publishable but meaningless research, membership will shrink. There are no quick answers to the twin problems of membership recruitment and retention beyond increasing our relevance to psychologists and society at large.