In October, Judith E.N. Albino, PhD, president of Alliant International University, was honored in Denver for the success of the Judith Albino Diversity Scholarship Fund. Approximately $200,000 has been given to this fund and to the university by colleagues and friends of Albino, the former president of the University of Colorado. The scholarship fund was established in 1990 and supports diversity scholarships for those attending the University of Colorado Health Sciences Center.
Philip G. Zimbardo, PhD, finished his tenure as president of APA in December by honoring a number of public figures with citations and commendations for service to psychology.
While visiting New York City, he rewarded three people who have helped communicate the importance of psychology to the general public. In a small ceremony at the Hilton Times Square, he gave a presidential citation to Joyce Brothers, PhD, for her role "as a pioneer in media psychology, presenting psychological research and practice to generations of the public" through radio, television, newspapers and magazines.
Zimbardo also presented commendations to Elizabeth Rukzsnis, assistant producer, and Andrea Gitow, PhD, producer, at the Psychology Unit of "Dateline NBC" for their careful research, recreations of classic psychological experiments, and accurate portrayal of the results and meaning of psychological research.
Celia Fisher, PhD, director of the Fordham University Center for Ethics Education and chair of APA's Ethics Code Task Force, received a commendation for her work in updating the Ethical Principles of Psychologists and Code of Conduct. Fisher was praised for her "poise, equanimity and grace" in dealing with the difficult task of creating consensus out of differing opinions.
Another commendation went to Donald O. Clifton, PhD, chair of the Gallup International Research and Education Center, for his lifetime achievements. In "living out the vision that life and work could be about building what is best and highest, not just about correcting weakness," the commendation says, "he became the father of strengths-based psychology and the grandfather of positive psychology."
In September, the Rhode Island Psychological Association co-sponsored a public reading of "Shades"--a play by Paula J. Caplan, PhD, a visiting scholar at Brown University's Pembroke Center for Women--followed by a discussion led by psychologists.
The play contains several themes that resonated with the association, as well as the theater company that co-sponsored the reading. Caplan says the play asks questions such as "How are people affected by war? Can you be a good American if you don't agree with the government?" A similar reading took place in New York City in February, and Caplan hopes to organize an event in Massachusetts as well.
Psychologist Robert T. Croyle, PhD, has been appointed acting director of the Division of Cancer Control and Population Sciences of the National Cancer Institute (NCI). As acting director, Croyle will manage a $459 million program of research in epidemiology, surveillance, behavioral science, health services research and cancer survivorship. Previously, he served as the division's associate director for behavioral research. Croyle received his PhD from Princeton University in 1985 and then worked at the University of Utah department of psychology and the Huntsman Cancer Institute, moving to NCI in 1998.
Eleanor Gibson, PhD, died in December at the age of 92. Gibson, a former professor of psychology at Cornell University, was awarded the National Medal of Science in 1992 by President Clinton. One of very few psychologists to have ever received the nation's highest scientific honor, she was best known for her work on perception and learning, employing the "visual cliff" to determine that most infants could perceive depth and would not crawl out onto a platform that appeared to drop off. A proponent of the ecological approach, Gibson said that most psychological processes are built to operate in the real world, and to understand them, psychologists needed to consider their functions.
Psychologist Helen Kahn, PhD, associate professor of communication disorders at Northern Michigan University, has instituted a clinical internship at the Memory Diagnostic Center, which involves the Alzheimer's Association, the university and two county hospitals. Kahn and her students aid caregivers by helping to break down the communication barriers that often result when patients can no longer comprehend complex language, long sentences or open-ended questions. Caregivers will learn how to use simple sentences and how to ask questions that offer clear choices. Kahn hopes to maintain independent living for the Alzheimer's patients as long as possible.
John M. Kennedy, PhD, professor of psychology at the University of Toronto, was included in a December special issue of The New York Times magazine on "The Year in Ideas." He studies blind artists who can draw recognizable geometric objects. Kennedy theorizes that blind people rely on developing their sense of touch to imagine physical space, offering a revision to the belief that pictures can only be generated through optical stimuli.
Scott Meit, PsyD, associate professor of family medicine at the West Virginia University School of Medicine, has received a primary health-care fellowship from the Department of Health and Human Services. Meit--who is on APA's Council of Representatives and is also a member of APA's Committee on Rural Health--was nominated for the fellowship by APA's Practice Directorate for his commitment to outreach and delivery of health services to rural America. The six-month fellowship brings together a multidisciplinary group of primary health-care providers to study health-care policy-making and prepares them to shape institutional, local, state and national policies.
--J. McKAY AND M. GREENGRASS