Candidates for APA President
Kathleen M. McNamara (BA, Seton Hill, 1971; MS (1974) and PhD (1977), Ohio University; ABPP-Clinical) works with Department of Veterans Affairs (VA), Maui Community-Based Outpatient Clinic (CBOC), and is in private practice, specializing in neuropsychology and general psychological services to rural populations.
Professional experience: McNamara began her career in a pediatric medical center, and then accepted a position among the charter faculty of the School of Professional Psychology, Wright State University (1979-89), where she served as director of internship training and specialized in neuropsychology teaching and practice. She also taught medical residents in a family practice residency, consulted and trained students at the state hospital and provided clinical service at the forensic hospital.
In 1989, she accepted a position with the Honolulu VA, with administrative duties as assistant chief and director of training for psychology service. Clinically, she provided neuropsychological services for all areas of the medical center, served as the team psychologist for Day Hospital, and established psychological services at the four rural primary-care clinics before securing a full-time psychologist position at the Maui CBOC. She developed and obtained funding for postdoctoral positions and a rural health internship rotation.
Professional leadership: McNamara has been actively involved in professional issues at the state and national levels since graduate school, holding numerous leadership and governance positions. Selected examples follow: twice elected to APA's Council of Representatives, (Ohio and Div. 42--Independent Practice); elected to APA Board of Directors; chair, Board of Educational Affairs and Committee on Psychology and AIDS, and currently Committee on Rural Health; elected for two terms to the Committee for the Advancement of Professional Practice; elected to the Board of Governors, APA College of Professional Psychology; appointed to Steering Committee for Conference on Postdoctoral Education and Training, to the Commission on Education and Training Leading to Licensure, and to the Distance Learning Task Force; co-chaired Technology Applications Advisory Group; associate editor, Professional Psychology: Research and Practice; president, Ohio Psychological Association (OPA); president and treasurer, Div. 31 (State Psychological Association Affairs).
Advocacy: McNamara has been actively involved in advocacy on behalf of the profession for over 25 years. Selected examples: chair for psychology's political action committee (PAC) in Ohio (six years); board member, original national psychology PAC and member of board and treasurer for current PAC (AAP/PLAN); recipient Karl F. Heiser APA Presidential Award for Advocacy; chair, APA Board of Directors Public Policy Office Advisory Committee; chair, OPA Legislative Committee; member, Hawaii Psychological Association (HPA) Legislative Committee, with special focus on prescription privileges.
Professional awards: OPA Distinguished Service Award; Distinguished Service Award, Hawaii Psychological Association (HPA); Karl F. Heiser Presidential Award for Advocacy; HPA Award for the Provision of Psychological Services to Rural Com-munities; American Academy of Family Physicians, Recognition Award as an Active Teacher in Family Practice; Wright State University President's Certificate of Recognition for Overall Distinction in Teaching, Research and Service; Distinguished Practitioner in Psychology, National Academies of Practice.
Fellow status: Divs. 31 (State Psychological Association Affairs); 29 (Psychotherapy); 42 (Independent Practice).
McNamara's candidate statement
Psychology must take seriously our responsibility to be a leader among leaders. Ours is a science of behavior, a profession rooted in improving the quality of life, a discipline committed to advancing the public interest, with the knowledge and skills to facilitate excellence in education. I am ever mindful of this wonderful complexity, mirrored in APA's membership, purpose and structure. Yet, I also see the common threads that can support an agenda showcasing psychology as a leader. APA's mission, "to advance psychology as a science and a profession and as a means of promoting health and human welfare," is the focus of my presidential initiative, securing psychology's place among leaders.
Designating psychology explicitly in public policy as primary in health care is a critical step in accomplishing our mission. Our science already substantiates this designation, but is limited in the funding sources and amounts. Practitioners continue to be labeled as ancillary or allied. Training funds are restricted by label and category. The unique ways that age, gender, sexual orientation, ethnicity and culture influence the definition of health and access to health care are neglected. This must change.
I am firmly committed to recognizing how psychologists in public service contribute to APA's mission. Yet, their talents and access to avenues for change are underutilized. Public service includes governmental agencies responsible for health policy and the clinical sites serving the most diverse populations. Public service includes the centers for research excellence targeting health, wellness and prevention. Public service includes the largest systems for training practitioners. Psychologists in public service have a major leadership role in fulfilling APA's mission; primary health-care designation can become a model for their leadership now and in the future.
I look forward to implementing this agenda.