Candidates for APA President
Donald K. Freedheim, PhD, is professor emeritus of psychology and founding director of the Schubert Center for Child Development at Case Western Reserve University (CWRU). He earned his doctorate in clinical psychology from Duke University. During graduate school, he served as psychologist for the North Carolina Cerebral Palsy Hospital and completed an internship at Boston Children's Medical Center. Following graduation, he became chief psychologist at the Mental Development Center at CWRU and later took a full-time teaching position in the department of psychology. He was a visiting associate professor at Tel Aviv University in 1974-1975. In addition to teaching in the undergraduate and graduate programs at CWRU, he has had a part-time clinical practice. He was also a consultant to the Society for Crippled Children and the Family Service Association. He worked part-time in a pediatric practice and co-authored one of the early articles on pediatric psychology, published in the Journal of Pediatrics.
He served as president of the Cleveland and Ohio Psychological Associations and APA's Div. 29 (Psychotherapy). He represented Div. 29 on APA's Council of Representatives for five years and served terms on APA's Board of Directors, Board of Professional Affairs and Committee on International Relations in Psychology, which he chaired. Currently, he is chair of the Policy and Planning Board of APA.
He is a founder and on the steering committee of AFFIRM and a member of the National Academy of Practice in Psychology.
He founded the APA journal Professional Psychology; edited Div. 29's journal, Psychotherapy, for ten years; and edited the volume "History of Psychotherapy: A Century of Change" (APA, 1992) for the APA centennial. He is editor of "History of Psychology, Vol. I of the Handbook of Psychology" (Wiley & Sons, 2003). He is co-author of "The Clinical Child Documentation Sourcebook" (Wiley, 1999), a co-developer of the APA Psychotherapy Videotape Series, and associate editor of the Encyclopedia of Psychology.
Locally, Freedheim chaired the Cuyahoga County Board of Mental Retardation and served on the Board of the Jewish Family Service Association. Currently, he is co-chair of the Mental Health Committee of the Cleveland Chapter of the American Red Cross and on its Trauma Response Team.
Freedheim's candidate statement
APA has worked diligently to maintain strong ties among the academic, research and practice areas. Many of the gains we have made in expanding practice into areas that were formally restricted to the medical profession are due to research evidence underlying practice procedures. With these advances has come increasing public confidence in psychological interventions. But the question remains whether the profession will continue to be a science-oriented, research-based field that the public trusts to provide valid, documented and ethical practices. I am committed to strengthening the alliance between science and practice, which I believe is fundamental to the future solidarity of the profession.
Although there have been increases in the number of ethnic-minority members in APA, given the growing diversity in the U.S. population, the field remains underrepresented. For psychology to stay relevant to the constituency we serve, we must interest minority students in seeking higher education in psychology. I would work toward providing incentives and outreach programs at both the national and state levels for minority students.
Americans face the greatest threats to security in our history. Psychology has a vital role in maintaining the mental health of our nation. I would foster the development of strategies and programs with other health organizations and government entities to ensure that trained psychologists are available in times of crisis.
Two further issues need consideration. The governance and staff of APA need to continue working together to plan for the economic security of the association over the years to come.
There are insufficient avenues for members who wish to be involved in APA. We need strategies to bring more members into division and state/provincial activities. There is considerable untapped expertise within our membership that could enrich the work of the association.