June 3, 2014

Diaz-Granados to Join APA as Executive Director for Education

WASHINGTON — Jaime “Jim” L. Diaz-Granados, PhD, of Baylor University has been selected as the American Psychological Association’s executive director for education. Diaz-Granados will replace Cynthia D. Belar, PhD, who is retiring.

Diaz-Granados will assume his new APA role on a part-time basis this fall and full time in January 2015. Diaz-Granados is currently a professor of psychology, neuroscience and biomedical studies and chair of the Department of Psychology and Neuroscience at Baylor University. A longtime leader in psychology higher education, Diaz-Granados is currently the board president of the Council of Graduate Departments of Psychology. As a member of the APA Commission on Accreditation, he serves as co-chair for program review and chair of the Research Working Group.

Diaz-Granados is an experienced researcher in the developmental, behavioral and neurochemical aspects of alcohol abuse and addiction and previously served as the director of the Baylor Addictions Research Consortium and as a member of review panels and committees with the National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism. Diaz-Granados has received over $1.5 million in research grants and awards during his career.

“We are extremely excited to have Dr. Diaz-Granados joining our senior staff,” said APA CEO Norman B. Anderson, PhD. “His broad knowledge of the issues and opportunities in psychology, his significant experience within the psychology education community and his proven ability to be a thought leader, collaborator and team builder will enable him to make important contributions to APA and the discipline in the years ahead.”

In his new role at APA, Diaz-Granados will manage the Education Directorate, which includes programs to enhance the quality of teaching and learning outcomes at all levels of education and to increase financial and policy support for psychology education and training. The Education Directorate comprises the offices of Program Consultation and Accreditation, Graduate and Postgraduate Education and Training, Precollege and Undergraduate Education, Continuing Education in Psychology and CE Sponsor Approval. Also housed within the directorate is the APA Center for Psychology in Schools and Education and the Education Government Relations Office.

“I am honored to have been selected to lead the Education Directorate. It is a privilege to follow Cynthia Belar and her great leadership,” said Diaz-Granados. “She has left a positive and indelible mark on our discipline and leaves the directorate in great shape. I am thrilled for this opportunity to serve alongside an excellent APA staff and look forward to continuing the important work of advancing the science and practice of psychology in education and training.

“As we look to the future, the current landscape of science, education, and health care affords our discipline a number of unique opportunities and presents some unique challenges. While I will miss working with my talented colleagues at Baylor, I am excited to join my new colleagues at APA and look forward to meeting the opportunities and overcoming the challenges of these exciting times.”

Diaz-Granados earned his PhD in psychology in 1994 from the University of Texas at Austin, where he also completed his undergraduate studies in 1986. Diaz-Granados also completed a postdoctoral fellowship at the Medical University of South Carolina in 1996.

The American Psychological Association, in Washington, D.C., is the largest scientific and professional organization representing psychology in the United States. APA's membership includes nearly 130,000 researchers, educators, clinicians, consultants and students. Through its divisions in 54 subfields of psychology and affiliations with 60 state, territorial and Canadian provincial associations, APA works to advance the creation, communication and application of psychological knowledge to benefit society and improve people's lives.