APA Leadership Institute for Women in Psychology

Mentoring women for leadership in psychology.

By Shari E. Miles-Cohen, PhD

In 2013, the APA Women’s Program Office (WPO) again received CEMRRAT2 Task Force (C2TF) funding to support the APA Leadership Institute for Women in Psychology (LIWP). The funding, which is intended to be used to further support the attendance and participation of women of color in the LIWP, was used to support the LIWP events in March and October.

Since 2011, the C2TF support has been instrumental in further diversifying the LIWP’s teaching faculty. During the training events in March and October of 2013, Melba Vasquez, PhD, and Jean Lau Chin, EdD, joined Lula Beatty, PhD, Jessica Henderson Daniel, PhD, and Karen Wyche, PhD, as members of the LIWP’s leadership training cadre, as well as members of the LIWP’s Executive Committee. And although Jennifer Kelly, PhD, another member of the LIWP’s teaching faculty, was unable to participate in these two events due to scheduling conflicts, she remains an important and valued member of the LIWP’s leadership cadre and executive committee. 

All five women actively engaged the participants in discussion of leadership and power, mentoring, negotiation skills, managing multiple roles and other leadership competencies. Aspects of leadership development, which complement the objective of the LIWP, are to:

  1. Prepare, support and empower mid-career and senior women psychologists as leaders. 
  2. Promote positive changes in institutional and organizational life. 
  3. Increase the diversity, number and effectiveness of women psychologists as leaders. 

The APA LIWP, now in its sixth year, includes almost 200 mid-career women psychologists from academic, academic medical, clinical and consulting settings. In March, WPO hosted the follow-up meeting for the 2012-2013 APA LIWP, the largest class yet with 51 participants. The 2013-2014 APA LIWP, which convened in Washington, D.C., in October, included 26 participants. In an effort to continue to enhance the APA LIWP, WPO is partnering with the Government Relations Office of the Public Interest Directorate (PI-GRO) to offer a one-day advocacy training session as an option for this year’s participants. The executive committee will evaluate the additional training to determine if it should be offered in future years. 

In addition, the APA LIWP Fund, which is the American Psychological Foundation (APF) Leadership Institute for Women in Psychology Fund, has been renamed the Dorothy W. Cantor APF Leadership Institute for Women in Psychology Fund, in recognition of a $100,000 donation by Cantor. As of Dec. 31, 2013, the Cantor APF LIWP Fund stands at more than $256,000 in cash and pledges.

APA Leadership Institute for Women in Psychology