SES Policy Corner

Message from Kerry Bolger, PhD, OSES’s new Government Relations Liaison

Greetings, SES Community Members! I would like to introduce myself as a new member of the APA team working on socioeconomic status issues. As Senior Legislative & Federal Affairs Officer in the Public Interest Government Relations Office, my job is to promote psychology in the public interest in two areas of federal policy: issues related to socioeconomic status, and issues related to children, youth and families. Stepping into the role of my outstanding predecessor, Krysta Jones, I am looking forward to working with the Committee on Socioeconomic Status, APA members and the Office on Socioeconomic Status on advancing federal policies to address disparities based on SES and related issues.

By way of introduction, here is some information about my background: After receiving my PhD in developmental psychology from the University of Virginia in 1996, I worked in academia, most recently as an assistant professor in the Department of Human Development & Family Studies at the University of Wisconsin–Madison. Seeking more experience in public policy, I came to Washington in 2007 as an APA Congressional Fellow. I spent my fellowship year working in the office of U.S. Representative Diana DeGette of Colorado, learning about the workings of Congress and the effective use of psychological knowledge in government. I enjoyed the experience so much that I accepted an offer from Congresswoman DeGette to join her staff as a legislative assistant. During my time on the Hill, I worked extensively on health issues, including passage of the maternal, infant and early childhood home visiting programs in the Affordable Care Act. I joined the APA staff in 2011, with a goal of advancing evidence-based policies that make people’s lives better.

I am looking forward to working closely with you on APA’s federal policy priorities related to socioeconomic status. Please feel free to contact me anytime by email or at (202) 336-6068 with questions, concerns, ideas and recommendations.