“The Executive Council shall have general supervision of the affairs of the association between its business meetings, fix the hour and place of meetings, appoint all APA-established positions for association service, make recommendations to the membership, and perform such other duties as are specified in these bylaws. The council shall be subject to the orders of the membership, and none of its acts shall conflict with action taken by the membership.” – LPA bylaws Amended 2014
Current LPA Leadership:
Jesse Lambert, Psy.D., MP
Amy Henke, Psy.D.
Co-Chair Communications Committee
Paula Zeanah, Ph.D.
Dr. Paula Zeanah is research director at the Picard Center and the Lafayette General Medical Center/Our Lady of Lourdes Endowed Chair in Nursing at the University of Louisiana at Lafayette. Prior to her positions at UL Lafayette, Dr. Zeanah was a professor in the Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences at Tulane University where she served as Chief of the Division of Clinical Psychology and co-director the pediatric-psychiatry consultation-liaison program. She also served as an assistant professor in the Department of Psychiatry at LSUHSC in New Orleans. A pediatric nurse and clinical psychologist, Dr. Zeanah’s lifelong interests have been the interface of health and mental health in primary and tertiary settings. Her current scholarly activities focus on adverse childhood experiences, college students who are parents, mental health in maternal-infant home visiting programs, ethical issues in infant mental health, and sexual self-esteem. Dr. Zeanah earned her Ph.D. in Clinical Psychology from the University of Connecticut and she completed an internship in pediatric and child psychology with the Brown University Internship Consortium in Providence, RI. Dr. Zeanah is a longstanding member of LPA. She has served on the Executive Council (2012-2015 and 2021-2023) and on the Convention/Continuing Education. She is committed to upholding the values of LPA and to its continued growth and development as an excellent professional organization.
Richard Niolon, Ph.D.
Co-Chair, Professional Affairs
Dr Niolon is a licensed clinical psychologist in the state of Illinois. He obtained his Ph.D. in Clinical Psychology in 1997 from Saint Louis University. He completed his internship at Stroger Hospital (formerly Cook County Hospital) in Chicago, Illinois serving underserved individuals within the community. Following internship, he joined a private practice in downtown Chicago completing postdoctoral hours and receiving licensure in 1998. Dr. Niolon continued to work in private practice, offered family assessments for the Department of Child and Family Services, and served as a consultant at a social service agency on the south side of Chicago. Dr. Niolon began teaching with The Chicago School of Professional Psychology in the Fall of 1999 as a part-time adjunct instructor for four years. He joined as full-time faculty in 2003 and became the Associate Department Chair in 2007, returning to teaching in 2010. In Fall 2016, Dr. Niolon moved to New Orleans to teach full-time at the Chicago School program at Xavier University of Louisiana. Dr. Niolon has a professional passion for couples work with regard to clinical areas including issues associated with cohabitation, divorce, remarriage, and domestic partnership rights. Dr. Niolon is Co-chair of the professional affairs committee since 2019.
Kim VanGeffen, Ph.D.
Chair, Professional Affairs
Dr. VanGeffen is a clinical psychologist and clinical neuropsychologist in private practice in the Lakeview area of New Orleans. She received her license to practice psychology in Louisiana in 1984. Dr. VanGeffen received her doctorate in clinical psychology at Louisiana State University in 1982. She completed her internship at the University of Maryland School of Medicine. In 2000, Dr. VanGeffen served as president of the Louisiana Psychological Association. She is also currently serves as the Chair of the Professional Affairs Committee. Dr. VanGeffen received the Distinguished Psychologist Award from the Louisiana Psychological Association on June 13, 2015. She also received the Award for Distinguished Service from the Louisiana Psychological Association on May 18, 2018.
Nathan H. Brown, Psy.D.
Dr. Brown is a licensed clinical psychologist. Dr. Brown is an Assistant Professor of Clinical Psychiatry for LSU Health Sciences Center (LSUHSC) and the dedicated Psychologist at the Burn Center at University Medical Center, New Orleans (UMCNO). He earned his doctorate in Clinical Psychology from Roosevelt University and completed internship and postdoctoral fellowship at LSUHSC. He has been licensed in Louisiana since 2020. Dr. Brown provides clinical services in English and Spanish, and specializes in the psychological assessment and treatment of patients in both outpatient and integrated medical settings. Dr. Brown works in the UMCNO Behavioral Health Clinic, in general mental health and the Intensive Outpatient Program, and the UMCNO Burn Center, providing psychological care to inpatient and outpatient burn survivors. His professional interests include health psychology, psychotherapy with Latinx patients, clinical supervision, and multicultural competence in mental health treatment.
Sonia Blauvelt, Ph.D.
Chair, Public Affairs
Dr. Blauvelt (she/they) is a licensed clinical psychologist in private practice in Baton Rouge, LA. She obtained her doctorate in Clinical Psychology from Louisiana State University in 2018. She specializes in treating PTSD, trauma-related disorders, and anxiety disorders in adults. Dr. Blauvelt practices with an anti-oppression and anti-racist orientation and welcomes individuals from historically marginalized and minority populations. In addition to maintaining her practice, she teaches at Louisiana State University, provides workshops related to the provision of culturally affirming services, and provides consultation services for a statewide suicide prevention program. Dr. Blauvelt is chair of the LPA Public Affairs Committee and serves on the board of the Baton Rouge Crisis Intervention Center.
Monica Stevens, Ph.D.
Dr. Stevens is a Clinical Psychologist and Assistant Professor of Psychiatry at Tulane School of Medicine. She specializes in treating disruptive behavior disorders, trauma, and grief. She earned her B.S. in Psychology from the University of Southern Mississippi and her M.S. and Ph.D. in Clinical Child Psychology from the University of Florida. Dr. Stevens is invested in the use of evidence-based practices that consider the importance of relationships, cultural responsivity, and individual and community-based protective factors. Since she joined the Tulane Department of Child Psychiatry in 2010, Dr. Stevens has practiced in various clinics and organizations including those that serve the needs of very young children, school-aged children and adolescents with significant psychiatric and educational concerns, and children involved with the juvenile justice system. She is energized by advocacy efforts that promote equity, diversity, and inclusion for children and families as well as efforts to improve the well-being of Louisiana’s youth through collaboration and innovation.
Gail Gillespie, Ph.D.
Chair, Convention & Continuing Education Committee
Co-Chair, Membership Committee
Dr. Gail Gillespie received her Ph.D. in 1992 from the University of Southern Mississippi with a specialization in school psychology. In private practice in New Orleans since 1996, she specializes primarily in evaluation and treatment of school-aged children, young adults, and families; doing short-term work with adults through New Orleans Musician’s Clinic; and working with individuals with developmental disabilities. She has been a member of the LPA since 1992, having previously served on the executive council as director in 2010-2011, secretary and continuing education chair 2015-2017, and co-chair for both the membership and convention and continuing education committees in 2022-2023. She was president of the Crescent City Area Psychological Society in 2019 and is currently the secretary. She is the regional director for the Association for Comprehensive Energy Psychology. She specializes in Emotional Freedom Technique and is currently completing coursework to become a psychedelic-assisted therapist. Dr. Gillespie continues to enjoy being a part of positive momentum in various professional psychology organizations.
Koren Boggs, Ph.D.
Koren Boggs is a Psychologist at The Autism Center at Children’s Hospital New Orleans. She earned her PhD in Clinical Psychology at the University of Mississippi and completed her internship and postdoctoral fellowship at The Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine and Kennedy Krieger Institute in Baltimore, Maryland. Koren specializes in autism spectrum disorder and developmental disabilities. She develops and provides behavioral intervention services to children with autism spectrum disorder and their families, conducts diagnostic evaluations, consults within departments in the hospital and organizations in the community regarding serving children with autism spectrum disorder, and trains and supervises undergraduate, graduate, and post-graduate trainees. With more than 14 years of experience, she is passionate about helping improve the lives of children and adolescents with autism spectrum disorder and developmental disabilities through collaboration with families, other providers, and community members and organizations. Koren completed a five-year term on the LSBEP, serving as Chair in 2019-2020. She has worked on a variety of multidisciplinary and multiagency committees and tasks forces on initiatives related to best practices in autism, improving access to care, and regulating and protecting the practice of Psychology. Koren looks forward to serving in the role of Director within LPA, and to collaborating with members of LPA and the Psychology community at large to promote the mission of LPA.
Lucinda DeGrange, Ph.D.
Dr. Lucinda DeGrange is currently in independent practice in New Orleans, LA. She earned a doctorate in School Psychology from Tulane University New Orleans and completed a fellowship in Forensics with an emphasis in the area of Child Custody with Tulane University Medical School Department of Psychiatry in association with Dr. Karen van Beyer. Dr. DeGrange completed an internship in School Psychology with the Louisiana State University – Health Sciences Center. Currently, Dr. DeGrange serves as the Louisiana Representative to APA’s Council of Representatives. Additionally, she is a member of APA’s Advocacy Coordinating Committee and past-president of LPA (2016-2017).