Message from the President:
June 13, 2023
As my year as President of LPA draws to a close, I want to share a few thoughts. First, it has been a great honor to serve as President of the only organization that serves all psychologists in Louisiana-and especially during our 75th anniversary! The position has given me the opportunity to see the “big picture” of the involvement, skills, knowledge, commitment, and dedication so many of you give to LPA. Getting to know psychologists around Louisiana is my favorite part of being a member of LPA. We have much to be proud of!
This year has flown by. During fall 2022, we focused on a vigorous membership drive, and many of us took advantage of the Fall Workshop, held in Baton Rouge at the Lake House. John Simoneaux and William “Chuck” Credo, III gave excellent presentations on ethics, law, mental health, and related issues. Throughout the year, LPA, in conjunction with APA, offered three continuing education webinars, well-received by attendees. Additionally, LPA offered member-oriented discussions on serving in LPA and LSBEP, and readiness for the legislative session. Newsletters, blogs, listserv announcements, and website updates kept members informed of public and professional activities and opportunities relevant to psychologists. The year ended strong—the legislative committee fought hard to preserve psychologists’ legal and ethical responsibilities, and advocated for evidence-based, gender-affirming health care for transgendered children. The courage, preparation, knowledge, and commitment our team showed in the face of very challenging circumstances was impressive. And finally, we had a fantastic Spring Convention in New Orleans. We believe attendance was the highest in quite some time, and feedback regarding speakers, presentations, venue-and even food-has been quite positive. We celebrated with a champagne toast to LPA’s 75th anniversary.
History shows LPA serves important functions for Louisiana psychologists. Successes are the result of all who contribute-and care. I want to thank every member of the Executive Council (EC)—what pleasure to serve with you. Every committee has been active and effective-thank you! To members who contributed time and effort to make our 75th anniversary year very special-thank you! We say good-bye to Chris Parkinson, who has served so ably as President and Communications Chair, and to Stephanie Grant, a valued member of the EC-thank you for your service to LPA. We welcome Gail Gillespie and Monica Stephens as new members of the EC, Amy Henke as President-Elect, and Jesse Lambert as President. One of my goals was a commitment to excellence-and it has been an excellent year for LPA. There’s plenty more to do, of course, and I hope you will be a part of the shaping of LPA’s priorities and endeavors as we move into the future. Thank you.
March 15, 2023
2023 is here and it is an important year for us: 2023 is LPA’s 75th Anniversary! The traditional
symbol for a 75th anniversary is the diamond, signifying endurance and strength, and LPA
exemplifies both. LPA was founded in 1948 by members of the Psychology Departments of the
Louisiana Teacher’s Association (LTA) and the Louisiana College Conference (LCC), with the
aim of advancing psychology as a science, as a profession, and as a means of promoting
human welfare (sound familiar?). It was not until 1964 that psychology was recognized,
legislatively, as an independent profession and received licensing status, and not until the 1980s
that the mandate requiring psychologists receive consultation from medical physicians was
removed. Over the past 75 years, there have been significant accomplishments, but we’ve also
experienced times of internal division and external threats. I invite you to check out the brief
history of our organization, found under “About Us” section of this website, to learn more!
As psychologists, we know that to move forward, it is often necessary to acknowledge, honor,
and incorporate the experiences of the past. I believe this is what we need to do as an
organization. Let’s use this year to better understand where we have come from and use that
knowledge to inform and guide us in the present and as we move into the future.
Over the coming year, we will be celebrating LPA’s 75th anniversary with a variety of activities
and opportunities to share our past and current histories together. We want your ideas about how
to acknowledge accomplishments, leaders, key events, and other markers of the growth and
development of LPA. If you have information about our history you’d like to share, please reach
out to me and/or members of the Executive Council. Together, we will remain a strong and
dynamic organization for psychology.
“I have great respect for the past. If you don’t know where you’ve come from, you don’t know
where you’re going. I have respect for the past, but I’m a person of the moment. I’m here, and I
do my best to be completely centered at the place I’m at, then I go forward to the next place.”
July 1, 2022
Dear Members of LPA
As a long-time member of LPA, sometimes a “paying only” member and other times involved as a member (and Chair) of the Conference/Continuing Education committee and as a member of the Executive Council, I have witnessed our organization change, expand, contract, regroup, and grow in supporting our mission and membership. I have always been impressed by the commitment and care so many members dedicate to LPA. It is an honor to serve as President of LPA for the 2022-2023 term.
Given the challenging social problems affecting all of us, our clients, and our communities, there is no better time for LPA to be a strong and vibrant organization. As a member-driven organization, we need members who want to participate and help shape our organization’s important priorities and endeavors. In the coming year, we will continue to emphasize growing and diversifying LPA’s membership so that it truly represents the professional roles and specialties, career status, regions of the state, and demographics-and contributions -of Louisiana psychologists.
Effective communication is essential to generate member engagement. Whether through the updated website, a respectful and active listserv, continuing professional development offerings and updates of LPA activities, or direct contact, it is important that members have ready support, resources, and information. I will collaborate with the Executive Council to ensure accessibility, openness, and responsiveness to LPA members.
Professional excellence, a hallmark of our field, includes using evidence and science to inform decisions and actions. There is not always agreement on what is excellent, and excellence is not always achieved, but I believe we all share a commitment to excellence. LPA has benefitted from thoughtful, informed, and responsive leaders. I will do my best to continue that tradition and to support LPA’s ongoing development as an excellent professional organization.
Paula Zeanah, Ph.D.