Gratitude for the SCCAP Community, Commitment to the SCCAP Mission

President's Message

Michael Southam-Gerow, Ph.D. SCCAP President

Hello, amazing SCCAP members. Thank you for reading InBalance and for being part of APA’s Division 53. The last quarter of the calendar year means the beginning of the changing of the guard for SCCAP presidents. With great humility, I thank the members of SCCAP for entrusting the leadership of the board to me for this year. You made an excellent choice in Anna Lau as my successor, and I look forward to working with her closely next year. I want to start my last column as president by sharing how deeply grateful I am to have served as the organization’s president over the past year. SCCAP has been pivotal in my career, beginning when I was a graduate student in the early 1990s. I am honored to have had the opportunity to serve the organization. 

SCCAP’s Advisory Board 

I am particularly thankful for the opportunity to work with our extraordinarily committed, impressively gifted, and exceptionally collaborative SCCAP board members and our talented director of operations. Please indulge me in taking a few words to thank them for their work this past year. Serving on the SCCAP board is a volunteer effort for each member. All of them have one (or more) demanding positions as well as busy lives outside of work. The pandemic has only magnified the challenges that they face in balancing these various demands. Despite these pressures, the members of the SCCAP board remained steadfastly dedicated to the work we had this past year. And as was shared at the membership meeting on Sept. 10, 2021 (video available soon), they were remarkably productive for the organization. Your SCCAP board is an amazing group and I have been so lucky to work with them. 

Let me share some of the great formative work that your board has been doing over the past year. A major focus for the past two years has been an inward look, including a careful revision of our vision and mission. As well, we have built a roadmap for our future initiatives. SCCAP is in the fortunate position of having talented and dedicated board members who bring many complementary skills to the table. We have determined in recent years to work smarter, not harder. In doing so, we aim to keep our focus on the mission, thereby avoiding the temptation to do a little of everything and instead focusing on doing a few things with quality. Big thanks to recent presidents Steve Lee and Steve Hinshaw who invested effort in moving in this direction. Our current work represents continuing fruition of their leadership. 

Clarifying SCCAP’s Statements 

One major focus has been a revisiting and clarifying of our mission and vision statements. And I am pleased to report that that work is completed!

SCCAP Vision Statement: 

To improve the mental health and resilient development of children, adolescents, and families with full commitment to promoting diversity, equity, and inclusion.

Proposed (a member vote is coming soon) SCCAP mission: 

SCCAP enhances the science and practice of clinical child and adolescent psychology by supporting its membership, and the field’s workforce, in the domains of (a) research; (b) evidence-based practice; (c) training and career development; (d) diversity, equity, and inclusion; and (e) dissemination

Given these two statements, the board committed this year to develop a roadmap for 2022 and 2023, identifying those projects and initiatives that will be the focus for the organizations (and by omission, those that will not be the focus). We used a mantra to guide our choices: “We are a membership organization.” Accordingly, our roadmap initiatives are ones that will bring value to you, our members. 

Although incoming President Anna Lau will finalize the roadmap in the midwinter meeting in late Jan. 2022, I can share a sneak peek. We have several core activities that will continue, including our generous (and growing) annual awards, our impressive stable of publications (JCCAP, EPCAMH, and this newsletter), our robust listservs, and a commitment to high-quality APA convention programming. In addition, our focus initiatives for 2022 will likely include: (a) continued funding of projects through our Child Mental Health in Action program; (b) a robust set of webinars available to members; (c) advocacy related to training standards and/or specialty recognition; (d) a new Clinical Practice Institute; and (e) continued investment in the Leadership Education to Advance Diversity (LEAD) institute and the Future Directions forum, excellent professional development opportunities for our members. I hope that gives you a taste of what to expect in 2022 from SCCAP.

In closing, I again thank SCCAP members and the SCCAP board for a great year. I am so proud of what we have accomplished together. And I look forward to the great year planned for our members in 2022.