Presidential Update July 2022

headshot of Dr. Nicole KeedyThe Iowa Psychological Association has been working hard to serve its members, the field of psychology, and Iowans who benefit from our services. As we pass the midpoint of another productive year, this update serves to highlight a number of recent efforts that have successfully targeted IPA’s Strategic Plan Themes:

  1. Education and Training
  2. Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion
  3. Building Connections and Community
  4. Advocacy
  5. Financial Stability

You are encouraged to read the full Strategic Plan, which is available on our website:

Education and Training 

The Public Education Committee, under leadership of co-chairs Dr. Valerie Keffala and Dr. Warren Phillips, recently worked with the IPA Training Director, Dr. Matt Cooper, to compile a list of resources they distributed to IPA members regarding providing psychological services to Ukrainian refugees. Dr. Phillips has also been collaborating with IPA member Dr. Alice Fridman Glass to improve access to psychological resources for Ukrainian refugees and immigrants. The Disaster Response Committee, under leadership of Dr. Ashley Freeman, has provided information regarding disaster response trainings and resources to IPA members via the member Elist.

The Program Planning Committee, under leadership of co-chairs Dr. Valerie Keffala, Dr. Nicole Holmberg, and myself, has been working hard to arrange an exciting array of upcoming training events in collaboration with various committees and IPA members. This committee has compiled a list of suggested training topics provided after training events and a survey administered by Dr. Kevin Krumvieda to ensure upcoming programming will target member interests. The current lineup includes the following events, for which you may register at

  • Reawakening PTSD and the COVID-19 Pandemic: Treatment Perspectives (1.5 Hours) ONLINE VIA Zoom on July 27, 12pm - 1:30pm
  • Don’t Let the “TR” Fool You: The DSM-5-TR is Far More Than a Text Revision (2 Hours) ONLINE VIA Zoom on Friday, August 26, 1 - 3pm
  • What Psychologists Should Know about Disability as Diversity (3 Hours) ONLINE VIA Zoom on September 9, 9am - 12pm
  • Iowa's Legislative Process (1.5 Hours and free for all IPA members!) ONLINE VIA Zoom on Tuesday, September 13, 2022 12:00 pm - 1:30 pm
  • Ethical Considerations for Psychologists Working with People with Disabilities (3 ETHICS CE Hours), ONLINE VIA Zoom on September 16, 2022, 1 - 4pm
  • IPA Fall Conference: CFT in Practice: An Introduction to Compassion-Focused Therapy (6 Hours) in West Des Moines on October 7, 2022, 8:15am - 4:30pm

Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion

The Diversity and Social Justice Committee, chaired by Dr. Nicole Holmberg, has collaborated with multiple committees, including the Strategic Planning Committee, to ensure consistent attention to Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion (DEI) across all activities and Strategic Plan Themes of the association. These efforts are reflected in the content provided under each of the themes. The committee now has a liaison, student member Angelica Castro Bueno, who participates actively in Membership Committee activities and they are considering additional committees on which DSJ liaisons may serve.

Building Connections and Community

The Program Planning Committee and Membership Committee are collaborating to prepare a social event with an integrated student poster session for the 2023 Spring Conference. The Disaster Response Committee has been working to build connections with the Red Cross, other state psychological associations, and disaster response organizations in Iowa to assist in offering ways for IPA members to become involved in disaster response efforts.

The Diversity and Social Justice Committee has continued to foster an inclusive and welcoming environment in IPA with discussions to promote reflection related to equity, diversity, and inclusion; Diversity Spotlights regarding various cultural, national, and religious holidays and observances; and solicitation of member Diversity Profiles. They recently guided discussions regarding the film “13th” and the book Minor Feelings: An Asian American Reckoning by Cathy Park.

Under leadership of Dr. Maggie Doyle, the Early Career Psychologist (ECP) Committee hosted a panel for students to learn about the internship and postdoc process, which the committee hopes to offer annually. They also hosted an ECP social in Ankeny. The Membership Committee, under leadership of co-chairs Dr. Alissa Doobay and myself, hosted an all-member social at the Spring Conference in which they welcomed members to bring nonmembers who may be interested in joining IPA. This event was well attended and highly enjoyable, with images (kindly provided by IPA member Sam Battaglieri) available for view on the IPA closed Facebook group.

The Psychopharmacology Committee, chaired by Dr. Bethe Lonning, announced and congratulated Iowa’s fourth conditional prescribing psychologist and IPA member, Dr. Scott Young. This committee continues to support IPA members in their pursuit of prescription privileges through advocacy, education, and support.

The Website, E-communications, and Blog (WEB) Committee, co-chaired by Executive Director Suzanne Hull and Dr. Katie Kopp, maintains optimal functioning of the IPA website. They have made efforts to improve website accessibility to comply with the Americans with Disabilities Act. Additionally, they recently made the IPA Blog publicly available to increase ease of access and to allow nonmembers to learn about benefits and activities of the association.


As the IPA Representative to APA’s Council of Representatives, Dr. Sally Oakes Edman prepared comments that were approved by EC vote to be submitted on behalf of IPA to the APA Committee on Accreditation (CoA). The comments requested that the CoA utilize titles that clearly distinguish doctoral and master’s level health service providers. Additionally, IPA requested that accreditation site visitors continue to be trained at the doctoral level.

Our Director of Professional Affairs, Dr. Bethe Lonning, has consistently responded to requests from IPA members regarding practice, insurance, and credentialing concerns. Examples of recent DPA efforts include helping an IPA member resume participation on an insurance panel following an unexpected change in their provider panel, helping prescribing psychologists receive credentialing and reimbursement from an insurance company, and helping an IPA member resolve an attempted recoupment of payments from over two years ago. Notably, a law was subsequently passed that prohibits recoupment from Medicaid for payments for claims from over two years prior.

The Diversity and Social Justice Committee provided information to IPA members regarding the effects of legislative/legal decisions on psychological well-being, specifically regarding Iowa HF 2416, the ban on transgender girls and women playing in sports, and the recent Supreme Court of the United States decision to overturn Roe v Wade.

Our State Advocacy Coordinator, Dr. Paul Ascheman, collaborated with the Advocacy Team and provided testimony to Iowa House and Senate subcommittees regarding SF2015, which addressed appropriate cognitive screenings for occupational therapists to utilize, as well as HF2042 and SSB3054 regarding psychological test disclosures. Dr. Ascheman also strategized with other IPA Advocacy Team members to present testimony before subcommittees regarding HSB517 addressing the inclusion of neuropsychologists as concussion professionals; HF2017 addressing provisional psychologist licensing; and HF2137 and SSB3003 addressing inclusion of psychologists in prescribing mental health provider loan repayment.

Our Federal Advocacy Coordinator, Dr. JoAnna Romero Cartaya, sent a message to the Elist requesting members to attend the APA Federal Quarterly Summit on Sunday July 24th and Monday July 25th) with the topic: Addressing the Impact of Climate Change and Health Equity. She routinely sends APA advocacy communications and action alerts to the Elist.

Financial Stability

The association has developed a strong financial foundation under the guidance of our Treasurers and the Finance Committee over the past several years. Due to this stability, the Finance Committee, under leadership of the IPA Treasurer Dr. Sarah Fetter, was able to consider requests for additional budget items for IPA committees. They created a proposal that Executive Council approved in June, which will provide signage and supplies to the State Advocacy Coordinator for advocacy events, support costs of becoming prescribing psychologists for up to three IPA members, continue sponsoring the first year of membership for students, and repay the IPA investment account.

The Membership Committee has continued to exceed budget expectations for membership income with recruitment meetings, letters, and emails; renewal outreach; enhancement of member benefits; and strong student sponsorship and mentorship programs. Membership numbers continue to grow and maintain IPA as a high performer in percentage of state-residing psychologists who are members of their state association.

The above efforts truly represent only a snapshot of the activities of IPA. This association relies on each member’s contributions of time, energy, engagement, and financial resources. A great thank you to our association’s leaders as well as each individual member as we work to fulfill the themes of the IPA Strategic Plan. We function astoundingly well as an aggregate of 279 amazing psychologists, students, and psychology associates and I am looking forward to our continued efforts, growth, and collective accomplishments.


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