2007 Annual Reports for Boards and Committees
Committee on Structure and Function of Council

Members

Janet C. Helms, PhD, Chair; Joseph F. Aponte, PhD, Armand Cerbone, PhD, Linda M. Forrest, PhD, Michael J. Murphy, PhD, Corann Okorodudu, EdD

In 2007 CSFC was comprised of two white/Caucasian males, one of whom is openly gay, one Hispanic/Latino male, one white/Caucasian female, two African American females.

Meeting Dates

CSFC met on March 23 & 24 and November 2 & 3, 2007.

Election of Chair for CSFC for 2008

CSFC voted to elect Joseph F. Aponte, PhD, as the 2008 chair of CSFC.  Dr. Aponte’s term begins on January 1, 2008, and ends on December 31, 2008.

Orientation Session for New Council Members

At its March meeting, CSFC discussed the results of the survey on the 2007 New Council Member Orientation and reviewed the 2007 schedule for the New Council Member Orientation sessions.  CSFC decided to make no changes to the schedule for 2008 but did suggest that the 2008 CSFC Chair consider adding diversity issues to the portion of Session 1 led by CSFC.   

At its November meeting, CSFC developed a major purpose and overarching goals for the New Council Member Orientation sessions as follows and decided to continue its work over email:

Major Purpose

To provide information and activities to enhance the effectiveness of new Council members within the context of APA’s mission.

Overarching Goals (and objectives for each goal)           

  • Understanding the structure and function of Council within APA

    • Process and procedures of Council

    • Organizational charts

    • How things happen formally and informally

    • Communication of fiduciary responsibility

    • Understanding Council as political process

    • Providing opportunities for networking

  • Building acquaintances

    • Story telling – including why networking has been beneficial

    • Negotiating in hallway

    • Building alliances

    • Multiple identities

    • Recognizing political process

  • Understanding the importance of role as Council members representing their constituencies and issues to APA as a whole

(CSFC did not have time to complete objectives for the 3rd overarching goal.)

Subsequent to CSFC’s meeting, the following topics were approved for the 2008 New Council Member Orientation sessions:

Session 1 (Thursday, February 21, 2 to 4:30 p.m.)  – Overview and Introductions, Structure and Functioning of Council, Association Overview, Legal Responsibility of Council Members and Parliamentary Procedures.

Session 2 – (Friday, February 22, 5 to 6 p.m.) – Panel Presentation: A Case Study of Motion to Seat the National Ethnic Minority Psychological Associations on Council

Mentoring Program for New Council Members

CSFC discussed the mentoring program for new Council members.  CSFC voted to approve a checklist for off-going members of Council that provides tips on orienting their successors on Council.

Council Representation for Four Ethnic Minority Associations

CSFC voted to recommend that Council approve amending the APA Bylaws as follows to provide a voting seat on Council for four National Ethnic Minority Associations (bracketed material to be deleted; underlined material to be added):

Article V. Composition of the Council of Representatives

1. Council shall be composed of Representatives of Divisions, Representatives of State and Provincial Psychological Associations, members of the Board of Directors, the Officers of the Association (the chief staff officer shall serve without vote), [and] the APAGS Representative and one Representative from each National Ethnic Minority Psychological Association (the Asian American Psychological Association, the Association of Black Psychologists, the National Latina/o Psychological Association, and the Society of Indian Psychologists).

5. Council Representatives of a Division [or], a State/Provincial Association, or the Asian American Psychological Association, the Association of Black Psychologists, the National Latina/o Psychological Association, and the Society of Indian Psychologists shall be members of [the Division or State/Provincial Association] their respective constituencies and Members of the Association, and shall be elected for a period not to exceed three years. If during that three-year period the Division or State/Provincial Association is allocated fewer seats, the Division or State/Provincial Association shall recall the appropriate number of Representatives. The term of office of the recalled member is thereby terminated.

6. Each APA Fellow, Member, and voting Associate member shall choose the Division(s) or State/Provincial Association(s) through which he/she elected to have his/her interest represented on Council by allocating, at the time of the annual dues statement, a total of ten (10) votes to the Division(s) and/or State/Provincial Association(s) through which he/she wishes to be represented the following year. However, only Fellows, Members (or voting Associate members) of the Divisions or State/Provincial Associations so designated will be allowed to nominate and elect their Council Representatives. The Representatives of each of the National Ethnic Minority Psychological Associations shall be designated by their respective Association.

8. A Council member who has served for six consecutive years shall not be eligible for election or appointment for a period of one year as a Representative from any Division, State/Provincial Association, National Ethnic Minority Psychological Association, or coalition.

Article XVI. National Ethnic Minority Psychological Associations

1.As provided in Article V.1, the Asian American Psychological Association, Association of Black Psychologists, National Latina/o Psychological Association, and the Society of Indian Psychologists shall each have one voting representative serving on the Council of Representatives of the American Psychological Association.   

2. Each of these National Ethnic Minority Psychological Associations shall exercise such control over its members so that membership in such Association shall not imply membership in the American Psychological Association.

3. The American Psychological Association shall not be responsible for the acts or omissions of these National Ethnic Minority Psychological Associations, except as specifically authorized by these Bylaws or other duly promulgated rule of Council.

The following explanatory note will be sent out with the Bylaws vote to explain to the APA membership that three of the four organizations will accept Council seats immediately: “The Association of Black Psychologists (ABPsi) has advised us at this time they will not send a representative to APA Council. Nonetheless, it is being included in the new Article XVI so that if and when ABPsi decides to send a representative they will be able to do so.”

CSFC was informed that Association Rule changes will also be required and that the relevant changes would be forwarded to the Board at its June 2007 meeting.  CSFC also recommended that, if the Bylaw amendment is approved, the representatives from the National Ethnic Minority Psychological Associations be fully reimbursed for their attendance at the Council meetings.

Caucuses of Council

At its March meeting, CSFC continued its discussion regarding caucuses of Council as well as the relationship of caucuses to APA and the need to establish a structure for caucuses which will be able to address concerns raised by the caucuses.  While recognizing the usefulness of caucuses and the necessity to preserve that usefulness and minimize negatives, CSFC also recognized the need to address concerns such as proliferation/overlap; expense/dues; not enough time scheduled; continuing negative feedback from off-going Council members and endorsement process.

CSFC agreed that this structure should not come from CSFC but rather through a collaborative process with the caucuses.  It sees the need to balance individual caucuses goals with guiding/overarching principles to insure that concerns raised are addressed to everyone’s satisfaction. 

CSFC approved appointing a Caucus Council Workgroup (CCWG) to study the relationship between caucuses and Council to develop procedures for addressing content, structure and organization.

CSFC held a conference call with the caucus chairs and proposed a two year collaborative effort.   All participants on the call agreed that its caucus would appoint a member to the CCWG.  CSFC members will speak to chairs of caucuses who were not represented on the call and ask if they will agree to participate.  Each caucus will be asked to appoint someone in their first for second year on Council so that they can serve a two-year term to preserve the continuity necessary to address the concerns in the most effective way possible.  It is planned that CSFC and CCWG will hold a conference call prior to the 2007 August convention and hold monthly calls thereafter.  Additionally the CCWG will meet in August 2007 and again in February 2008.

At its November meeting, CSFC discussed a draft summary of contributions and concerns related to caucuses and draft suggestions for the reorganization of caucuses that were developed by Dr. Aponte as follow-up to the conference calls of the Caucus Council Work Group (CCWG) that took place in October 2007.  (At its March 2007 meeting, CSFC approved appointing a Caucus Council Work Group to study the relationship between caucuses and Council and to develop procedures for addressing content, structure and organization.)  CSFC suggested some edits to the documents, including the addition of a Collaborative Caucus Model to the alternate models proposed for reorganizing caucuses.  CSFC approved forwarding the documents as amended (attached) to CCWG.  The Work Group will be asked to forward the documents to their caucus members with a request for feedback.  CSFC agreed that the issue of caucus endorsements should be considered as a separate issue and Dr. Aponte will recommend this to the CCWG.  CSFC will meet with members of CCWG at the February 2008 Council meeting to discuss feedback from the caucuses and determine next steps.

Representation on the Board of Directors/Allocation of Resources Across Four Directorates

CSFC discussed the item “Representation on the Board of Directors/Allocation of Resources.”  CSFC noted that the perception that the Science constituency isn’t represented on the Board at a level equal to the Practice, Education and Public Interest constituencies is an important issue that CSFC has struggled with but has not been able to resolve.  CSFC also noted that the data provided on the budget is not sufficient to make any conclusions regarding allocation of funds across directorates.

Dealing with Proposed Wording Changes During Council Debate (NBI 32A)

CSFC voted to recommend that Council approve the following substitute main motion to Council New Business Item 32A:

Be it resolved that an item will not be amended by Council unless the originator(s) is/are present, or a Council member or other designated representative is present who (which) the originator empowers to negotiate proposed changes in the wording.

The item will be forwarded to the Committee for the Advancement of Professional Practice, Board of Educational Affairs, Board of Professional Affairs, Board of Scientific Affairs, Board the Advancement of Psychology in the Public Interest and the Policy and Planning Board for consideration at their fall 2007 meetings.  It is anticipated that the item will be placed on the Board of Directors December 2007 agenda and Council’s February 2008 agenda.

Amendment to APA Priorities (NBI 32F)

The main motion of Council New Business Item 32F states, “that it is recommended that an 11th priority be added to the list of APA priorities to be addressed when proposing resolutions.  This priority would be: Promote and support the advancement of psychology as a scientific discipline.”

CSFC did not recommend approval of the main motion of the item.  CSFC asked staff to contact the movers of the new business item to advise them that the CEO is currently working with a Strategic Planning Committee to discuss the strategic planning process for the Association and that the new strategic planning process will replace the priority setting process that has been used thus far. 

CSFC asked that the mover be informed that CSFC doesn't think it is appropriate to add new priorities to the list at this time since a whole new process is underway and there will be a whole new list of priorities/major goals brought forward for Council's consideration in the near future.  The mover should also be made aware that CSFC had concerns about adding priorities piecemeal even with the current process.

Note: The movers were contacted by staff but were not willing to withdraw the item so it was forwarded to the Board of Educational Affairs and Board of Scientific Affairs (designated referral groups) for consideration at their fall 2007 meetings.

Task Force on Council Representation

At its March meeting, CSFC met with the Policy and Planning Board to discuss concerns among state association leaders that the size of the state/province/territory pool of seats has been reduced by one seat for the second year in a row.  CSFC voted to recommend that the Board of Directors approve the following motion:

That the Board of Directors approves the formation of a Wildcard III Task Force with a specific charge of studying the current apportionment system to determine if changes are needed and suggesting changes if needed to ensure equitable representation of all constituencies, while taking into consideration representation in the interests of the whole association.

P&P and the Committee on Division/APA Relations also recommended that the Board approve the above motion.

At its November meeting, CSFC requested that since CSFC, the Committee on Division/APA Relations (CODAPAR) and the Policy and Planning Board (P&P) recommended that the Task Force on Council Representation be established, that the result of the Task Force discussions come back to CSFC, CODAPAR and P&P for review and comment. 

Breakout Groups at Council Meetings

CSFC recommended that Council approve the following motion regarding breakout groups at the February meetings of Council:

Council requests that breakout groups be scheduled at each February meeting of Council for the purpose of providing an ongoing mechanism for Council to analyze and discuss priorities.

CSFC also emphasized the importance of diversity training for Council members and noted that at no time should the breakout groups be held in place of diversity training.

Diversity

Diversity Implementation Plan

CSFC reviewed the Diversity Implementation Plan of the CEO and believed that more work is necessary before sending it to Council.  CSFC suggested that overarching guidelines and principles be articulated in the plan and that a model template and a structure for accountability be incorporated in the plan.  CSFC recommended that a diversity implementation officer be hired to coordinate all diversity efforts within the association.  CSFC also suggested that a component of the strategic planning process for the Association focus on diversity.  CSFC shared its suggestions with Dr. Anderson when he met with CSFC to discuss the Diversity Implementation Plan.

CSFC Report on Multicultural/Diversity Capabilities

CSFC discussed the CSFC Report on Multicultural/Diversity Capabilities and expressed interest in the plan of the Board of Directors for future training for Council and board and committee members.  CSFC decided it will continue to focus on diversity issues for the Council of Representatives.

Review of CSFC Multicultural/Diversity Plan and Activities

CSFC requested that as placeholder item be included in each future CSFC agenda for discussion of any issues regarding diversity that members would like to discuss and also to inform CSFC of any future plans for diversity training.  CSFC will also encourage its members to discuss diversity issues as they arise during the meeting.

Diversity Check-In

At its November meeting, CSFC discussed plans for the diversity training on sexual orientation and gender identity to take place at the February 2008 Council meeting and March 2008 Consolidated Meetings.  CSFC members also discussed personal experiences related to diversity.  CSFC decided that an item will be placed on each CSFC agenda titled “Diversity Check-In” and that each meeting should start and end with a discussion on diversity.  The initial discussion will be for members to get to know each other and share experiences and the discussion at the close of the meeting will be used to talk about how the meeting went with relation to diversity.  Members will also be encouraged to speak up throughout the meeting if any diversity-related issues arise.   

CSFC also discussed the new reimbursement policy for Council members that became effective in January 2006 which may decrease the incentive for divisions and state/provincial/territorial associations to include ethnic minorities on their election slates for Council. The new policy provides full reimbursement for all members of Council for the February Council meeting and the cost of two night’s stay at the August meeting of Council.  In an effort to provide some incentive for divisions and state/provincial/territorial associations to nominate and elect ethnic minority members to Council, ethnic minority members receive full reimbursement for their attendance at the August Council meeting.  At its November 2008 meeting, CSFC will look at the number of ethnic minorities elected to Council for terms starting in 2006-2009 to determine if the new policy has had an effect on the number of ethnic minorities elected to Council. 

Mission of CSFC

At its March meeting, CSFC discussed the mission statement of CSFC and the possibility of sun-setting the committee.  CSFC decided to continue its discussion at its November 2007 meeting. CSFC asked that minutes from several previous CSFC meetings be provided at the November meeting.

At its November meeting, CSFC discussed its mission, including consideration of recommending to Council that CSFC be sunset.  CSFC will continue the discussion at its March 2008 meeting.  If CSFC determines that the committee should continue, CSFC will conduct a review of and consider changes to CSFC’s mission statement.  CSFC will also conduct a five-year review of the structure and function of Council as mandated in the Association Rules.