Fall 2020 AK-PA Newsletter

Fall 2020 AK-PA Newsletter


Please enjoy this Newsletter brought to you by the Alaska Psychological Association

To date 2020 has been a year of many twists and turns, ups and downs! While the AK-PA Board has not been immured we have forged ahead and have been working behind the scenes to continue to fulfilled our mission and vision.

“Mission: To promote the advancement, communication and application of psychological science and knowledge to benefit society and improve lives.

“Vision: A strong, diverse, and unified psychology that enhances knowledge and improves the human condition.”

Here are a few of the things we have been behind the scenes working on:

  • We are thrilled to welcome our new Executive Director, Marvo Reguindin and his team. Please see the formal introduction by clicking here
  • We welcome our newly elected Board members:
    – Bernice Nisbett MS – Secretary
    – Hannah Ekstrom, PsyD – Returning Member at Large – Ethics Chair
    – Seth Green, PhD – Member at Large
  • We had a successful training, presented by our own Pamela Hays, Ph.D.
  • We welcomed the CEO of the American Psychological Association for two days of learning about Alaska. See the story at this link.

In closing, we welcome you to join in our endeavor to contribute in a positive manner to the psychological health and welfare of the people in our state. If you have ideas, share them with us, join in one of our committees, identify an area we are missing-help us develop. Please come to the table and join in our committee to serve our community. As a volunteer board we have been busy and yet there’s is so many more opportunities. Accept this as a personal invitation to join us!

Thank Yous!

Jana Zeedyk, PhD – Thank you for your service as the Past President

Kara Stocker, PhD – Thank you for your service as Member at Large

Michael Reed, PsyD – Thank you for your service as Member at Large

K/J/ Worbey, MS, LPA – Thank you for your service as Secretary

Suzanne W. Strisik, PhD – Thank you for your services as the Ethics Chair

Chris Reynolds – Special thank you for keeping a pulse on community issues.

Committee Updates

Committee Updates

Fall 2020

AKPA Legislative Committee Report

By Robert Lane, Ph.D.
Legislation/APA Federal Advocacy Committee Representative

The main focus of the committee’s efforts continues to be working on advocating for the Model Licensing Act (MLA).  The MLA effort began as an initiative within the Early Career Psychologist group at APA and AKPA responded to that.  As a quick recap, AKPA organized a series of workshops looking at aspects of our current licensing statutes and then a work group cobbled together the beginnings of a draft with recommended changes.  From there, we received legislative assistance in having our draft translated into the form of an actual bill.  We were not successful in finding a legislative sponsor during the last legislative session and you may recall that session was impacted by the virus in a way that generally made the advancement of any non-critical legislation impossible.  With the start of a new legislative session in January we will be looking for a sponsor or co-sponsors. 

Diversity Committee Report

By Ebony McClain, Ph.D.
Diversity Chair

Meet the Moment Town Hall – August 10, 2020

The Diversity Committee had its first Meet the Moment Town Hall in August. Deputy Chief McCoy from the Anchorage Police Department talked about the efforts that the APD police department have been making to address systemic racism in the police department. He talked about ideas to increase training for officers and APD at all levels. He talked about how the MH community could support these efforts. He welcomed feedback from the Alaska mental health community. 

Katie Baldwin-Johnson from the Alaska Mental Health Trust talked about the efforts to build a crisis continuum of care for Alaska.  She is a Senior Program Officer at the Trust, working on developing this model of care in Alaska. She encouraged community members to talk with representatives and local officials about their thoughts on the crisis continuum of care.  She encouraged us to contact leaders in our districts and welcomed participation and encouraged feedback about policy and advocacy efforts.  She can be reached at 907-269-1049.

Local representatives can be found here.

Learn more about the efforts to design a crisis continuum

Meet the Moment Town Hall October 27, 2020

A followup Meet the Moment Town Hall panel discussion with panelists from around the state will addressing inequality and injustice and how they are fighting for equality where they live and work.  The Town Hall titled: Anti-isms and Advocacy: What are you doing to fight inequality and injustice where you live and work? featured panelists:

E.J.R. David, Ph.D. –  Professor of Psychology, UAA
Pamela Hays, Ph.D. – Private Practice, Author
Ebony McClain, Ph.D. – Private Practice
Issa Spatrisano, M.Ed. – Program Director and State Refugee Coordinator at Catholic Social Service’s Refugee Assistance and Immigration Services (RAIS)
Denise Dillard, Ph.D.

Dr E. J. R. David
Monique Andrews, M.S., event moderator
Dr Pam Hays
Dr Ebony McClain
Issa Spatrisano, MS
Dr Denise Dillard

AK-PA hosts Dr. Arthur Evans, CEO American Psychological Assoc.

AK-PA hosts Dr. Arthur Evans, CEO American Psychological Assoc.

AK-PA virtually hosted APA CEO Dr. Arthur Evans on September 25th and 26th to learn about Alaska and the mental health challenges that a rural state faces.

Friday morning, he met with UUA and APU faculty to learn about their psychology programs, issues they are facing, and goals they have. He learned that both universities have a high number of students of color in their programs and that APU is on its way to become a tribal university with a high number of indigenous students. Later that afternoon he met with members of AK-PA’s student circle followed by a social hour at the end of the day – 10 PM his time!

On Saturday, Dr. Evans met with Deputy Chief Ken McCoy of the Anchorage Police Department which laid the foundation for future collaboration with AK-PA helping to provide resources the police will need on mental health, both in training as well as with public interactions.

Saturday afternoon, Dr. Evans held a town hall discussion on Population Health and shared his vision of a direction APA will be moving to where psychology can play a role when it comes to the planning of public policy in urban as well as rural areas. After his town hall met with the AK-PA board to provide insight on how the association can grow and become the go to resource for mental health in the state.

AK-PA Board Retreat

AK-PA 2020 Board Retreat

The AK-PA board met on Saturday Aug 22 to welcome the new board members and new Executive Director, Marvo Reguindin. The 4 hour meeting started with intros about how long they have been involved with AK-PA and a fun ice breaker where those attending divulged their favorite meal the can prepare.

The AK-PA virtual board retreat. Monique Andrews had the right way to attend!
  • Ruddy Taylor – She has been a member since grad student, she has been President Elect for 1 year. She prepares a mean Gumbo, her recipe is from two of her aunts.
  • Robert Lane – Robert has been a long-time board member, his first year was in 1991. Became president in 1996. Went to early days of SLC at APA. Saw FAC got full ride to SLC. Upon hearing Ruddy makes gumbo he mentioned that he loves to eat gumbo! His favorite meal to cook is Brisket and has discovered how sous vide cooking.
  • Sandra Mitchell – Sandra is on her second year on the board. She became treasurer versus easing into the board as member at large. She likes to cook Asian food, mostly Chinese and Thai food.
  • Ebony McClain – Ebony is the Diversity Chair and has been on the board for 2 years. With two kiddos she says she has become quite the cook and also bakes. Her favorite meal to prepare is fried chicken and red beans and rice.
  • Hannah Ekstrom – Hannah started as an APAGS Rep, ECP rep, and now member at large. She is not a domestic cooker and likes to experiment with recipes. She learned how to boiled eggs in Insta-Pot.
  • Monique Andrews – Monique is the current APAGS rep. Attends APU for Counseling Psychology and has been on the board for 1 year. Husband does the cooking and likes to make Chicken Marsala.
  • Seth Green – Seth is the newest to the board and member at large. Has known about the AK-PA for years and has known of a lot of board members. He joined the board by being asked. Smoked salmon is his specialty and uses his Insta-Pot to get by.
  • Jenn Burkhart – Started as student rep in 2014 or 15. She was appointed technology chair three years ago and became CE Coordinator for 2 years. She loves cooking, her Insta-Pot, and Thai and Asian dishes

A discussion on the finances found the 2020 budget is similar to the 2019 budget but with the Covid 19 Pandemic there were not CE workshops in the Spring. The new E.D. will work with the Treasurer and Bookkeeper to work on the 2021 budget in October and November.

Diversity, Legislative, and Grad Student committee chairs gave an update on their committee plans.

The board did additional planning for the upcoming Sept 25 and 26 virtual visit with APA’s CEO, Dr Arthur Evans

2021 Planning

1 large CE workshop will be planned in the 1st, 2nd, and 4th quarters. No CE events during the summer.

Marvo Reguindin hired as new Executive Director

Marvo Reguindin hired as new Executive Director

Marvo Reguindin, Executive Director

Marvin “Marvo” Reguindin was hired as AK-PA’s new Executive Director in August. He was chosen for his experience and success as the Executive Director of Washington State Psychological Association (WSPA) and he will serve both organizations with his marketing and association management company staff based in Spokane, Washington.

As the new Executive Director for Alaska Psychological Association he enters with high praise from his SPTA Executive Director peers. In his second year with WSPA sat on the Executive Committee for APA’s Council of Executives of State and Provincial Psychological Associations (CESPPA) as a member at large and then as recording secretary for 2 years. His leadership with Washington State helped them improve their finances, increase membership, and win an APA Legislative Grant in 2019. These and other noteworthy achievements helped WSPA win the Outstanding State Psychological Association Award at the 2020 APA Practice Leadership Conference.

For Alaska, Marvo will bring guidance and knowledge of state psychology associations to a very energetic board of directors. He and his will begin increasing communications with members through newsletters and social media, keep the website updated, and attend and represent AK-PA at licensing board meetings.  He also will bring collaboration between Alaska and Washington State through continuing education and areas of interest that either association is weak on.

When not managing association clients he volunteers his time on local boards and committees. He is currently Board Vice President of AHANA – Multi-Ethnic Business Association, Board Vice President of Outreach Foundation, and on the Marketing and Gift Planning committee for Innovia Foundation. He received a B.A. in Business with an emphasis in Advertising from California State University, Fullerton, and currently teaches Graphic Design in the school of business at Gonzaga University.

His staff of two will also provide services for AK-PA and will be referred to as the office in all communications. Sierra VanderHoogt will serve as the office manager for AK-PA. She is detailed oriented and will be the primary contact for members with billing and login questions. She as been with Thinking Cap for 6 years since graduating from Eastern Washington University with a BS in Biology. Karena Kliefoth is Thinking Cap’s graphic designer and has been with the company for 11 years. She has a BA in studio art from Smith College, BFA from California Institute of the Arts, and an AAS in Graphic Design from Spokane Community College. Karena is a talented illustrator and knows her way around website HTML coding. Both Karena and Sierra have experience in website design and programming.

Since March, Marvo and staff have set up a virtual office and all are working from home but connected using online communication and apps as well as a VOIP phone system that has allowed them to keep a professional office presence. The company is currently contracted to provide 20 hours a month of service to AK-PA and will work to grow the account to increase the hours and services. A four month transition period is anticipated before Marvo and staff will have the AK-PA account fully under control and running smoothly.

Join us for a Meet the Moment Town Hall Meeting Tonight!

You are invited to AK-PA’s Call to Action: Meet the Moment Zoom Town Hall Series!

Meet the Moment: Addressing Inequality
August 10, 2020  |  6-8pm

Zoom meeting ID: 854 7598 5290
Passcode: 228975

Presenters: Kathleen Baldwin-Johnson (Crisis Now) and Deputy Chief Ken McCoy (Anchorage Police Department)

The goal: To start the conversation about addressing inequality in our communities, including the impact of racism and health disparities in physical and mental health in Alaska.

Why: The Alaska Psychological Association is committed to justice and speaking up in times of injustice. We believe that no one should have to feel fear, anxiety, or threatened because of their skin color. We are committed to highlighting and celebrating diversity.

Please join us with your questions and concerns!

This is the first in a series of Town Hall meetings hosted by AK-PA to address inequality in our community. We will continue this iportant dialogue with ongoing Meet the Moment Town Halls via Zoom.

The focus of AK-PA’s first Town Hall in the Meet the Moment series identifies ways the mental health community can address issues related to racism and mental health in policing and behavioral health crisis management (Crisis Now model).

In an effort to provide information about current needs and to learn more about the role of mental health providers in fighting for equality, we have invited Kathleen Baldwin-Johnson with Crisis Now and Deputy Chief Ken McCoy with APD to speak with us.

In preparation for AK-PA’s first Meet the Moment or to learn more, watch current ongoing courageous conversations in our community:

Town Hall with Mayor Ethan Berkowitz and APD as an introduction to APD policing: https://www.facebook.com/MayorBerkowitz/videos/virtual-town-hall-with-mayor-berkowitz-and-apd/695338884373686

KTUU One Alaska discussion with community leaders: https://www.ktuu.com/2020/07/28/ktuu-2-hour-special-one-alaska-many-voices/

Standing with Our Community

“Racism is associated with a host of psychological consequences, including depression, anxiety, and other serious, sometimes debilitating conditions, including post-traumatic stress disorder and substance use disorders. Moreover, the stress caused by racism can contribute to the development of cardiovascular and other physical diseases” (American Psychological Association, Sandra Shullman, 2020).

The Alaska Psychological Association condemns racism and recognizes racism as a psychological health and medical health emergency. We condemn the murders of Black people, Indigenous people, and all people of color at the hands of police officers. We stand with the families of George Floyd, Ahmaud Arbery, Breonna Taylor, and the countless others who have died due to racial inequality and injustice.

These recent incidents highlight the over four hundred years of institutionalized and systemic racial injustice in the United States. Incidents like these wear on the mental, emotional, and physical health of those on the end of injustice. We have a responsibility to speak up and speak out to end inequality and discrimination in this country. Racism must be a part of our ongoing conversations and commitments to change. We must not be silent, as our silence is complicit, and our silence is not our power.

The Alaska Psychological Association is committed to justice and to speaking up in times of injustice. We believe that no one should have to feel fear, anxiety, or threatened because of skin color. We are committed to highlighting and celebrating diversity. We are committed to the fight to ensure that all citizens of our state have equal access to mental health and medical health care. We pledge to focus our efforts to be a part of the greater conversations about the impacts of racism on psychological and medical health. We pledge to be a part of the solution.



In solidarity,

Alaska Psychological Association Board of Directors


Download a PDF version here

AK-PA BOD Elections 2020

It’s that time of year again when the Alaska Psychological Association is looking to solicit nominations for individuals interested in serving as part of the AK-PA Board of Directors. Elections will be held during the month of June. AK-PA’s long-term goal is to be a statewide leader in mental health. We need your help to reach this goal and keep AK-PA an active and productive association. All full or affiliate members of AK-PA are encouraged to consider serving on the Board (if you are not currently a member, it’s not too late – you can apply on our website: www.ak-pa.org/join).

AK-PA is seeking nominations for several positions. Each position will serve a two-year term beginning August 16, 2020.

  • The Secretary creates a record of all the meetings of the Association and is a member of the Board’s Executive Committee.
  • Three Members-at-Large, who serve as a liaison between the general AK-PA membership and the Board, working to form and chair workgroups for various special interests and projects (e.g., Disaster Response Network, Early Career Psychologist, Rural Practice)
You are welcome to nominate yourself or someone else for these positions. If you are interested in learning more, have questions about Board service, or would like to submit a nomination, please send an email to info@ak-pa.org. All nominations will be reviewed by the elections workgroup and a slate of candidates will be included on the ballot. The deadline for nominations is May 31, 2020.


Please consider nominating yourself or another member to serve on the Board – filling these positions is vital to the continued success of AK-PA!

Reaching Out to Our Community

Dear Alaskan Community,

We know that during this time of uncertainty, many in our community are under strain and stress.  We are incredibly grateful to see how out community has come together in strength and resilience.  Please continue to connect and reach out to each other in fellowship and with resources.  On behalf of our AK-PA Board of Directors, we also want to reach out to our community to offer additional helpful resources for dealing with the impact of COVID-19.

COVID-19 Resources for Practice

Telebehavioral Health Resources

Distance Learning Resources for Students and Faculty

COVID-19 Specific Concerns

Disaster Relief Loans

Guidance on HIPPA and 42 CFR During COVID-19 Pandemic

Guidance on Reimbursement with Medicare

Direction for Health Care Professionals during COVID-19 Pandemic


Community Resources

Resources for Those in Need

Resources for Households during COVID-19 Pandemic

Resources for Families

Stay Informed

COVID-19 Information

As we know, the situation with the COVID-19 Pandemic is dynamic and resources will be evolving.  Please continue to connect with reliable and up-to-date information from these sources:

Please reach out to us with questions or ways your Board can support our community during this time.

Stay healthy and safe,

Alaska Psychological Association Board of Directors