2019 Award Recipients
2019 Award Recipients
2019 Awards presented by the Society for Health Psychology (Division 38) Each year, the Society for Health Psychology (SfHP) recognizes members for outstanding contributions to the field by presenting awards in Research, Clinical Practice, Education & Training, Mentoring, and Career Service. Award categories were established to acknowledge and appreciate excellence in health psychology across the career span and throughout the field
I’m honored to share words in recognition of Dr. Sarah Feldstein Ewing, the recipient of the 2019 Excellence in Health Psychology Research Award. Sarah is not able to attend convention this year to receive this award in person as she is currently in Aarhus, Denmark where she is serving as a Visiting Professor at the Centre for Alcohol and Drug Research at Aarhus University.
Sarah is a clinical psychologist, having trained at the University of New Mexico under Bill Miller who is credited with creating Motivational Interviewing, a behavior change therapeutic approach known well in the field of health psychology. She went on to complete her clinical internship at Brown University and post-doctoral training in addiction neuroscience at the MIND Research Network in Albuquerque.
Sarah’s research focuses on understanding ways to address adolescent risky behavior, including alcohol, other substance use, and sexual risk behavior. She’s what I think of as a renaissance researcher, a unique blend of a basic and clinical scientist. Her work as a trialist has received considerable acclaim, and she’s extended novel paradigms to understand the neurobiological mechanisms that drive behavioral intervention outcomes by having subjects listen to recordings from their therapists during fMRI scans and identifying differential cortical activation based on the types of therapist utterances. This has led to a program of research that identifies ways to optimize therapies that target risk behavior during important periods of adolescent brain development.
Some of her many accomplishments include:
- Publishing more than 100 peer-reviewed articles and book chapters, many in high impact journals
- Editing two books
- Serving in the past as Associate Editor for Neuroscience & Biobehavioral Reviews and Psychology of Addictive Behaviors and currently for our own Health Psychology
- Receiving Fellow status in the Society for Health Psychology and in Division 50 (Addictions) Serving as Principal Investigator or Co-Principal Investigator on 7 R01 or U01 grants from the NIH and serving as Co-Investigator on many others.
- Recently being granted a K24 award from the NIAAA to protect time for mentoring graduate students, fellows, and junior investigators
- Reaching full professor at a prestigious research institution within 9 years of completing her PhD
And the list goes on….
A topic on the mind of many early- and mid-career psychologists is the balance between career and other life responsibilities. Maybe the strive for balance never ends. I’ve learned much from Sarah as her colleague and as a core faculty member in the newly formed clinical psychology PhD program at Oregon Health & Science University, for which Sarah serves as the inaugural Director of Clinical Training. Sarah makes it a point never to hold a faculty meeting or ask anything of faculty after 2:30 in the afternoon, recognizing that many of us have school-age children and may need to be free for school pick-ups and afterschool activities. She cherishes her own family and recognizes and honors the importance of boundary setting for working professionals.
Sarah has accomplished what many highly productive and successful researchers would achieve over a career. What I haven’t mentioned yet is that Sarah completed her doctoral degree in 2007, meaning she is only 2 years removed from ECP status. I’ve seen many accomplished individuals receive this award from the Society for Health Psychology over my years attending APA convention, and Sarah is definitely one of the most, if not the most, junior award recipient, a newly-minted mid-career psychologist, at least by APA’s definition. I’m very appreciative to the awards committee and to the Society for Health Psychology for selecting Sarah whose achievements and merit are very worthy of this recognition.
Aric Prather is a leading thinker and researcher working at the nexus of psychosocial processes, mental health, sleep regulation and immune function. His sophisticated multi-level, multi-method research includes population and experimental studies and encompasses psychological, behavioral and social determinants of physiological responses to stress and sleep regulation.
With over 60 publications, Dr. Prather has demonstrated novel links between aspects of sleep with immune functional responses, including getting a cold infection and immune cell aging. His ability to integrate multiple levels of analysis has provided deeper answers to mechanistic and applied questions about associations among sleep, health, and mental health. He also devotes himself to service locally and nationally, and is an effective translator of science to the public. He represents the best of the field of Health Psychology. Despite his accomplishments, Dr. Prather is unfailingly modest, and brings humor wherever he is.
Dr. Prather received his BA in Psychology from UC Berkeley, MS and PhD in Clinical and Biological & Health Psychology from the University of Pittsburgh, and was a Robert Wood Johnson Foundation Health and Society Scholar at UCSF-UC Berkeley. His work is recognized by many awards, including the APS Herbert Weiner Early Career Award, and the Robert Ader New Investigator Award from the Psychoneuroimmunology Research Society.
It is an honor to introduce Dr. James Annesi, the recipient of the 2019 Society for Health Psychology’s Excellence in Clinical Health Psychology Award. As a colleague, research mentor, and friend, Jim has impressed me by his commitment to excellence in applied research and dedication to helping people live healthier lives. His accomplishments are numerous and it would take me at least an hour to share them. However, I am only given no more than three minutes. So, it will be very brief.
In nearly 25 years, Jim has made outstanding contributions to our understanding of health behavior change through his meticulous, systematic, and evidence-based approach. His 175 scholarly publications share his research findings in health behavior-change theory and methods in exercise adherence, weight management, and the effects of physical activity on mental health, self-image, emotional eating, and other quality-of-life factors. His additional 100+ papers and book chapters target health-promotion practitioners, and four books translate research for clinical applications. I know, first hand, that Jim looks forward to helping the field of health psychology move to a place where the production and application of state-of-the-art behavioral science co-exist and thrive, especially in organizations capable of fostering large-scale health improvements.
As the Vice President of Research and Evaluation at YMCA of Metro Atlanta, Jim has fully “taken advantage” of his position to make theory- and evidence-based behavior science the driving force in health promotion programming for positive behavioral changes. His theoretically driven and evidence-based programs such as THE COACH APPROACH, Youth Fit 4 Life, Start For Life, The Health and Fitness Experience, and Weight Loss For Life have been identified by the National Institutes of Health/National Cancer Institute as representing the most treatments by any single researcher or research group in the areas of physical activity, nutrition, and obesity certified by their Research-tested Intervention Programs. Those programs have been used by numerous community health promotion organizations, preventive medicine and academic institutions in the U.S., Canada, U.K., Italy, and Japan. The research and translations into practice of those programs have been supported by the U.S. Department of Education, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, and Canadian Interior Health Authority, along with many private foundations. Recent reviews also identified his research program on exercise adherence intervention as being the most extensive in the world to date.
Please join me in congratulating Dr. Jim Annesi, the recipient of the Society for Health Psychology’s 2019 Excellence in Clinical Health Psychology Award.
It is a pleasure to present Dr. Cerissa Blaney with the Society for Health Psychology’s Excellence in Clinical Health Psychology by an Early Career Professional Award.
Upon completing her internship and post-doctoral fellowship at the Alpert Medical School of Brown University, Dr. Blaney joined the University of Central Florida faculty with a joint appointment in the Department of Psychology and Department of Internal Medicine. Dr. Blaney served in this unique role from 2015-2019, during which time she was Director of Behavioral Health at the UCF Health College of Medicine Practice. At this patient-centered medical home, Dr. Blaney developed and led integrated behavioral health services with a focus on brief individual and group treatment, as well as consultation and assessment. Dr. Blaney’s dedication to providing exemplary service has been evident across her many roles, including supervising students in clinical and research capacities, providing care to patients, and working with and educating medical providers. Such activities were performed while navigating the complexities that accompany the integration of behavioral health services into an existing medical clinic structure. These efforts were especially impressive given her early career status.
Dr. Blaney is also very engaged in the health psychology community. She is currently the co-chair of the SBM Integrated Primary Care SIG, and is an active member of the Division 38 Integrated Primary Care SIG, as well as the Association of Psychologists in Academic Health Centers.
Throughout Dr. Blaney’s many professional responsibilities, she has truly “put students first.” Dr. Blaney is known by her trainees not only for her passion for integrated healthcare, but also for being warm, understanding, and exceptionally supportive. Therefore, it no surprise that Dr. Blaney’s nomination came from two of her doctoral trainees. While these students were unfortunately unable to attend APA this year, they have emphasized to us that Dr. Blaney’s stellar mentorship, in conjunction with her many professional accolades, exemplifies excellence in the field of clinical health psychology.
Please join me in congratulating Dr. Blaney.
I’m thrilled for the opportunity to celebrate Dr. Tracey Revenson, Professor of Psychology at Hunter College and the Graduate Center of the City University of New York, for her 2019 Excellent in Health Psychology Mentoring Award. I have known Tracey for the past sixteen years; she has been my teacher, my collaborator, and now my colleague. Much of my own scholarly creativity and productivity can be attributed to how Tracey taught me to think big, think cleanly, and think hard.
When submitting materials for this nomination, Tracey’s advisees, near and far, recent and long ago, speak about feeling lucky to have been in her orbit during their intellectual development and lucky to be in her orbit today. Traceyleads with her head and heart, and she expects others to do the same; we are all the better (scholars, teachers, colleagues) for it.
She is recognized internationally for her research on stress and coping processes among individuals, couples, and families facing serious physical illness. In addition to dozens of book chapters, articles, books, and handbooks, it is worth noting that she is a Fellow in four different APA Divisions. In addition to these scholarly contributions, mentorship is an area in which Tracey truly excels. In the most traditional sense of mentorship, her success can be seen in having guided more than twenty doctoral students and postdoctoral fellows to careers of their own.
In the more real “hands on” meaning of mentorship, Tracey continues to be well known among her students for the extensive and thoughtful comments that she provided on papers, master’s essays, and dissertations. She always pushed us in the right direction, pressing us to think critically about our work and to see the “big picture.” Past mentees are quick to express their enthusiasm and excitement about Tracey’s mentoring style, commitment, and influence. Comments from past students included:
“She has been one of the most influential teachers, mentor, and most supportive and trusted collaborator. I can say with complete certainty that Dr. Revenson’s mentorship and support have been critical to all of my academic and professional achievements.”
“At every stage of my career thus far, Tracey has been right there, offering support and advice all along the way. Not surprisingly, Tracey has always been the best at offering both problem-focused support and emotion-focused support. At the end of a conversation with Tracey, you not only feel reassured, confident, and validated, you also leave with a concrete plan of action.”
“Brilliant, creative, funny, fun, thoughtful, generous.”
Her students have watched, benefited from, and been in awe of Professor Revenson’s dedication to mentorship for the past thirty years. Perhaps the most precious resource we have as academics and intellectuals are the talented and dedicated mentors who take seriously the educational mission of our profession. I cannot think of a more deserving recipient of the Excellence in Health Psychology Mentoring Award than Dr. Tracey Revenson.
Dr. William Robiner is the 2019 recipient of the Cynthia D. Belar Award for Excellence in Health Psychology Education and Training. He is Professor of Medicine and Pediatrics at the University of Minnesota Medical School.
Dr. Robiner is among a small but significant group of senior psychologists in US medical schools today who have pushed the margins of psychology’s role and function in US medical schools and in particular at the University of Minnesota School of Medicine. His achievements stand out as solid examples of how psychologists can be exemplary citizens in these academic settings and serve as a strong role model for younger clinical health psychologists to emulate. He is a “triple threat” medical school faculty member serving as an active clinician, researcher and educator. Of these three activities, Dr. Robiner has made his most sustained and significant contributions as an educator. Dr. Robiner himself considers education and training as one of his most significant areas of contribution to his university, medical school psychology and to professional psychology in general.
Dr. Robiner’s educational activities and accomplishments are well known within the University of Minnesota Academic Health Science Center, where he trained as a clinical psychology intern. He went on to become the Associate Director and then Director of the Psychology Internship Training Program at Minnesota in the same program in which he received his training. He has served as the Internship Director for twenty-five years and in that capacity has directed the training of more than 130 psychology interns, leading the program through five cycles of successful accreditation. Five cycles of accreditation is a herculean effort of its own for anyone familiar with the APA Commission on Accreditation standards. For more than seven years, he directed the post-doctoral health psychology training program at the Minnesota University Medical Center.
Dr. Robiner has received numerous awards for his service and contributions as an educator within the University. In 1997, he was awarded the University of Minnesota Academic Professional Award. In 2011, Dr. Robiner was inducted into the Academy of Excellence in the Scholarship of Teaching and Learning at the University of Minnesota Academic Health Center. In the history of this Academy, Dr. Robiner was only the second member of the Medical School to be honored in this way, the most prestigious teaching award at this academic health center. He was recently the Co-PI of a grant from the Office of Faculty Affairs of the University of Minnesota Medical School to develop a mentoring program for the Division of General Internal Medicine to promote the career development of early career faculty. His role as Co-PI was to develop the program, help train faculty mentors, evaluate the program, as well as to serve as a mentor. In 2016, Dr. Robiner was awarded the University of Minnesota President’s Award for Outstanding Service to the University, honoring his contributions at and beyond the Medical School. He is only the second Medical School faculty member to be honored with this recognition.
Within the State of Minnesota, Dr. Robiner has been a tireless advocate for education, training, and licensure. He wrote the white paper which argued for the doctoral degree as the basis for psychology licensing in the state. It was distributed to the Minnesota legislature and played a pivotal role in changing the statutes governing licensing of psychologists in Minnesota to conform with the national standards promulgated by APA and ASPPB. It was later modified for publication in the Clinical Psychology Review, and remains one of the few academic articles in the literature addressing the doctoral standard for psychology licensure with special relevance today.
Dr. Robiner is a founding member of the Minnesota APA-Accredited Psychology Internship Centers (MAAPIC). MAAPIC hosts two annual trainings for psychology interns in local programs and mentors new directors of psychology internship training.
Dr. Robiner together with Bruce Bobbitt and Michael Fuhrman constructed one of the most widely used objective measures of supervised training in clinical psychology known as the Minnesota Supervisory Inventory (MSI, 1994). The MSI and other quality assessment and improvement tools he developed for the U of M Psychology Internship (e.g., evaluation of supervisors, program evaluation) have been incorporated in more than 70 psychology internships and doctoral programs as part of their evaluative self-study processes. The MSI was showcased in the Association of State and Provincial Psychology Boards (1998) Report of the ASPPB Task Force on Supervision Guidelines as a model evaluative tool in supervision. These materials have been updated in response to regulatory, professional, and the educational developments, such as the new Standards of Accreditation for Health Service Psychology.
In 2012, his wider national achievements were recognized by the National Register of Health Service Providers in Psychology with the awarding of the Alfred M. Wellner Distinguished Career Psychologist Award. He is among the most consistent and strongest voices for board certification for professional psychologists especially clinical health psychologists. He was the first board certified Clinical Health Psychologist in Minnesota, currently serves as an examiner for ABPP-Clinical Health, and has arranged for board exams to be conducted annually at the University of Minnesota.
Finally, Dr. Robiner represents psychology to the wider medical, educational and clinical practice communities. Since 2018 he has served as one of two representatives from the Association of Psychologists in Academic Health Centers (APAHC) to the Council of Faculty and Academics Societies (CFAS) of the Association of American Medical Colleges (AAMC). The CFAS is comprised of leaders in American medicine with deans, department chairs, specialty training directors, medical society presidents and professional society members. The importance and influence of the AAMC cannot be undervalued. It is the organization that has the single most influence on American medicine and the healthcare system. In this forum, Dr. Robiner and Dr. Laura Schaffer as psychology representatives are able to address and interact with some of the most significant leaders in academic and clinical medicine. The APAHC presence in this group has been one of the most important network connections for medical and health psychology, increasing the visibility of all psychologists in these settings. In a very real way Dr. Robiner is a true inter-professional educator and champion for psychology in medical settings.
Dr. Robiner’s many accomplishments in health education and training make him a most deserving recipient of the Cynthia Belar Award for Excellence in Health Psychology and Education. He is an exemplary member of the Society for Health Psychology and a role model for younger health psychologists to emulate.
Elizabeth Klonoff is Vice President for Research and Dean of the College of Graduate Studies, University of Central Florida (UCF). Prior to her move to UCF in 2016, she was at San Diego State University and University of San Diego where she was Co-Director of Joint Doctoral Program in Clinical Psychology, one of the premier graduate programs in the country. Being a leader and making important contributions to health psychology is nothing new to Dr. Klonoff. When you look at places that matter in health psychology, Dr. Klonoff is not only at the table, she is often at the head of the table. In the Society for Health Psychology, she has served in executive leadership positions for many years, leaving an indelible mark on the organization. She chaired the program at APA, served as President of the organization, and represented the Society as a Member of the American Psychological Association (APA) Council of Representatives. In the American Academy of Clinical Health Psychology, she was first Secretary and then President of an organization that developed into one of the fastest growing American Board of Professional Psychology Specialties. She also served multiple terms on the Board of the Council of Clinical Health Psychology Training Programs. She led the 2010 Riverfront Conference in Jacksonville FL, and the subsequent effort for clinical health psychology to maintain its recognition as a formal specialty in professional psychology.
Dr. Klonoff, while remaining true to her roots in health psychology, as extended her activity and impact more broadly into clinical psychology and professional psychology. She served on the Executive Board, including chairing, the Council of University Directors of Clinical Psychology, commonly referred to as CUDCP (2014-2016). When APA was enhancing psychology’s position as a health profession, Dr. Klonoff was called upon to be a member of the Health Service Psychology Education Collaborative (2012), which created the educational ‘Blueprint’ for training health service psychologists. Within APA, she later served on the Board of Educational Affairs, where her impact in education and training extended across all of psychology. She has served on the Board of the Association of Psychology Postdoctoral and Internship Centers (APPIC) and also on the Commission on Accreditation, where she was a member and Chair. As Chair, she guided professional psychology’s major transition from Guidelines and Principles, which had been in place for 30 years, to the new Standards of Accreditation.
Dr. Klonoff is a mover and shaker in professional psychology. She has been particularly instrumental in outlining competencies in clinical health psychology, transitioning the internship selection process into the automated match system, managing the acute shortage of available internship positions, developing the accreditation process for postdoctoral programs, creating education and training framework for health service psychology, and developing the new standards for accrediting professional training programs. Along with her colleague Kevin Larkin, PhD, she authored the authoritative book on specialty competencies in clinical health psychology.
In addition to her remarkable contributions in professional psychology, she is also a distinguished scholar. As an investigator on over 40 grants, author of five books, and with upwards of 150 publications, she has made numerous scientific contributions in the related areas of cancer prevention and control, minority health, and health disparities. Dr. Klonoff has also served in editorial roles for high impact health and professional psychology journals, including senior editorial positions in Health Psychology, Training and Education in Professional Psychology, American Psychologist, and Journal of Behavioral Medicine.
No surprise to anyone who knows the accomplishments of Dr. Klonoff is that this is not her first professional recognition. Her awards, all at the national level, include the Paul Nelson Outstanding Contributions to Education and Training Award from APA’s Council of Chairs of Training Councils; Beverly Thorn Award for Outstanding DCT Service from CUDCP; Cynthia D. Belar Award for Excellence in Health Psychology Education and Training from SfHP, and recognition for Excellent Commitment to the Highest Quality Graduate Student Training from the APA’s Association of Graduate Students.
With great pleasure, the Society for Health Psychology presents Dr. Elizabeth Klonoff the Nathan W. Perry, Jr. Award for Career Service to Health Psychology.
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