Presidential Initiatives



Mary Coakley-Welch, PhD


Welcome to the 2016 -- 2017 MNS year! Each year, a new Board of Directors takes office on July 1. Some Board members remain, since terms are for three years, but others complete their terms as new members join the Board. 

My first statement as President is to thank MNS members who give time, energy, expertise, and ideas by serving on the Board of Directors, chairing committees, participating in committee activities, and volunteering for other MNS events and projects.  It is truly a group effort that keeps our Society vibrant and moving forward. Initiatives happen thanks to the Board, committees, and individual members’ involvement.

My vision for MNS this year includes the following priorities:

  1. Promoting access to neuropsychology services in current and emerging healthcare systems and in other settings such as schools and community service and education programs, through education and direct advocacy.
  2. Advocacy through education: Extending our reach through public education.
  3. Fostering connection within and outside of MNS.

I first became active in MNS projects in 2010. Review of our recent and distant history shows that MNS has had a growth spurt in recent years, reflected in new committees and new undertakings.  We are a relatively small organization, but we are an organization with high ambition.   

I see the next few years as a time to consolidate and develop the more recent initiatives, (such as public education; tracking healthcare reform policy developments; fostering cultural competence in neuropsychology; and a formal mentoring program), while supporting our longstanding committees and mission.  Below, I have designated a few NEW components for development this year, within some of the more recent initiatives.

Specific plans for this year include:

Promoting access to neuropsychology services

Bullet Support the ongoing work of Professional Affairs Committee and Healthcare Reform Committee members as they work to protect patient-access to our services and help us understand and participate in the changing healthcare landscape and with a NEW 2016 component: explore and promote other settings (education and community programs) in which people might access our services.

 Support the ongoing work of Diversity Committee members as they promote cultural competence among neuropsychologists and the delivery of neuropsychological services to diverse and multicultural populations.

Advocacy through Education

 NEW 2016 component: The Neuropsychology of Health. Shine a light on our expertise in fostering and maintaining cognitive, emotional, and physical health through brain-based prevention, wellness, treatment, and recovery actions and interventions.

 Support ongoing development of the MNS Speakers Bureau which brings our  members and our expertise directly to professional and community groups.

 Support the launch of our new web-based Building Healthy Brains series, initiated by current Past President Stephanie Monaghan-Blout, PsyD. Watch the list serv for details on submitting a public education piece in your area of expertise – clinicians, researchers, and clinician-researchers welcome!   Read the first article here

Fostering connection within and outside of MNS

 Support the MNS CE program which brings together members and others with shared interests for lectures and workshops.

 Support MNS committees in connecting with other professional organizations who share MNS goals and interests.

 Bring together local researchers for the annual MNS Science Symposium and for maximizing participation and benefits from our membership in FABBS (Federation of Associations in Behavioral & Brain Sciences).

 NEW 2016 component: Introduce the MNS Art Contest: inspired by member Dr. Hope Schreiber’s suggestion and her generosity in loaning her photograph Zakim Blue to MNS for the 2016 Science Symposium.  Watch the list serv for notices for how to enter your Massachusetts-themed work of art to be in the running for use in the 2017 Science Symposium publicity materials.

My closing statement is to invite each and every MNS member to get involved in some way. No level of participation is too small and our activities are wide-ranging. 

 Come to a Tuesday evening CE lecture…’ve now participated!
 Help advance our profession and client-access to care by working on a project – you can watch for list serv posts seeking an MNS member to lend a hand, for example, by attending a healthcare policy meeting & reporting back to us, or by contributing information for an advocacy or education document that a committee is writing, or in other ways.
 Join a committee.
 NEW 2016 component: Researchers: get involved with our FABBS membership; or submit to our web series: Building Healthy Brains – maybe collaborate with a clinician on an article to bring the latest research and its clinical or lifestyle applications to the public – we’ll help make the researcher-clinician connection; join our Speakers Bureau.
 NEW 2016 component: Enter a work of art in our Art Contest!
 Maintain your MNS membership – it’s good for you and good for the Society and the profession.
 Not sure which option is right for you or where to start? Email me
 Have an idea for MNS? Send an email.

Get connected and feel the rewards and energy that come from contributing to our profession and Society.

With best wishes and great thanks for the opportunity to serve as President,


Mary Coakley-Welch, PhD
MNS President

August 2016


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