Alice Ann Holland, Ph.D., ABPP
I am honored to be considered for the Member-at-Large position on the NAN Board. I have been involved with NAN since I was a graduate student, both working as a student volunteer at the Annual Conference and presenting at NAN Grand Rounds in 2011. (I am forever grateful to that audience for being so kind and collegial to a mere graduate student, which boosted my confidence in public speaking!) I was a member of the NAN Legislative Action and Advocacy Committee (LAAC) from 2014-2015 and served as LAAC Co-Chair from 2016-2018. Also from 2016-2018, I served as NAN liaison to the Inter-Organizational Practice Committee (IOPC) and as the NAN Representative to the Federation of Associations in Brain & Behavioral Sciences (FABBS).
I was honored to receive the NAN Early Career Service Award in 2018 and want to credit the amazing teamwork of my LAAC, IOPC, and FABBS colleagues. No one ever accomplishes anything in a leadership role without a great team.
My involvement in NAN to date has left me so impressed by the vision and commitment of this organization. From the Clinical Grants Research Program to the Social Media Committee, NAN is truly leading the field of neuropsychology in so many ways. As part of these efforts at the committee level in the past, I saw how hard NAN works to serve our profession, and I would appreciate the opportunity to keep contributing to those efforts through the role of Member-at-Large.
To tell you a little about myself, I am a pediatric neuropsychologist at Children’s Medical Center Dallas (CMCD) and an Assistant Professor of Psychiatry at the University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center. I also serve as Research Director of the CMCD Neuropsychology Service. Being involved in both clinical work and academia, as Member-at-Large, I will keep a balanced and broad perspective regarding the diverse practice areas of NAN members.
It would be an honor to represent you and your professional interests/needs to the NAN Board as Member-at-Large. It is important to me that I represent each and every NAN member who wants an idea or concern brought to the attention of the Board, and to do so effectively means being accessible to you. If you have any questions, please don’t hesitate to contact me at Alice.Holland@childrens.com.
Dr. Holland is a member of the following organizations:
- Texas Psychological Association, President (2019)
- National Academy of Neuropsychology, Member
- American Psychological Association, Member
- Society for Clinical Neuropsychology, Member
- American Academy of Clinical Neuropsychology, Member
- International Neuropsychological Society, Member
- National Register of Health Service Psychologists, Member
Candidate Positions on the Issues:
How does your background qualify you for this office?
My involvement in professional service—currently as President of the Texas Psychological Association (TPA)—began in graduate school, when I served in various positions in the American Psychological Association of Graduate Students (APAGS), ultimately as Regional Advocacy Coordinator for the Southwest Region of the APAGS Advocacy Coordinating Team. I served on the TPA Board from 2013-2016 and subsequently was elected to the TPA Executive Committee, starting in 2017.
Specific to NAN, I was a member of the Legislative Action and Advocacy Committee (LAAC) from 2014-2015 and served as LAAC Co-Chair from 2016-2018. During that time, in addition to overseeing various projects and coordinating action on specific legislative issues, I instituted a nationwide legislative tracking program that is helping NAN monitor legislation relevant to neuropsychology in each individual state.
Also from 2016-2018, I served as NAN liaison to the Inter-Organizational Practice Committee and as the NAN Representative to the Federation of Associations in Brain & Behavioral Sciences. Through those experiences, I became very familiar with various challenges our field is facing on a national level—ranging from insurance reimbursement to research funding—and collaborated with other national leaders working to find solutions.
All these experiences strengthened my leadership, collaboration, organizational, and time management skills. My TPA Presidential term ends this December, which will allow me the time to be an active, engaged Member-at-Large for NAN.
I’m organized, an active contributor, and a team player. I would be honored to represent you and your professional needs/interests to the NAN Board as Member-at-Large.
What do you see as the major challenges to neuropsychology in the next 5 years? How do you believe NAN, under your leadership, can be effective in meeting these challenges?
In fall 2017, the Texas State Board of Examiners of Psychologists passed a rule allowing masters-level Licensed Psychological Associates to practice independently, without any scope restrictions—meaning they can advertise neuropsychological evaluations. I have been impressed by NAN’s level of involvement on this issue, clearly recognizing the concerning precedent this could set for other states.
As Legislative Action and Advocacy Committee (LAAC) Co-Chair, I developed a legislative tracking program so that NAN could monitor federal and state legislation relevant to neuropsychology. As Member-at-Large, I will continue to pursue initiatives to keep NAN engaged in state-level issues, as this is where most practice-related challenges—from insurance reimbursement issues to legislative threats—arise.
While recognizing that masters level clinicians are valuable to the provision of mental healthcare, we also must help patients make informed choices regarding neuropsychological services through public education efforts explaining the difference between doctoral-level neuropsychologists and masters-level clinicians. Strong demonstration of the value and efficacy of neuropsychology services—which points to the importance of supporting initiatives such as the NAN Clinical Research Grants Program—should be central to our efforts.
My experience fighting rule changes in Texas will be a strong asset to NAN. There have been valuable lessons learned over the course of our ongoing efforts in Texas. NAN can be central to a coordinated effort to protect and enhance neuropsychology at federal and state levels. As Member-at-Large, I will tirelessly help NAN proactively anticipate and address emerging issues related to protection of titles and scope of practice.
How would you promote professional practice?
As a pediatric neuropsychologist, I see clinical patients weekly, lead a research lab, and am involved in supervision and teaching. Thus, I’m familiar with the various joys and challenges of many aspects of our field. As Member-at-Large, I will keep a balanced and broad perspective regarding the diverse practice areas of NAN members.
Public education improves clinical referrals and is essential for successful legislative advocacy and negotiations with insurance panels. NAN and the NAN Foundation are already doing an impressive job in this regard. As Member-at-Large, I will embrace the opportunity to investigate and pursue ways to build on those successes and further increase momentum for public education efforts.
I was the American Psychological Association (APA) Public Education Chair for Texas from 2014-2018. I would love the opportunity to apply the skills and strategies I learned in that role to a nationwide public education campaign focused specifically on neuropsychology.
From my experience as the Legislative Action & Advocacy Committee (LAAC) Co-Chair, I know NAN is perfectly positioned for such an initiative. For example, the Professional Affairs and Information Committee (PAIC) has fantastic resources—brochures, info sheets, etc.—that could be updated and distributed in a public education campaign targeting physician groups, insurance providers, legislators, and/or media. The Social Media Committee and the NAN Foundation are other examples of how NAN is at the forefront of public education efforts. I look forward to furthering those efforts to further promote the professional practice of neuropsychology.
How do you plan to bridge science and practice?
Since my professional work involves clinical evaluations, research, and teaching in an academic medical center, I am firmly rooted in the mindset of bridging science and practice.
As a profession, we must educate legislators, media, and the general public about the hard science underlying the seeming “black box” of neuropsychology in practice. Integrating research into public statements and distilling study findings for a lay audience provide an important public service while also emphasizing the empirical foundations of our professional practice.
As liaison between the Board, committees, and NAN membership, Member-at-Large is the ideal position for encouraging and facilitating collaboration between committees to improve the integration of science and practice within various NAN initiatives. However, the energy and focus of a single person can be lost years down the road if procedures are not established that truly embed the integration of science and practice into the core of NAN operations. As Member-at-Large, the latter is what I will work to accomplish.
It is imperative for every professional organization for psychology and neuropsychology to base all actions on scientific knowledge. For this reason, as President of the Texas Psychological Association (TPA) this year, I created TPA’s first-ever Science Committee to provide consultation and support to our Board and our other committees with respect to public statements, legislative advocacy work, and any other formal position/vote under consideration by TPA Board. As NAN Member-at-Large, I will work with the Board to determine if such a committee might be similarly beneficial to NAN’s work.