Beth C. Arredondo, Ph.D., ABPP-CN
I am humbled and honored to accept the nomination to run for the office of President of the National Academy of Neuropsychology (NAN), and I hope to have the opportunity to serve you as a leader of the organization and the NAN Board of Directors (BOD). I have been an active member of NAN since I was a trainee, starting as post-doctoral member of the Legislative Action and Advocacy Committee (LAAC) in 2010, moving into the co-chair position, and then serving NAN as Treasurer from 2017-2019. In that time, NAN has taken initiatives that have had real benefit to the field, our patients, and healthcare, and I have been grateful to be part of an organization that values flexibility and collaboration. I decided to put my name in for consideration for President in order to continue the initiatives that others have championed, including the partnerships initiated during the Geriatric Summit, organizational advocacy via NAN’s Day on the Hill, and partnerships with the NAN Foundation to educate patients and care partners. That was in January 2020. I have written and re-written this statement numerous times over the last several months as we as individuals and our organizations have faced challenges that none of us imagined and had to re-think our work, the health and safety of ourselves and our patients, and our impact on others as individuals of privilege. I have been grateful for NAN’s work in collaboration with other members of the Inter-Organizational Practice Committee (IOPC) and additional partners to address practice issues nimbly and comprehensively and for their statement that, “one of our foundational values is to embrace diversity and pursue equality. To this end we must continue to challenge ourselves to do more to promote inclusivity and equality.” NAN is a thriving organization that is well-suited to address existing and new challenges, and I am excited to possibly play a role in supporting existing projects and new initiatives while embracing the challenges of our current times, recognizing the need to be flexible, to think deeply about our contributions to inequality, and to work to promote inclusivity and innovation for the future of neuropsychology. Thank you for this opportunity, and I hope you consider me deserving of your vote. If chosen, I would love to use this platform to elevate the voice of members. Please contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org with ideas, areas of improvement, concerns, and questions.
Dr. Arredondo is a member of the following organizations:
- American Academy of Clinical Neuropsychology (AACN) - Member
- American Board of Clinical Neuropsychology (ABCN) - Member
- American Board of Professional Psychology (ABPP) - Member
- American Psychological Association (APA) – Member
- American Psychology-Law Society (AP-LS; APA Division 41) – Member
- International Neuropsychological Society (INS) – Member
- Louisiana Psychological Association (LPA) – Member
- National Academy of Neuropsychology (NAN) – Member
- Society of Clinical Neuropsychology (SCN; APA Division 40) – Member
Candidate Positions on the Issues:
How does your background qualify you for this office?
Advocacy for psychology and neuropsychology has been a passion of mine since graduate school, and I have been actively involved in professional service since 2010, when I was a postdoctoral fellow. I served on the advocacy committee of NAN and the practice committee of the Massachusetts Neuropsychological Society as a trainee/fellow member, transitioned to co-chair of the LAAC, and was elected NAN Treasurer. I have also been actively involved in professional service in the American Psychology-Law Society (AP-LS). In my role on the LAAC, I served as one of the first members of the IOPC and helped to develop the 360-Degree Advocacy Model. I spent my entire early career in volunteer and appointed/elected roles within NAN and other professional organizations, including the honor of being presented with the NAN Early Career Service Award in 2015. I have been involved in decision-making at the BOD level and worked closely with the BOD and office staff to ensure we were managing finances well. I was lucky to serve during a time of financial strength and was part of the process to expand NAN’s services to members from a financial standpoint, including funding for the Geriatric Summit and NAN’s Day on the Hill, which was postponed due to COVID-19. I am committed to promoting the advancement of the profession and making sure that neuropsychologists have a seat at the table because we have valuable input on many issues that are relevant to our patients and our communities.
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?
I decided to run for NAN President in order to continue to be part of the innovation I saw during my tenure on the LAAC and on the BOD. My goals were to continue to encourage that innovation and support for moving neuropsychology into a modern and flexible specialty, anticipating and responding to changes in the healthcare landscape. That plan continues in full force, with the added challenge of addressing pandemic-related practice changes. I believe NAN is well-suited to lead the changes and innovations because it represents all neuropsychologists and values thinking outside of the box and strategizing for the future. NAN’s culture of building partnerships allows it to collaborate with others quickly and efficiently, and I would be honored to play a role in NAN’s response. Healthcare inequality and lack of diverse representation in organizational leadership are challenges that are not new but have had renewed focus recently. Diversity has been a value of NAN’s for years, and I think NAN will be able to continue to promote that value and improve upon it by expanding from diversity to inclusion. If elected President, I will actively look for opportunities for NAN to support inclusion and will actively listen to other leaders and members to expand diversity. Finally, psychology’s exclusion from the Medicare definition of a Physician is an ongoing challenge. NAN has been actively involved in legislative initiatives to change this error, and I plan to continue this work.
How would you promote professional practice?
I am a scientist-practitioner in the Department of Neurology at Ochsner Health. I am a generalist who engages with patients with a wide range of referral questions, symptom presentations, and backgrounds. I also work in inpatient psychiatry, providing neuropsychological and forensic services for largely indigent defendants and civil patients and maintain a civil forensic/medicolegal practice. My view of the role of neuropsychology and the challenges we face as a field are rooted in promotion of professional practice. NAN has been a leader in this area for years, and one of my roles as President will be to support organization-wide initiatives, including advocacy outreach, continued collaboration from the Geriatric Summit and partnerships with stakeholders, and promoting the NeuroNetwork for professional discussion and resource-sharing. I will also support the initiatives of committees. The Professional Affairs and Information Committee (PAIC) is obviously practice oriented, but all the NAN committees play some role in the promotion of professional practice. For example, the DistanCE offerings increase the knowledge base of practitioners, the Culture and Diversity Committee offers resources regarding the “influence of culture and individual diversity in neuropsychological outcomes,” and the Policy and Planning Committee communicates NAN’s stance on practice-related issues. I am proud of NAN’s collaboration with other IOPC member organizations to offer guidance to practitioners related to COVID-19 and the resources they put together on the website regarding telehealth practice. As President, I will also listen to membership regarding other areas of need that I may be unaware of due to privilege.
How do you plan to bridge science and practice?
During my tenure on the LAAC and BOD, I was involved in several initiatives to bridge science and practice and hope to continue to do so as President. The Health Outcomes and Neuropsychology Efficacy Initiative (HONE In), provides members with brief summaries of current research to help in documenting the effectiveness of our services, and is a clear example of bridging science and practice in the interest of advancing neuropsychology. This project seeks to make existing research easily digestible for busy practitioners, with an emphasis on documenting the utility of neuropsychology in different settings. The goal is to allow practitioners to use research to back up claims about the benefit of neuropsychology in discussions with administrators or third party payers. This model can be followed for any number of topics, including telehealth and diversity issues in neuropsychology. I also intend to encourage cross-discipline learning to improve our ability to communicate our science to different audiences. NAN has a platform through the NAN Foundation to bring science to the public in the form of podcasts about brain health, with a goal of increasing patient and caregiver knowledge which may aid our practice. In addition, the planned congressional advocacy outreach involved education about communicating science to legislators. Impacting policy based on science will improve our ability to practice effectively. I will also encourage collaboration among NAN committees and between committees and our journal publisher to promote science to practitioners and the public via traditional means and social media.