Announcer February 2017 Print

President's Message


By Giries Sweis, Psy.D, CPA President

Dear Colleagues,

This issue of The Announcer includes special attention on the new Ohio rule limiting opioid prescriptions and the state proposal that called for creation of a seven-member state behavioral health profession-al board to replace several independent mental health boards. I encour-age you to read these headlines, as they bring attention to the challenges of dealing with the opioid addiction epidemic and the future of how our mental health boards will oversee our professional practice. Hopefully, these readings will create meaningful discussion with your colleagues and help you better prepare when approaching individuals that are at risk and/or struggling with an opioid addiction and furthermore to continue to support the opposition of board consolidation in general and spe-cifically the elimination of the State Board of Psychology.

I am delighted to announce the results of our recent election. Our new President-Elect is Dr. Eric H. Berko, who has served as secretary for the past year. Our new Treasurer is Dr. April Sobieralski and Dr. Farshid Afsarifard is our new Secretary. Thanks to all who sent in your ballots.

We had an enjoyable and well-attended Awards Ceremony at our Annual Meeting in December. Dr. Abraham Wolf, PhD received the Life Time Achievement Award. This award is given to individuals who have made sustained, outstanding, and significant contributions to the field of psychology over the course of their careers. Dr. Wolf has had a distin-guished career for the last 36 years as a clinician, administrator, profes-sor, editor, researcher, and author. Combining clinical work and re-search, he has applied his expertise to the study of psychotherapy. Dr. April Sobieralski was the recipient of the Outstanding Early Career Psy-chologist Award. Dr. Sobieralski has dedicated clinical and administra-tive work helping individuals with eating disorders and has recently tak-en a position as a director for a counseling center

Please also encourage your students and colleagues with an interest in psychology to join the CPA and ensure its future viability.

Giries Sweis

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Past-President's Message


By Miriam Boraz-Paponetti, Ph.D. CPA Past-President

We have had quite a year with regard to accomplishments of the Board and in advancing the mission of the CPA, from another year of outstanding speakers to hosting our own poster competition for undergraduate college students. Our Board, in particular, Debbie Ross, had a great year of showcasing our rich Cleveland psychological community. We appreciated all who attended our ses-sions this year.

Cathy Gaw facilitated the OPAs proposal of a new governance model and ran a round table discussion groups with various topics and opportunities for CPA members to network, with great success.

One of our most exciting endeavors for this year is our new website. Our Tech Committee has worked tirelessly to guide us through the process of getting a new website. Please be patient with us as we update our website and work out our kinks.

It has been quite an active and productive year. It is my sincere wish that we pro-vided the psychologists of the Cleveland community an opportunity to learn from each other through our programs and opportunities to be together and engage in collegial discussion. Thank you for allowing me to serve as your President. It has been an hon-or.

Miriam Boraz-Paponetti

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Program Report


By Debbie Ross, Ph.D., Programs Chair

We have had some interesting programs in 2016. We started with a program on bullying be-havior, a very important topic generating much interest currently.

Josephine Ridley did an excellent Saturday morning three-hour Ethics program on Suicide.

Joe Alexander did a very informative program on the west side at Dave and Busters on Video Game Addiction. He presented a well-rounded view on the positive and negative aspects of video games.

This summer Cathy Gaw conducted a workshop for Ohio Psychological Association that pro-vided an opportunity for psychologists to interact and learn about a variety of topics in small group table discussions.

Then we were pleased to have Lori DeAngelo present on her excellent work at Magnolia House. She brought a social worker and member of Magnolia House with her. There was a great opportunity for participants to ask questions and interact.

At our annual meeting in December we gave awards to early career psychologist and lifetime achievement award. Then Lisa Damour spoke about her work with and book on working with Adolescent girls.

As always, we are interested in your programming ideas and speakers.

Debbie Ross, Ph.D.
Programs Chair

Save the Date!

MARCH 18TH we will have a 4 hour ethics program. This Saturday morning program will be presented by Cyndi Kubu and a panel of others from the Cleveland Clinic.


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Action Alert


HB49 (The Budget Bill) proposes consolidating a number of professional regulatory boards. For example, the Ohio Board of Psychology, the Counselor, Social Worker and Marriage and Family Therapy Board and the Chemical Dependency Counselor Board are combined into the Behavioral Health and Social Work Board.

Ohio Psychologists and the Ohio Psychological Association oppose consolidation of regulatory boards and eliminating the Board of Psychology because:

The Boards are self-sufficient: License fees fully fund the cost of board operations. The Boards operate efficiently through group purchasing and shared services. No tax payer dollars are saved by consolidation of boards.

The behavioral healthcare occupational licensing boards have no operational deficiencies that need to be fixed. There have been significant problems in other states with consolidation leading most to return to independent boards.

The behavioral healthcare professions are each distinct and separate in training curriculum and standards, ethics codes, accredit-ing bodies, scopes of practice, and treatment modalities. A "one size fits all" model will not work.

The role of Board members on each board is different. For the Board of Psychology Board members have significant responsi-bilities: supervise complaint investigations, participate in the examination of individuals seeking to be licensed, and provide training in the laws and rules for Applied Behavior Analysts.

Consolidation of boards dilutes the stature of the distinct professions and these licensed professionals believe consolidation sig-nificantly diminishes the value of their license. While the structure of separate Boards looks like silos, the Psychology Board has always reached out to all stakeholders for input when developing rules and policy. The Psychology Board regu-lates psychologists, school psychologists and applied behavior analysts, who work with people on the autism spectrum, which has proven to be a thoughtful and appropriate grouping.

Consolidation discourages students from enrolling in the States graduate educational programs and discourages people from entry into our marketplace. The licensing process will be significantly slower. Ohio already has a shortage of mental health professionals, especially in some areas of the state. We need to make Ohio more attractive to psychologists not less attractive.

The public is better protected by maintaining independent, autonomous licensing boards whose mission is public protection by overseeing their individual licensees. This is one of the main reasons that states that have had consolidated boards have gone back to independent boards.

One behavioral healthcare profession should NOT be allowed to have regulatory authority over another behavioral healthcare profession. With a large board there would have to be committees for each profession, and committee members who investigate and recommend disciplinary action cannot also participate in a vote on board action – resulting in one profession disciplining other professions.

Combining the boards would be costly – leases to cancel, materials to be re-worked, contracts to be worked out, employment issues and loss of employment, retooling expensive data management systems that were just developed, websites to be changed, additional staff to do the work currently done by Board members, etc.

Fewer members of each profession and fewer public members would be on a consolidated board. There will be fewer volunteer board members available to effectively administer the operation of the board to review complaints and be involved in investigations. This will result in a backlog in complaint investigations and licensing.


The mission of the Board of Psychology:

Protection the public - an especially vulnerable population. 
Regulate the practice of psychology and school psychology.
Regulate the practice of applied behavior analysis to better serve people with autism and similar diagnoses. 
Develop and update Rules and policies affecting these practices.


Current Work Load of Board of Psychology

360 psychologist applications received
300 oral exams administered by Board members
100 Certified Ohio Behavior Analyst trained and examined in laws and rules
The Executive Director of the Board of Psychology has approximately 20 weekly 
consultations with licensees by phone or email.


Ohios Board of Psychology is nationally recognized as a pioneer in regulatory policy and practice. Among Ohio licensees it is viewed as fair and consistent. Consolidation would make Ohio one of two states that do not have an independent Board of Psychology. This will send a clear message to psychologists that their discipline is not valued in Ohio which will make it a less appealing state for psy-chologists to move to and start their businesses. In a state that is currently facing an unprecedented opioid epidemic and has a high concentration of military Veterans, Ohio needs to be attracting more psychologists rather than discouraging them from coming here.

Resist the state house efforts to disempower our professional board by combining ours with other, less effective and active boards. House Bill 49 proposes just this action and would make Ohio one of only two states without an independent board for psychology. See the talking points (page 4) and write or call your congressperson NOW! This comes up for a vote next week!

Name & Title





Rayn Smith, Chair




Scott K. Ryan, Vice Chair




Jack Cera, Ranking Member




Marlene Anielski




Nickie J. Antonio




Steven M. Arndt




Louis W. Blessing III




Jim Butler




Robert R. Cupp




Mike Duffey




Keith Faber




Anne Gonzales




Doug Green




Bridgid Kelly




Sarah LaTourette




P. Scott Lipps




Robert McColley




Adam C. Miller




Michael J.O'Brien




John Patterson




Thomas F. Patton




Rick Perales




Daniel Ramos




Alicia Reece




Bill Reineke




John M. Rogers




Mark J. Romanchuk




Gary Scherer




Kirk Schuring




Robert Cole Sprague




Emilia Strong Sykes




Andrew Thompson




Address mail to:

Representative xxxxx

Rife Building

77 South High Street

Columbus OH 43215



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Community Service

The Search Is On for Psychologists Who Love to Read

Michael Leach, Ph.D.

I have been writing book reviews for the ANNOUNCER for 25+ years and its about time for me to stop. Ideally, there are 3 or 4 of you out there who love reading as much as I do and would like to (1) keep up with the current literature and (2) let your colleagues know the books you really enjoyed reading.

Publishers have been good to us. They send us free books, knowing that we will only publish reviews on the few that we really like. In fact, most publishers let you choose any books you want from their new and forthcoming publications list. You even get to read books 2-3 months before they are officially published. Here is a great way you can stock up your professional library and benefit your col-leagues at the same time. Im happy to get you started, introduce you to the publishersrepresentatives and even help you prepare your first reviews for publication. Your only obligation to the AN-NOUNCER would be to submit one review per year.

Contact me at:, if you are interested.

Michael B. Leach, Ph.D.



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Membership News


Please consider renewing through CPAs website ( at your earliest convenience. The renewal tab is on the front page of CPAs website, and the process takes only a few minutes. If you have any questions or concerns with the renewal process, please direct them to our Administrative Assistant at 216.397.9229.

While the website has been in transition, membership renewals have been strained. We are now up and running, so please log on as soon as possible to re-new.

Lets keep these programs coming!

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Ohio Psychological Association News


By Cathy Gaw, Psy.D., OPA Representative

OPA Board meetings since September 2016 Board Retreat: 10/22/16, 10/10/16, 1/14/17

OPA Staff Change: Dr. Bobbie Celeste, OPAs Director of Professional Affairs (DPA) for 18 years, retired at the close of 2016. She had been an energetic and positive influence on Ohio psy-chology and psychologists throughout her directorship, including: participating in a number of coa-litions, advocating with key state departments, outspoken advocate for diversity initiatives and Fed-eral Advocacy, creator of OPA Legislative Day, effective leader in passing state legislation address-ing areas of concern for psychologists, advocating for psychologists with insurance companies, and consulting with psychologists on a range of issues. She has been very appreciated by OPA and psy-chologists and will be missed. If you wish to send Bobbie a message, you can do so at the forum created for this purpose on the OPA website. Dr. Jim Broyles has taken on the part-time role as OPAs Director of Professional Affairs as of 1/1/2017. He is currently the Chair of the OPA Insur-ance Committee and will be focusing DPA efforts on advocating for psychologists with all issues related to insurance, Medicaid and Medicare.

OPA has a new and improved website! It is much easier to navigate and use – check it out!! OPA members, make sure to update your profile page on the site (

OPA Membership Renewal is now on a rolling basis, meaning that the year of membership begins on the date you renew your membership. This should make the process more user-friendly. Many thanks to OPA Staff, especially Karen Hardin and Carolyn Green, for this fabulous improvement!!!

OPA Governance Structure – OPA members voted to accept the new governance structure re-searched and fine-tuned over the past 4 years. Stay tuned to the OPA website for details of the up-coming election of president elect and the smaller board made up of 5 Vice-Presidents and Execu-tive Committee members.

Opening for OPA Public Education Coordinator – This position is one that involves creating a bridge between APAs public education efforts and the needs of Ohio psychologists and their clien-tele. Please refer to OPA website for information about your fit with this exciting role!

District and State Science Fairs – Influence the lives of young, enthusiastic behavioral scientists - Be a behavioral health project judge at your District and State Science Fair! Cuyahoga, Summit, Geauga, Lake and Portage counties comprise District 5, whose science fair will be held at Universi-ty of Akron on 3/18/2017. State Science Day is on May 13,2017 in Columbus, OH. Contact OPA Executive Director, Michael Ranney, for more information.

Respectfully Submitted:

Cathy Gaw, Psy.D.


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