President’s Column: Highlights of 2019

Kathryn Stamoulis

Kathryn Stamoulis

Kathryn Stamoulis, PhD

As I near the end of my presidential year I want to thank everyone who put in the hard work to make this a great year for The Society for Media Psychology and Technology. It has been a pleasure to serve and work closely with our membership and our amazing Executive Committee. My goal this year was to increase our visibility and bring new energy to our small division, and this will continue under the leadership of President Krishna Kumar and President-Elect Chris Ferguson.

A highlight of my presidential year was seeing so many of you in August at the annual APA convention in Chicago. Frank Farley and Krishna Kumar put together an amazing convention program. Standout sessions included two talks on Fake News and Misinformation. One was chaired by Chrysalis Wright with Speakers Mary Poffenroff, Roger Klein, Susan Birne-Stone, and Jerri Lynn Hogg. Chrysalis then went on to share her Fake News expertise on the APA stage during a live podcast recording of Speaking of Psychology. The second one was chaired by Krishna Kumar with Speakers Debbie Joffe Ellis and Stanley Krippner and Discussant Frank Farley; this session was also extremely well attended even though it was on Sunday morning. Joanne Broder and Donald Grant co-chaired a talk on Device Management and Intelligence, a topic that has put our Division on the proper use of technology map. Additionally, a talk on The Ethics and Practicalities of Promoting Yourself on Social Media, chaired by Ryan Hooper with Speakers Allycin Powell-Hicks and me was so jam-packed that the Fire Marshall came in to ask people to leave!

The Division’s social hour held at a Historic Chicago Mansion was a huge success. It was the first time we hosted the event off-site of the convention center or affiliated hotels, and while change can be scary, it brought great vibrancy to our division. We attracted new members, curious students and many people from other Divisions who wanted to check out what we had to offer. A magician opened the celebration with some party tricks and the full bar and ample food kept people very happy. The best part? The cost was on par with the average expense of convention social hours of the past.

At the social hour, we celebrated Division members who have been doing outstanding work to advance our profession. We honored our Lifetime Achievement Award recipients Elizabeth Carll and Roger Klein, Scientific Award Recipient Frank Farley and Early Career Award Recipient Jerri Lynn Hogg. Additionally, we recognized our new Fellows: Brad Bushman, Mary Gregerson, Karla Hamlen, and David J. Palmiter, Jr.

Moreover, we had some exciting firsts this year. We co-sponsored the APA Technology, Mind & Society Conference in Washington, DC, which brought together prominent scholars in the field from around the world. Also, our first-ever fundraiser campaign (part of an APA pilot program) was a success and APA will be using our feedback to implement future divisional fundraisers. Thank you again to all of you that donated and a special thank you to our gold-star donor Mary Alvord, who made an extremely generous contribution!

As we head into 2020 our Division is in a great place and will continue to thrive under the leadership of Krishna Kumar and Chris Ferguson. Thank you again for the honor and privilege of being your president!

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