On behalf of Psychologists in Long Term Care (PLTC), we would like to congratulate our 2022 Award winners. The Awards Committee was delighted to have received the largest number of nominations in memory. All nominees were well qualified and have contributed greatly to the field of geropsychology.
The 2022 PLTC Awards are as follows:
The James Georgoulakis, PhD Award for “Outstanding Contributions to Psychology in Long Term Care” is presented to:
Lisa Lind, PhD
This award is presented “for making a significant impact on psychology in long term care via research, clinical training or through other contributions.”
Lisa Lind, PhD, ABPP, is a licensed psychologist who is board certified in Geropsychology. She has provided psychological services in long-term care (LTC) settings for the past 18 years. She currently serves on the Chief Clinical Leadership Team at Deer Oaks Behavioral Health in the role of Chief of Quality Assurance and Compliance, where she helps oversee the provision of quality clinical services being provided in LTC settings in 29 states across the US. She is the current President of Psychologists in Long-Term Care (PLTC) and also serves as the Chair of the PLTC Public Policy Committee. Dr. Lind also serves as the Co-Chair of AMDA’s Behavioral Health Council. She is actively involved in advocacy, training, and mentorship activities related to the provision of mental health services in LTC settings. Her current research interests include the impact the COVID-19 pandemic has had on the emotional and behavioral health of LTC residents.
The Michael Duffy, PhD Award for “Outstanding Contributions to Training and Mentorship of Psychology in Long Term Care” is presented to:
Deborah Theis, PhD
This award is presented “for demonstrating an outstanding commitment to providing training support and mentorship of psychology in the field of long term care.”
Deborah Theis, PhD, is a Licensed Psychologist with over 23 years of experience working in the long-term care industry. Dr. Theis obtained her Ph.D. in Counseling Psychology from Texas A&M University in 1995. She has extensive experience managing comprehensive psychiatric and psychological services provided to long term care facilities to manage their behavioral health needs. Dr. Theis currently serves as the National Director of Training and Development for Deer Oaks. In that is role she identifies and internal and external training needs as it relates to behavioral health services in post-acute and long-term care. In addition, Dr. Theis serves on the Board of Directors for American Association of Geriatric Psychiatry, is the Programming Chair for Psychologists in Long Term Care and is a Committee Member for Academic and Higher Education for Texas Psychological Association.
The inaugural “PLTC Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion (DE&I) Award” is presented to:
Lucas Morgan, PhD
This award is presented “for being a catalyst for change regarding long term care or other older adult populations through diversity, equity, and inclusion endeavors such as research, training, mentorship, publications, community service, clinical practice, advocacy, and/or other activities.”
Lucas Morgan, PhD, is an early career licenced psychologist from and living in Hawai’i, who has focused much of his clinical and teaching work on geropsychology, and the intersections of identity, power and privilege, diversity, social justice, and marginalization in clinical work. He works in private practice, partners with geriatic health teams, and leads trainings for family members caring for loved ones with Alzheimer’s Disease and related dementias. He earned his PhD from UMass Boston where he was significantly influenced by his primary mentor Lizabeth Roemer, PhD, as well as Karen Suyemoto, PhD, and whose work continue to shape his growth and development as a psychologist. He loves being in the mountains and the ocean, but is finding little time for that currently given that he has 5 yr old and 7 month old children, a dog, cat, fish, and lots of plants. For all of whom he is very grateful.
PLTC is also proud to announce this year’s PLTC 2022 Student Research Awards:
The Student Paper Award was presented to:
Rachael Spalding, Ph.D. from West Virginia University, for the paper titled: “Development and Initial Validation of the Attitudes Towards Older Adult Sexuality in Long-term Care Scale”. Rachael’s mentor is Barry Edelstein, Ph.D.
This study developed and tested the psychometric properties of a measure of attitudes toward sexual expression in residential long-term care settings. The study sampled 295 community-living adults and found the resulting scale (i.e., the Attitudes Towards Older Adult Sexuality in Long-term Care Scale) had a two-factor structure: general attitudes toward sexual behaviors and acceptability of various sexual behaviors in long-term care.
The Student Poster Award was presented to:
Isha Karmacharya, MPH from Miami University, for the poster titled: “Simple solutions to a complex problem: Listening to direct care workers’ perceptions about retention.” Isha’s mentor is Leah Janssen, Ph.D.
This qualitative study engaged direct care workers (DCWs) across various long-term care settings to identify factors that promote retention. Findings highlight the roles of work culture (e.g., person-centered care, family atmosphere, relationship building, staff empowerment, coaching supervision, participative leadership, effective communication, and flexible working conditions), appreciation (e.g., valuing, respecting, recognizing, and acknowledging the efforts of DCWs), and monetary benefits (e.g., regular wage raises, employee assistance funds, gift cards, bonuses, paid time off, health insurance benefits, and travel reimbursement) for retention.