• Editor's Note
 • President's Message
 • Ted and the Brown Pelican
 • NYSATSA mourns the loss of its first President
 • Public Understandings of Sexual Abuse and Sexual Abusers
 • Evidence-Based Practice with Juveniles
 • Book Review:
The Myth of Sexual Addiction
 • Book Review:
Polygraph, Sex Offenders, and the Court
 • 2012 Executive Board Election
 • 31st Annual Research and Treatment Conference
 • New ATSA Members
 • Professional Issues Committee Update
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Vol. XXIV, No. 3
Summer 2012
President's Message

Dear ATSA friends and colleagues,

Welcome to the Summer Edition of the Forum.  Best wishes to everyone! For some of our members, the beginning of summer has brought record heat, deadly wildfires, and dangerous storms.  My thoughts are with those of you who have been or may be affected.

As you are likely aware, registration is now open for the 31st Annual ATSA Conference.  I am very excited about the range of great speakers, topics, and sessions represented in this year’s program, and I hope that you agree.  Thanks to all who responded to the Call for Abstracts. We received nearly 250 excellent and intriguing proposals and, as is often the case, this created quite a challenge for making the final selections.  Much appreciation goes to the reviewers, Conference Planning Committee members, and ATSA staff for putting together the final program.  I look forward to seeing you in Denver in October for what is sure to be another fantastic conference!

I remain inspired by my colleagues on the ATSA Executive Board of Directors and the various ATSA Committees, who continue to take definitive action to fulfill our commitment to the organization overall and to you, the members. The Board continues to make significant strides in advancing ATSA’s Five Year Strategic Plan and very much appreciates the input provided recently by you, the membership, regarding the remaining strategic plan priorities in the existing plan.  Indeed, well over 400 members responded to the survey in April. Your feedback was, and continues to be, extremely important and beneficial as we move forward.

A specific area of emphasis of the Board has been examining the structure and composition of the Board to ensure that it is well-positioned to efficiently and effectively advance the values, vision, and mission of ATSA; support the organization’s vitality and growth; enhance opportunities for members’ involvement; and have the flexibility to represent the evolving diversity, interests, and needs of the membership. In the coming months, we will be sharing with you the fruits of the ongoing, thoughtful, and productive discussions that have occurred over the past two years, and seeking your feedback on the exciting directions in which we hope to move in this regard.

Although I would like to provide detailed updates on the numerous impressive activities of the all of ATSA Committees, in the interest of space and relative brevity, I am providing only some highlights, with more to come in the next issue.

  • The Adolescent Guidelines Committee, co-chaired by Mr. Tom Leversee and Dr. Jacque Page, is making substantial progress in developing the first set of ATSA practice guidelines for adolescents who have engaged in sexually abusive behavior.
  • The Education and Training Committee, co-chaired by Ms. Diana Garza Louis and Dr. Michael Miner, continues to work on developing more online availability for training and CEUs on the ATSA website, as well as matching mentors for those who request one.  The committee will further develop other educational materials to be available online for members. They are currently recruiting committee members and mentors to further these goals.
  • The Prevention Committee, chaired by Ms. Joan Tabachnick and Ms. Sally Thigpen, continues their efforts to create a new ATSA library through which members will be able to access program information, educational materials, research, and other resources on a variety of prevention topics.  Look for an announcement of this resource in the very near future. 
  • The Public Policy Committee, co-chaired by Mr. Chris Lobanov-Rostovsky and Dr. Jill Levenson, developed a soon-to-be released policy paper and bibliography on risk assessment for adult males who have sexually abused, as well as a fact sheet pertaining to the need for research and protection of research participants.  
  • The Research Committee, chaired by Dr. Karl Hanson, developed a position statement pertaining to incentives for offender participation in research. This position statement, which was recently approved by the Board, was based on an extensive literature review completed by some members of the Research Committee, as well as Dr. Michael Miner, for an academic article that is now “in press” in Criminal Justice and Behavior.
  • The Student Committee, chaired by Ms. Leslie Helmus, has re-established the student list-serve, which has sparked lively discussions and interesting exchanges regarding innovative and, in some instances, good-humored research among the students.
  • Collaboratively, the Public Policy Committee and Adolescent Guidelines Committee drafted an overview document entitled Adolescents Who Have Engaged in Sexually Abusive Behavior: Effective Policies and Practices which, following the Board’s final review and approval, will replace the previous ATSA policy statement on this client population.


Special thanks to Ms. Maia Christopher for her outstanding leadership as ATSA’s Executive Director; Ms. Alisa Klein, ATSA’s Public Policy Consultant; and the wonderful team at the ATSA headquarters – Ms. Kelly McGrath, Ms. Sarah Gorter, and Mr. Aniss Benelmouffok – who work on a day-to-day basis, oftentimes behind the scenes, to support ATSA’s successful operations. And, of course, please join me in thanking Dr. Robin Wilson, the Forum Editor, and the other contributors to this issue.

On a final note, the elections for the ATSA Board are completed. Congratulations to President-Elect Elizabeth Letourneau and our new Midwestern Regional Representative Shan Jumper.  Thanks for taking part in this important part of our organization!

Kind regards,

Dr. Kurt Bumby

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