Vol. 34, Issue 3
Summer 2022
Text Only Version
In This Issue
Farewell Letter to Maia
Editor's Column
ATSA Presidentís Column
Alcohol, Consent Education, and Sexual Violence on College Campuses: Opportunities for Prevention?
Bestiality and its Relevance in Psychosexual Evaluations
Treating Anxious Teens in an Anxious World
Examining the Dark Sides of Psychedelic Therapy
How to Treat Youths who have Committed Sexual Offenses
Child and Adolescent Committee
Membership Committee
Membership Coordinator for ATSA
Cybersex Unplugged: Finding Sexual Health in an Electronic World
Weston Edwards, David Delmonico,and Elizabeth Griffin
2011 CreateSpace Independent Publishing Platform 212 pages
ISBN-13:978-1453626450 $22.95 via Amazon (paperback)
The Correctional Helicopter: How and Why Correctional Agencies Fail to Rehabilitate Offenders
Richard J. Parker, Ph.D.
2022 Tellwell Talent 266 pages
ISBN-13 978-0228873235 Hardcover: $21.38 (Amazon)
Gregg Belle, Ph.D. of Quincy, Massachusetts, USA
Welcome ATSA's newest members
2022 ATSA CONFERENCE: October 26 - 29
ATSA Fellow Applications Open
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Forum Editor
ATSA Forum Editor:
Sharon Kelley, Psy.D.

Managing Editor:
Tegan Waring, B.A.

Editoral Board Members:
Katherine Gotch, M.A., LPC
Deirdre M. D'Orazio, Ph.D.
Rosaura Cruz, Ph.D.

Associate Editor of Research Corner:
Ian McPhail, Ph.D.

Review Editor:
Becky Palmer, M.S.

Book Reviewers:
Shoshanna Must, Ph.D.
Robert Parham, M.A.
Jim Reynolds, Ph.D.
Tracy Tholin, LCPC, LSOTP

Contact the editor or submit articles to:

Sharon Kelley, Psy.D.
Sand Ridge Secure Treatment Center
Madison, WI, United States
E: sharonmkelley@gmail.com
P: 608-301-1478
Farewell Letter to Maia
by Shan Jumper, Ph.D.

In July we say goodbye to long time ATSA Executive Director Maia Christopher.  In this farewell letter it seems fitting to use some of the poignant words ATSA members shared publicly following the announcement of Maia’s transition to tell the story of and pay tribute to Maia’s long and dedicated service to our organization.  We are also exploring additional options to honor Maia’s legacy.

The average tenure for an Executive Director of a non-profit organization is approximately six years.  ATSA has been blessed with Maia’s strong leadership for 15 years.  Maia’s executive skills are a huge part of ATSA’s ongoing financial stability.  She became incredibly adept at conference planning and implementation, with virtually every conference under her leadership generating a meaningful profit for the organization. 

Maia’s service to ATSA actually began several years prior to her moving into the Executive Director position.  She had previously served on the ATSA Board of Directors and also co-chaired the committee that developed ATSA’s first practice standards, titled “ATSA Standards and Guidelines”.

Maia officially began in her role just before the conference in 2007 during a period of turmoil for the organization following the departure of two short term Executive Directors, neither of whom were a good fit for the organization:

“One can only imagine the challenges of being an Executive Director for ATSA.  We wanted a person competent in administration, management, and organizing a conference while also needing someone with not just an understanding of the field, but a deep appreciation for it. Maia was clearly it. With the help of then-President Robin McGinnis and “Dream Team” member Jacque Page, Maia basically saved the 2007 ATSA conference in San Diego.  This can’t possibly have been easy for anyone involved. Thank you, Maia Christopher, for your service and leadership through all the ups and downs of our organization.”  (David Prescott)

“Once upon a time Maia was one of us working on committees and being a board member and attending conferences along with the rest of us. Then an opportunity arose, and Maia emerged as a leader among us and learned all the ins and outs of conference planning and helping grow our membership and the necessity of having connections with other groups who desired to end sexual violence and prevention of sexual violence. Maia worked tirelessly and I imagine there were times many of us when hearing about ATSA also thought of Maia.  I suspect many of us have spent some time trying our best to craft a remembrance of Maia and the impact she has had on our organization and on our lives.” (Becky Palmer)

Throughout my tenure on the ATSA board I developed a tremendous appreciation for all the effort it takes from the Board, the Executive Director, and the ATSA staff to keep our organization not only running smoothly but also constantly improving and evolving. Maia has projected a natural image of confident and compassionate leadership that helped to define ATSA’s public image:

“Very well said. Thank you for that important history of Maia’s tenure as ED for ATSA and highlighting the numerous ways - too many to count really - in which she has moved ATSA forward and helped shape who we are today!” (Katie Gotsch)

“It was always obvious that Maia was cut from the ATSA cloth. She has been devoted to ATSA, its mission and its future. We have been lucky to have her as our ED for as long as we have. One of the best things about ATSA are the relationships you develop and, although Maia's relationship with ATSA will be changing, we will continue to reap the benefits of having been in relationship with her. I hope her future will also be enriched as a result of her tenure as our ED. I will miss her.”  (Anton Schweighofer)

“Maia has been an exceptional and transformative leader, and she will be sorely missed. I wish her all the best in her future endeavors.” (Sharon Kelley)

“I share everyone's thoughts on Maia's leadership. Having served with her in a few different ways, I have been impressed with her ability to see the details while holding onto the big picture. She has always been so welcoming to me and as others have noted, been able to expand the scope of what ATSA and its mission means to individuals, different professional groups, and the field of sexual abuse prevention as a whole.  Thank you to Maia and the entire Board for all of your leadership!” (Melissa Grady)

"I wanted to echo all the comments about what others have said and add my thanks to Maia. It is amazing to think about all that has happened with ATSA over her tenure. And it takes a certain kind of leader to allow and encourage such innovation. While there have been disappointments as well, I think back over these years and for me, I have seen ATSA take on so much that has been personally meaningful to me. As Karen mentioned, ATSA has carved out a place on the board for a victim advocate, implemented an impressive strategic planning process, fully embraced prevention, dived deeply into the implications of race, power, and privilege in our field and, more recently, committed to exploring how to collaborate in the campus world. And this is all on top of managing an incredible staff, organiz[ing] a large international conference, and [managing] a membership that stretches across the world. As you can tell from my listing I am not a clinician, but ATSA and Maia has welcomed my perspective and contributions. I know that would not be possible without a leader to help make that happen. Thank you, Maia, and wishing you the best in whatever you do next." (Joan Tabachnick)

“Maia's stepping down as Executive Director of ATSA is a significant loss to ATSA. She has been a transformative leader who has changed ATSA's face and direction.  She took over the helm at a time we were floundering with an Executive Director who was uninterested in ATSA's mission and had essentially left us leaderless. Maia not only gave us administrative and managerial stability, but she also gave us direction forward, increasing ATSA's influence and helping to establish our relationships with other organizations seeking to prevent sexual violence.  Under her leadership our committees became more focused and productive. She made ATSA a welcome home for victim advocates and increased our public policy presence and our focus on prevention at every level.  She will be missed.  Congratulations, Maia, on a job well done.” (Ray Knight)

In addition to tremendous appreciation of Maia’s contributions to the organization, another prominent theme of the comments from the membership and the current Board of Directors has been the gratitude many of us feel in relation to our personal connections with Maia.  In addition to her grit, Maia is a fantastic host with a gift for always making the ATSA Board and membership feel welcome and special.  Along with her heavy load of administrative duties, Maia excelled in managing relationships with dozens if not hundreds of ATSA members. This is a less tangible but equally important strength Maia brought to her role as Executive Director, one which clearly showed her commitment to improving our organization and her dedication to enriching the membership experience of every ATSA professional.  Many of us look forward to ongoing relationships with Maia and the well wishes from so many reflect the meaningful ways she has touched our lives:

“I am both saddened to hear of Maia's decision to move on (is there life after ATSA?) and pleased to hear that new opportunities for Maia lie ahead (again, though... is there life after ATSA?). Thanks for all your work, Maia, and the great job you've done with and for ATSA and the strong and focused leadership you've provided, strengthening our organization still further. I'm also very glad for the opportunity to have gotten to know you and build a supportive relationship. I wish you the very best in your new endeavors and whatever lies ahead.”  (Phil Rich)

“I agree with all that has been said and would like to add my thanks to Maia for welcoming me, as a victim advocate, into the ATSA fold. Through your partnership and friendship, I have broadened my knowledge about sexual violence and its prevention and have developed many new friends and valued colleagues in the process. Thank you, Maia - well done!”  (Karen Baker)

“I want to echo the comments made by others as we reflect on Maia’s tenure as Executive Director. I have so many fond memories of serving on the ATSA Board and being able to experience her stewardship.  Thank you for taking such great care of this wonderful organization and each of us. The evolution of this organization under your leadership is quite a legacy. Best of luck in your next chapter.”  (Tom Leversee)

“I want to echo what many others have said.  She has worked tirelessly to move the organization toward its goals, to strengthen ATSA's reputation, visibility and collaborative partnerships, and to navigate through many challenges, both internal and external to the organization.  Maia has also been a good friend to many of us and I am grateful to have enjoyed her friendship and worked with her in many capacities.  I join others in wishing her the very best.” (Robin Goldman)

On behalf of the ATSA Board of Directors, thank you Maia for leaving ATSA in a better place than we were in when you became our Executive Director, and for your 15 years of dedicated service to making the world a better place to live in.  We will miss your presence but look forward to a continued connection for years to come.  Best of luck as you begin the next leg of your professional journey.

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