From the Presidents Desk:
I am super excited to begin our 2020/21 service year with a new executive leadership team and board, presenting: Marianne Marlow, President (that’s me!) for a special one year only term, Susan Leveridge, President-Elect, Emily Hughes, Treasurer, Karen King, Secretary, Shannon Thompson, Education and Advocacy Director, and board members, Ellen Carruth, Education and Training Chair and President Emeritus, Karen Langer, President Emeritus, Kyle Williams, Eastern Washington Representative, Katie Lorz, Student Representative (for just one more month, until she graduates) and Membership Chair, Kaitlyn Chapman, board member, Debiruth Stanford, Board Member, Dominique Avery, Board Member, and Sara Oppler, Business Operations Director.
Several years ago we identified three areas of focus and developed strategy to provide the highest value to our members. This year, we are devoting even more energy and talent to these focus areas by appointing chairs for each of the areas to develop action plans to further the clinical mental health counselor profession. The areas of focus are 1) Legislative, 2) Training and education, and 3) Membership expansion and development. Each of the chairs is developing an action to strengthen and focus our attention. We look to our members for continued involvement and feedback as we grow and elevate our chapter for the benefit of our members, community, and profession. Please reach out and connect with us for involvement with our organization. It is a great way to develop professionally and give back to the clinical mental health counselor profession.
And finally, key updates from the AMHCA 2020 conference: In addition to some really great program content, this conference highlighted some trends for us to pay attention to in WA and nationally. Stay tuned for updates that we will include in newsletters.
- OneAMHCA – We are continuing to develop a more effective national presence that will serve the chapters in even more effective ways by piloting a prototype in WA state that will help to inform the national organization. The association with a strong national presence enables our chapter to have a stronger voice for clinical mental health counselors in ‘both Washingtons.’ Increase professional unification among the states: education, training/supervision standards/portability, and parity.
- Increased technology resources for the profession.
- Diversity and Inclusion awareness and advocacy for our profession and those we serve.
- Expand federal (Public Health Services Act) definition of the mental health workforce.
- Department of Transportation Substance Abuse Treatment Recognition.
- Increase collaborationon unification with American Association of State Counseling Boards (AASCB), Association for Counseling Education and Supervision (ACES), the National Board for Certified Counselors (NBCC) and the American Counseling Association (ACA).
- Improve licensure portability.
Please join us for our monthly meetings to connect with other clinical mental health counselors, learn about how to use your particular skill to advocate for the profession, and get involved locally to serve as you further develop in your profession.
Marianne Marlow, MA, LMHC, CFDW President, Washington Mental Health Counselors Association