Professor Emeritus Donald Bersoff Elected President of the American Psychological Association
Professor Emeritus Donald Bersoff, who launched Villanova University School of Law’s J.D.-Ph.D. in Law and Psychology Program, has been elected President of the American Psychological Association, starting his term in January 2013. Bersoff is the first lawyer practitioner elected to lead the APA, which is the largest group of psychologists in the world.
Bersoff has outlined three initiatives he will pursue in 2013 that will focus on serving military veterans, increasing diversity among psychologists and boosting the association’s membership among academic psychologists and scientists. More specifically, Bersoff said he aims to focus his attention on both research and evidence-based programs that have served military personnel and their families at the 2013 American Psychological Association Convention.
Bersoff joined the faculty at Villanova Law in 1990 as Director of the J.D./Ph.D. Program in Law and Psychology which was offered jointly by Villanova University School of Law and the Department of Clinical & Health Psychology at MCP Hahnemann University (which has since merged with Drexel University.). Prior to Villanova Law, Bersoff was a partner at the law firm of Ennis, Friedman & Bersoff in Washington, D.C., and later a partner at Jenner & Block. He was also General Counsel to the American Psychological Association, and Special Consultant to the National Commission for the Protection of Human Subjects in Biomedical and Behavioral Research. He previously taught at the University of Maryland School of Law, Johns Hopkins University and Ohio State University.
Emeritus Professor at Drexel University since 2001 as well, Bersoff is a nationally renowned expert on legal and ethical issues in mental health, developmental disabilities and education, as well as ethics and the law.
Professor Bersoff received his B.S., M.A. and Ph.D. from New York University and his J.D. from Yale University Law School.
In mid-January, Bersoff spoke at the 2013 National Multicultural Conference & Summit, which focused on transforming multicultural psychology in Houston, Texas.