President’s Letter – March 2018
As Spring begins, I am more and more looking forward to our 50th annual AASECT conference. Co-chairs Jayleen Galarza and Juan Camarena have put together a stellar program. Following the footsteps of recent co-chairs, they and their conference committee have looked for engaging thought leaders and have also valued diversity and inclusion throughout the plenary and workshops. I’ve checked the program multiple times already to start making my own selections about the workshops I most wish to attend. (I’m THAT excited about it!) It’s a good problem to have to see that there are often several in any given time frame that I wish I could be at.
Outreach Chair, Tameca Harris-Jackson, also put together a committee to review the Creating Community scholarships. What we saw were a group of individuals who are working toward their education and/or AASECT certification, who are inquisitive and passionate, and who we are so proud are a part of our AASECT family. To the extent that some of you are able, I hope you’ll consider donating to support future scholarship recipients. Your donations can help more people attend the AASECT conference, get additional training, and work toward certification. For many individuals, doing so would help them become the only professional sexuality educator, counselor, or therapist in their community, if not for hours around.
Also, with the transitions of FSSS, AASECT now house the Whipple Family Plenary funds that support an annual conference speaker who specifically focuses on sexuality research. Last year the Whipple Plenary speaker was Dr. David Buss on his mating strategies research. This year it in Dr. Michael Seto, on his research related to pedophilia. If you’d like to join me in further supporting the fund, donations can be made online. We are so appreciative of Dr. Beverly Whipple for her vision to support such speakers at AASECT meetings.
Finally, our country continues to grapple with difficult issues related to sexual exploitation, as well as the rights of sexual and gender minorities. We still have a lot of work to do. I encourage all of us to consider how we can be beacons of light and reason in our own communities. We need your engagement more than ever.
Looking forward to seeing many of you in Denver!
Debby Herbenick, PhD, MPH, CSE