From the President's Desk - October 2016

Dear AASECT Family,


Here in Indiana, most days are crisp and cool this time of year. And the leaves – after months of offering shade – have turned varying shades of red, orange, and yellow and, tired, now fall to the ground. Perhaps you’ve felt a little tired, too, with the current election cycle and difficult conversations cropping up in the news. And yet, as AASECT members well know, these are also teachable moments. Many of you have been resources for education, knowledge, and support for friends, family members, and colleagues grappling with issues related to sexual assault, consent, or harassment. Thank you for the work that you do every day, personally and professionally, sharing your talents, wisdom, and compassion with your communities.


AASECT members have much to be proud of. On the heels of a successful Summer Institute, we are now looking toward an exciting Winter Institute being organized by PESC Chair Prem Pahwa and his team. And although our 2017 annual conference is months away, co-chairs Mariotta Gary-Smith and Jayleen Galarza have been hard at work, putting great thought and care into developing the kind of conference that members ask for. I’m already excited about seeing everyone in Las Vegas, where new and seasoned members alike will have opportunities to learn from, engage, and connect with one another. 2017 marks AASECT’s 50th anniversary and we’re also planning to honor our past as we collectively shape our future. I hope that you will encourage students, mentees, and new professionals to join us at our annual meeting and see what AASECT is all about. This is also a time when we are forging relationships with exhibitors and sponsors; if you know of organizations who should be front and center at AASECT, please connect them with our Executive Director, Michael Chan, who can share more about these opportunities with them.


I’m pleased, too, to announce that the Journal of Black Sexuality and Relationships (JBSR) has generously offered a 20% subscription discount for AASECT members (sincere thanks to its editor, James Wadley!). To receive the discount, go to JBSR page on the University of Nebraska Press’s website and enter  the coupon code AASECT_J16x at checkout. The first issue of JBSR is available as a free sample on Project MUSE. Dr. Wadley and his team have also provided 10 additional articles for AASECT members to read free of charge; they are available in our Box folder where you can find more than 80 other scientific and clinical peer-reviewed articles available for free download:


If you are in the Chicago area, please join the Board of Directors on November 18 for a Meet & Greet following our Fall meeting. It’s a terrific opportunity for us all to get to know one another better and for us to update AASECT members in person about recent Board activities, including new potential position statements in the drafting and revision stages. Details for this, and other Meet and Greets, can be found by clicking here


Finally, I want to thank Gina Ogden for establishing a new AASECT award – the Integrative Approaches to Sex Therapy Award, which will honor strong contributions in our field for generations to come. You can read more about the award in this issue of CS, but I want to thank Gina for her generosity and her vision. I’d also like to thank Michelle Sugg and Konnie McCaffree who, as presidents before me, worked with Gina and our Executive Director, Michael Chan, to bring this vision to life.


Thank you all again for your care, compassion, and professionalism as AASECT members. Working as part of a community makes even the challenging times more pleasant and fruitful. 


Debby Herbenick, PhD, MPH, CSE 

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