Letter from the Newsletter Editor, July 2017

Hello everyone,

Thanks to all of you who participated in our annual meeting in San Diego. We had a West coast record attendance of 1607 that included 79 SOBP travel awardees. The plenaries were outstanding, as were the symposia, oral, and posters. We continue to be the major scientific organization fostering the growth of the next generation of behavioral and clinical neuroscientists and the number of younger attendees was truly inspiring. Congratulations to Paul Holtzheimer and Kerry Ressler for their leadership in organizing the scientific program and to Maggie Peterson, Mimi Macke, and Sarah Timm and John White (Parthenon) as well as SOBP Council for managing all of the logistics and planning. In sum, we had another great conference!

At our business meeting we announced that SOBP Council has been developing a 5-year strategic plan to advance our organization into an even stronger position. To date, we have developed the following draft vision, mission and mission-based 5-year goals we want to share with you.

Vision: The Society of Biological Psychiatry’s vision is to advance understanding, investigation, and treatment of psychiatric disorders until they are eliminated as a cause of human suffering.
Mission: The mission of the Society of Biological Psychiatry is to:
1.     Promote excellence in research investigating the nature, causes, mechanisms, and treatments of disorders of thought, emotion, and behavior.

  • Goal: Develop award program specifically targeting examples of research excellence in biological psychiatry.
  • Goal: Increase the quality of our annual meeting materials.

2.     Foster development of investigators in psychiatry.

  • Goal: Convert current young investigator and mentoring programs into a more deliberate developmental pipeline across the career lifespan.

3.     Educate young scientists and clinicians about the biological underpinnings of psychiatric disorders.

  • Goal: Create a program re: neuroscience basis of mental illness that penetrates 90% of the residency programs nationally.

4.     Disseminate the highest quality knowledge regarding the scientific basis of psychiatry.

  • Goal: Create a dissemination program for reaching a wider audience.
  • Goal: Maintain high quality and improve impact factor for Journals.

We are certainly interested in member input, so please don’t hesitate to drop me any comments. We are in an exciting time for SOBP and hope that you share that enthusiasm. If you are not a member, please join!

Best Wishes

Steve Strakowski, MD
Founding Chair, Department of Psychiatry
Professor of Psychiatry, Psychology & Educational Psychology
Dell Medical School, University of Texas-Austin

Disclaimer:  The opinions expressed in these editorials are those of the individual authors and do not necessarily reflect the position of the Society of Biological Psychiatry, its officers, or members.

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