Candidate Statements for Division 24. Society for Theoretical and Philosophical Psychology

Please note that the submission of a candidate statement was voluntary, so not all candidates listed on the ballot will have a statement.

Candidate: Gregg R. Henriques, PhD

Office: President-elect

Candidate Statement:

I am honored to be considered for president of the APA Division 24, Society for Theoretical and Philosophical Psychology. Over the past several years my involvement in the division has deepened, and I am happy to consider it my professional home, a place where I have made many lasting friendships and had endless stimulating conversations. During this period, I have worked on the Executive Committee in the role of Membership Chair, represented the Division at APA Conferences, maintained an active presence on the list serve, served as a member of the Division’s Ethics Review of the Hoffman Report, and had a leading role developing the midwinter programs for the past three years.

I believe I will make for an effective president. I have broad familiarity with the many facets of the field. I have authored many peer reviewed articles, three special journal issues, and a book, A New Unified Theory of Psychology, and am a regular blogger on Psychology Today. I was recently voted to be an APA Fellow through the Division.

As president of the Society for Theoretical and Philosophical Psychology, I will work to continue advancing the society and will emphasize exploring the dialectical tensions between critical theory and constructive solutions and between fostering unity and embracing pluralism. I will be especially focused on how Division 24 can be a place for building effective conceptual bridges between science and practice. Thank you for your consideration.




Candidate: Stephen C. Yanchar, PhD

Office: President-elect

Candidate Statement:

I am grateful to be nominated for president of the Society for Theoretical and Philosophical Psychology. I have long found the Society to be a place of scholarly excellence and warm collegiality. I see any opportunity to play a role in its leadership as an honor. I currently serve as secretary and have, in the past, acted as the annual convention program chair and, several times, as a member of the midwinter committee. My qualifications also include serving previously as associate editor for New Ideas in Psychology and currently as associate editor of the Journal of Theoretical and Philosophical Psychology and editorial board member of Issues in Religion and Psychotherapy. In my involvement in the Society, and in various leadership roles at my university, I have sought to be open to others and work collaboratively in response to the needs of the organization. This, of course, I would strive to do as president. I would also seek to facilitate the growth of diversity as we plan for a vibrant future. Finally, with others in the division, I have argued that examining underlying assumptions is a key aspect of critical thinking. As president, I would invite members to critically consider the Society’s future within APA and the field. What assumptions have allowed the Society to thrive? What assumptions should be reconsidered as we prepare to meet the challenges of the future? These questions I would ask Society members to consider as we continue to strive for excellence.




Candidate: Samuel D. Downs, PhD

Office: Treasurer

Candidate Statement:

Thank you for considering me as treasurer of the division. For about a year, I have been in conversation with Mary Beth Morrissey, our current treasure, on some budget related issues. This experience has prepared me for a role as treasurer.




Candidate: Michael Arfken, PhD

Office: Member-at-Large

Candidate Statement:

Dr. Michael Arfken is Associate Professor of Psychology at the University of Prince Edward Island. His scholarship focuses a range of issues surrounding social, environmental, and economic justice and had been featured in Handbook of Critical Psychology, Journal of Theoretical and Philosophical Psychology, Handbook of Critical Social Psychology, Encyclopedia of Critical Psychology, Social and Personality Psychology Compass, Annual Review of Critical Psychology, and American Psychologist. Michael’s theoretical and philosophical work explores a range of issues at the intersection of hermeneutic phenomenology and critical political economy. Against the background of this work, he has recently started to investigate the experience of people trying to carve out an existence beyond the boundaries of a competitive market society.

Michael has had an opportunity to present his work to Division 24 both at the APA Annual Convention and as a guest editor for a special issue of Journal of Theoretical and Philosophical Psychology that explored the philosophical foundations of modern social justice movements. He is also actively involved with members of the Division in planning the 2019 Mid-Winter Meeting.

As a Member-at-Large on the Division 24 Executive Committee, Michael would be interested in connecting a new generation of philosophical and theoretical scholars to established scholars within the Division. Through this outreach, he hopes to encourage our colleagues across the Association to recognize the importance of grappling with the philosophical and theoretical foundations of their various empirical investigations.




Candidate: Robert C. Bishop, PnD

Office: Member-at-Large

Candidate Statement:

I have been attending and presenting at Division 24 meetings for that past 20 years and believe that this division is well-positioned to address foundational issues in psychology as well as wider issues affecting society. To enrich our ability to address these two fronts I would like to see the division deepen philosophical and historical analysis not just to sharpen our critical edge, but also to strengthen our ability to present credible alternatives in addressing the problems underlying within and beyond mainstream psychology. I would like to help us find ways to engage with the work of philosophers and historians who care about the same questions Division 24 members do. To me this means finding ways to enable faculty members, practitioners and students to embark on deeper study of philosophical and historical work that is relevant to the concerns and work of the Division. It also means finding ways to increase the participation of philosophers and historians in our meetings whose work addresses issues and concerns relevant to our Division. If I’m elected, I would work to help Division 24 pursue ways to bring about these kinds of philosophical and historical enrichment to our work.