Thoughts and Thanks as I Retire as Registrar & Executive Director

Dear Colleagues and Friends,

It’s hard for me to believe that after so many years with the College I’m now writing my last newsletter article.  I want to take this opportunity to express my thanks and appreciation to all of you who have made this journey so positive and memorable. 

When I joined the College of Psychologists as Director of Professional Affairs, I never could have predicted that my career path would lead me to remain at the College for over 26 years; culminating with the privilege of being Registrar & Executive Director of this very important and critical organization.  Over the years, my activities have encompassed almost all aspects of College work; certainly a highlight of which has been my Tricky Issues presentations.  Beginning as an experiment at a very early Barbara Wand Seminar, I had no idea Tricky Issues would catch on the way it did, or that it would become my signature piece of professional work.  These presentations offered me the opportunity to meet with so many members and graduate students preparing to become members, and engage in discussions of ethics, jurisprudence and complex issues encountered in professional practice, in an interesting, and hopefully, enjoyable way. 

Of all the opportunities my work at the College afforded me, I know that I will miss most the privilege of meeting so many of you.  In addition to getting to know so many members of the College in Ontario, I  also had the opportunity to work with psychology regulators from across Canada and the United States, sharing ideas about how regulatory bodies could work with and assist members as they strive to provide excellence of service.  I have also been fortunate to work with many highly committed individuals from other Ontario health Colleges as well as the Ministry of Health and the Ministry of Children, Youth and Community Services. All of these relationships mean so much to me and will not be forgotten.

It has been a great pleasure to work with so many professional and public members who have generously volunteered their time, over the years, to serve as Council and Committee members, Oral Examiners, Peer Assisted Reviewers and more, to assist the College in fulfilling its mandate to serve and protect the public interest.  I especially want to thank the many College Presidents with whom I’ve had the honour to work most closely.  Together, we have guided the College as it addressed a variety of issues; some much more difficult than others.

The responsibility of leading the College certainly is not a one-person job and I have been so fortunate to have had the support of excellent and dedicated staff. Over the years, the College has been able to attract very talented and conscientious individuals with whom I’ve had the privilege to work, and from whom, the privilege to learn. Without these people it would have been very difficult for me to fulfill my role as Registrar.  I especially must acknowledge my appreciation to my Senior Management Team which continues to provide strong and steady leadership. Thank you to Barry Gang, Caitlin O’Kelly, Lesia Mackanyn, Stephanie Morton  and Zimra Yetnikoff who have been with me for much of this journey and are deserving of credit for many of my successes.

As I leave this position, I envision a future for the College full of innovation and new opportunities. I look forward to hearing about the growth and promise which will come as Behaviour Analysts join Psychologists and Psychological Associates under the College’s umbrella.  I wish my successor Dr. Tony DeBono much success as he takes on this challenging role and I anticipate, that with the assistance of Dr. Wanda Towers, the current President, the transition will be smooth and productive.

LastIy, I’d be remiss if I didn’t express my sincere appreciation to all of you, the members, for all the work you do in providing the necessary, safe and effective services you offer to so many people in Ontario.  Thank you, as well, for the many very kind and generous words I have received in emails and cards and for your support and collegiality over the years.

My very best wishes to all of you,

Rick Morris, Ph.D., C.Psych.