Austin Group Psychotherapy Society

Letter from the President - 2021

Monday, December 20, 2021 3:00 PM | Scott Phillips

Dear friends & colleagues,

This message marks the last time I will write to you as President. It’s been a challenging past two years for us all and it’s been an honor and a privilege working with such a great Board. I certainly had different expectations about what our organization would be navigating when I started this role. Though I would have liked to be working on different priorities, l am quite proud of what we have accomplished together. 

In a quick pivot the board successfully transitioned to provide events and training online. Our Board successfully gave energy to maintaining our connections and continuing to develop as an organization. We provided more events with a focus on the impact of diversity and difference. We welcomed a large cohort of scholarship recipients. We transitioned to a new website that allows better membership management and removes the need for technical skills on our board. We continue to be financially sound. We continue to grow our numbers and welcome new members. Shifting and maintaining all this during a pandemic is a testament to the Board and to our organization.

What’s Next

I am excited what comes next for AGPS!  I warmly welcome Pierre Choucroun, LPC, CGP as our new President in January! Pierre has a strong group practice, a creative clinical mind, and a deep commitment to group therapy. He brings fresh eyes and ideas along with patience in his leadership to the Board. His value for increasing awareness and access to great group therapy training here in Austin will continue our growth. 

Join me in welcoming the following members to our Board of Directors. They have been recommended by the Nominating committee and officially elected by our membership.

  • Treasurer: Steve Cheney, MA, LPC

  • Member-at-Large: Monrovia Van Hoose, LCSW (Institutes Chair)

  • Member-at-Large: Donna Rich, LCSW (Events Co-Chair)

  • Member-at-Large: Allen Lambert, LCSW, CGP (Events Co-Chair)

  • Member-at-Large: Dana Reichman, LMSW (Development Chair) 

Continuing on the Board:

  • President: Pierre Choucroun, PhD, LPC, CGP

  • Past-President: Scott Phillips, LMFT, CGP

  • Secretary: Courtney Stollon, LCSW, LCDC

  • Member-at-Large: Patty Olwell, MA, LPC, CGP (Marketing Chair)

  • Member-at-Large: Stacy Spencer, LCSW-S (Diversity, Equity, Inclusion Chair)

With Appreciation

As I transition into an advisory role as Past-President, I’m acutely aware of the contributions of our Board members and leaders that made these challenging past two years a success. Send them a message or say thank you when you connect with them again. 

Rolling off the Board:

  • Treasurer: Rhea Pledger, LPC, CGP (2020-2021)

  • Member-at-Large: Kayle Evans, LCSW-S, LCDC (Programming Chair, 2018-2021)

  • Member-at-Large: Charles Couchman, PhD (Institutes Chair, Editing Chair, 2018-2021)

  • Member-at-Large: Kristen Wicke, LPC, CGP (Development Chair, 2020-2021)

  • Member-at-Large: Bree McDaniel, LCSW (Membership Chair, 2020-2021)

Special thanks for the work of Annual Conference Chair   Laura Ebady & Committee members Aaron Bandy, Courtney Stollon, & Michael O’Donnell for facilitating a powerful learning experience   Katherine Barnhill has done an outstanding job as CEU Chair. Our Nominating Committee Chair  Anna Graybeal  & committee members  Lavanya Shankar   and  Jason Sugg have done wonderful work identifying our next leaders.

Our leadership is consistently made stronger with fresh perspectives and diverse interests - consider enriching your group community by serving on a committee, a project, or the Board! Committees and projects offer a great way to get to know other leaders or for long time members to get reconnected and to give back. We continue to look for a good fit to fill our Membership chair for the coming year - reach out to Pierre Choucroun with any recommendations or interest (

We hope to see you on Friday January 14, 2022 at our AGPS Annual Business Meeting and Small Group Breakouts “Returning to the office?: Practical, Ethical, and Emotional Considerations”. 

All the best - and Happy Holidays!

Scott Phillips, LMFT, CGP

Austin Group Psychotherapy Society


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