Board of Directors

NYABPsi Board of Directors

President

Dana L. Collins, PhD

I am a licensed counseling psychologist committed to the empowerment of marginalized individuals and communities, promoting social and racial justice, raising awareness about mental health and reducing stigma, addressing trauma, and healing through alternative methods. I have provided direct mental health services to youths, adults, and families, and particularly enjoy working with youths of Color. I have also conducted, presented, and published research on a wide range of topics related to race, including racial identity development, and the ways people understand and discuss race. I’m originally from Oakland, CA, and received my B.A. in psychology from Spelman College, my M.S. in counseling and counselor education from Indiana University, and my PhD in counseling psychology from Boston College. I recently relocated to New York and work with adults who face mental health barriers to employment. Before being elected as President, I served as President-elect for the New York chapter of the Association of Black Psychologists.It is truly an honor, privilege and gift to serve and lead, and I’m excited about the ways that NYABPsi will continue to grow and inspire our communities.


Treasurer

Lorie Nicholas, PhD

Dr. Nicholas has served in the field as a Clinical Psychologist for over twenty-five years. Dr. Nicholas also serves as an Adjunct Professor in the Department of Law & Police Science and Criminal Justice Administration at John Jay College of Criminal Justice (CUNY). She holds a doctorate in Clinical-Community Psychology. She served as NYABPsi’s Treasurer during the 2019-2020 term.


Members-At-Large

Nadege Apoleon, PhD


Dr. Apoleon obtained her undergraduate degree in Public Health and International Affairs from Rutgers University. She went on to obtain a master’s degree in Public Health from Boston University. Dr. Apoleon received her doctorate in clinical psychology from Nova Southeastern University. She currently works as a psychologist for one of the federal agencies of the Justice Department. Her training and interests in psychology are in the fields of forensic and correctional psychology, neuropsychology, addiction (food, substance and gambling), and health psychology. She provides individual and group services. Aside from her aforementioned interests, Dr. Apoleon volunteers her time working with youth programs in her community. She also works with religious and community organizations providing services to members of the Haitian community. Dr. Apoleon is fluent in Creole and has working knowledge of French.

Jamila Codrington, PhD


Dr. Jamila Codrington is a New York state-licensed psychologist specializing in children, adolescents, and families. She is the founder and CEO of Asili Services, Inc., designed to provide holistic and consultation services and empower communities of African descent by raising awareness of mental health, education, and social justice issues. For over 15 years, Dr. Codrington has served as the Supervising Psychologist at Astor Services for Children and Families. She is also an Adjunct Professor at New York Theological Seminary. Dr. Codrington is a Past President of the New York Association of Black Psychologists and has served on the Board of Directors for 13 years, chairing the Legislative and Social Action Committee. She was awarded the 2010-2011 distinguished Bobby E. Wright Award by the Association of Black Psychologists for her exemplary commitment to community service and empowerment. Dr. Codrington earned her Ph.D. in Counseling Psychology at the University of Maryland at College Park and has published in professional journals including the Journal of Multicultural Counseling and Development, Dreaming, and Cultural Studies of Science Education, as well as a book chapter in Helping Beyond the 50-Minute Hour: Therapists Involved in Meaningful Social Action. Dr. Codrington has served on the Association of Black Psychologists’ Public Policy Committee and co-authored the Association’s position paper on Special Education and the Mis-education of African American Children.  

Denise Hinds-Zaami, Exec. Ed.D

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I grew up in the housing projects of Brooklyn, New York, and have stayed in Texas, Atlanta, North Carolina, Pennsylvania, Brazil, and Morocco. I’ve traveled to countries on every continent, including Antarctica. My educational background: BA in Psychology from the City College of New York: MS in Social Work from Columbia University; MA in Psychology from The University of Texas at Austin; Doctorate in Education (Exec. Ed.D.) from Seton Hall University (NJ). I attended the Instituto Joaquim Nabuco in Recife, Brazil.Much of my life’s work has been as a psychologist, a counselor, a psychotherapist, a social work supervisor, a mental health coordinator and director, an advocate, and an educator teaching preschool through university levels in New York and beyond. I worked most recently as a Psychologist for New York State. My electronic poster presentation at the July 2012 Convention of The International Congress of Psychologists, in South Africa, was entitled “Psychological Constructs of Healing and Survival from Africa and Its Diaspora”, under the category “Psychology Serving Humanity”.  

Roderick Hurley (Graduate Student Member-at-Large)

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Roderick Hurley is a 4th-year doctoral student in Critical Social/Personality Psychology at The Graduate Center, CUNY. His research investigates the role of music in personal development and community building. He has served as graduate student board member for the past two years, having joined NYABPsi as an undergraduate at Medgar Evers College. Rod currently serves on the communications committee and led our recent website upgrade project. 

Aaron Irons (Undergraduate Student Member-at-Large)


I am a psychology student in my last year at SUNY Old Westbury. I am a Patient Access Service Representative at Zucker Hillside Hospital. I engage in a fair amount of political activism, including Black Lives Matter protests, and phone banking for political campaigns. I have previously volunteered at the Youth Justice Board, an organization dedicated to providing change to underserved communities by combining the perspectives of young people from across New York City. I’m interested in conducting research on why many other individuals are not as politically active and sometimes vote or work against their interests. My career aspiration is to become a clinical psychologist and provide counseling to adolescents who may need intervention.

Lavon Johnson, CPA

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Lavon grew up on the south side of Chicago. She graduated from Michigan State University (MSU) in 2014 with her undergraduate degree in Accounting and a specialization in Information Technology. In 2015 she graduated with her Master’s degree in Public and Corporate Accounting and Information Systems. She is an active Certified Public Accountant (CPA) in both Illinois and New York. Lavon started her full-time career with a Big 4 accounting firm. Recently, Lavon transitioned from that firm to a management consulting firm where she practices financial services management consulting. During the tax season, Lavon is a Live CPA for a large, software-based, self-prepared, tax preparation service. Lavon also recently started a nonprofit geared towards empowerment for all and mentorship for young girls and boys in NYC underrepresented communities. Lavon loves mentoring and giving back to her community through serving and she continues to be actively involved with various community initiatives. Additional community organizations Lavon is involved with include Volunteer Income Tax group in partnership with NABA during the winter months where she is an advanced preparer of tax returns for low-income individuals and families in the NYC area, and when needed, a quality reviewer for the returns. She enjoys any sports (whether she’s good at them or not; she just likes to have fun and be active!) and traveling the world. Fun fact about Lavon is that while in South Africa she rode an Ostrich! 

Maudry-Beverly Lashley, PhD

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Maudry-Beverley Lashley is a tenured Professor and Chair of the Department of Psychology at Medgar Evers College (CUNY). She is a clinical/developmental psychologist whose research and clinical skills are based on a research/practitioner model. She earned a doctorate from Howard University, Washington DC, and obtained both her Masters and Bachelor’s from Hunter College, (CUNY). She has worked in the areas of substance abuse, juvenile offenders, and clients/ patients who have suffered from a variety of mental health challenges, domestic violence. She has published in several peer-reviewed journals, popular magazines, and two book chapters, and has presented at several conferences both in the US and in the Caribbean. Her areas of research include examining a variety of issues pertaining to family, particularly child care issues, family rituals affecting the Black community, ways in which single mothers are resilient in the face of personal and social stress, and cardiovascular issues. 

Alice Shephard, PhD

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Alice Shepard is a Faculty Counselor in the SEEK Department at the City College of New York. She holds a BA from Brown University and a PhD in Clinical Psychology from the CUNY Graduate Center. Dr. Shepard is the Past President of the New York State Psychological Association Group Therapy Division. She began her career at CUNY in 1999. Dr. Shepard has a long history of working with first-generation college students, adult learners, and recent immigrants. She is a supervisor for the CCNY Clinical Psychology Doctoral Program. Dr. Shepard is also the founder of a group therapy practice, Mirielle Therapy Practice PLLC, in New York City.

Tanya White- Davis, PsyD


Dr. Tanya White-Davis is a Clinical Psychologist who has worked in the field of primary care psychology for over a decade. She is a current board member and past president of the New York Association of Black Psychologists. Dr. White-Davis earned her degree with a concentration in Health Psychology from Nova Southeastern University. She completed a two year post-doctoral fellowship in Primary Care Family Psychology with a Pediatric Psychology track at the University of Rochester. She also completed the Behavioral Science Family Educators Fellowship program within the national Society for Teachers of Family Medicine which has enhanced her work in graduate medical education. She is director of the Division of Primary Care Behavioral Health Education, and a full-time faculty member in the Department of Family and Social Medicine at Montefiore Medical Center/Albert Einstein College of Medicine in the Bronx. In this position, Dr. White-Davis teaches and manages the behavioral health education within the Family Medicine, Social Pediatric, andPrimary Care Social Internal Medicine Residency programs. Additionally, she teaches and supervises primary care psychology trainees in the Advanced Primary Care Psychology Fellowship and Primary Care Psychology Externship programs. Dr. White-Davis has provided primary care psychotherapy services to children, adolescents, and families of the Bronx, with professional interests in bullying, race and racism, family systems and empowerment, primary care psychology, and health disparities.

Lisa Whitten, PhD


Dr. Whitten earned her Ph.D. in Clinical Psychology from the Derner School of Psychology at Adelphi University in 1982. She has been active in the Association of Black Psychologists for over 35 years, serving five terms as President of the New York chapter. She is currently co-chair of the national Ethics Committee. In 2009, she was honored by the organization with the Distinguished Psychologist Award for her scholarship, and her service, which focused on engaging and empowering student members.Since 1986, Dr. Whitten has been a faculty member in the Psychology Department at the State University of New York, College at Old Westbury since 1986. For nine years, she developed programs designed to reduce the stigma of disability as Director of the Office of Services for Students with Disabilities. Her scholarly work focuses on bringing race and culture to the center of the psychology curriculum, the challenges of teaching about race, and on survival guilt in African American college students. Dr. Whitten has consulted with numerous colleges and medical schools on the role of culture in health care, teaching about diversity, and enhancing the success of African American and Latinx medical students.

 OVERVIEW OF BOARD ROLES AND RESPONSIBILITIES 

The NYABPsi Board generally meets on the last weekend of each month. The meetings usually take place in person but are temporarily being held via Zoom teleconference. Board members are required to join or chair at least one committee (e.g., Program Development Committee, Legislative and Social Action Committee, Membership Committee, etc.). The committees work primarily through teleconferences and electronic communication. All Board members must be active (paid membership on both the local and national level) during their term of service. Candidates for election for a Board position must also be a paid member at the time of nomination. The information below on Board member responsibilities is taken from our NYABPsi Bylaws. 

BOARD OF DIRECTORS: The Board of Directors of the NYABPsi shall be the administrative and executive body of the Association and shall exercise general supervision and control over the property, business and other affairs of the NYABPsi. All Directors of the NYABPsi shall be members in good standing of NYABPsi. The Board of Directors of NYABPsi shall consist of the President, the President-Elect, the Immediate Past President, the Secretary, and the Treasurer, as officers of the NYABPsi, and of 10 members-at-large of NYABPsi, elected by the members of the NYABPsi. 

OFFICERS: The officers of NYABPsi shall be a President, a President Elect, the Immediate Past-President, a Secretary and a Treasurer. All officers of the NYABPsi shall be members in good standing of the NYABPsi. The terms of the office of the President, President-Elect, and Immediate Past-President shall be one year. The terms of the office of the Secretary and Treasurer shall be two years. 

Officer Duties

President 
It shall be the duty of the President to preside at all meetings of the NYABPsi and of the Board of Directors, to countersign all contracts and other instruments affecting the affairs f the Association, and to exercise general supervision over the affairs of the NYABPsi. She/he shall be an ex-officio member of all committees of the NYABPsi. The President only shall undertake or assume the authority to act as a representative of NYABPsi, except upon authorization of the Board of Directors of the NYABPsi. The President position is a one year term. Presidential tenure shall be limited to two consecutive terms of office. 

President-Elect 
It shall be the duty of the President-Elect to assume and perform the duties of the President in the event of the absence or incapacity or resignation of the President. The President-Elect position is a one year term. 

Secretary 
It shall be the duty of the Secretary of the NYABPsi to keep the records of all meetings of the Association and of the Board of Directors, and to keep records of all other official documents and reports of the NYABPsi. In the event of the extended absence, incapacity or resignation of the Treasurer of the Association, the Secretary is authorized to sign checks or drafts upon the funds of the Association and to perform such other duties incident to the office of the Treasurer, until such time as a successor to the Treasurer shall be selected. The Secretary will also manage, in collaboration with the President (the official correspondence of the Association), calls for and notices of meetings and all correspondence related to NYABPsi. 

Treasurer 
It shall be the duty of the Treasurer to have custody of the funds of the NYABPsi. These funds shall be deposited in the name of the Association at such bank or banks as the Board of Directors of the NYABPsi shall direct. The Treasurer shall arrange for the collection of dues and other monies due to the NYABPsi and shall have authority to sign checks and drafts on behalf of the NYABPsi, upon authorization of the President, as provided for in this Constitution and By-Laws and by action of the Board of Directors of members of the NYABPsi in proper meeting. He/she shall have such additional duties as are described in Article IX of the By-Laws. 

Member-At-Large 
Members-at-large are regular members of the Board of Directors, who do not hold one of the aforementioned officer positions. There are 2 Graduate Student and 2 Undergraduate Student positions included within this position.