American Board of Geropsychology
ARTICLE I: Name and Composition of the Board
The name of the Specialty Board shall be the American Board of Geropsychology (ABGERO). Unless decided otherwise in the future by a majority vote of the board certified members of the ABGERO, the ABGERO shall be affiliated with the American Board of Professional Psychology (ABPP) and subscribe to the bylaws of ABPP. Nothing in these bylaws shall be in conflict with the bylaws of ABPP. Certificates authorized by the ABGERO shall be issued jointly with ABPP and holders of such certificates shall be considered as having been awarded a certificate by both ABGERO and ABPP.
ARTICLE II: Purpose
ABGERO’s mission is to promote competence in geropsychology by developing a mechanism to examine individuals to determine competence in the delivery of assessment, intervention, and consultation services to older adults.
To determine whether applicants for ABGERO board certification who have met ABPP generic requirements also meet ABGERO’s eligibility requirements for candidacy, and to conduct examinations to determine whether such candidates meet ABGERO’s criteria for board certification.
To award such certification in the field of geropsychology (and if decided upon its subspecialties) to qualified applicants, and to maintain a registry of holders of such certificates.
To evaluate compliance with maintenance of certification requirements.
ARTICLE III: Composition and Responsibilities of the ABGERO Board of Directors (hereinafter referred to as “Board”)
Section 1 – Composition
The Board shall consist of fourteen ABGERO specialists. At least one member of the Board shall be an Early Career Psychologist (ECP), defined as less than 10 years after receipt of the doctoral degree. One Board member is a non-voting Past President Ex Officio. Members of the Board shall be elected to a term of four years by a majority vote of the members of the Board. The Board shall solicit nominations for each Board position from all board certified specialists in good standing in the specialty. The Board shall elect incoming members of the Board taking into account matters such as, but not limited to, the specific needs of the Board, the number of nominations a particular nominee receives, and the representation on the Board of diverse opinions and perspectives.
Section 2 – Terms of Office
Terms of office shall be staggered. No more than two successive terms for the same Board position shall be permitted any individual except (a) in cases where a sitting member of the Executive Council (defined in Article V, section 1 below)filled someone else’s term and then was re-elected twice, and (b) for the Examination Committee Chair whose continuity is important for operation of the examinations. A Board member who has completed 2 full terms must be off the Board for a period of 3 years before seeking re-election to the Board. The ECP can serve two consecutive four-year terms. An ECP not serving in the identified ECP position serves as any other board member. A term of office shall commence at the ABGERO annual meeting (typically held at the APA Convention) following the member’s election.
Section 3 – Unfilled Terms
In the event of a vacancy from the board, before the expiration of a member’s term, the Board shall, within 30 days, choose a successor for the unfilled portion of the term from among all specialists in good standing in the specialty.
Section 4 – Responsibilities
The Board shall have authority to issue from time to time, and thereafter to amend, rules and procedures relating to the issuance or revocation by the ABGERO of certificates of competence in the practice of geropsychology.
The Board shall have the authority to establish one or more regional committees on examination in geropsychology in order to reduce the travel costs of examiners and candidates.
The Board shall be vested with the management and control of the property, business, and affairs of the ABGERO. More specific responsibilities of Board members are described in Articles IV and V.
ARTICLE IV: Officers of the Board
The officers of the Board shall consist of a President, President-Elect, Immediate Past-President, Treasurer, Secretary, Examination Coordinator, and other officers and agents as may from time to time be elected by and from the Board.
The President, President-Elect, Immediate Past-President, Treasurer, and Secretary shall each be elected to serve for a term of two years. The Treasurer and Secretary may each serve an optional second 2-year term, but not more than two full successive terms in the same office. At its annual meeting, the Board shall elect a person to fill each of the offices named above whose term expires at the end of the year.
Any officer may be removed from office, with cause (i.e., policy or ethics code misconduct or significantly poor performance), by a three-fourths vote of the entire Board. If a vacancy occurs among the officers of the Board by reason of death, resignation, removal, or otherwise, that vacancy may be filled for the unexpired term by the Board.
The President shall preside at all meetings of the Board. The President shall (a) be the chief executive officer of the Board and ensure that all directives of the Board are carried out; (b) based on a vote of the Board, appoint members of all committees other than the Executive Council (Section IV., 1.), of which he or she shall be a voting member; (c) prepare, or cause to be prepared, an annual report of the Board’s business, activities, and affairs to be disseminated at the annual meeting of the Board and, thereafter, to the ABGERO specialist membership; and (d) have other duties as may from time to time be prescribed by the Board.
The President-Elect shall perform the duties and have the powers of the President during the absence or disability of the President.
The Immediate Past-President chairs the Nominations and Awards committees and performs other tasks as may be requested by the President or Board.
The Treasurer shall keep or cause to be kept records of all the financial affairs of the Board and ensure consistency with ABPP Central Office records. He or she shall process reimbursement requests and submit them to the ABPP Central Office for processing. He or she shall render an annual proposed budget, and report of prior year’s budget from time to time and upon demand by the Board or the President, and reports on all relevant matters related to his or her assigned duties and responsibilities.
The Secretary shall keep or cause to be kept minutes and records of all Board proceedings, of all meetings of the members, of all examinations, and of all certificates issued, and shall have custody of the Board’s seal and shall affix it when and wherever proper. The Secretary shall chair Ad Hoc Appeals Committees as needed (see Article V, Section 8).
ARTICLE V: Committees
Section 1- Executive Council
There shall be an Executive Council composed of the President, President-Elect, Immediate Past-President, Treasurer, Secretary, and Examination Coordinator. The duties of the Executive Council shall be to develop an agenda for the annual meeting and make recommendations to the Board for action.
Section 2 – Credentials Committee
The Examination Committee shall report to the Board and have the authority to develop and oversee candidate examination procedures on behalf of the Board. The Examination Committee shall be empowered to organize one or more regional oral examination teams to perform oral examinations in regions which are advantageous to the candidates, examiners, or the overall process as circumstances require.
The Examination Committee consists of a Chair and the following subcommittees and coordinators. The Examination Committee chair is an appointed position. The Chair serves as the Examination Coordinator [see subsection (c) below]. The Examination Committee Chair and subcommittee chairs are (re)appointed annually by the President based on a vote of the Board. Replacement of Examination Committee and subcommittee chairs or members, in the event of a vacancy, shall be made by the President based on a vote of the Board. The chair may, as needed, convene a subcommittee to develop Ethics vignettes and procedural guidelines for administering and grading the ethics component of the oral examination.
- Credentials Subcommittee. This subcommittee shall consist of a chair and at least two other board certified geropsychologists who are drawn from various professional backgrounds and are representative of the geropsychology community. This subcommittee shall have the authority to make an initial determination of an applicant’s eligibility for examination and shall report to the Examination Committee chair and Board as to the applicant’s eligibility. This subcommittee shall also have the responsibility to periodically review the Board’s guidelines for eligibility to be examined.
- Practice Sample (i.e., Professional Self-Study and Practice Samples) Subcommittee. This subcommittee shall consist of a chair and at least two other board certified geropsychologists. This subcommittee develops procedural guidelines for outlining necessary minimal criteria for practice samples, and reviews practice samples that have been submitted. This subcommittee reports to the Examination Committee Chair for approval of any procedural changes.
- Examination Coordinator. This Coordinator schedules oral examinations and selects and appoints oral examiners, observers, and trainees for the oral examinations. The Coordinator reviews observers’ and candidates’ reports to evaluate the performance of oral examiners.
Section 3 – Nominations Committee
The Immediate Past-President of the Board shall Chair the Nominations Committee; the current officers of the Board shall serve as the members of the committee. The Nominations Committee shall present candidates to the Board to fill expiring terms of all Board members at the annual meeting of the Board. The Nominations Committee shall solicit recommendations for Board nominations from all board certified specialists in good standing in the specialty. Nominees shall be elected to Board membership after a majority vote of the Board, and shall begin their terms January 1 of the following year.
Section 4 – Awards Committee
The Immediate Past-President shall chair the Awards Committee. The committee shall be comprised of the Executive Council members. The committee shall make recommendations to the Board for Awards. If more than one person is nominated for an award, a majority vote of the Board shall determine the award winner. The committee shall consider nominations from any board certified geropsychologist. The awards shall consist of the annual ABPP Specialty Award for Geropsychology, as well as any other awards as determined by the Board.
Section 4 – The Nominations Committee
The past president of ABGERO will be the Chair of the Nominations Committee; the current officers of the ABGERO will serve as the members of the committee. The Nominations Committee will present candidates to the Board to fill expiring terms of all Board members at the annual meeting of the Board. The Nominations Committee may receive recommendations for Board nominations from outside the Board. Nominees will be elected to Board membership after a majority vote of the Board, and will begin their terms at the end of the annual meeting following that election. Candidates for the Executive Council positions will be board members nominated by the Nominations Committee. The Board at the annual meeting will vote by majority rule to approve new Executive Council members and their terms will begin at the end of the annual meeting.
Section 5 – Maintenance of Certification (MOC) Committee
Board Certified Specialists who are certified after January 1, 2015 must successfully maintain their certificate every ten years. Board Certified Specialists who were certified before January 1, 2015 are encouraged to maintain their certificate through demonstration of ongoing competent practice every ten years, but may waive this obligation and maintain their certificate.
The MOC Committee is responsible for reviewing MOC submissions by ABGERO specialists and subspecialists, and for evaluating compliance with current criteria and standards approved by the ABGERO Board The MOC committee shall also advise the Board regarding possible revisions of the MOC criteria. The ABGERO President appoints a MOC Director and a minimum of three (3) members from the Board to serve on the MOC Committee.
Section 6 – Inclusion Committee
The Board values diversity and inclusivity among all persons, including the Board members and board certified specialists more broadly. The Inclusion Committee is responsible for promoting the Board’s commitment to diversity, broadly defined, and inclusiveness. The committee is comprised of a chair and at least 2 members who are board certified specialists in good standing in the specialty. Terms are for 3 years for the chair and members, with an optional reappointment for a 2nd term as determined by the President. Member terms shall be staggered.
Section 7 – Outreach Committee
The Outreach Committee is responsible for publicity and marketing, broadly defined, via technology (e.g., social media) and non-technological means. The committee shall also facilitate communication between the Board and the community of board certified geropsychologists. The committee is comprised of a chair and at least 2 members who are board certified specialists in good standing in the specialty. Terms are for 3 years for the chair and members, with an optional reappointment for a 2nd term as determined by the President. Member terms shall be staggered.
Section 8 – Ad Hoc Appeals Committee
An Ad Hoc Appeals Committee shall be convened on an as-needed basis by the President to review appeals (a) by applicants regarding not being approved as meeting the geropsychology-specific credentials criteria (as determined by the Credentials committee); (b) by candidates regarding not passing the Practice Sample review (as determined by the Practice Sample subcommittee); (c) by candidates regarding failing the Oral Examination (as determined by an appointed Oral Examination team); or (d) by specialists regarding failing the MOC review (as determined by the MOC Committee). This committee shall be chaired by the Secretary and shall consist of three (3) members of the ABGERO Board not already serving on the Examination Committee.
Section 9 – Subspecialty Committee (if sub-specialties are developed under ABGERO)
The Subspecialty Committee shall govern aspects of the subspecialty process, including the creation of subcommittees responsible for credential review, development and administration of a written examination (if required), and development and implementation of the practice sample review and oral examination procedures. The Board shall appoint a Chair of the Subspecialty Committee; members shall be selected by the Subspecialty Committee Chair with approval by the Board.
If the Board approves the designation of subspecialties within ABGERO, each subspecialty shall have an Examination subcommittee, the chair of which shall be appointed by the President in consultation with the Subspecialty Chair and Specialty Examination Committee Chair, with approval of the Board. This committee shall have the authority to make an initial determination of an applicant’s eligibility for subspecialty examination based on a credentials review, as well as develop the practice sample and oral exam requirements.
If the Board approves the designation of subspecialties of ABGERO and a written exam is determined to be a necessary part of the examination process, the Subspecialty Written Examination Subcommittee shall work with the specialty Written Examination Subcommittee (Article V, Section 2, subsection e) to develop the rubrics and write, edit, develop and test item banks for the subspecialty written examination. This subcommittee shall report to the Examination Committee and Board for approval of any procedural changes.
ARTICLE VI: Meetings
Meetings of the Board shall be held quarterly at a time and place to be fixed by the Board. The Board may schedule additional meetings as may be required to conduct its work. Meetings may be held in person or via telecommunications.
Special meetings of the Board may be called by the President or upon the written request, made to the President, of at least one-third of the members of the Board. The President shall have the right to fix the place, date, and time of such special meetings. Electronic participation (e.g., via telephone) may be sufficient upon approval of the President.
A majority of the members of the Board shall constitute a quorum for the transaction of business of the ABGERO. Except as herein may be specifically otherwise provided, the votes of a majority of the quorum shall be sufficient to pass upon any business of the ABGERO. The President does not vote unless there is a tie, at which time the President casts the deciding vote.
The Board shall be authorized to carry on the business of the ABGERO by electronic mail or mail ballot between meetings. In such instance, it shall require an affirmative vote of a majority of the Board members to pass upon any business of the ABGERO.
ARTICLE VII: Income and Properties
The income and properties of the ABGERO, whenever and however derived, shall be applied solely toward promoting the purposes of the ABGERO as set forth in the bylaws of ABGERO. No portion of the income or properties shall be paid or transferred directly or indirectly by way of dividend, bonus, or otherwise by way of profit to members of the ABGERO, provided that nothing contained herein shall prevent proper remuneration to any officer or to any servant of the ABGERO or to any member for any services actually rendered to the ABGERO, nor repayment to any member for traveling expenses actually incurred in connection with the proper and necessary business of the ABGERO.
ARTICLE VIII: Liabilities of the Board of Directors
No member of the Board or other officer or servant of the ABGERO shall be liable for the accounts, receipts, neglects, or defaults of any other like members or agent, or for joining in any receipt or other act of conformity, or for any loss or expense happening to the ABGERO through the insufficiency or deficiency of any security in or upon which any of the money of the ABGERO shall be invested or for any loss or damage arising from the bankruptcy, insolvency, or tortious act of any person with whom any monies, securities, or effects shall be deposited, or from any loss or damage occasioned by an error of judgment of oversight, or for any other loss, damage, or misfortune whatever which shall happen in the execution of the official duties or in the relation thereto, unless the same happened through dishonesty, willful neglect, or default.
ARTICLE IX: Amendments
Amendments to these bylaws may be made by a two-thirds majority vote of the Board.
ARTICLE X: Ethical Principles
The ethical principles of ABGERO will be those adopted by ABPP.