2011 IPPA Awards Program Winners

IPPA’s Awards Program began in 2011 when the Executive Committee of the Board of Directors honored Mihaly Csikszentmihalyi, Ed Diener, Raymond Fowler, Christopher Peterson, Martin Seligman, and George Vaillant with the first Fellow Award.


The Fellow Award confers the title of Fellow on IPPA members who have contributed most significantly to the development of the association and advancement of knowledge in their specific field either through research or practice.

IPPA Fellows 2011

mihaly2Mihaly Csikszentmihalyi Ph.D. 

Professor Csikszentmihalyi is the director of the Quality of Life Research Center (QLRC) at Claremont Graduate University. The QLRC-as described on the Claremont website-is a non-profit research institute that studies “Positive Psychology”; that is, human strengths such as optimism, creativity, intrinsic motivation, and responsibility.

Professor Csikszentmihalyi is a member of the American Academy of Education, the American Academy of Arts and Sciences, and the National Academy of Leisure Studies. He is the author of numerous books: Flow: The Psychology of Optimal Experience; The Evolving Self: A Psychology for the Third Millenium; Creativity: Flow and the Psychology of Discovery and Invention; Finding Flow: The Psychology of Engagement with Everyday Life; Good Work: When Excellence and Ethics Meet; Good Business: Flow, Leadership and the Making of Meaning.


Ed_DienerEd Diener Ph.D.

Ed Diener was a professor at the University of Illinois from 1974 until 2008 and is now Professor Emeritus, and a Senior Scientist for the Gallup Organization. Diener is now also a Professor of Psychology at both the University of Virginia and University of Utah. He was the president of three scientific societies and the editor of Journal of Personality and Social Psychology. Diener was the founding editor of Perspectives on Psychological Science and a co-founder of Journal of Happiness Studies. He has over 340 publications and 110,000 citations of his work, and has been awarded many of the top scientific recognitions in psychology, as well as honorary doctorates. Diener explores the personality and cultural influences on SWB, as well as the influences of income on well-being. He works on the development and validation of diverse measures of SWB. He recently has been exploring the beneficial effects of subjective well-being on health, social relationships, productivity, and citizenship. Diener spearheaded the drive to use national accounts of subjective well-being for policy purposes. In 2000 Diener proposed that nations establish national accounts of well-being, and he has a number of publications explaining and defending this idea.


Raymond Fowler, Ph.D. 

Raymond D. Fowler was an American psychologist and Professor Emeritus of the University of Alabama. He was president of the American Psychological Association (1988) and served as APA’s executive vice president and chief executive officer (CEO) from 1989 to 2003. His academic contributions spanned more than four decades, from innovative work on personality assessment in the 1960s to his role as a leading voice for the study of positive health in the early years of positive psychology.  Dr. Fowler conceived of the idea for the International Positive Psychology Association in 2006 and International Positive Psychology Association and served as Senior Advisor to the Executive Committee in the first years of the Association.


Christopher-PetersonChristopher Peterson, Ph.D.

Christopher Peterson was the Arthur F. Thurnau professor of psychology at the University of Michigan in Ann ArborMichigan and the former chair of the clinical psychology area. He was science director of the VIA Institute on Character, and co-author of Character Strengths and Virtues for the classification of character strengths.[2] He is noted for his work in the study of optimismhealthcharacterwell-being and one of the founders of positive psychology.[3][4] In 2010, Dr. Peterson won the 2010 Golden Apple Award – the most prestigious teaching award at the University of Michigan. After his untimely death in 2012, IPPA created the Christopher J. Peterson Golden Medal Award, the highest honor the organization bestows.


Martin Seligman, Ph.D.

Martin E.P. Seligman is the Zellerbach Family professor of psychology and director of the Positive Psychology Center at the University of Pennsylvania, where he focuses on positive psychology, learned helplessness, depression, ethno-political conflict, and optimism. He is a best-selling author of several books including, most recently, Flourish. He received the American Psychological Society’s William James Fellow Award for basic science and Cattell Award for the application of science, and two Distinguished Scientific Contribution awards from the American Psychological Association. In 1996, Seligman was elected president of the American Psychological Association by the largest vote in modern history. His current mission is the attempt to transform social science to work on the best things in life—virtue, positive emotion, good relationships, and positive institutions—and not just on healing pathology.


VaillantGeorge Vaillant, Ph.D.

Dr. Vaillant is a Professor of Psychiatry at Harvard Medical School and the Department of Psychiatry, Massachusetts General Hospital. He is graduate of Harvard College and Harvard Medical School; Dr. Vaillant did his psychiatric residency at the Massachusetts Mental Health Center. He has spent his research career charting adult development, the importance of involuntary coping mechanisms, and recovery from alcoholism. From 1970 to 2005 he was Director of the Study of Adult Development at the Harvard University Health Service. The study is arguably the longest (75 years) prospective psychosocial and medical study of males in the world. At age 80 he is now the beneficiary of his own research.

More recently Vaillant has been interested in positive emotions and their relationship to positive psychology.

In 2000 he became a founding member of positive psychology. He has been a Fellow at the Center for the Advanced Study in the Behavioral Sciences, a past Class A (nonalcoholic trustee) of Alcoholics Anonymous and is a Fellow of the International Positive Psychology Association. He has received the Jellinek Memorial Award and American Psychiatric Association Distinguished Service Award.

His published works include Adaptation to Life, 1977, The Natural History of Alcoholism-Revisited, 1995, Aging Well, 2002, Spiritual Evolution, 2008 and Triumphs of Experience, 2012.