by James Pawelski, Ph.D. , Executive Director (Volunteer)

Ten years ago, a small group of volunteers with a shared interest in positive psychology set out to create an international membership association where scholars, practitioners, and students could contribute to the long-term growth of the field.

Ten years later, we can be proud of what we have accomplished. Working together, we have advanced the science and evidence-based application of positive psychology and created opportunities to learn and connect. Some highlights include:

  • Hosting five World Congresses on Positive Psychology that welcomed some 6,000 attendees from more than 50 countries
  • Honoring 84 exceptional members with leadership awards and student scholarships
  • Connecting more than 1,000 members in IPPA’s five divisions, focusing on students, work and organizations, clinical psychology, positive health and wellness, and positive education
  • Producing more than 40 webinars with experts in the Positive Psychology Leader Series, thanks to founder and host, David J. Pollay
  • Developing an online Learning Library of resources including 200+ member presentations
  • Providing support for nearly 20 regional positive psychology and basic research conferences around the world

At the 10th Anniversary Party

I am glad that we had the opportunity to celebrate these accomplishments recently at the Fifth World Congress at IPPA’s 10th Anniversary Party, where attendees socialized, networked, and enjoyed performances by the wonderfully talented Cirque Eloize.

Our collective accomplishments are remarkable, and we are working to ensure we have a strong infrastructure in place to achieve even more in the future. In the past year, IPPA has reshaped its Constitution and governance structure to ensure more balanced representation of our researcher and practitioner colleagues and prepare us for the next decade of growth. Our Executive Committee has spent countless volunteer hours helping us develop and follow through on a strategic plan, and we have welcomed 40 volunteer division leaders who are creating new resources and rigorous standards for our field.

All of IPPA’s past and future can be attributed to the efforts of its volunteers. IPPA was started as, and continues to be, a volunteer-led organization, and we are endlessly grateful for the time, talent, and expertise contributed by those volunteers from all levels of the organization.

Reflecting on all we have achieved together, I am filled with a sense of awe and gratitude for the friendship and fellowship that IPPA inspires. Please join me in expressing gratitude toward those who have served, and I invite you to consider how you can get involved yourself, finding ways to make your own contributions to this community in a manner that leverages your strengths.

I look forward to keeping the connections going throughout the year.