History

The following essay appeared first as an article1 in the Journal of Workplace  Behavioral Health and later as a chapter2 in Employee Assistance Programs in Higher Education.   Two lists appear at the end of the essay. The first is a list of those who served as IAEAPE officers since 1993; the second names the IAEAPE members who received recognition awards for their significant contributions to the association.

The History of the International Association of Employee Assistance Professionals (IAEAPE)

Joel Shapiro, Sally B. Philips

Abstract

This article provides an historical overview of the evolution of the International Association of Employee Assistance Professionals in Education (IAEAPE). The IAEAPE was developed in parallel with the introduction of employee assistance programs in higher education.

KEY WORDS: IAEAPE, EAP, Interrnational Association of Employee Assistance Professionals in Education

Joel Shapiro, MSW, was the Director of the University of Vermont Employee Assistance and Lifetime Wellness Programs.  He is now the Director of Human Resources Organizational Services at UVM> . Sally B. Philips, EdD, CEAP, was Director of the University of Miami Employee Assistance Program. Additional contributions to this article were made by William Mermis, Ph.D, and the late Fran Deats.

Address correspondence to: Joel Shapiro, MSW, University of Vermont, Employee Assistance Program, 466 South Prospect Street, Burlington, VT 05401-3534. Email: Joel.Shapiro@uvm.edu

Roots in Industrial Alcohol Programs
Employee Assistance programming expanded from industry to higher education with the development of three higher education employee assistance programs (EAPs) in the mid 1970s. During this time, the University of Delaware, Rutgers University, and the University of Missouri initiated programs to handle alcohol abuse by faculty and staff. In 1976, with the support of a National Institute of Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism (NIAA) grant, the University of Missouri sponsored the first of six conferences designed to assist institutions of higher education in establishing EAPs.

After the NIAA support ended in 1982, a number of individuals in EAPs in educational settings, including K-12, community colleges and universities, agreed to continue meeting to share ideas. Initially called “EAPs in Education” the group met from 1982 through 1992. They formally organized as an association in 1993: “The International Association of Employee Assistance Professionals in Education” (IAEAPE). The IAEAPE operates independently of other EAP associations. Currently the organization has over 150 members from 80 institutions.

Phases of Development

Phase One
In an article titled “The College and University EAP Network” (1990), IAEAPE member Dr. William Mermis described the several distinct phases of the development of EAPs in education which led to the formation of the IAEAPE.

The first phase occurred in the mid 1970’s. While business and industry were involved for many years with employee assistance programs (which often were primarily alcohol assistance programs), the same was not true for EAPs in educational settings. A crucial turning point in this development started in the mid 1970s.

A major force (leading to the development of EAPs in higher education) was the NIAAA grants made to the University of Missouri at Columbia during the years 1976 to 1981…. at the time of their first grant, there were probably less than 10 programs in higher education settings. (Mermis, 1990, p.34)

Annual Conferences
These first grants from NIAAA were part of a funding strategy to develop a network of colleges and universities EAPs. As a result of these grants, Drs. Richard Thorenson and Elizabeth Hosokawa of the University of Missouri at Columbia spearheaded a series of conferences beginning in August 1976 and continuing through 1981. The first conference occurred in Columbia, Missouri. Then, the conference site moved to other cities. These conference proceedings were the forerunner of the annual IAEAPE conferences that continues today. By 1990 approximately 200 programs existed in universities and colleges as a result of this initial seeding.

From the oral history we know these meetings established the tone of mutual support, information sharing and creative brainstorming which remain core values of IAEAPE. These individuals, responsible for operating EAPs in an academic setting recognized that operating within an academic culture created some unique practical and ethical issues. It has been well documented that the culture and structure of higher education, especially within the faculty, is having the flexibility of time and schedule to explore, conduct research, create innovative programs, investigate new ideas and develop new protocols…. The freedom to be creative that is essential to these activities can also provide protection for those who need assistance and are non productive members…. Because deteriorating job performance is more difficult to monitor and detect in terms of faculty performance especially at the level of tenured professor or dean, it can be less useful as a criterion on which to base a referral to an EAP. (Stoers-Scagg, 1999, p.36)

Additionally, the academic culture includes academically trained individuals performing managerial roles in a shared decision making context. Most campus communities are essentially mini-cities with the infrastructure needed to maintain housing, security, food and educational resources for its students, meaning a 24 hour staffed system. Many universities are affiliated with medical colleges and teaching hospitals, adding another population base with important needs to be served. Consequently, these programs serve a wide diversity of people and reflect several organizational sub cultures. Having a venue to discuss how to institute and successfully operate an EAP in a university or college setting became a vital component of the annual conferences.

Phase Two

The second phase of the development of EAPs in Higher Education, which eventually led to the formal establishment of IAEAPE, was a series of conferences coordinated with the annual Employee Assistance Professionals Association (EAPA) conference. Informally calling themselves “EAPs in Education,” the group met annually from 1982 to 1991. It became a tradition that the university from the host city took a key role in organizing the conference. The conference and gatherings would meet for the day or two preceding the national EAPA conference. These conferences continued the tradition of fostering discussion on issues pertinent to higher education and became a rich resource for networking and sharing information.

Other Concerns.
Simultaneously, the development of EAPs in K-12 education became organized and members from this group joined the IAEAPE and assumed some leadership positions. In addition, the association wrestled during this period with formally aligning itself with either EAPA or Employee Assistance Society of North America (EASNA).

Phase Three

The third phase began with the decision to formally organize “EAPs in Education” as IAEAPE (International Association of EAPs in Education). Dr. Polly Moutevelis Karris from the University of Maine was the organization’s President during this transition period.

Communication Modes
IAEAPE has grown and thrived during the past 12 years. The annual conference has provided a regular opportunity for sharing information and strategies. We developed a website (www.iaeape.org) with a section open to the public. The members-only section contains a wealth of information on presentations, policy development, trainings, responses to list serve polls, etc. A directory that compiled information on all members was published each year, as was a semi-annual newsletter. Since 2004 the IAEAPE directory has been on line at the web site. A list serve, spearheaded by Fran Deats from the University of Massachusetts, was started in 2001. It has provided another rich resource for sharing of information and support. It has allowed us to stay virtually connected to such an extent that the twice a year newsletter was discontinued in 2003.

Virtual Headquarters
Indeed, electronic technology has made it possible for this small association to carry on its business in a virtual setting. IAEAPE has no headquarters. Currently, the four-officer Board meets monthly through a conference call. The membership has access to these minutes via the members-only section of the web site. When input is needed from all the members, the officers communicate through the listserv instead of a convened meeting. The annual business meeting of the membership which is required by the Bylaws is scheduled during the annual conference. Thanks to long-standing cooperation with US Bank, checking account activity is done by mail, and statements are downloaded from the Internet. The TIAA-CREF saving account statements are also retrieved from the Internet. Each officer at the end of his or her term forwards to his or her replacement the essential documents that inform that office.

References

Mermis, William. (1990, February). The college and university EAP network, EAPA Exchange, 34-35.

Stoer-Scaggs, L. (1999). Employee assistance programs in higher education. In Oher, J. (Ed.), The employee assistance handbook . New York:  Wiley, 35-58.

*   *   *

1Shapiro, J. and Philips, S.B. (2006/2007). The evolution of the international association of employee assistance professionals in education (IAEAPE), Journal of Workplace Behavioral Health, 22(2/3), 1-5.

2Maiden, R.P. and Philips, S.B., (Eds) (2006/2007). Employee Assistance Programs in Higher Education. Binghamtom, NY: The Haworth Press.

IAEAPE Officers

Click here for Current Officers.

1993 

(then known as EAPs in Education)
President
Vice-President
Secretary
Treasurer
 
Polly Moutevelis
Karris
University of Maine
 
Ron Wheeler
University of Saskatchewan
Keith Brunshen
University of Michigan
Carol Bennett-Speight
University of Pennsylvania
 
Kathleen Beauchesne
Johns Hopkins University
1994
(chartered as International Association of EAPs in Education)
 
Polly Moutevelis
Karris
University of Maine
 
Ron Wheeler
University of Saskatchewan
Kathleen Beauchesne
Johns Hopkins University
 
Cheryl Riley
West Virginia University
1995 & 1996
 
Claire Fleming
New York University
 
Charlotte Sanborn
Dartmouth College
Kathleen Beauchesne
Johns Hopkins University
 
Cheryl Riley
West Virginia University
1997 & 1998
 
Charlene G. Gooch
Clifford A. Katz
University of Texas at Austin
 
David A. Rasch
Stanford University
 
David W. Johnson
University of Minnesota
1999 & 2000
 
David W. Johnson
University of Minnesota
Nancy Myers
University of Nebraska: Lincoln
 
David A. Rasch
Stanford University
 
Bruce C. Prevatt
Florida State University
2001 & 2002
 
Karen Semenuk
University of Michigan
 
John Franz
University of California - Fresno
 
Joan Rinner
University of Iowa
 
Tom Ruggieri
University of Maryland
 2003 & 2004
 
 
Sally Philips
University of Miami
 
 
Steve Pearson
University of Wisconsin
 
 
Tom Waldecker
University of Michigan
Tom Helma
Michigan State
(1/03-4/03)
Owen McKensie
University of Virginia
(5/03-12/04)
2005
President
President Elect
Secretary
Treasurer
Andy Silberman
Duke University
Linda Starr
Cornell University
Donna Buehler
Stony Brook University
Sally Philips
University of Miami
2006
Linda Starr
Cornell University
James Platt
Dartmouth College
Mary Remón
Jackson Health System
Sally Philips
University of Miami
2007
 
James Platt
Dartmouth College
 
Joel Shapiro
University of Vermonth
 
Mary Remón
Jackson Health System
John Hyatt
University of Texas
MD Anderson Cancer Center
2008
 
Joel Shapiro
University of Vermonth
 
Mary Remón
Jackson Health System
 
James Kendall
Vanderbilt University
John Hyatt
University of Texas
MD Anderson Cancer Center
2009
Mary Remón
Jackson Health System
Tom Waldecker
University of Michigan
James Kendall
Vanderbilt University
Jonathan Novello
Michigan State University
2010
President President-Elect Secretary Treasurer
Tom Waldecker
University of Michigan
Mary Wilkes
Florida State University
Paula Gomes
Emory University
Jonathan Novello
Michigan State University
 2011
Mary Wilkes
Florida State University
Eileen Fenrich
Georgetown University
Paula Gomes
Emory University
Orlando Gonzalez
University of Miami
2012
Eileen Fenrich
Georgetown University
Robert Meier
Ohio State University
Lib Edwards
Wake Forest Baptist Health
Orlando Gonzalez
University of Miami
2013
Robert Meier
Ohio State University
Olga Vera-Nesmith
University of Colorado
Lib Edwards
Wake Forest Baptist Health
Terry Nicotra
Duke University
2014
Olga Vera-Nesmith
University of Colorado
Jim Kendall
Vanderbilt University
Pilar Tamburrino
 University of Miami
Terry Nicotra
Duke University
2015
President President-Elect Secretary Treasurer
Jim Kendall
Vanderbilt University
Lib Edwards
Wake Forest Baptist Health
Pilar Tamburrino
University of Miami
Scott Embley
LSU
2016
President President-Elect Secretary Treasurer
Lib Edwards
Wake Forest Baptist Health
Terry Nicotra
Duke University
Clevevoya Jordan
Emory University
Scott Embley
LSU
2017
President President-Elect Secretary Treasurer
Terry Nicotra
Duke University
Orlando Gonzalez
University of Miami
Clevevoya Jordan
Emory University
Karen Brouhard
Boston University

 

 Bill Mermis Service Excellence Award

Bill IAEAPE created the Bill Mermis Service Excellence Award to give special recognition to those members who have given outstanding service to the organization.  This annual award is dedicated to the memory of Dr. Bill Mermis, who served in many professional roles over the years, most of that time in residence at Arizona State University, where he was founding Director of the Employee Assistance and Employee Wellness Programs.  His final appointment was as Program Head of the Human Health Studies Program.  Bill died on August 14, 2006, at the (very young) age of 71.
 
Bill was a visionary and a sublime networker whose dream was to advance the cause of human services for all.  Bill was a “People Grower,” someone who worked to encourage visionary networkers.  Bill has been described as a gentle giant – a caring and principled man who made himself available for those who were less experienced. He generously gave time, information, and advice.
A long-time member of ALMACA/EAPA, Bill was a founder of IAEAPE.  A frequent presenter at conferences, he engaged his audience in open discussion while fostering creativity. The ultimate mentor, he preferred teaching and networking to administration and politics.  This patriarch of IAEAPE never held a position as an officer within the organization, but his influence was great.
 
Bill was a man who loved to laugh, loved to teach, and mostly loved to make life better for all of us.  Bill will long be remembered for his familiar parting phrase, “to be continued” - a fitting epitaph, for as long as we have memories, Bill’s influence on our profession will live on.  In a continuation of his legacy, the Bill Mermis Service Excellence Award will, each year, recognize other outstanding members of IAEAPE for their contributions to the organization.
AWARD RECIPIENTS
2016- Jim Kendall
2015- Terry Nicotra
2014 - Paula Gomes                          
2013 - Steve Pearson        
2012 - Donna Buehler
2011 - Jonathan Novello
2010 - Mary Remón and Tom Ruggieri
2009 - Sally Philips
2008 - Teresa Kulper and Bruce Prevatt
2007 - Sally Philips
2006 - Andy Silberman and Tom Waldecker
2005 - John Franz
2004 - James Platt and Linda Starr
2003 - Lisa Dau
2002 - Sally Harvey and Fran Deats
2001 - Beverly Ford and David Johnson
2000 - Claire Fleming and Jim D’Artnay [Pioneer]
1999 - Charlotte Sanborn
1998 - Carol Hacker
1997 - Elizabeth Hosokawa and Bill Mermis
1996 - Polly Moutevelis-Burgess (formerly Polly Moutevelis Karris)
1989 - John Franz
(Year unknown) - Keith Bruhnsen

 

IAEAPE CONFERENCES

Year

Month and days

City

1999

10/18 - 20

Orlando, FL

2000

11/15 – 17

New York, NY

2001

10/25 - 27

Vancouver, Canada

2002

10/21 - 23

Boston, MA

2003

11/19 – 21

New Orleans, LA

2004

11/15 – 17

San Francisco, CA

2005

10/18 – 20

Philadelphia, PA

2006

10/3 – 5

Nashville, TN

2007

10/22 – 24

La Jolla, CA

2008

10/29 – 24

Atlanta, GA

2009

6/16, 9/16, 10/5, 11/4

Phone Conferences

2010

10/4 – 6

Tampa, FL

2011

10/24 - 26

Boulder, CO

2012

10/15 – 17

Annapolis, MD

2013

10/14 - 16

Scottsdale, AZ

2014

9/25 - 27

Orlando, FL

2015

9/24 - 26

San Diego, CA

2016 10/27-29 Chicago, IL