2019 Incoming SIG Leadership
Angela Fang, PhD – Incoming SIG Chair
The Neurocognitive Therapies and Translational Research SIG is leading the front in developing novel therapies and improving the CBT of the future. Our core mission is to bridge the link between basic and applied science in neuroscience and psychology, and my passion for this kind of scientific integration has made the SIG my professional home within ABCT since 2012. Being born in Taiwan and growing up in a Chinese American immigrant family, I was not accustomed to discussing mental health issues at the dinner table, much less brain contributions to mental illness. It has been through my graduate and postgraduate studies, clinical training, and interactions with SIG members, that I have learned how empowering it can be for patients and clinicians alike to understand how behavior can influence biology and vice versa, and also how these interactions can inform treatment decisions. I am currently Assistant Professor at MGH/Harvard Medical School and have focused my multidisciplinary research on understanding the neural and endocrine correlates of social cognitive mechanisms underlying anxiety and obsessive compulsive related disorders. In these populations, I have tested the effects of intranasal oxytocin on attention and trust behavior, and examined peripheral levels of oxytocin as a biomarker of social cognitive impairment. In my K award, I seek to examine whether the neural correlates of maladaptive self-focused attention serve as a predictor of treatment response to CBT. As clinician scientists, I believe we offer a unique vantage point to study the advancement of psychological treatments for mental disorders because we can bring first-hand knowledge of disorder heterogeneity and heterogeneity in treatment mechanisms to generate nuanced hypotheses about key treatment targets. As SIG chair, I would work toward creating a stronger neuroscience presence at ABCT by building up membership especially among trainees and junior investigators, as well as developing high-impact programming that will inspire interest in neurocognitive therapies across ABCT as a whole.
Andrew Peckham, PhD - Incoming SIG Treasurer and Membership Chair
The NTTR SIG has been my professional home since I entered the field, and I am excited to run for the position of Treasurer and Membership Chair. In this role, my goals would be to (1) continue growing our SIG’s membership within ABCT, (2) ensure that existing members can easily and consistently pay annual dues online, and (3) work with SIG leadership to advertise our SIG’s presence to colleagues outside of ABCT who may not be aware of this group. To achieve these goals, I would work diligently to advertise our SIG’s presence to other like-minded ABCT attendees (such as the Technology SIG), work with our website manager to continue building our capacity for online dues collection, and network with colleagues at meetings of other organizations such as Biological Psychiatry in order to gain new members who may not already attend ABCT.
I previously served as the SIG’s website manager from 2010 to 2018. In this role, I worked closely with SIG leadership to plan website content, implement a new PayPal system to collect dues, and plan the website’s transition to its current Wix platform. In addition, I have served in multiple other SIG roles, including helping to plan the 2016 pre-conference institute and serving as Student Representative (2014-15). I am currently a postdoctoral researcher at McLean Hospital and Harvard Medical School, where I conduct research on transdiagnostic cognitive mechanisms of impulsivity; my research also incorporates multiple methods including EEG/ERP and eyetracking. Prior to my current position, I completed my PhD in Clinical Psychology at the University of California, Berkeley. It would be an honor to continue serving the SIG as Treasurer/Membership Chair. Thank you for your consideration.
Maria Kryza-Lacombe, MS - Incoming SIG Student Representative
I am currently working toward my PhD in clinical psychology with a concentration in neuropsychology at the SDSU/UC San Diego Joint Doctoral Program in Clinical Psychology. My research focus lies at the intersection of affective and cognitive developmental neuroscience. I am interested in assessing the interplay between cognitive development and positive and negative emotions in the generation and maintenance of psychopathology. My long-term goal is to pursue independent research in a multidisciplinary academic setting where I hope to contribute to mechanism-based prevention and intervention development efforts to foster resilience in children that translates into advantageous outcomes in adulthood. As such, I am strongly committed to the SIG’s mission to use cognitive and affective neuroscience to improve the conceptualization and effectiveness of therapeutic interventions. For the past year I have been the NTTR SIG's website manager and have been inspired by the members’ research and enthusiasm for the NTTR SIG’s mission. As the SIG's Student Representative I hope to help the SIG grow by connecting more students to our community.