Getting to Know the GPR Committee

By: Brittany Greiert, Ph.D., NCSP  

For as long as I can remember I've always had an interest in legislative advocacy but historically was unsure of the impact that I could make. Sometimes my voice felt small and I fell under the assumption that there were others who could advocate more effectively, make change happen faster, and make a larger impact than I ever could. As a graduate student in 2013, encouraged by an enthusiastic professor who believed that every voice can make a difference, I traveled to Washington D.C. to attend the GW/NASP Public Policy Institute (PPI). At PPI I learned how to use my voice through an intensive learning experience that involved education public policy training, developing grassroots advocacy skills, and visiting congressional offices to advocate on Capitol Hill.  My commitment to advocacy has blossomed since attending PPI and recently I was selected to serve with other passionate advocates on the NASP Government and Professional Relations (GPR) committee.  

As one of the newest GPR members, I have been delighted to learn about all of the different ways that GPR supports advocacy efforts for the profession of school psychology.  GPR is a committee that is comprised of a diverse group of school psychologists who focus on advancing the public policy priorities of NASP. The GPR Committee is dedicated to promoting school psychological services and effective mental health and educational services for all children and their families through appropriate legislation, advocacy, and public policy development and implementation. This includes particular attention to public policy that promotes the availability of comprehensive school psychological services in schools and the role of school psychologists as mental and behavioral health providers.  

Activities that the GPR committee engage in include, but are not limited to: providing assistance to states on advocacy and public policy related activities upon request (including grassroots and/or advanced advocacy training); professional development focused on educating school psychologists about key policy and advocacy initiatives; meeting with elected officials; writing policy papers; staying abreast of public policy and advocacy related issues; presenting advocacy related sessions and running a GPR advocacy booth at the NASP Annual Convention; helping develop the annual Public Policy Institute (PPI); and resource development.  

If you are interested in learning more about how the GPR committee can help you find your advocacy voice, provide advocacy training, access information, or answer questions please contact a GPR committee member.  

GPR Committee   

Katie Eklund (Chair):  

Nate von der Embse (Co-Chair):  

Kelly Vaillancourt Strobach (Director):  

Christina Koch (Manager):  

Shawna Rader Kelly (Strategic Liaison):  

Brittany Greiert (Western region):  

Margaret Sedor (Western region):  

Laurie Klose (Southeast region):  

Meghan Silva (Southeast region):    

Paul Baker (Southeast region):  

Peter Faustino (Northeast region):  

Barry Barbarasch (Northeast region):  

Kari Oyen (Central region):