Lee Jaffe Elected to be President of the American Psychoanalytic Association (APsaA)

This is a proud moment for all of us at the San Diego Psychoanalytic Center (SDPC).  For the first time in our history, and for the fist time in the 100-year history of the APsaA, one of our own, Lee Jaffe will be taking over the helm of our national parent organization.  

Lee ran an honorable campaign for 6 months, and won the election by a 2/3rds majority.  His two-year term as President-elect will begin after the APsaA Spring 2016 meetings in Chicago. Following his two-year term as President-elect he will serve a two-year term as President, completing his term in June 2020.  We can now look forward to Lee bringing SDPC to APsaA, and bringing APsaA to SDPC.  

When asked about our celebrating his election, Lee said, “let’s celebrate SDPC too, as it has been my home for over 30 years.  SDPC has nurtured my abilities as an analyst of children and adults, as a teacher, as a writer, as a supervisor and as a leader.

At the 3/19/16 SDPC celebration, Lee thanked his SDPC "family" for working together to promote psychoanalytic thinking, as well as to support his professional develop during his years of training, teaching, and leadership on the local, national, and international level.  With characteristic humility and gratitude, Lee warmly acknowledged the contributions of the SDPC community, and he described a future at SDPC and APsaA of increased inclusiveness and collaboration. 



Tribute to Dr. Jaffe from his colleagues: 

Alan Sugarman, PhD: " I have known Lee Jaffe for 35 years, since contacted me regarding his interest in psychoanalysis and his wish to be my TA in the CSPP Psychoanalytic Theory course I was to teach. This sort of initiative and commitment to psychoanalysis characterizes Lee’s career. His keen intellect, strong sense of responsibility and capacity to translate abstract psychoanalytic concepts into comprehensible English, led me to co-author many articles with him during his training. And for many years now, Lee has been a valued colleague, someone from whom I learn. Nowhere is this clearer than in our recent collaboration as Co-Directors of Education along with Barbara Rosen. (How Talking Cures/our co-directorship. Family)  Lee’s sensitivity to organizational complexity, something that is not my strongpoint, was a great learning experience and I was astounded with Lee’s sensitivity to group process.

"Given his intellect and clinical acumen, I’ve been surprised at how Lee has gravitated to psychoanalytic administration – a sometimes thankless area. But we should all appreciate it because he is clearly dedicated to furthering the growth of psychoanalysis on the local, as well as national, and international levels. His election to be President-Elect of the American Psychoanalytic Association is a boon both to it and to our local institute. He will be an excellent and facilitative leader as ApsaA transitions and completely modifies its administrative structure. He will also enhance our local institute’s visibility and help analysts elsewhere, particularly the East Coast, to realize that psychoanalysis can thrive in the hinterlands, west of the Hudson River. They may even realize that San Diego trains fine psychoanalysts."

"I am disappointed that I cannot be here this evening to express this tribute in person. But my heart is with all of you. Lee, you have worked hard to attain this new position of leadership and I know that you will make us all proud as you excel at it."

Nadine Levinson, DDS: "I am sorry I cannot be with you all for this most important event. As per Lee’s style, he didn’t want me to speak about him, but about our SDP Center and how much we have all benefitted by coming together to better promote psychoanalysis.  But even though I agreed with him at the time, I have now decided to speak about LEE and mention a few stellar accomplishments  - like  Imagine one of our SDPC members now bestowed with the confidence and responsibility of shepherding the American Psychoanalytic Association." 

"LEE IS A GREAT LEADER! We go way back to when he first got his feet wet as a Candidate, representing SDPC at one of the first American Psychoanalytic Foundation meetings in Chicago in the very early 90’s. At that time I knew he was destined for great leadership positions…. and he shortly became President of IPSO, the IPA’s Candidate organization. He did great things there like getting an IPA-IPSO financial and organizational restructuring (not easy to do with the IPA), that insured the security and integration of all IPA candidates into the larger organization."

"When we served together on the IPA Board, Lee continued his role promoting candidates. He also created an IPA 100th year Anniversary video and invited me to help. As a consequence, a highly acclaimed video was produced (available to be seen on PEP) and featured Leo Rangell, Past IPA President, as narrator. What most people don’t know is that Lee appeared for about 15 mini-secs, in two spots, but I have that original copy (which has more time with Lee), speaking about the IPA and psychoanalysis. If Lee ever becomes IPA President (NOT A PART OF LEE’S OWN AGENDA, ONLY MINE)…. I will re-edit the video and bring it back to its original format with more of Lee’s sage comments." 

"I hope I have not embarrassed Lee too much, for as bright and creative Lee is, he is humble. SO LEE, TAKE THE CREDIT YOU DESERVE FOR ALL THE HARD WORK YOU HAVE DONE FOR PSYCHOANALYSIS, LOCALLY, NATIONALLY, AND INTERNATIONALLY.   I remain an ardent supporter."

Robert Tyson, MD: "I wish  I could be with you to say these things myself as it is a pleasure. Some years back in the last century, Lee Jaffe and I met and began discussions about how he could best apply for clinical psychoanalytic training. In those days, only MD applicants were routinely considered by APsaA. and others had to go through a rather daunting application procedure. According to my recollection, Lee complained eloquently and persistently, but just as persistently. he persevered. I persevered as well, repeatedly but not particularly sympathetically. pointing out what he had to do." 

"I didn't realize it at the time, but I think Lee must have been processing this experience with an appraising sense of how things could be done otherwise.  As the years went by, I gradually came  to  sense this  ongoing  background process  - not   a Bernie Sanders kind of "Let's have a revolution", but a continuing sense of perspective that on occasion allowed Lee to make a cogent comment or introduce a fitting alternative. Lee was consistently and impressively on target, which gave me, and I think others, the impression that Lee was a valuable co­worker who understood what was happening and what could be done about it." 

Stefano Bolognini – President, IPA"Dear Colleagues of the San Diego Psychoanalytic Center, I am delighted to celebrate Lee’s election with all of you. I would like to convey, on behalf of the IPA Administration and Board, our warmest congratulations and best wishes to Lee, while at the same time expressing my own personal delight and satisfaction for the well-deserved success of a colleague and friend whom I have known for many years and whom I value so highly."

"Lee and I had the opportunity to work together at the first IPA Board and I appreciated his democratic, forward-thinking vision regarding psychoanalysis as well as his steadfast commitment to institutional life. I feel sure that, thanks to Lee’s personal contribution and his communitarian mentality, APsaA and IPA will be able to continue their fruitful cooperation and go ahead jointly toward a flourishing future for Psychoanalysis." 

"My congratulations to Lee, and my warmest wishes to all the colleagues at the San Diego Psychoanalytic Center."

Mark Smaller - President ApsaA: "Lee & I became candidates as a result of the 1987 lawsuit that finally opened the doors, and made APsaA professionally diverse in the way it is today. Lee has obviously aged better than me, but then, he had the benefit of Southern California sun, and I had to fight and struggle through Chicago and Michigan winters over all these years." 

"However, even in the Midwest winters pale in comparison to the various “storms” in APsaA we have both endured. However we, and our conviction of a progressive, thriving APsaA, and our thriving field of psychoanalysis has prevailed with our respective elections."

"Last summer I spoke with Lee about his campaign. I remember trying to offer some advice based on having run in two such campaigns. One piece of advice was that he must stay focused on his vision of the future of APsaA, not be too worried about whatever else would emerge.  Campaigning in APsaA I think makes the current presidential election look like a walk in the park. Trump would not have a chance of surviving!"

"But Lee did.  Lee stayed with his convictions, his ideas, his skills, the creativity that he had honed in the San Diego Center over the years, his work in the IPA, and in his practice.  He made use of every aspect of his personal and professional life to win.  For that he deserves great admiration, great respect, and certainly this celebration." 

"Its been a long way since that 1987 lawsuit, and I think we proved just how important it was. Well done Lee J.  And my warmest congratulations."  

Jung-in Ko: "I am honored to have this opportunity to express my gratitude and respect to Dr. Jaffe today. He has been my supervisor for about 6 years, years that have helped me to grow as an analyst and as a adult. He has taught me patience, respect for human mind and value of analytic work. As I recall him, several analogies and old sayings he used come into my mind. ‘You can’t push a river’, ’You can’t make an omelet without breaking eggs’ etc. I can picture that Dr. Jaffe will smile when he hears these expression remembering how impatient I was, and how anxious I was when I faced my patients’ painful feelings and my own emotional difficulties. Now, those expressions are my favorite when I teach my young residents. For the life of an analyst and a mature adult, I have learned from him that how important the sense of humor and curiosity under various situations is. By learning those qualities I can see more joy at my work and in my personal life. Last thing I want to mention about is how warm and welcoming he has been whenever I visit San Diego during my long remote training period."

"As he is elected as president of American Psychoanalytic Association, I believe that he will make the best president for the organization as he has been for me as a supervisor."

"I wish I can be there with all of you to celebrate Dr. Jaffe today, and I really appreciate that I can have this chance to say short words for him and share this moment with people in San Diego Psychoanalytic Center, that is my second home and my analytic family."