The mission of the Delaware Psychological Association is to promote the profession of psychology and enhance and improve the quality of life for Delawareans. We do this through public and professional educational programs, by supporting high ethical standards and integrity for psychologists, and by working collaboratively with other groups to affect positive change in individuals, groups, and the community.
We are committed to promoting psychology across the state and nationally through our voting membership in the American Psychological Association.
In October 1946, Dr. Joseph Jastak invited Delaware psychologists to meet, get to know one another, and discuss forming an association. The vote to create a constitution and bylaws was unanimous, and in September 1948, the Delaware Psychological Association (DPA) was accepted as an affiliate of the American Psychological Association (APA). DPA had 26 Charter members in December 1948, and Dr. Jastak was its first president.
On May 1, 1980, DPA was incorporated and received its 501(c)6 non-profit status. In that same year, a group of private practice psychologists organized the Delaware Society of Psychologists in Independent Practice (DSPIP). The focus of the society was to concentrate on issues of importance to those in independent practice and the development of a closer working relationship with the legislature. DSPIP became Delaware Psychologists, Inc., which merged into DPA in the early 1990’s.
DPA has always played a significant role in the political and social arenas supporting important issues for psychologists. It pioneered in rights of women and minorities and was active in supporting legislation on patient privacy, licensure standards and mental health parity. DPA continues to help its members navigate major changes in Medicare, Medicaid and managed care reimbursement rates and is taking an active role in the implementation of the Affordable Care Act in Delaware.