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Letter from SE™ Board Chair, Michele Solloway, PhD, LMT, MPA, SEP

by | Sep 6, 2022 | POINT OF VIEW

Dear Global SE Community, 

SEI recently convened the board, Executive Director, staff directors, and several other assistants, faculty, international organizers, and SE community members to engage in a strategic planning process, something we do every three years. The strategic planning meeting in August of 2019 was my first board meeting, and now I had the honor of attending this strategic planning meeting as the board chair! 

Throughout the process, I was most struck by how far we have come as an organization. In 2019, we had a board of five people (two were brand new). We did not have: ethics or governance documents; key staff roles and capacity in training, communications, or fundraising; most of our current committees, including governance, ethics, curriculum, and more; a Public Health Initiatives program area; and many other things, including an efficient and robust technology platform. All of these have now been put in place or are in the process of being implemented through hard work by our dedicated and committed staff and faculty, and by you, our community. As I review what we have accomplished, I am inspired and moved. 

As we look ahead to our next three years, we have begun to outline our ambitious goals, and look forward to getting your feedback to shape and finalize them. We know we want to expand our reach to new audiences as the educational and humanitarian home for SE. We’ll do this through research, training, outreach, and more. You might remember that we are planning to have a professional association to serve the SE community before, during, and after completing the SEP certificate. We’ve made a lot of progress toward that over the past three years and are now in the home stretch before we can launch it and share more with you about how this will elevate your work and the SEP credential. We are also focusing on our wonderful assistants, their incredible value and importance to the organization, and thinking about their needs and how to redesign the assistant program to better support them. To that end, we have created an Assistant Advisory Council to ensure they have direct access to the Board and input on key program and training issues. And there’s so much more we’re working on! 

We are also expanding our connections with our international partners. I had an opportunity in July to meet with the European SE Association (EASE) at their General Assembly in Prague, and with our amazing research teams in Israel and Turkey to strengthen our relationships. These meetings were invaluable for several reasons. First, the expansive face-to-face human contact meant being able to co-regulate and be in the same energy field. It also allowed for deeper collaborative discussions and co-creating a vision and road map for future activities. Plus, they were just fun! It highlighted for me the importance of working towards a global SE conference where everyone can have the opportunity I did – to share space with our colleagues and partners and feel how extraordinary we are as a community. Our uniquely multidisciplinary field brings together therapists, social workers, researchers, first responders, medical providers, and others into a vibrant SE community; a home for all those who hold an expansive view of the human potential for healing and resilience. I hope in the coming years we can unite across language and geography to reach new heights, together. 

More is on the way! There’s much work to do still to think deeply about our strategic priorities and involve many more of you in building out our 2023-25 strategic plan. Until then, please do not hesitate to reach out to me personally (msolloway@traumahealing.org) or to our open line, listening@traumahealing.org 

With gratitude,
Michele