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Meet the Representatives



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Harold Cook, Ph.D. Professor Emeritus, Columbia University and
SPSSI UN Representative.

He was on faculty for 30 years in the Clinical Psychology doctoral program. Publications include: Children’s Cooperative Behavior, Racial and Gender Imitative Behavior, Attitudes toward War. Harold served on several Psychology journal editorial boards and was an APA UN rep., and IUPS's main rep

Harold's was on UNICEFs committees: Children's Rights, North American Regional Planning Consultation on Violence and Children, and founding Chair of Working Group on Violence against Children. He was elected to: Executive Committee on Mental Health, and Co-Chair of the Committee on the Family.

Harold testified to a U.S. Senate committee on the adoption of the Convention on the Rights of the Child, presented a paper at an invitational international conference on the future of the Peoples Permanent Tribunal and Restorative Justice, and is an advisor to an international Italian foundation on culture and gender.


    Sheri R. Levy, Ph.D. is a Professor of Psychology at Stony Brook University, New York, USA.  Levy and her research team study stereotyping, prejudice, and discrimination based on age, disability status, ethnicity, gender, race, and sexual orientation as well as intersectionality in the study of aging, climate action, global health, human rights, intergenerational relations, politics, polyculturalism, and student engagement in STEM fields. In one line of research, Levy and her team have shown that PEACE (Positive Education about Aging and Contact Experiences) model interventions reduce negative attitudes toward older adults.  Levy was Editor-in-Chief of Journal of Social Issues (2010-2013), co-edited Intergroup Attitudes and Relations in Childhood through Adulthood (Levy & Killen, 2008, Oxford University Press), and edited a subsection on Ageism in the Encyclopedia of Gerontology and Population Aging (Eds: Danan Gu and Matthew Dupre, Springer). She writes a blog for Psychology Today and created a web-based resource called “Taking Ageism Seriously” ( Levy received her Ph.D. at Columbia University and her B.A. at the University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, USA. 
    David Livert, Ph.D. currently serves as SPSSI’s Main Representative for its United Nations team. He is immediate Past-President of the Psychological Coalition of NGOs Accredited at the United Nations (PCUN), an organization representing 12 psychological NGOs around the world. Livert formerly co-chaired SPSSI’s Internationalization Committee, during which time he established the SPSSI-SASP Small Group Series, which alternatives each year between North America and the Western Pacific. An Associate Professor of Social Psychology at Penn State University's Lehigh Valley campus, his research has examined intergroup relations, team dynamics, and inter-cultural contact. He also studies a variety of phenomena related to food preparation including chef personalities, temporal conflict, teamwork, and well-being in professional kitchens. He is co-author of Making Dinner, published in 2019 by Bloomsbury. Livert earned his undergraduate and master's degrees in psychology from Vanderbilt University and his Ph.D. in social psychology from the City University of New York Graduate Center. 
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Joseph De Meyer, Ph.D. Clinical psychologist. Certificate psychoanalysis W.A. White Institute. Ten years clinical director of rural (Alabama) and -inner- Jersey City community mental health centers. New Jersey private practice (1984). UN representative - incl. main - SPSSI since 2001. Executive member NGO Committee on Mental Health and -reinstated- NGO Committee on Education. Co-founder of the Psychology Coalition at the UN (PCUN);  the NGO Committee on Education, Learning and Literacy;  and the NGO Committee International Day of Education for Global Citizenship. Member sub-committees of the UN Department of Public Information (DPI)- NGO Executive Committee. Co-organizer several of their GA opening UN International Conferences (incl. first ever psychological and education conferences) and numerous presentations on mental health and education for UN Commissions. Liaison UN Civil Society and several UN Missions. Clinical supervisor of graduate students; state licensure applicants and psychoanalytic training candidates.


Corann OkoroduduPh.D. a retired Professor of Psychology and Africana Studies at Rowan University, served as Associate VP for Academic Affairs and Coordinator of Women’s and Africana Studies, promoting human rights and social justice policies and practices. At the UN she represents the Society for the Psychological Study of Social Issues, brings psychological perspectives to bear on the UN’s agenda, provides leadership on racism and children’s rights, and is Founding Past President of the Psychology Coalition of NGOs Accredited at the UN.


    Laurel Peterson, Ph.D. (she/her) is an Associate Professor of Psychology at Bryn Mawr College. She researches how social forces shape health thinking, health behaviors, and physiological processes. Laurel believes in the power of psychological science to serve others through teaching and research mentorship at Bryn Mawr College and translating psychological science via her role as a SPSSI NGO-representative for the United Nations.

    Deborah Fish Ragin, Ph.D. is a Professor Emerita, Montclair State University.  She received her Ph.D. from Harvard University and her A.B. from Vassar College. Prior to teaching at Montclair, Deborah served as an Associate Research Professor at Mount Sinai School of Medicine (now the Ichan School of Medicine), Department of Emergency Medicine, and as Assistant Professor at Hunter College’s Community Health Education Program. Her public service includes five years as an American Psychological Association (APA) Representative to the United Nations,  President of the APA’s Society for the Study of Peace, Conflict, and Violence (Division 48, Peace Psychology), a member of the Health Research Council of the Health Psychology Division (Division 38) of APA, and most recently a Society for the Psychological Study of Social Issues (SPSSI) Representative to the United Nations. She has authored articles on HIV/AIDS, domestic violence, health care disparities, healthy communities, and research ethics. She is also the author of a leading health textbook entitled Health Psychology: An Interdisciplinary Approach, published by Routledge/Taylor & Francis, now in its third edition and the co-editor of  Handbook of Research Methods in Health Psychology, also published by Routledge/Taylor & Francis.




Rachel Ravich, Ph.D.







    Peter Walker, Ph.D. has followed sustainable development and climate change issues at the UN since the Earth Summit in Rio in 1992.  More recently he has been concerned with the impact on human well-being of climate change and sea level rise on coastal cities.  His PhD is in Environmental Psychology. An Adjunct Associate Professor at the New College of Hofstra University in the 1990's, he has taught at the College of the Built Environment, University of Washington.