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Happenings in BIS

Summer 2020 Newsletter -> BIS News

Welcome Back to School!

Who could have predicted a “return” to school like this one? Zoom and Google Classrooms, screens instead of chalkboards, kitchen tables instead of cafeterias – it’s a whole new reality. We continue to be inspired and impressed by how SPG’s behavior team has pivoted to meet the needs of our students, teachers and colleagues.

Congratulations, Brianna!

SPG is delighted to announce our newest BCBA, Brianna Gonzalez! Bri completed her fieldwork requirements in May, graduated with her masters degree from Pepperdine in June, and passed the BCBA exam in July. Clearly the quarantine could not contain her viral productivity!


Highlights of Bri’s fieldwork hours include coaching classroom staff in Oakley, presenting on low-intensity strategies to a packed classroom of educators in San Lorenzo, conducting a functional analysis in Pittsburg, participating on the PBIS team at Marchus School, and providing behavioral skills training to countless RBTs in Berkeley. Bri has an optimistic can-do attitude, seeks out experiences beyond her comfort zone, and builds genuine rapport with students, staff, and colleagues. Congratulations on your accomplishment, Bri!


Teletherapy Updates

SPG’s teletherapy team has been hard at work putting together multidisciplinary videos, trainings and resources to help support all our staff prepare for a return to distance learning this fall. This Back to School Teletherapy Resources shows what’s available.


Equity and Diversity Resources

Podcast: Behavioral Observations Podcast, Session 120 Listening to Perspectives that Matter »

In this episode, the host of the Behavioral Observations Podcast, Matt Cicoria turns over this podcast to Dr. Antonio Harrison, Shawn Capell, Pierre Louis, Larry West III, and Kirk Kirby to share their experiences as African American men in this country. Check out this powerful podcast!


From Matt’s introduction to this podcast:

Since the killing of George Floyd, I’ve had colleagues approach me with suggestions on how to address the issue of police brutality and racism on Behavioral Observations. To be honest, none of the suggestions were entirely satisfying.

As a white guy living in one of the whitest states in America – someone who has not had any mistreatment based on his skin color – other than condemn the actions of those police officers, sharing my thoughts on this event (as well as the broader topic of racism and police brutality) would not only ring hollow, but not be appropriate for the moment. In other words, I realized that I lacked personal perspective with this issue, and while I may have some thoughts on the matter, those thoughts are more or less academic in nature.

So after wracking my brain for a few days on what I could do to leverage the BOP platform for good, I came upon the idea for this show: For Session 120, I want to take myself out of the podcast altogether, and turn it over to a panel of African American men who are also our colleagues in Behavior Analysis. The goal of the show would be for both me and the BOP audience to simply listen rather than talk.

I reached out to Dr. Antonio Harrison to see if he would be interested in facilitating this discussion, and thankfully he agreed. We then recruited Shawn Capell, Pierre Louis, Larry West III, and Kirk Kirby to participate in the panel. From there, I stepped out of the rest of the production process. As of this writing, I haven’t even listened to the final product yet because I want to experience this conversation as an audience member would.

As such, I’m ready to learn more about the experience of African American men in our country and I hope you are too. If you find value in this episode, please share it with as many friends and colleagues as possible. I’m hoping this episode is also disseminated beyond the field of Behavior Analysis as well. Lastly, if you have the means to do so, please consider donating to the group, Black Applied Behavior Analysts, (in case you’re wondering, I have and will continue to put my money where my mouth is).


Webinar: An Open Discussion about Race & Diversity in Behavior Analysis »


This webinar spotlights a candid discussion about recent events and how behavior analysts, organizational leaders and the science of ABA can help improve race relations in the United States.


Podcast: Cultural Humility

Dr. Gallardo, Professor of Psychology and Director of Aliento, The Center for Latina/o Communities at Pepperdine University, started this podcast to try to address ways of understanding “the other” while trying to produce meaningful change. He is a licensed psychologist and maintains an independent/ consultation practice where he conducts therapy, forensic/legal psychological assessments, and consults with organizations and universities on developing culturally responsive systems. He teaches courses on multicultural and social justice, intimate partner violence and professional practice issues. “For a long time I have been concerned about our disconnect from one another as human beings. Our histories in the United States indicate that when we work together, we succeed, yet we continue to dehumanize people and communities. How do we create a more just society? How can we come together as human beings?” This podcast addresses ways in which human beings can better understand “the other,” while learning how to create meaningful change. Listen as I have cultural conversations with both professionals and community members about cultural, social, and political issues and what we can do to create more just outcomes while seeing our human connection to one another.”

Want More ABA?

Check out these helpful sites:

About Behavior Analysis – ABA Subspecialty Information from the BACB »

ABA in Education:

Have you been curious about behavior analysis in the field of education?

Pandemic Pastimes

We polled our team – what’s one thing you’ve learned or done during quarantine that you never thought you would learn/do?


Jose made chicken confit and completed puzzles.

“Actually something I would have NEVER done is complete my CEUs in a timely manner. I’m almost done with 13 months left. I usually complete them in the last month.”








Paul took up aquarium gardening.


Shay is rollerskating!








From Charity:

I’ve been volunteering at my local community Gardens. This particular one is called Hoover Garden. If you’re in the Oakland area, stop by and don’t forget your mask!












From Stephanie Delarosa:

There are days where I’ve dreaded having to spend more time at home, but it’s given me plenty of room to get back into my artwork. I’ve always wanted to try resin pouring, specifically seascape paintings. After several scrapped canvases, I think I’ve got the hang of it.