Symposium Speakers and Schedule 2023

Jae Puckett (Michigan State University)

Jae A. Puckett, Ph.D. (they/them) is a clinical psychologist and assistant professor at Michigan State University where they are affiliated with the Ecological/Community Psychology program. Dr. Puckett leads Trans-ilience: The Transgender Stress and Resilience Research Team. Their work focuses on exploring both the unique challenges and strengths within the transgender community, with an eye towards clinical implications.

Talk title: Transgender and Gender Diverse People’s Experiences of Resilience: Adapting Conceptual Frameworks and Addressing Measurement Challenges
Danielle Dickens (Spelman College)

Danielle Dickens, PhD. (she/her) is an Associate Professor in the Department of Psychology at Spelman College. Dr. Dickens earned her B.A. in psychology from Spelman College, and her M.S. and Ph.D. from Colorado State University in Applied Social and Health Psychology. As a Black feminist social psychologist, her research focuses on identity formation and identity shifting among Black women, and how they navigate the world. She has received grant funding through foundations and federal agencies, such as Goldman Sachs, the American Psychological Foundation, and the National Science Foundation, to support her research. Dr. Dickens is also the 2019 recipient of the American Psychological Association (APA) Teaching of Psychology of Women Award and the 2020 APA Psychology of Black Women Foremothers Mentorship Early Career Award. In all, she aims to contextually position and understand the lived experiences of Black women in the U.S. to identify effective strategies to reduce inequities and improve their career development and mental and behavioral health outcomes.

Talk title: Being (Un)Seen: Exploring the Psychosocial Outcomes of Identity Negotiation among Black Women
Meredith Chivers (Queens University)
Dr. Meredith L. Chivers (she/her) is an Associate Professor in Psychology, Queen’s National Scholar, Director of the Sexuality and Gender Laboratory (Sagelab), and a Member of the Centre for Neuroscience at Queen’s University (Kingston, Canada). She received her PhD in clinical psychology from Northwestern University in 2003, was trained in sexual psychophysiology at the Kinsey Institute at Indiana University, and completed her clinical residency and post-doctoral fellowships at the Centre for Addiction and Mental Health (CAMH)/University of Toronto. Dr. Chivers is President of the International Academy of Sex Research, a registered Psychologist, and serves on the editorial boards for many academic sexuality research journals including the Archives of Sexual Behavior and the Journal of Sex Research. She has published over 100 articles, won several awards, and her research has been widely covered by international media such as the New York Times, and featured in numerous PBS, CBC, and BBC documentary and television programs. The focus of Sagelab research is gendered/sexed sexuality, including sexual response, sexual attractions, and sexual functioning, with a focus on women.
Talk title: (not) Written on the body: How (re)focusing on women’s sexual pleasure decenters essentialist models of gendered/sexed sexual response, sexual attractions, and sexual wellbeing.

Lanice R. Avery (she/her) is an Assistant Professor of Psychology and Women, Gender, and Sexuality at the University of Virginia, where she uses multiple methods to explore Black women's intersectional identity development, sexual socialization and victimization, and the associations between gendered racism and psychosexual well-being. Her research has been funded by the National Academies of Science and the Ford Foundation, and she currently serves as the Principal Investigator of an NIH-funded project that examines how internalizing negative gendered-racial stereotypes impedes young Black women’s help-seeking behaviors in the context of interpersonal violence. Her second NIH-funded project focuses on the external and structural influences on romantic relationship development for Black girls, and the cultural assets they garner to facilitate sexual agency and conflict remediation in relationships. Her research is published in several high-impact academic journals, including: Body Image, Psychology of Women Quarterly, Sex Roles, Journal of Counseling Psychology, and Archives of Sexual Behavior.

Lanice Avery (University of Virginia)
Talk title: “Black Like Love Too Deep”: Exploring the Implications of Gendered Racism on Black Women’s Psycho-Sexual Well-Being
Breanne Fahs (Arizona State University)

Breanne Fahs (she/her) is Professor of Women and Gender Studies at Arizona State University. She has published widely in feminist, social science, and humanities journals and has authored six books: Performing Sex; Valerie Solanas; Out for Blood; Firebrand Feminism; Women, Sex, and Madness; and Unshaved. She has also edited or coedited three volumes: The Moral Panics of Sexuality, Transforming Contagion, and Burn It Down!. She is the Founder and Director of the Feminist Research on Gender and Sexuality Group at Arizona State University, and she also works as a clinical psychologist in private practice.

Talk title: A reconsideration of sexual freedom: How anarchist principles of ‘freedom to’ and ‘freedom from’ can reshape understandings of women’s sexual liberation.
Sara McClelland (University of Michigan)

Sara McClelland (she/her) is Associate Professor in the Departments of Psychology and Women’s & Gender Studies at the University of Michigan. She is a feminist psychologist who studies stigma and discrimination, with a focus on issues of reproductive justice and critical sexuality studies. Her research focuses on developing social science methods and designs with the potential to impact medicine, education, and public policy. This has included: studying the role of racism in assessments of attitudes towards abortion, the effects of abstinence-only-until-marriage sex education on young adults, and gaps in clinical care for women diagnosed with cancer. More details about her research can be found at

Talk title: Discussion across the 70th Symposium on Motivation

(Note: all talk titles and abstracts are tenative; please check back closer to the event for updates)