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Congratulations to the winners of our Practice Board’s Distinguished Contribution to Practice Award

Dr Dan O’Hare, Professor Leam A. Craig and Dr Kokkwang Lim have been confirmed as the 2023 winners of one of our most prestigious awards.

07 June 2023

Awarded by our Practice Board, the Distinguished Contribution to Practice Award recognises practitioner psychologists who have made an outstanding and lasting contribution to a particular psychological area.

Dr Dan O’Hare is an educational psychologist and senior lecturer at the University of Bristol, and founded an online magazine, edpsy.org, covering educational psychology.

His professional interest centre on communication and dissemination, climate breakdown, children and psychology. Central to his work is making psychology more accessible for the people who psychologists work with.

Dan’s journey to becoming an educational psychologist saw him work as a primary school classroom assistant, a learning support assistant in an alternative provision school and a youth worker, as well as in marketing and sales.

Dan qualified as an educational psychologist in 2015 with a thesis focused on evidence-based practice and spent six years working as an educational psychologist with Gloucestershire County Council.

He has given his time across a range of BPS roles including as Division of Educational and Child Psychology co-chair, sitting on the Member Board, and as a member of the Climate and Environmental Action Coordinating Group.

Dan said:

“I really appreciate being given this award and feel both shocked and pretty chuffed! One of my passions is trying to open up psychology, increase public engagement and support psychologists to share their work in open and accessible ways, so for my work in this area to be recognised in this way really is pretty incredible.

“I’ve always believed that the more accessible we make our psychology, the better for those we work with in helping to create positive change and do good.

“I’m indebted to both Rich and Emily, the other two thirds of team edpsy, for their commitment and energy. I also have to thank Mary, Amanda, Jak and Rob, my colleagues at the University of Bristol for their support and encouragement - what a fantastic team to be part of.

“I think perhaps most importantly I want to share my gratitude to all the psychologists and professionals who have contributed to edpsy and made it the engaging, community-focused platform that it is.”

Professor Leam A. Craig is a consultant forensic and clinical psychologist and partner at Forensic Psychology Practice Ltd.

Leam is a visiting professor of forensic clinical psychology at Birmingham City University, professor visiting chair of the School of Psychology at the University of Lincoln, and an honorary professor of forensic psychology at the Centre for Applied Psychology at the University of Birmingham. 

He has worked in several forensic psychiatric secure services and as a consultant to prison and probation services throughout England, Wales and Northern Ireland, specialising in high-risk, complex cases.

In addition to clinical duties, he has almost 25 years’ experience working as an expert witness, having produced more than 1,500 psychology reports and given evidence on more than 250 occasions.

Leam is a previous committee member of the Division of Forensic Psychology, and chair of its Membership Subcommittee. Since 2015 he has acted as a voluntary advisor to the BPS and the Health and Care Professions Council on disciplinary matters and cases of malpractice and has served as chair of the BPS’s Expert Witness Advisory Group.

Leam said:

“I am hugely honoured, humbled and grateful to the BPS Practice Board, in firstly being nominated, and then being awarded, this year’s Distinguished Contribution to Practice Award. 

“I am privileged to have the intellectual companionship of a number of world-renowned practitioners and researchers in the field of clinical and forensic psychology which has been immeasurable in developing my practice, and the training and development of others in clinical forensic psychology.   

“I owe a debt of gratitude to my clinical supervisors who shaped my early practice and to my academic mentors who have guided and supported my research interests for well over 20 years. 

“Since 2015, a particular interest has focused on developing guidance and training to psychologists working, or wishing to work, as expert witnesses, and together with colleagues from the Expert Witness Advisory Group, we have published research, numerous practice guidance documents and delivered an annual expert witness conference, with psychologist and judicial speakers attracting over 350 online delegates from across the world in 2022. 

“In this capacity I continue to work to support and advance the use of psychologist expert witnesses across judicial settings and in the development of the registration and training for psychologist expert witnesses.”

Dr Kokkwang Lim is a senior consultant clinical psychologist at the Centre for Effective Living (Singapore). He has previously served for three consecutively elected terms as the President of the Singapore Psychological Society, which in 2006 had conferred on him the Award for Outstanding Contribution to Psychology in Singapore.

He has provided collaborative leadership in establishing the first and sole registration system for professional psychologists in 2001.

For nearly 30 years he has made capability building contributions to mental health related professions, including impactful training of clinical and counselling psychologists in the private, public, and voluntary sectors that serve the needs of culturally and socioeconomically diverse populations.

Kokkwang said:

"I am most honoured and grateful to receive this award from our esteemed Practice Board. It affirms the BPS's global perspectives, concern and support regarding creative, conscientious and consequential ways in which psychology can be applied to benefit humanity.

“I am also deeply thankful to all the clients, trainees, colleagues and fellow psychologists whom I have served and served with - you have been my best teachers. Asia and the world need psychology more than ever for even basic levels of security, wellbeing and sustainability.

“While people in Asia and around the world are all unique in similar ways, my hope is that our society will continue to propagate international insights, technology and strategies so that we may wisely navigate through collective crises and opportunities in our long-term future." 

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