Maria Valdovinos, associate professor of psychology, has been selected to serve on the Board of Directors of the Association for Professional Behavior Analysts. The association’s nominating committee selected Valdovinos from among a list of nominees, submitted by affiliate organizations, to serve a three-year term set to end Aug. 31, 2019.
The Association of Professional Behavior Analysts (APBA) is a nonprofit organization whose mission is to promote and advance the science and practice of applied behavior analysis.
Valdovinos has been a faculty member in the department of psychology and neuroscience at Drake University since 2010. She teaches courses in child and adolescent development, psychology of developmental disabilities, behavior analysis of child development, applied behavior analysis, and applied and professional ethics.
She currently serves as president of Iowa ABA and serves as the chair of its legislative committee; in this capacity, Dr. Valdovinos has worked with her colleagues to increase the number of behavior analysts in the state of Iowa. She also sits on a state advisory board that aims to increase needed supports for children with autism spectrum disorder (ASD) and their families.
Valdovinos received her doctorate in Developmental and Child Psychology from the University of Kansas in 2001. Afterward, she completed a post-doctoral fellowship at Vanderbilt University’s Kennedy Center for Research on Human Development.
Prior to beginning her studies in Kansas, Valdovinos worked in residential and day treatment settings with adults diagnosed with intellectual and developmental disabilities. Her experiences in these settings lead to her interest in evaluating the pharmacological and behavioral treatment of challenging behavior, which has received federal funding.