By Christy Evanko
The Virginia Association for Behavior Analysis (VABA) is the affiliate chapter of ABAI in Virginia. We represent behavior analysts in Virginia and ended 2022 with over 600 members! We had a slight increase over 2021 membership but are not back to our pre-COVID numbers of over 800 members. The Commonwealth of Virginia has the 11th largest certified BCBA-Ds, BCBAs, BCaBAs, and RBTs (combined) in the United States. The association has been in existence since 2003 and is a 501c6 organization. VABA contracts with a lobbyist and has one paid contracted position, an Administrative Director.
We have four goals that we use to achieve our mission of promoting and supporting the practice, research, and dissemination of behavior analysis throughout the Commonwealth of Virginia. Goal 1 – Improve Viability and Sustainability of the Organization; Goal 2 – Provide Quality Service to Our Members; Goal 3 – Strengthen the Diversity and Cultural Competence within VABA and the Behavior Analysis Profession across the Commonwealth; Goal 4 – Advocate for the Science of Behavior Analysis in the Commonwealth. We are frequently monitoring our strategic plan to find better ways of serving our members.
This year our 19th annual conference was in Harrisonburg. We were very excited last year to get back to in-person conferences after two years of virtual. We recently began offering location-based special interest groups in Central VA, Tidewater, and Northern VA, which are providing additional professional development events to serve our members. Our Marketing & Membership; Diversity, Equity & Inclusion, Dissemination, and Public Policy Committees continue to meet and do the heavy lifting for our organization. We are very excited to have recently completed a website and logo reboot and hope that everyone enjoys the new look.
In 2022, VABA distributed four newsletters that were each opened by half of our membership or more. We published ten blog posts with information that affects practitioners in Virginia. We communicated to over 1800 people via Facebook, over 1200 via Twitter, and over 400 people on our newer Instagram Account. We also began using LinkedIn to communicate. We publicized more than 40 jobs on our website. We had 300 attendees and 31 sponsors. We published an annual report on our Web site – https://www.virginiaaba.org/about/annual-reports/.
VABA Membership offers many benefits, including an annual conference, networking opportunities, quarterly newsletter, CEU offerings (including the conference and beyond), members-only resources including supervision resources and a search engine, lobbying and policy efforts, location-based special interest groups, and discounts on a variety of outside products. The VABA Board of Directors works diligently to make sure we are relevant to behavior analysts in Virginia. We meet every-other month and stay in continual contact to provide benefits that our members request and need. We are proud to represent behavior analysis in Virginia.