I completed my Ph.D. in developmental and child psychology at the University of Kansas in 1971 with an emphasis upon applied behavioural analysis. During that time I worked with severely disabled persons at the Kansas Neurological Institute in Topeka, Ks and at the Juniper Gardens Children’s Centre in an inner city neighborhood of Kansas City, Ks. I then became an assistant professor at the University of Waterloo in recreation, kinesiology and health studies. While at both locations I researched the power of recreation to lead to positive change in children and adolescents. At the University of Waterloo I was also a national health research scholar. I also received federal and provincial funding to establish Kitchener Achievement Place which was the first international application of a teaching family model to treat pre-delinquents in their home community. This model worked with both the boys in the program and also their parents and schools while working to help them get on a path to achievement. I also conducted research at a senior citizen centre with the aim of increasing interaction and participation in activities. Pursuing an interest in health systems and aiming to work to facilitate the smooth interaction of health agencies, I then became the first executive director of the Waterloo Region District Health Council.
In 1980 my wife and I formed Dr. Pierce & Associates which provided comprehensive psychological services both to individuals and agencies. I am a member of the Ontario Psychological Association and the American Psychological Association. I am authorized to work with children, adolescents, adults, families and seniors. We have worked closely with physicians and teachers to provide treatment to individuals and their families. I became the director of the Waterloo Region HSO Mental Health Program which provided comprehensive mental health services to the patients of sixty-six family physicians. This work became one of the models for the current family health team approach in Ontario. Part of our work included providing psychoeducational assessments to individuals both through our practice and also through a school board for which we were the sole provider of assessment services.
Psychoeducational assessments are an invaluable tool. They identify not only strengths and weaknesses but also can lead to positive change. Helping individuals achieve their dreams is a joy for everyone.