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Dr. Robert Putnam Named President-Elect of the Massachusetts Association of Applied Behavior Analysis

Randolph, Mass. — Robert F. Putnam, Ph.D., LABA, BCBA-D, Executive Vice President of Positive Behavior Interventions and Supports and Consultation for May Institute, was recently elected President-Elect of the Massachusetts Association of Applied Behavior Analysis (MassABA) at the Association’s annual meeting.

Applied behavior analysis (ABA) is a methodology, or framework, that applies scientific interventions to address behavioral needs. MassABA represents more than 700 ABA professionals, provides training and educational opportunities, and informs members about ABA practice developments in the Commonwealth.

May Institute, a leading national provider of educational, rehabilitative, and behavioral healthcare services for people with special needs, has an international reputation for excellence in the field of ABA. It was the first nonprofit human services organization in the country to receive top national honors from the Society for the Advancement of Behavior Analysis (SABA) and the Association for Behavioral and Cognitive Therapies (ABCT). May Institute has received the Outstanding Training Program Award from ABCT and the Award for Enduring Programmatic Contributions in Behavior Analysis from SABA.

At May Institute, Dr. Putnam currently leads a systems-wide change initiative, entitled Positive Behavior Interventions and Supports (PBIS), to improve the effectiveness and efficiency of behavior and clinical supports across the organization and in schools across the country. The Massachusetts Department of Developmental Services, which funds May Institute’s adult services for individuals with intellectual disabilities, has adopted PBIS as its clinical framework.

Dr. Putnam also serves as Senior Vice President of Research and Consultation at the National Autism Center at May Institute (NAC), and was an Expert Panelist on the National Standards Project of the NAC. In addition, he serves as a national implementation partner with the Department of Education’s Office of Special Education Program’s National Technical Assistance Center for PBIS (

“Bob is an innovative leader who has distinguished himself in the fields of positive behavior supports and applied behavior analysis,” said Lauren C. Solotar, Ph.D., ABPP, President and Chief Executive Officer of May Institute. “His new role as President-Elect for the MassABA is a great honor for him and for May Institute. We are very proud of his accomplishments.”

A licensed psychologist and a certified health service provider, Dr. Putnam received his Ph.D. from Boston College. He has served on the faculty of the Harvard Medical School.

Dr. Putnam has given more than 100 presentations at schools and conferences relative to development and implementation of effective discipline, functional behavior assessment, and positive behavior support practices He consults nationally and internationally in China, Canada, Qatar, Abu Dhabi and Oman.

He is widely published in this field, including recent articles in Behavior Modification, Child and Family Behavior Therapy, Journal of Positive Behavior Intervention, Behavior Analysis Today, Psychiatric Services, and Journal of Special Education Leadership. Dr. Putnam also coauthored a number of chapters around these topics.

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