A native of Cambridge, Massachusetts, Gerald P. Koocher completed his B.A. degree in Psychology at Boston University, and his MA and PhD in clinical and developmental psychology at the University of Missouri. From 1971 through 2001 he served successively as an intern, post-doctoral fellow, and ultimately as Chief of Psychology at Boston Children's Hospital and Judge Baker Children's Center. During this period he also served as a full time faculty member (Associate Professor) at Harvard Medical School. In July, 2001 Dr. Koocher became Professor of Psychology and Dean of the School of Health Sciences at Simmons University (Boston), later serving as Associate Provost. In July, 2013 he became Professor and Dean of the College of Science and Health at DePaul University. He continues to hold appointments as Lecturer in Psychology at Harvard Medical School and Senior Associate in Psychology at Children's Hospital Boston and faculty member at the Harvard Bioethics Center.
Dr. Koocher was elected a Fellow of twelve divisions of the American Psychological Association (APA) and a Fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS). He became the first person to earn five specialty diplomas from the American Board of Professional Psychology (Clinical, Clinical Child /Adolescent, Couple/Family, Forensic, and Clinical Health Psychology). He holds active licenses as a psychologist in Illinois, Massachusetts, and New Hampshire, as well as the Certificate of Professional Qualification and Interjurisdictional Practice Certificate from the Association of State and Provincial Psychology Boards.
Dr. Koocher previously served as Editor of the Journal of Pediatric Psychology and The Clinical Psychologist and was the founding Editor of the journal Ethics & Behavior. He currently serves as Associate Editor of Practice Innovations and has published more than 350 articles and book chapters and authored or edited 17 books.
Areas of his expertise include:
- Adaptation to chronic and life-threatening illness in childhood (especially cancer, cystic fibrosis, and diabetes).
- Coping with bereavement and loss, psychological assessment.
- Professional and scientific ethics, and mental health malpractice and professional liability.
Very active in professional affairs, Dr. Koocher served as President of the Massachusetts and New England Psychological Associations and of four APA divisions (Clinical Psychology, Psychotherapy, Children, Youth, and Family Services, and Pediatric Psychology). He served ten years as Treasurer and then as President of the APA (2006), plus two years as APA Parliamentarian.
Dr. Koocher lives inBrookline, Massachusetts where he served more than three decades as an elected member of town government and for more than a decade as President of the Brookline Community Mental Health Center. His hobbies include photography and psittacine aviculture.