Family Process: The Journal
Nathan Ackerman and Don Jackson founded Family Process as a not for profit journal. It was the first journal devoted to this topic. It had no official connection with a professional association or university. The early editorial board was full of “Who’s Who’s” in family therapy. The board continues to include leaders in the field and to publish some of the most exciting work on family processes. It has gone up in the ranking of family studies journals in recent years and currently has an impact factor of 3.0, of which we are quite proud.
Jay Haley was the first Editor of the journal. One of the most accomplished teachers, clinical supervisors, and authors in our field, he was appointed by Ackerman and Jackson as the first editor of Family Process and he served in this capacity from 1962-1969. He was assisted in this role by his first wife, Elizabeth Haley, who was an experienced journalist. The aim of the journal was to foster the development of a science of the family. The influence of the Palo Alto group in the early issues was very evident.
After being one of the original advisory editors, Don Bloch became Editor in 1970 and remained in this role until 1982. It was under his leadership that the journal went from biennial to quarterly publications. This enabled the journal to be more visible. As Ransom noted in a 2002 article, Don was an effective editor because he loved the work, discovering new talent, encouraging new ideas, moderating controversies, nurturing manuscripts through to finished products, and representing the journal and the field of family therapy. In addition, he did the Family Process Training Project, which listed and categorized all of the training facilities. Because of his success with the journal, he later went on to edit Families, Systems, and Health.
From 1982-1990, Carlos Sluzki edited Family Process. His vision was that the journal was a collective, interdisciplinary brain, of which authors, reviewers, and readers were a part. He referred to the journal as an ecosystem of ideas. Under his leadership, the journal became more focused on the diversity of families.
In 1991, Peter Steinglass became the Editor and remained in this role through 1997. He redesigned the logo and cover page for the journal. While he was at the helm, the journal incorporated new ideas in the field related to feminism, postmodernism, and social construction. He expanded the advisory board to ensure greater demographic diversity, as well as greater integration of individuals with expertise in clinical and research perspectives.
Carol Anderson was the first female Editor of the journal, and held this post from 1998-2003. Incorporating a biopsychosocial perspective, her editorial themes pertained to beyond the nuclear family, families and culture, family strengths and resilience, and interventions with hope.
Evan Imber-Black was Editor from 2004-2012. Evan stepped in at a critical time in the life of the journal, and was able to forge a productive and fruitful relationship with Wiley-Blackwell. Her dedication to Family Process and her tenacious and proactive stance in getting new articles and special sections as well as in mentoring junior scholars, greatly increased the number and quality of the manuscripts the Journal received. Her efforts as an Editor were fierce and visionary, as she insisted that the language of the journal be reader friendly and accessible to clinicians and scholars alike throughout the world. The internationality and social justice focus of the journal really increased under her term.
Our current Editor, Jay Lebow, takes his task very seriously, as he is hard working and incredibly dedicated to the field of Family Process, but he also brings a joyful and happy spirit to the task. A Clinical Professor of Psychology at the Family Institute at Northwestern and Northwestern University, he has engaged in clinical practice, supervision, and research on couple and family therapy for over thirty years, and is board certified in family psychology and an approved supervisor and clinical member of AAMFT. He is the author of 6 books and over 100 book chapters and articles, most of which focus on research and practice in couple and family therapy, the interface of research and practice more broadly in psychotherapy, integrative practice, and intervention strategies with divorcing families. He is a past president of the Society for Family Psychology of the APA (Division 43), served for many years on the Board of Directors of AFTA, and was named Family Psychologist of the Year in 2007. Living in academia for his career, he easily blends articles on teaching, theory and research into his issues. He has brought on three stellar Associate Editors who help with this work. Michael Rohrbaugh is the Associate Editor for Research. Janine Roberts is our first Associate Editor for International Scholarship. Her love of story telling, poetry and connection have already allowed her to bring Family Process into a variety of new cultures. Vicki Dickerson is Associate Editor for the Technology and New Media. Vicki has already spearheaded video interviews and other exciting technology on the website.