Norine G. Johnson Source: en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Norine_G._Johnson

Norine G. Johnson
Born(1935-12-03)December 3, 1935
DiedNovember 19, 2011(2011-11-19) (aged 75)
Known forPast president, American Psychological Association
Scientific career
FieldsPediatric psychology

Norine G. Johnson (December 3, 1935 – November 19, 2011) was an American psychologist and a past president of the American Psychological Association (APA). Johnson was the founding director of psychology for Kennedy Memorial Hospital (later renamed the Franciscan Hospital for Children), ran a private practice and was on the faculty of Boston University School of Medicine.


Johnson was born in Indianapolis. Her mother, Marie Collins Goode, was a teacher, and her father, Frank O. Goode, was a dentist. Johnson's paternal grandmother was married to a sheriff; he was killed when they were a young couple. Johnson often thought about the strength that her grandmother showed after that loss, and those thoughts inspired some of her professional research interests.[1]

Johnson completed a bachelor's degree at DePauw University.[2] She earned a PhD in clinical psychology from Wayne State University in 1972.[3] After an internship at University Hospitals in Cleveland, Johnson was one of the earliest members of the budding specialty of pediatric psychology.[1]

As a psychologist in private practice, Johnson had a clinical interest in the treatment of adolescent females. She was a consultant for the film 5 Girls, a documentary that followed the growth of five subjects from age 13 to age 17. She served on the faculty of Boston University School of Medicine.[3] Johnson founded a hospital psychology department at Kennedy Memorial Hospital (which later became Franciscan Hospital for Children).[4]

After learning that no woman had been president of the Massachusetts Psychological Association in almost 50 years, Johnson ran for and was elected to that office, beginning a two-year term in 1981.[1] She served on the APA Council of Representatives and convinced the organization to sell Psychology Today; the APA owned the publication at the time but it was costing the organization millions of dollars.[5] In 1997, she joined the APA Board of Directors.[1] She assumed the APA presidency in 2001.[6] Johnson, who aligned with the biopsychosocial model, was APA president when the concept of health was first acknowledged in the association's mission statement.[1]

Johnson wrote three books. Her last work, a historical novel titled An American Family Myth, was finished after she was diagnosed with breast cancer. She was married to Wayne Woodlief, a columnist with the Boston Herald'.[4]

She died of breast cancer on November 19, 2011.[1][7] The Society for the Advancement of Psychotherapy (Division 29 of the APA) awards the Norine Johnson, PhD, Psychotherapy Research Grant.[8]


  1. ^ a b c d e f Cantor, Dorothy; Goodheart, Carol (April 2012). "Norine G. Johnson (1935-2011)". American Psychologist. 67 (3): 244–245. doi:10.1037/a0027713. PMID 22468786.
  2. ^ Florence Denmark; Michele Antoinette Paludi (2008). Psychology of Women: A Handbook of Issues and Theories. Greenwood Publishing Group. p. 31. ISBN 978-0-275-99162-3.
  3. ^ a b "Norine G. Johnson Clinical Psychology Scholarship". Wayne State University. Retrieved November 12, 2014.
  4. ^ a b "Norine G. Johnson, at 75, leading child psychologist, resident of Roslindale". Boston Herald. November 22, 2011.
  5. ^ DeAngelis, T. (2007). "Women Leaders: Norine G. Johnson, PhD". Monitor on Psychology. 38 (7): 86. Retrieved November 12, 2014.
  6. ^ "Former APA presidents". American Psychological Association. Retrieved November 12, 2014.
  7. ^ Lawrence, J. M. (December 1, 2011). "Norine Johnson; child psychologist studied strong women". The Boston Globe. Retrieved November 12, 2014.
  8. ^ "Norine Johnson, PhD, Psychotherapy Research Grant". American Psychological Association. Retrieved November 12, 2014.