One chapter closes and another begins, today, as Louise Braddock hands the Directorial baton to Chris Newfield.
Those who have had the pleasure of working with Louise Braddock will recognise certain values to which she ardently adheres: that brevity is a virtue, and that unnecessarily laudatory proclamations be avoided at all costs.
I hope, therefore, not to trespass against what I expect to be her wish that any messages of thanks and goodwill be limited both in length and depth!
Suffice it to say that my own nine years at the ISRF to date have been as enjoyable and rewarding (and, in a good way, challenging) as they have thanks, in no small way, to her.
It is a dreadful cliche to remark upon how quickly a significant period – such as our nine years working together – can fly by. Even more of a cliche is the suggestion that such seeming acceleration of the passage of time is directly correlated to the amount of fun one has been having. Nevertheless, cliches be damned – these nine years do seem to have passed in something of a blur, not for a lack of fun – it has actually been fun! – but also I think because we have achieved such a lot.
It is easy to forget that, a decade ago, the ISRF was yet to run its first grant competition; it is just seven years since our first annual workshop; we approach the print publication of the 22nd issue of the ISRF Bulletin; and our ‘virtual college’ of Fellows has grown from around 20 in 2015 to more than 80 today.
Louise would, I’m sure, be the first to acknowledge that this could have happened without her – but not necessarily in the same way. Every development has been carefully considered, appropriately critiqued, and pursued with an eye both for productivity and propriety.
She leaves a legacy upon which Chris Newfield – formerly of University of California Santa Barbara – can build, a solid foundation from which the ISRF can continue to grow and adapt to the ever-changing world (never mind just the academic world) we find ourselves in.
And, of course, it is important to note that whilst Louise is leaving the ISRF, she will undoubtedly enjoy the opportunity to devote more time to her own academic interests. I am certain that the ISRF’s loss will be to the advantage of the field of psychoanalytic scholarship.
I’m sure I can speak for the whole ISRF family in wishing Louise well for her own next phase, as the ISRF moves into its own – and, no doubt, we shall meet again!
*This may, or may not, pass muster as a Latin phrase – but I trust that Louise will enjoy it either way!
Stuart Wilson oversees the general administration of the ISRF’s operations. He supports the Director of Research in the implementation of the Foundation’s funding strategy and activities, and is the first point of contact for all general enquiries.
He is an experienced administrator whose previous employers include University College London and King’s College London. He Has a BA in History from Goldsmiths, University of London (2007).
Away from the ISRF, Stuart is Executive Director & Editor of todolist.london.