ITAA Board of Trustees

2023 - 2024 ITAA Board of Trustees

Thorsten Geck, President

Thorsten Geck, MSc (Psychology), TSTA (O), lives in Hamburg, Germany. He works with organizations in change projects and supports teams in finding their purpose and their processes to be successful.

Thorsten appreciates the richness of the intercultural encounter and exchange in the TA community. He also has the strong conviction that TA with its sometimes long and vigorous training process is an advantage to develop personally and professionally. He finds this strength vital for the quality of counselors, coaches, and consultants and their goal to serve the clients. Therefore, he invested his resources in the development of exams as a stepstone to quality and excellence. He was co-chair of IBOC from 2012 and served on the board of trustees as VP of Professional Standards from 2015 on for 2 and a half terms. In EATA he served as coordinator for written exams.

Thorsten thinks that the TA community needs to find answers to the challenges of this time: climate change, diversity, and split in societies and how this change impacts psychologically the experience of the human being. He believes that listening and understanding are essential to dialogue. Also, he believes in the importance of learning and education to make informed choices in complex situations.

TA became one theory and pragmatic approach among others. TA can measure up to academic standards. It is the task and the challenge of transactional analysts to make a point about the resources and strength of the theory which has interlinked concepts and offers maps for understanding self, others, and the relationship between them. On such an account, Thorsten is eager to improve the structures of ITAA for powerful and authentic dynamics between the association, its members, and the professional world. In the role of the president, he will do so by learning, listening, and making decisions with the team of trustees.

Chitra Ravi, Past President

Chitra Ravi, BS, MA (psychology), TSTA (psychotherapy), lives in Bangalore, India, where she facilitates transactional analysis psychotherapy training and individual/group supervision. Having been on the ITAA Board of Trustees for 6 years and serving previously for 6 years as chair of the IBOC, she has had the opportunity to interact widely with the ITAA community, address significant issues, and make some difficult decisions. In the time of the pandemic crisis and pervasive uncertainty, Chitra brought her experience and perspective to her role as president. She believes that humility and willingness to learn from others are crucial to undertake challenges in serving the BOT.

John Oates, Treasurer

John is a chartered accountant (Institute of Chartered Accountants in England & Wales - ICAEW). After qualification in 1975 with what is now PwC, he specialized in IT and Business Systems. In the mid-1980s, he joined what is now RSM (UK) in Manchester as a partner in charge of IT, managing the firm’s own systems and providing IT consultancy services. During this time, the business grew substantially. John has been a member of the Technical Committee of the ICAEW’s IT Faculty since 1989, chairing it for 7 years, and then chairing the faculty itself for the maximum 4-year period. He retired as a partner in RSM in 2011, remaining as a consultant for 2 years. He continues to conduct software reviews for the ICAEW’s IT Accreditation Scheme, helping him keep up to date with the fast changes in the software industry. John has a number of voluntary roles. He is treasurer of a local group supporting the Ffestiniog Railway in North Wales, where he has volunteered since 1969. John is Director, Business Systems at Ffestiniog Travel, being influential in upgrading their systems, putting most of them in The Cloud. He is also chairman of the Mid Cheshire Rail Users Association (400+ members) and chair of the Mid Cheshire Community Rail Partnership. His wish is to see ITAA’s systems run slickly and for the executive and board of trustees to have the appropriate information to inform their decisions as the ITAA develops.

Rema K. Giridhar, Secretary

I feel privileged to become ITAA Secretary. I come from south India and feel this is a great opportunity to increase my connections with the wider TA community. It is almost a decade since TA came into my life, and it has helped me to stay grounded, respectful of others, and authentic in the way I feel, think, and behave. This will help me with the tasks of secretary. I have been part of the South Asian Association of Transactional Analysts (SAATA) as joint secretary and coeditor of the newsletter and have been involved in various day-to-day functions, tasks, and communications. This has helped me build my professional and personal acumen and will also help me to fulfill the responsibilities of ITAA Secretary in the best possible way. I am one of the National Coordinators (India) of the TAPACY projects of IDTA and so far have successfully executed four projects under this banner. I am passionate about working with children and young adults and constantly look for opportunities among the student community to give what I received.

Michelle Thomé, Vice President, Development

I started on the board as Latin America Regional Representative in 2018 and am pleased to take on the position of VP Development. I organized the first online workshop in May 2021 that was used as a pilot for the ITAA’s first online conference. I am a member of the Ethics and Conference Committees, and as VP Development, I manage the Communications Team working to develop ITAA’s new website, logo, and social media platforms. I bring 28 years of experience in the fields of journalism and marketing to my 7 years as a transactional analyst. Since my first contact with TA in 2013, I have advanced in theoretical knowledge and personal and professional relationships, especially when I increased my international connections. Working as a counselor, coach, and constellator, I use TA theory and practice with clients with significant results. In Brazil, I am a TA trainer and supervisor, teaching TA 101 and 202 classes.

Sylvie Monin Vice President, Operations

Sylvie Monin is a Teaching and Supervising Transactional Analyst in the counseling field and has a Swiss Federal Diploma of Counselor in the psychosocial field.  She is based in Geneva, Switzerland, where she runs a private practice working with individuals and groups.  A partner and member of the teaching and supervising team of Atrium, she is in charge of the counseling curriculum there.  Sylvie has authored articles on TA counseling, was the guest editor of the January 2013 Transactional Analysis Journal issue dedicated to counseling, and is now a coeditor of the TAJ. Her previous work as an executive assistant led to work in the United States and Switzerland, where she gained extensive experience in the field of business, international organizations, multinationals, and Swiss private firms.  She draws from this experience in her work as a counselor and in her involvement in the TA associations. Sylvie was a member of EATA Council from 2010 until 2018, 6 years of which she served as vice president.  She has been intent on gaining recognition for counseling as a professional field and on facilitating closer cooperation and building bridges between the ITAA and EATA.  Sylvie received the 2019 ITAA Service Award and is passionate about TA and values its internationality.

Suriyaprakash C. Vice President, Professional Standards

My first engagement with the ITAA was in 2001 when I joined the erstwhile Board of Certification (BOC) and ever since I have been engaged in various capacities in and out of the Board of Trustees (BOT). I left the BOT in 2016 as the President, and I'm now back to serve the interests of our beloved association and its membership, as Vice President of Professional Standards. In my over two decades of association with the ITAA, I have been part of several projects and initiatives. And what fascinates me the most is its tenacity and audacity to reinvent and rise stronger, almost from the ashes, through every crisis and challenge it faces. While I carry that history with me, I also bring with me a newfound enthusiasm and curiosity to take the ITAA through its next phase by asserting its primacy as the international professional body for transactional analysis while upholding its spirit as a public benefit corporation.

Professionally, I’m a professor of organizational behavior; trainer, coach, counselor and consultant; and an organizational teaching and supervising transactional analyst living in Coimbatore, India and co-founder trustee and secretary of the South Asian Association of Transactional Analysts (SAATA). Personally, I’m fond of people, passionate about long-distance running, fortunate to be doing what I love, and grateful for all that life offers to me. Philosophically, I am inclined towards the Vedantic view of life, believe all our actions have their own consequences, have faith in the goodness of people, and trust everything happens for a reason.

Steff Oates, Vice President, Research & Innovation

I served as ITAA Secretary from 2009–2014 so I am very aware of the workings of the Board of Trustees and the executive committee. During that time, I was involved in the process of the TAJ moving to an external publisher. Since the end of my term as secretary, I have remained involved, especially with our publications, which are an important area of responsibility for the VP of R&I. I have been coeditor of The Script, have coedited three TAJ special issues, and have had a number of articles published. I remain a member of the TAJ editorial board and have recently been involved in supporting authors whose first language is not English in their writing for the TAJ. I have also been involved in writing for and soliciting articles for the French-language journal and am very interested in collaboration with TA organizations who publish in their own languages. As secretary, I managed the awards committee and so am well aware of the awards processes, including the Eric Berne Memorial Award and the more recent ITAA Research Award. I am used to regularly producing reports about team and committee activities and would enjoy working with and representing the editors of the TAJ and The Script. I have a passion for disseminating the TA literature and to that end have coauthored a TAJ article with a psychoanalyst. I would very much like our journal to achieve wider coverage in intellectual circles across our four fields of application and beyond.

Marguerite Sacco, Regional Representative, Africa & Middle East

I am looking forward to serving in this role because I want to contribute to and become more involved in the inner workings of the ITAA. This position affords me the chance to represent Africa, where I live and where TA is small but precious and needs representation and as much support, and as many opportunities as possible to grow its strength and numbers. As far as the Middle East goes, this is a great chance for me to make contact with transactional analysts and to find out more about TA activities in that part of the world, ensuring that they too, are represented in the ITAA. I have been a Certified Transactional Analyst in the organizational field since 2010 and am planning to complete the TEW in 2021. After that, I will sign a contract and work toward becoming a TSTA. On this journey, I look forward to meeting transactional analysts from around the globe and to becoming involved in the development of the ITAA.

Keiko Hoshino, Regional Representative, Asia Pacific

I take joy in connecting with the world through the TA framework and TA terms. I hope to share that joy more with people in my region. I connected with TA 30 years ago in Japan and with ITAA 12 years ago. I became a CTA in 2019 and a PTSTA in 2021. I work in the educational field, including TA training. For people from areas where English is not the primary language, it is challenging to obtain information about international TA, even for me. That is why I thought that I, as a member with English-language challenges, could make a contribution. For example, in exams, not only the examiners but also the candidates need to take more account of language and cultural differences. Focusing on what is created between people and connecting them is great learning and joy. I will be happy to work as a bridge so that people in my region can interact with TA people around the world to learn more about each other.

Anne Tucker, Regional Representative, Australasia

Anne has been a Teaching and Supervising Transactional Analyst in the organizational field since 2015. After a nursing career, she worked in business, eventually running a successful company providing various counseling, training, and consulting services to New Zealand and Australian businesses. It was during that time that she discovered TA and found it invaluable in untangling both her own and company dynamics to achieve productive and effective outcomes. Anne now enjoys teaching and supervising people working in organizations as well as supporting people in their preparation for TA exams. Anne says, “I feel honored to be the Australasian representative on the ITAA Board of Trustees. My aim is to keep our members up-to-date with happenings and to share relevant information from our countries with the board. I am proud to be following on from our latest representative, Christine Kalin, who did a great job.”

Cristina Caizzi, Regional Representative, Europe & Central Asia

I’m a Transactional Analyst and these two words define myself as a therapist, as a teacher and supervisor, and as a person. I met TA in 2000 and since then I felt this was my way.

Besides working with my clients in psychotherapy and with my students in the two Training Institutes where I teach (SSPC-IFREP in Rome and SSPT-SAPA in Latina), I’ve always worked with TA associations, national and international, with the aim of doing my part in making TA more widespread and accredited.

In SIAT, an Italian National Association, I’ve served as part of the Council for 10 years, and for 6 years I’ve been Chair of its Scientific Committee, contributing to the organization of many national conferences and workshops in Italy. Since 2006, I have cooperated with EATA as an Italian translator of the EATA Newsletter and also in serving as an examiner in the CTA and TSTA exams. Since November 2021, I have been the EATA Representative at EAP (European Association of Psychotherapy).

I also cooperate with ITAA. Since 2013, I have been a member of the Transactional Analysis Journal Editorial Board. In the past two years, I’ve served as Chair of the Scientific Committee that organized the ITAA Online Workshop that was run in May 2021. And I co-chaired with Steff Oates the Scientific Committee for the ITAA Online Conference that was held in June 2022.

I’ve worked to spread TA in my country and also abroad by taking part in and organizing TA conferences, workshops, and exams.

Paula Rodrigues, Regional Representative, Central & South America & Caribbean

It is with joy and enthusiasm I accept the invitation to become the regional representative for Central and South America and the Caribbean region. In this role, I hope to contribute to the continuous learning process of all members of our region. To me, associating with the ITAA is a great opportunity to share knowledge and experiences in order to improve our repertoire as transactional analysts. I hope to be a bridge between the regions and to promote our personal and professional development and relationship. I was introduced to TA in 2017, and since then I have been applying it in the organizational and educational fields, especially in the leadership training I do for companies I work for in Brazil as a human relations professional. I will be encouraging my colleagues to share their findings about TA with the world. I believe this shared learning will allow us to harness the full potential of this theory to facilitate growth in the people with whom we work.

Lucy Freedman, Regional Representative, North America

I look forward to serving on the ITAA Board of Trustees as the representative of my region because of my lifelong commitment to TA and its potential for helping humanity live in peace and cooperation. The well-being and natural state of each person, known as OKness, must be nurtured to create a society to which we want to belong. The ITAA links people with similar beliefs across the world, adding to a powerful wave of change. I am eager to combine my personal contribution with those of others involved in the positive application of TA. Since my first steps into TA in 1972—serving on committees, on the board, on the World Integration Committee, then the Long-Range Planning Task Force, and as ITAA President—I have upheld the importance of an inclusive TA community. As chair of the 2014 San Francisco World Conference and cochair of the 2019 Raleigh Conference, I am impressed with the caliber of people leading the ITAA and look forward to working with them again. Having served continuously on the USATAA Council for the past 17 years, I have a good idea of what is happening in the North American region. When I was asked to consider running for this position, vacated due to term limits, I felt excited about ITAA’s future on the planet and in the virtual world. As your North America representative, I will nurture both organizational health and fresh and creative initiatives.