Dr. Conni Patterson was posthumously honored by the Louisiana Psychological Association for her service to our community and to the profession of psychology. She was a leader in state and national associations.
Dr. Constance Kendrick Patterson, extraordinary school psychologist, died on July 8, 2017 after a short, intense struggle to overcome renal cancer. She prided herself on her strength as a woman and a professional and fought the disease as long as she could. Dr. Patterson had a distinguished career during which she mentored more than a hundred professionals and influenced countless others. She began her career as a clinician in Illinois providing services to children and families. She completed a Ph.D. in school psychology at Illinois State University in 1995 with research on children with emotional disturbance and an internship at the Human Development Center (HDC), LSU Health Sciences Center in New Orleans and Jefferson Parish Schools. She joined the faculty of the Human Development Center as Coordinator of the Louisiana School Psychology Internship Consortium in 1997, supervising the program for eight years. During that time, she carefully shaped training to model effective and ethical practices of interns. Those interns now practice as school psychologists throughout the U.S. She joined the staff of the National Center for Special Education Accountability Monitoring at HDC in 2005 providing technical assistance to states.
In 2007, Dr. Patterson joined the faculty of Walden University teaching classes in school psychology and supervising students. She also conducted an active independent practice and supervised school psychology interns. In 2011, she joined the faculty of Tulane University’s and rose to Coordinator of the School Psychology program. Dr. Patterson developed special expertise in cross-cultural competence emphasizing generational and gender diversity.
Throughout her career she was active in professional organization service in a number of roles. She was a past president of the Louisiana School Psychological Association, a state delegate for the National Association of School Psychologists, and the Executive Council of the Louisiana Psychological Association. She also served as an investigator for the Louisiana Board of Examiners of School Psychologists. Dr. Patterson mentored countless school psychologists, teachers, school administrators, and families experiencing challenges. At her passing, many people reached out with stories of how Conni served as an inspirational role model of ethical and family-focused practice. She was an active member of the Algiers Point community in New Orleans supporting the arts, music, and people in need. No one can adequately capture or describe the breadth of her reach and influence on the practice of school psychology and her spirit of reaching out to others.
During her illness, Conni was supported by her school psychology family and close friends who maintained communication with Conni’s many friends, colleagues, and her family in Virginia. All involved are grateful for mutual support and for Conni’s relief from suffering.
Conni is survived by her mother, Lorena McCann, her daughter Melanie Hoerner (husband Jerry), her 3 grandchildren, Jared, Caleb and Marley, her sisters, Jean Kindrick, Becky Gibson, Trish Lutz, and Stacey Moffet, and numerous nieces and nephews.
A memorial school psychology internship fund has been established in her name with the LSU Health Foundation New Orleans (2000 Tulane Avenue, 4th Floor, New Orleans, LA 70112). Donations should be addressed to the Dr. Conni Patterson Scholarship Fund, c/o www.lspaonline.org.