CCAPS Mid-Level Career Achievement Award
David Gilles-Thomas, Ph.D.
This year’s recipient of the mid-level career achievement award is well known to us in CCAPS and in the larger world of counseling centers as someone who is on the cutting edge and very committed to advancing the profession. David Gilles-Thomas received his degree from the University of Illinois and completed his internship at the Counseling Center at the University of Maine before beginning his career at SUNY-Buffalo in 1992.
The nomination letter for David written by his boss and colleague, Dr. Sharon Mitchell, states that “David Gilles-Thomas has devoted himself to college counseling center work for the past fifteen years. During that time, he has been the embodiment of the multidimensional counseling center professional. His genuine caring for others, warmth, valuing of lifelong learning, keen intellect, curiosity, and humor have been the foundation of all the roles he has played; counselor, supervisor, outreach coordinator, practicum coordinator, assistant director, training director, interim director (twice) and his current role of associate director. David is steadfast, loyal, and willing to pitch in where the work is needed. This type of flexibility and forward thinking is not limited to his work at the University of Buffalo but has impacted the college counseling world as a whole.”
David has been active in the commission for over 14 years, serving on the CCAPS Directorate from 1998-2002, presenting and reviewing many programs over the years, and serving on the standing committee for men and co-chairing the commissions internet interest group.
Probably the reason that many people recognize the name David Gilles-Thomas long before they meet him personally is due to his groundbreaking work on the Counseling Center Village. David co-founded “The Village” in 1996 with Wendy Settle and continues to manage it today. The Village is an amazing resource for counseling center professionals to share information about psycho-educational/self-help materials, staff development, training programs, workshops, and practice resources. The Village has received 80,000 hits this year and is the number one match to a Google search for “counseling center”. It has received numerous awards from ACPA, APA, and beyond, demonstrating it’s excellent comprehensive and far-reaching impact. As Wendy states, “The Village has capitalized on the full potential of the web to promote collaboration, sharing expertise, and building upon each other’s strengths”. This project is a testament to David’s hard work and commitment to the profession.
David is described personally as thoughtful, compassionate, creative, warm, caring, sensitive, and fair and respectful in dealing with other people. Such an extraordinary person is well-deserving of this tremendous honor.