Association for Behavior Analysis International

The Association for Behavior Analysis International® (ABAI) is a nonprofit membership organization with the mission to contribute to the well-being of society by developing, enhancing, and supporting the growth and vitality of the science of behavior analysis through research, education, and practice.




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Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion

Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion Board


Mission: The mission of the ABAI Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion (DEI) Board is to foster and develop an inclusive, equitable, and just environment for all individuals and groups within the science and practice of behavior analysis and beyond.

Behavior scientists and practitioners have the capacity to contribute to individual and collective well-being through scientific and practical endeavors that include substantive and diverse representation. Toward that end, the DEI Board is dedicated to:


  • Recognizing the value of each individual and group;
  • Maintaining an ongoing and vigilant commitment to the advancement of knowledge on DEI issues through research, study, collaboration, and communication of that knowledge to the scientific community, policy makers, and the public;
  • Including, at every level of science and practice, those who have been traditionally marginalized and under-resourced;
  • Creating environments that are welcoming, safe, and encouraging to all;
  • Promoting implementation of practices that support and respect diversity of identity and experience;
  • Establishing formal and effective communication and feedback mechanisms related to inclusion within ABAI;
  • Developing and promoting the use of metrics of diversification, inclusion, and equity within ABAI and behavior analysis in general;
  • Evaluating the impact of ABAI’s DEI initiatives;
  • Supporting ABAI Boards in relation to DEI efforts;
  • Providing policy and procedure recommendations to ABAI Council.


Board Coordinators

Jovonnie Esquierdo-Leal (2019–2027)

Council Liaison

Jomella Watson-Thompson (2022–2025)


Board Members
  • May Beaubrun (2022–2025)
  • Kaitlynn Gokey (2023–2026)
  • Nicole Hollins (2022–2025)
  • Daniel Kwak (2022–2025)
  • Anita Li (2024–2027)
  • Erica McClure (2024–2027)



Volunteer for DEI Board



ABAI is a member of the Societies Consortium on Sexual Harassment in STEMM, the strategic focus of which is to, “[build] communities actively intolerant of sexual and intersecting bases of harassment and [build] bridges for collective efforts across STEMM—among societies, academic and research institutions, teaching hospitals and others, as well as researchers, faculty, and students.”



Grants & Awards


Distinguished Contributions to Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion Award

The Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion (DEI) Board of the Association for Behavior Analysis International (ABAI) invites ABAI members to nominate worthy candidates for its 2025 Award for Distinguished Contributions to Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion.


This award seeks to recognize, reward, and promote achievements with documented impact on diversity, equity, and inclusion. The award is envisioned as a mechanism for highlighting creative DEI programming and the central role of diversity, equity, and inclusion in individual and institutional success. The award can go to an individual or team from the public or private sector, working  within the field of behavior analysis or in other areas. The goal is to emphasize effective models of action in DEI. Membership in ABAI is not required for nominees.


The Award for Distinguished Contributions to Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion is presented at each year’s ABAI Annual Convention in a DEI event to honor the awardee(s). The awardee will receive a $2,000 honorarium as well as complimentary conference registration and travel reimbursement for one individual to present an invited address describing their work. Nominations for the award will be received and considered by the DEI Board, and the award winner will be determined by the Board.


Nominations are now closed.


Scholarly Contributions to Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion Paper Competition

The Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion (DEI) Board welcomes submissions by October 23, 2024, for the Scholarly Contributions to DEI Paper Competition!


The competition is designed to encourage, promote, and reward behavior analytic scholarship on topics and issues in DEI, both in the field of behavior analysis and more broadly. Students (graduate or undergraduate) and post-graduate professionals who have completed empirical or conceptual papers relevant to DEI and that are informed, at least in part, by a behavior analytic perspective are invited to submit. Two student papers and one professional paper may be selected as winners of the competition.


Rules, eligibility, submission

You will be asked to sign in to your ABAI portal account first, then be taken to the relevant page.


Past winners may be found here.


Innovative Student Research Grant in Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion

The application period for the Innovative Student Research Grant in Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion will open in September.



Position Statements


Board Activities

Diversity Data


Modifed by Eddie Soh