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The Paul Graves Myerson Award

The Massachusetts Institute for Psychoanalysis grants the Paul Graves Myerson Award to a member of the MIP community for outstanding contributions to the growth of our Institute or psychoanalysis in general.  Dr. Myerson’s forthright and unstinting commitment to MIP in its founding days was consistent with the nature of his intellectual contributions to the field of psychoanalysis.  His courage, vision, openness to ideas and plainspoken voice transcended limitations and constraints on the freedom of institutional and intellectual growth.  In this spirit, MIP continues to honor noteworthy contributions to our community and our field with the Paul Graves Myerson Award.

The Paul Graves Myerson Award was established in 2001. Nominees are put forward by the chairs of MIP committees and voted on by this same group.  

Paul Myerson Award 6/5/21

Presented by Joyce Klein

It’s an honor to be standing with you today granting you the Paul Graves Myerson Award for
You know this award well. As past president, you gave it for the past two years to two amazing
woman, Anna Ornstein, and Elizabeth Corpt, and now you join them as psychoanalysts who
have given much to MIP and the teaching of psychoanalysis.

When the co-ordinating committee met to nominate and vote on this award, they thought there
should be no question who should receive this recognition, at this time. Your presidency was
unprecedented. Your leadership as the pandemic began and as the racial upheavals were
stirred gave us a new direction and was a model for other institutions. The commitment to
becoming a more racially inclusive institute has changed us. Our faculty have been reviewing
their courses and integrating issues of culture, race and gender throughout our curriculum.
Our programming on issues of diversity has intensified and our consciousness raised to
another level as we focus on social issues as they relate to psychoanalysis. You lead the
Racial Equity and Anti Racism task force in reviewing other barriers MIP may face in becoming
a more diverse institute.

All that being said, we cannot forget who else Deborah Dowd has been to MIP and
psychoanalysis. You entered the four year Training Program in Psychoanalysis in 2006 with
energy and enthusiasm for learning. I was fortunate enough to join your class for one
memorable dream course- in which your “spark” your inquisitiveness and dedication for
learning, and psychoanalysis was apparent. Following your graduation in 2010, you brought
that enthusiasm for people, for psychoanalysis and for MIP to the Training Committee where
for 6 years, as co-chair, you infused it with new intentions, new structure and additional
mentorship. You maintained a Board of Directors position throughout the years to the present.
Having been President you are still, now Past President and serve on the Ethics Committee.

Also following your graduation, you immediately joined the faculty and sought to learn about
teaching from our most senior faculty. When you became that more experienced faculty
member yourself, you advocated for recent graduates to teach with experienced faculty
encouraging them to share the joys and challenges of teaching at MIP. You have given to MIP
as a teacher, supervisor and mentor. For the Post Graduate Fellowship Program you taught
Object Relations, for the Four Year Training Program you taught Technique for four years, as
well as two years of Clinical courses, and now, are teaching Relational Theory.

Your contributions to psychoanalysis also extend to the larger psychoanalytic community
through presentations at international conferences and published papers in journals. The paper
I heard you present was called States of Grace: A Relational Context for a Patient’s Coming
into Being. I was very moved by your description of your female patient being transformed
through her faith in the context of her work with you.

Deborah, I believe it is your faith, your energy, your commitment, your love, your hope for MIP,
for Psychoanalysis that has changed us and has earned you the Paul G. Myerson Award

Myerson Award Recipients

2020 Elizabeth Corpt
2019 Anna Ornstein
2018 Lynne Layton
2017 Ginger Chappell
2016 Ellen Wilson
2015 Bobbie Knable
2014 Laurence Chud
2013 David Doolittle
2012 Jonathan Slavin
2011 Barbara Pizer

2010 David Power
2009 Linda Luz-Alterman
2007-08  Jaine Darwin and Kenneth Reich
2006-07 Andrew Morrison
2005-06 Stuart A. Pizer
2004-05  Gerald Stechler
2003-04 Susan Rowley
2002-03 Malcolm Owen Slavin
2001-02 Mary Loughlin