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The COVID-19 pandemic – and other unfolding crises – continue to disrupt our families, our work, the lives of our kids, and our personal sense of safety, security and health. And yet, there’s good reason for optimism. We have agency, the ability to take charge of our lives and put ourselves onto better paths. Drs. Anthony Rao and Paul Napper will present seven fundamental tools from their book The Power of Agency. They have identified specific behaviors and ways of thinking that high agency people use to help them stay focused, productive, and authentic despite the many negative forces and powerful distractions surrounding us today.

Drs. Paul Napper and Anthony Rao are the co-authors of The Power of Agency: The 7 Principles to Conquer Obstacles, Make Effective Decisions and Create a Life on Your Own Terms

Dr. Napper leads a management psychology and executive coaching consultancy in Boston. His client list includes Fortune 500 companies, universities, and start-ups.

Dr. Rao is a nationally known expert in psychology. He started his career as a psychologist at Boston Children’s Hospital and for more than twenty years he was an instructor at Harvard Medical School.

Longer bios below:

Dr. Paul Napper, Psy.D.

Dr. Paul Napper helps business leaders increase their effectiveness through focusing and strengthening their agency as leaders. His professional background includes extensive experience in assessment and the application of psychological principles to improve the performance of people and organizations. His client list includes Fortune 500 companies, financial firms, non-profit organizations, universities, as well as start-ups.

Dr. Napper launched his career as a Wall Street analyst, first with J.P. Morgan Investment Management in New York and, following that, with Crowell, Weedon and Company in Los Angeles. During his tenure as a securities analyst, he was responsible for research and investment strategy for several major industries. He subsequently launched Performance Psychology, a management psychology consultancy in Boston.

Dr. Napper earned his undergraduate degree at the University of Pennsylvania in International Relations and pursued his master’s degree in the same field at the University of Chicago. He received his doctorate in psychology from William James College in Boston, one of the country’s premier schools of professional psychology. As part of his doctoral training he completed an advanced fellowship in psychological assessment during a three-year academic appointment at Harvard Medical School.

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Dr. Anthony Rao, Ph.D.

Dr. Anthony Rao is a clinical psychologist who holds a Ph.D. in psychology from Vanderbilt University. For more than 20 years, Dr. Rao worked in the Department of Psychiatry at Boston Children’s Hospital and served as instructor at Harvard Medical School, where he trained psychologists and physicians in the use of Cognitive Behavior Therapy, or CBT.

Dr. Rao has been a featured expert on documentaries and has been interviewed for articles in The New Yorker, The Boston Globe, The Washington Times, The Chicago Tribune, and Parents Magazine, among many others. His editorial letters and opinions have appeared in a wide range of publications including Newsweek, Scientific American, The New York Times, and New York Magazine.

Dr. Rao has lectured extensively at universities, including Tufts University, Emerson College, and Boston University. He regularly presents at conferences, parenting groups, and conducts workshops for professionals around the country who work with children and young adults.

His first book, The Way of Boys: Promoting the Social and Emotional Development of Young Boys (HarperCollins) is an expose on the current crisis in American boyhood. It urges parents, educators, pediatricians, psychologists, and other developmental experts to reevaluate and radically alter how we raise boys – so boys can be their best, respecting their unique development right from the start.


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