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Getting to Know Fellow Gail Steketee

Former Dean and Boston University professor emeritus Gail Steketee is formally retired.  But spend 5 minutes with her and you’d never know. An involved Academy board member, “vintage dancer” and renowned scholar on hoarding, Steketee shows absolutely no signs of slowing down.

She’s soon to publish another edition of the Oxford University Press series dubbed “What Everyone Needs to Know” with discussions on topical issues in humanities, law, medicine, science and social science. Psychology books in this series include ADHD and The Brain, and Steketee’s new addition will span science and social science. 

The concise, encyclopedia-like book is Steketee and co-author Randy Frost’s first effort at distilling their and others’ research about hoarding and hoarding disorder.  It’s set in a q & a format to help educate and dispel a few common myths about hoarding. Steketee says she hopes it’s helpful to community service providers who encounter hoarding in the course of their work.  She also wants it to assist the general public and family members who are trying to figure out what to do when a relative has accumulated a lot of stuff and can’t seem to manage it safely.

The new book, titled What Everyone Needs to Know about Hoarding, is scheduled for publication fall of 2019 or early 2020.   At least one of her clinical books has also been translated into Complex Chinese and several of their books have been translated into other languages, which she calls an exciting opportunity for international research.  

Apart from hoarding, Steketee spends time celebrating the dance styles, dress and social customs of the past.  From Regency period dances (Jane Austen style) to Civil War ballroom and WWI Ragtime, Steketee and her husband Brian attend week-long events waltzing, foxtrotting, executing swing and quadrilles.

Steketee formerly performed with a Boston-based troupe but now limits her dancing to fun events around the country. Dancers acquire the hobby by attending classes or weekend dances, but she concedes the hardest part is always finding enough men who are interested.

Her next potential juncket apart from the SSWR 2019 conference? Chattanooga, Tennessee, where you just may find her in ‘20s getup doing the “one-step” and partying like it’s 1929.

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