Of course, Alfred Adler is the founder of Adlerian psychology, and the namesake of Adler University. But in line with his community-driven school of thought was the start of our institution – one marked by the holistic collaboration of key Adlerian leaders.
We are continually grateful to our university founders for their formidable sacrifices, groundbreaking research, unparalleled social justice contributions, and steadfast commitment to Adlerian values. But today, Oct. 29, 2017, we especially honor Dr. Harold Mosak. It is his 96th birthday.
A founder of Adler University, Dr. Mosak has long served as a cornerstone of our educational institution. He was mentored by Rudolf Dreikers, a psychiatrist who immigrated to Chicago in 1937 after Alfred Adler’s death. Dreikers was an integral follower and advocate of Adler who lived and worked in Chicago’s Hull House.
Dr. Mosak reflects fondly on his time with Dreikers and colleagues Bernard Shulman and Robert Powers, with whom he framed goals to reflect Adler’s work. And, he has never neglected to convey his pride for helping establish Adler University.
“Decades later, my personal mission continues to be to ensure that Adlerian concepts and practice remain central to psychological theory and therapy,” he has said. “Our commitment then and now has resulted in a rich, worldwide network of former students and professionals who embrace Adlerian practice.”
Seventy years after Adler’s death, his approach is as strong as ever. In advance of Dr. Mosak’s birthday, the university’s faculty, staff, and students rallied to wish him well, drafting cards and arranging visits.
On a recent Monday afternoon, Marina Bluvshtein, Ph.D., and director of the Center for Adlerian Practice and Scholarship, brought Christine Henry and Ronak Makadia to meet him. Henry and Makadia are second- and third-year Psy.D. students, respectively.
Upon receiving the invitation, Henry recalled thinking to herself, “Dr. Mosak? No, not that Dr. Mosak”, later delighted to learn it was, indeed, that Dr. Mosak.
“I arrived and it was like a reunion with old friends,” she said, of spending time with him. “I had a great time, I enjoyed (meeting who is) now my ‘Dr. Mosak’ and my newfound extended Adlerian family.”
Creating an extended Adlerian family may be what Dr. Mosak does best. He has connected over the years with hundreds of students and colleagues, and even provided meals and housed students in need.
“There were summers with students in our home, with (my wife) Birdie sometimes cooking for our ‘family’ of twenty,” he has recalled. “We provided whatever students needed, and we’ve been repaid with the riches of their unending dedication.”
We are forever indebted to Dr. Mosak; not just for his contributions to our university, but for living Adlerian values so vehemently that it is palpable around the world. On this day, and every day, we celebrate you, Dr. Mosak.
Happy birthday, and many more!