Carlos S. Alvarado, PhD, Research Fellow, Parapsychology Foundation

May I congratulate the Parapsychology Foundation (PF) for its 65th anniversary? Today, on the 14th of December. the PF was chartered, and the PF was officially constituted. Congratulations are also due to the PF’s President Lisette Coly.

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Lisette Coly

 Those of you who are not familiar with the PF should check an article written by the officers of the organization, published in 2001. More recently, I wrote a shorter version of this paper and mentioned some recent developments. This will appear soon in the Psi Encyclopedia, a project of the Society for Psychical Research.

As many of you know the PF was the brain-child of medium-author-entrepeneur Eileen J. Garrett who, together with congressman (she did not like to be called congresswoman) Frances P. Bolton, developed the Foundation from 1951 to later years. After Garrett died her daughter Eileen Coly, took the reigns and continued the work.

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Eileen J. Garrett

 

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Frances P. Bolton

I became a consultant for the PF in 1998, and then in 2000, my wife and colleague Nancy L. Zingrone and I moved to New York City to work with Mrs. C. (Eileen Coly) and with Lisette, who wanted to hire us to develop various projects. Those of us who worked with Mrs. C. cannot help feeling sad celebrating a PF anniversary without her. She was vital to the PF, and many are the recollections I have of her character, sense of humor, and management style. Those who knew her beyond her public persona will be aware of the richness of her personality.

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Eileen Coly

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Eileen Coly with Carlos S. Alvarado and Nancy L. Zingrone

Lisette, already the Executive Director, became President when we lost Mrs. C. and continues the work to this day. Nancy and I  recently met with her and were recollecting our work together, and planning for the future. Lisette is a fountain of creativity and our meeting was never dull or without something to be said. Thanks to her the PF keeps developing in new ways, such as an active online presence unrivaled in current parapsychology. This includes posting online a variety of materials in YouTube. This includes many old and new lectures, recent forums, the Book Expo (in which authors and editors discuss their books about psychic topics), and our unique ParaMOOC, consisting of many high level online lectures, most of which are presented by doctoral level researchers via the WizIQ system.

Under Lisette, many of these projects continue in the spirit of the old PF. It is good to see that, in addition to the old projects, such as the famous 1953 conference held at Utrecht, new events are still organized by the Foundation. As before there is a strong interest in helping the field by providing educational resources, and an equally strong interest in keeping a truly international perspective.

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First International Conference of Parapsychological Studies, Utrecht, 1953

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Keep in touch because, more is coming soon from the PF.

Once again, I congratulate the PF and Lisette Coly for never abandoning their legacy or their vision. Happy anniversary.

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Eileen and Lisette Coly at the PF’s Eileen J. Garrett Library, Greenport, Long Island

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