Beck founded, Beck led.

Beck Institute was founded in 1994 by Drs. Aaron and Judith Beck. They continue to lead our organization, serving as President Emeritus and President, respectively. They are supported by Executive Director Lisa Pote, who oversees our operations.

Dr. Aaron T. Beck

President Emeritus

Aaron T. Beck, MD, is globally recognized as the father of cognitive therapy (CT) and one of the world’s leading researchers in psychopathology.  He has been credited with shaping the face of American psychiatry, and The American Psychologist has called him “one of the five most influential psychotherapists of all time.”

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Aaron T. Beck, MD, is globally recognized as the father of cognitive therapy (CT) and one of the world’s leading researchers in psychopathology.  He has been credited with shaping the face of American psychiatry, and The American Psychologist has called him “one of the five most influential psychotherapists of all time.”

Educational and professional background

Dr. Beck graduated from Brown University in 1942 and Yale Medical School in 1946. Originally trained as a psychoanalyst, his explorations into psychoanalytic concepts of depression while working as a psychiatrist at the University of Pennsylvania led to his development of CT, which has since been found to be effective in hundreds of clinical trials for many different disorders.

Dr. Beck has developed a number of scales to measure psychopathology that are used broadly throughout the world.  He has participated on review panels of the National Institute of Mental Health, served on the editorial boards of many journals and lectured internationally. He has been a visiting scientist of the Medical Research Council at Oxford and a visiting professor at Harvard, Yale and Columbia. He is a visiting fellow of Wolfson College. He is also the honorary president of the Academy of Cognitive Therapy, a nonprofit organization of more than 800 certified cognitive therapists and 100 general members worldwide.

Publications, awards and honors

Dr. Beck has published more than 600 articles and authored or co-authored 25 books. He is also the recipient of numerous awards, including the 2006 Albert Lasker Award for Clinical Medical Research and the Gustave O. Lienhard Award from the Institute of Medicine for “outstanding national achievement in improving personal health care services in the United States.”

Dr. Judith S. Beck


As President of the Beck Institute, Judith S. Beck, PhD, provides the vision and leadership to further our mission: to improve lives worldwide through excellence in Cognitive Behavior Therapy. She is also Clinical Professor of Psychology in Psychiatry at the University of Pennsylvania where she teaches second and third year psychiatric residents. She received her doctoral degree from Penn in 1982.


Judith S. Beck, PhD is the recipient of many awards, including:

  • Earl Bond Award for Distinguished Teaching of Medical Students and Residents University of Pennsylvania Health System, Department of Psychiatry
  • Award for Significant and Enduring Contributions to Cognitive Behavior Therapy Academy of Cognitive Therapy
  • Outstanding Contribution by an Individual for Clinical Activities Association for Behavioral and Cognitive Therapies
  • Distinguished Workshop Presenter Award American Psychological Association
  • Presidential Citation Texas Psychological Association
  • Health Disparities Award National Nursing Centers Consortium
  • Distinguished Contributions to the Science and Profession of Psychology Pennsylvania Psychological Association
  • Excellence in Cognitive Therapy Award Assumption College, Institute for Cognitive Studies
  • Psychiatric Residents Faculty Teaching Award University of Pennsylvania, Department of Psychiatry

Dr. Judith Beck was a Rachel Gundry Visiting Professor at the University of Maryland School of Medicine

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Dr. Beck directs the three major functions of Beck Institute:

Professional activities

Dr. Beck divides her time among administration, supervision and teaching, clinical work, program development, research, writing, and course development. She has been a consultant for several National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH) studies, has developed widely-adopted assessment scales for children and adolescents, and has made hundreds of presentations nationally and internationally on various applications of cognitive therapy. She is also a distinguished founding fellow and past president of the Academy of Cognitive Therapy.


Dr. Beck has written over 100 articles and chapters on different aspects of cognitive therapy. She is the author of the primary text in the field, Cognitive Behavior Therapy: Basics and Beyond (2nd ed.), which has been translated into 20 languages, as well as books, workbooks, and pamphlets for consumers. Her other publications include:

Online Courses

Dr. Beck continues to create online CBT courses for therapists, educating clinicians around the world on the essentials of CBT, CBT for depression, anxiety, and personality disorders. To date, her courses have been taken in 112 countries. She is currently working on several additional courses.

Lisa Pote

Executive Director

As the Beck Institute’s executive director, Lisa Pote, MSW, manages internal operations and oversees the creation of new programs. She also manages the expansion of existing programs to increase access to CBT training and resources for health and mental health professionals worldwide. She holds a Master of Social Work degree from the University of Tennessee with a focus in management and community practice.

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Prior to working at the Beck Institute, Ms. Pote was a senior vice president for Seedco, a national workforce and community development nonprofit. She provided oversight for the Memphis office, where she led the staff, managed multi-million dollar workforce contracts, designed and implemented the ACA Navigator statewide initiative, executed asset-building programs, and was responsible for quality assurance.

Prior to joining Seedco, Ms. Pote served as the vice president of Nashville’s Center for Nonprofit Management(CNM). She assisted in the daily operation of the organization and the consulting bench, matching nonprofits and consultants. She also provided consulting services to CNM-member nonprofit and government agency clients, with a focus on strategic planning, board development, performance planning and the development of strategic alliances.

Ms. Pote has served on numerous workforce, social service, and education boards. She was president of the Nashville Women’s Political Caucus and Hands On Nashville, chairwoman of the Middle Tennessee Workforce Investment Board Youth Council, and board member of the YWCA in Nashville. 

Allen R. Miller, Ph.D., M.B.A.

CBT Program Director

Allen R. Miller, Ph.D., M.B.A. is a seasoned clinician, trainer, and administrator who provides oversight to the training and clinical services at Beck Institute as the CBT Program Director. For over twenty-five years, he held leadership positions in a large integrated health system. Throughout his career, he has divided his time among administrative, clinical, and training and supervision responsibilities.

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As Director of Behavioral Health at WellSpan Behavioral Health, he provided administrative and operational oversight for the behavioral health service line that served hospitals and medical practices within the health system. He served as Chair of Psychology for a 580-bed acute care hospital, and as Chief Psychologist for an APA-approved internship in clinical psychology that he founded. In the internship, Dr. Miller provided training and supervision of essential cognitive and behavioral skills for a population health environment and an adaptation for working in medical settings. Utilizing the principles of implementation science, Dr. Miller worked to integrate sustainable CBT programs with primary care and other medical services. He also provided supervision for psychiatry fellows in their use of CBT with children and adolescents.

As a clinician, Dr. Miller has used CBT to help people of all ages with a myriad of presenting problems coming from forensic, community, educational, and medical settings. Dr. Miller has conducted workshops, written professional articles and published several resource books for lay readers about personality, depression, anxiety, and stress. He is a Founding Fellow of the Academy of Cognitive Therapy and is an officer on its Board of Directors.