The South African Transactional Analysis Association

The purpose of the Association is to contribute to public well-being through the use of TA. The principle of the South African Transactional Analysis Association is to develop, sustain and protect Transactional Analysis (TA) philosophy, theory and practice. Fundamental to this is respect for autonomy and human dignity. The Association will, therefore, promote individuality, diversity and community. The Association is underpinned by a commitment to TA principles, especially those of confidence and trust in self and other (I’m OK, You’re OK, We’re OK, They’re OK), a contractual method and a belief in the human capacity to grow and problem solve. It is the broad task of the Association to promote and develop the knowledge and practice of TA.

The Association’s objectives are to:

  • Promote family and community stability by informing family members, primary caregivers and educators in the dynamics of communication and relationship in order to promote self-help, empowerment and capacity building,
  • Provide educational and corporate enrichment through training of educators, care workers, managers and community members involved with educational and emotional development of children and adults,
  • Encourage reconciliation, mutual respect and tolerance in schools, organisations, families and communities made up of the various peoples of Southern Africa,
  • Grow progressive, competent and compassionate thinkers and practitioners who seek to improve family, education, care settings and general organisational relationships, and
  • Ensure sufficiently sound management and resourcing of the organisation in order to achieve the above mentioned objectives.

Executive Committee


Karen Pratt TSTA (E)

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Karen is passionate about connecting TA people around the world to develop a robust network of diverse TA professionals learning from each other. She is inspired by the positive philosophy of TA which gives people understanding and options of trying out new ways of being in the world. Her spirituality exploring mysticism and non-duality blends powerfully with TA principles.

Vice Chair

Marguerite Sacco PTSTA

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Marguerite Sacco is a Transactional Analyst (PTSTA). She holds a degree in Industrial Psychology, Specialist Certificates in Training Management (IPM), HR Management (UCT), Appreciative Inquiry and Coaching Skills and is an accredited Assessor and Moderator. She is a Transactional Analysis teacher, and designs and implements programmes using TA in organisational development.


Kirsty Melmed

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As a life coach and workshop facilitator, Kirsty’s mission is to empower you to live life authentically! Being part of this TA community has been transformational in her own personal growth and she is passionate about sharing that opportunity with others. She also loves a good spreadsheet so is happy to keep an eye on the SATAA’s books.


Andrew Matthews ACC

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Andrew’s interest is in what happens in the spaces between us during the evolution of highly effective teams and communities. He is committed to being a part of the SATAA community in its evolution of valuable and transformational use of TA.

Partner Organisation

SATAA is a proud partner member of the International Transactional Analysis Association

Honorary Lifetime Members

Richard G. Erskine

Richard G. Erskine, PhD, has served since 1976 as the Training Director at the Institute for Integrative Psychotherapy in New York City. He is a certified Transactional Analyst, a licensed Psychoanalyst , group psychotherapist and an internationally recognized Gestalt Therapist who trained with both Fritz and Laura Perls. He has twice received the prestigious Eric Berne Award for his contribution to the development of both a relational and integrative perspective in Transactional Analysis theory and methods. He has published over 50 articles in the Transactional Analysis Journal as well as five books on the theory and methods of a relationally focused integrative psychotherapy.

Richard introduced Transactional Analysis to South Africa in 1978 when he conducted a series of psychotherapy training workshops in Cape Town, Durban, Johannesburg, and Port Elizabeth when no one else was willing to come to South Africa to do training.

From 1979 to 1990 Richard conducted a Transactional Analysis psychotherapy training program in Johannesburg where he trained, supervised, and sponsored many of the early South African Transactional Analysts for their clinical certification which enabled TA to get a foothold in South Africa which led to the establishment of the SATAA.

Trudi Newton

Trudi Newton is a Educational TSTA, based in the UK, with a passion for radical approaches to learning and community development. For years I provided training in educational TA in the UK and Russia, and contributed to training programmes in several countries including South Africa. Now I only occasionally take part in TA training programmes (for instance with Karen Pratt in Cape Town). I do run workshops and courses for coach supervisors (including in SA), and I spend much of my time writing. Currently I am co-editing a book on educational TA, with contributors from 13 countries, and am also on the editorial team for another general book on TA.

I first came to SA in 1997, and immediately decided I wanted to come back. That opportunity came in 2003 when Colin Brett asked me to do some training for his TA group. Since then I have made maybe a dozen visits, short or long, and still feel a real connection. It’s hard to say what is most important and appealing to me about being in SA: the amazingly beautiful scenery and wildlife of course; the feel of being in Africa with its ancient human history; but more than these, the people I meet – always interested, open to change, engaged, energetic; and the heroes – Mandela, Tutu, Slovo, and – more personal – folk like Brigalia Bam (who we knew at WCC many years ago). It feels like a place where there is always something happening, where people don’t give up. That’s why I want to keep coming back.

Joanna Beazley Richards

Joanna Beazley Richards founded Wealden Psychology Institute in the South East of England, in 1986. Joanna has been a Teaching and Supervising Transactional Analyst since 1995. She is a Clinical Psychologist, and also has a Masters degree in Forensic Psychology. She is a qualified teacher, and has a specialist Diploma in teaching people with learning learning disabilities.

Joanna has been a trauma specialist for many years, having been trained by Babette Rothschild in the 1980s and 90s. Joanna is an Accredited EMDR Consultant. She has taught TA and Trauma Therapy in Turkey, Spain, Germany, Austria, Holland, USA and France, presented TA workshops in India, Japan, and of course her beloved South Africa. Joanna is assisted and supported by her husband John Baxendale, who is a Provisional Teaching Supervising Transactional Analyst.

Joanna relaxes by competing with her carriage driving horses, or on her farm, where she treats traumatised children and adults using animals as her co-therapists.

Diane Salters

I first discovered TA when a neighbour, who could see I was in need of help, gave me I’m OK, You’re OK to read. I had studied psychology as one of my majors at university but found it so unrewarding that I dropped it in my final year. Here, at last, was a psychological view that made sense to me and reassured me that I was not going crazy…simply had a lot to learn and unlearn! I took myself to Mavis Klein and can confidently say that she and TA saved my life. (1973)

I first started using TA in my work as a teacher. Having worked in schools for a time I had moved on to a running a special unit for 15 year olds who had been suspended from school or truanting so long that everyone had given up on them. They got a final year with us before being free to leave the education system at 16. It was, in all cases, too little too late, but still taught me the value of TA.

In 1980 I moved out of London and took part time work in a children’s home. There the head of the home realised I had quite a lot of TA learning and experience and invited me to join his TA group as co-therapist.  I had never thought of training as a therapist but suddenly realised I had better find myself a trainer. Gordon Law turned out to be my nearest, and a South African, which was a plus. We remained close friends until his death.  A year or two later I joined another South African, Petruska Clarkson, as part of her first training group at Metanoia. Brian Dobson and Sue Fish (also South Africans) were also part of that group.

I was certified CTA (P) in 1985. I went straight on to do another 4 years at Metanoia on Petruska’s first Integrative Psychotherapy training programme. I also took my TEW and took on some training and supervision. Over the years I developed a substantial psychotherapy practice in the Cotswolds, working both privately and with various NHS entities.

In 1993, following the release of Nelson Mandela, the pull to return home after 25 years of exile, was very strong and I came to live in Simons Town with my husband and son. My two older children chose to remain in the UK where they had been born and raised.

While living in the UK I was a member of UKATA and the ITAA. (that was required of all trainees at the time) Later I was also a member of EATA. I served briefly on the board of UKATA. I have remained a member of ITAA all these years and have served on the BOT in several capacities over the years, culminating in my presidency.

Sharon Kalinko

I first joined the SATAA in 1977 after doing a TA 101 and 202 with Maria Gilbert and Petruska Clarkson in Johannesburg.  I so enjoyed learning this theory and approach to therapy that I decided to study further in order to become a Transactional Analyst.

The following year I registered for my MA Counselling Psychology at UNISA where I studied for the next 2 years and qualified in 1979 as a Counselling Psychologist.  I chose to write my Masters thesis using TA as my theoretical approach even though I was the only student in my year doing this and it was not the approach favoured by the university.  I had to find my own supervisor, which I did, and Maria Gilbert agreed to supervise the theoretical aspects of the study which I conducted.

I then began my studies towards my CTA oral exam which I eventually took in Chicago in 1987 under the supervision of Maria Gilbert who by that time, had already emigrated to the UK with Petruska Clarkson. Diana Shmukler, who was the Prof of clinical psychology at Wits university took over the leadership of the by then, small SATAA community and became my new supervisor.

In 1990, I attended a TA conference in Brussels hosted by the ITAA and EATA where I took my Training endorsement workshop (TEW) and became a provisional Teaching and Supervising Transactional Analyst.  At this point, I started training people who wished to take their level 1 CTA examination.  We had a small community as most of the members of the organisation had either emigrated or left Johannesburg.  I then took over from Diana Shmukler as the chairperson of the SATAA when she emigrated.

In 2000 I qualified as a Teaching Transactional Analyst at the TA conference in Halifax and it took another 10 years to become a Supervising Transactional Analyst at the Eric Berne centenary conference in Montreal in 2010.  Since then I have trained and supervised many people interested in TA as therapists, organisational consultants, teachers and people who were interested in using it for the own self-development.

I have been using TA as my main theoretical framework for therapy and have integrated many other modalities into it due to its versatility and availability for integration.  I trained with Richard Erskine from 1978 on every occasion when he came to South Africa and I went to New York.  He supported my TA training and certification and I subsequently also joined his organisation to become an Integrative Relational Psychotherapist, trainer and supervisor always using TA as my umbrella framework.  I have been passionate about TA since 1976 when I first encountered it and my enthusiasm has never flagged.

Together with Diane Salters I organized the 2008 TA conference in South Africa.  It was the first and only conference held there and it was very successful.  After this, I resigned as the chairperson and Karen Pratt took over to make it what it is now.  I am very proud of the journey I travelled with TA and where it has culminated.