WASHINGTON, D.C. — The members of the American Psychiatric Association (APA) have chosen Jeffrey Geller, M.D., M.P.H., as the medical society’s next president-elect. The results were released today but are not official until the APA Board of Trustees confirms the election results at its March meeting.
Geller is Professor of Psychiatry and Director of Public Sector Psychiatry at the University of Massachusetts Medical School. He has served numerous APA leadership positions, including as Area 1 Trustee and Vice President of the APA Board of Trustees; member of the Committee on Psychiatric Diagnosis and Assessment, the Council on Advocacy and Public Policy and the APA Foundation Library and Archives Advisory Committee; and Book Review Editor and Column Editor for Psychiatric Services. Geller also serves on the SAMHSA National Advisory Council, as Vice President of the World Federation for Mental Health and on the boards of the American Association of Community Psychiatrists and the Treatment Advocacy Center.
“I am honored that my colleagues have chosen me to help lead our medical society,” Geller said. “I plan to focus on improving the profession, partly by easing the administrative, documentation and certification burdens placed on our members as they work to deliver high-quality care and treatment to our patients. I will also strive to advocate for equal coverage of mental illnesses as mandated by law, but not enforced, and to combat the terribly harmful discrimination against both psychiatric patients and psychiatrists. One more year of marginalization is 12 months too many."
“Congratulations to Dr. Geller and the other candidates on their election,” said APA President Altha Stewart, M.D. “I look forward to working with these newly elected APA leaders to advance psychiatric practice and APA’s leadership role in increasing access to care and improving the quality of mental health care.”
Among Geller’s priorities as APA president, when he assumes that role in May 2020, are supporting psychiatrists through improving their professional lives, such as addressing maintenance of certification issues and compensation. During his campaign, Geller expressed a desire to work more effectively to integrate psychiatry and other fields of medicine; improve mental health benefits; and further destigmatize psychiatry.
“I have known Dr. Geller for many years,” said APA CEO and Medical Director Saul Levin, M.D., M.P.A. “He has been a mentor and leader to me and many others. APA will be well-served by his election.”
Geller’s term as president-elect of the APA will begin this May at the conclusion of the APA Annual Meeting in San Francisco, when current President-Elect Bruce Schwartz, M.D., begins his one-year term as president.
Other successful APA leadership candidates who will take office after the APA Annual Meeting in May 2019 include:
Sandra DeJong, M.D., M.Sc.
Minority/Underrepresented (M/UR) Trustee
Rahn Bailey, M.D.
Area 3 Trustee
Kenneth Certa, M.D.
Area 6 Trustee
Melinda Young, M.D.
Resident-Fellow Member Trustee-Elect
Michael Mensah, M.D., M.P.H.
American Psychiatric Association
The American Psychiatric Association, founded in 1844, is the oldest medical association in the country. The APA is also the largest psychiatric association in the world with more than 37,800 physician members specializing in the diagnosis, treatment, prevention and research of mental illnesses. APA’s vision is to ensure access to quality psychiatric diagnosis and treatment. For more information please visit www.psychiatry.org.