Dr. Vivian Pender Takes Office as APA President


WASHINGTON, D.C., May 4, 2021 – Vivian Pender, M.D., began her term as President of the American Psychiatric Association (APA) at the 2021 APA Annual Meeting. She has had extensive APA experience, having served in numerous leadership roles at APA, including the District Branch, the APA Board of Trustees, the Finance and Budget Committee, the APA Assembly, and the APA Political Action Committee.

Dr. Pender is a Clinical Professor of Psychiatry at Weill Cornell Medical College and a training psychoanalyst at Columbia University. She has numerous awards for teaching medical students and residents. In addition to maintaining a private practice of psychiatry in New York City, she is the founder of Healthcare Against Trafficking, Inc., an organization that works to raise awareness of the role of health care in addressing this public health issue. She is also the author of ‘THE STATUS OF WOMEN: VIOLENCE, IDENTITY & ACTIVISM’, a book that examines the critical issues that women worldwide face.

Dr. Pender is a consultant psychiatrist and psychoanalyst to the United Nations. At the UN, she represents the International Psychoanalytical Association and the American Psychiatric Association, which are both designated NGOs with Special Consultative Status. In her UN capacity, she has chaired the NGO Committee on the Status of Women, and the NGO Committee on Mental Health.

“I’m honored to become president of the American Psychiatric Association in this critical moment in time,” Pender said. “APA has the potential to exert a profound influence on the mental health not only of the nation but of the global community as well. I look forward to the years ahead as we use our collective experience and voices to address the social determinants of mental health, and to advocate change for the better.”

Other successful APA leadership candidates who took office at the close of the APA Annual Meeting include:

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 37,400 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.


To advance the quality and effectiveness of psychiatric care through advocacy, professional education and camaraderie.



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