President’s Message

By: Sydney Wright, MD

Your NCPS has been active in a number of areas of interest and concern to members.

To begin, let me introduce our 2019-2020 elected NCPS Council. The bolded names were voted in by membership in our early 2019 election or have been appointed by council to fill vacancies.

  • Smita Das, MD ~ President (2019-2020)
  • Anna Glezer, MD ~ President Elect (2019-2020)
  • Shana Levy, MD ~ Vice President (2019-2020)
  • Julia Li, MD ~ Treasurer (2019-2020)
  • Diana Wertz, MD ~ Secretary (2019-2020)
  • Sydney Wright, MD ~ Immediate Past President (2019-2020)
  • Firdouse Huq, MD ~ Past President (2019-2020)
  • Adam Nelson, MD ~ APA Assembly Representative (2nd term/2016-2020)
  • Robert Cabaj, MD ~ APA Assembly Representative (2nd term/2017-2021)
  • Yelena Zalkina, MD ~ APA Assembly Representative (2nd term/2018-2022)
    • Dr. Zalkina has been appointed by the council to fill the remaining term vacated by the resignation of Peter Forster, MD
  • Raymond Reyes, MD ~ APA Assembly Representative (2nd term/2019-2023)
  • Farah Zaidi, MD ~ Councilor at Large (term 2017-2020)
  • Michael Ostacher, MD ~ Councilor at Large (term 2017-2020)
    • Dr. Ostacher has been appointed by the council to fill the remaining term vacated by Shana Levy, MD who moved to an officer position
  • Ivan Putziger, MD ~ Councilor at Large (term 2018-2021)
  • Steven Sust, MD ~ Councilor at Large (term 2018-2021)
  • Jim Eyerman, MD ~ North Bay Chapter President (2019-2020)
  • Richard Altesman, MD ~ Councilor at Large (term 2019-2022)
  • Sidney Edsall, MD ~ Councilor at Large (term 2019-2022)
  • Siya Mehtani, DO ~ UCSF Resident Councilor (term 2019-2020)
  • Earth Hasassri, MD ~ UCSF Resident Councilor (term 2019-2020)
  • Janet Baek, MD ~ San Mateo Resident Councilor (term 2019-2020)
  • Clayton Barnes, MD ~ San Mateo Resident Councilor (term 2019-2020)
  • Karen Li, MD ~ Stanford Resident Councilor (term 2019-2020)
  • Matthew Edwards, MD ~ Stanford Resident Councilor (term 2019-2020)
  • Heide Kuang, MD ~ CPMC Resident Councilor (term 2019-2020)

Elsewhere in this edition of the Psychiatric Physician you will find an Annual Meeting Recap and summaries of individual presentations at the meeting. A special thank you goes to Dr. Das and the Professional Education Committee, to each of our speakers, and to Adrianne Davis, our Executive Director, for their contributions to such a successful and well attended meeting.

There are a number of upcoming events of interest to members:

NCPS sponsors its first webinar on Earth Day, April 22nd titled “Climate Change and Mental Health: A Psychiatric Primer”. This is a CME event priced at $20.00 for general Members and $10.00 for ECP’s (FREE to RFMs). Register at

The next NCPS Council meeting will be in San Francisco at the Axiom Hotel on Wednesday, May 1st at 6:00 PM. All NCPS members are welcome to attend. Come and meet your Council. Dinner is provided. Please RSVP via email at

The APA Annual Meeting will be in San Francisco from May 18-22. There are several events of note:

NCPS will be recognized with an honorable mention for our submission for the 2019 Assembly District Branch Best Practice Award in recognition of our ongoing investment and engagement with our RFM’s, our meetings/networking/CME offerings and our financial stability and creative expenditures for members.

NCPS is hosting a reception at the APA Annual meeting on Sunday, May 19 from 4:00—6:00 PM at the One Kearny Club, a five minute walk from Moscone Center. At this beautiful rooftop venue there will be food, drinks and friendly mingling. This event is FREE to all NCPS/APA members. NCPS has extended this invitation to members of the other four California DB’s and to CPA & APA Executives. RSVP for this reception at

The APA 175th Anniversary Gala will be a grand celebration at San Francisco City Hall on Monday, May 20 from 7:00-10:00 PM to benefit the APA Foundation. Tickets are at

NCPS will host an APA “Training in Integrated and Collaborative Care: For Psychiatrists” on Saturday, June 8 from 1:00-5:00 PM in Cupertino, CA. This is a 4 Hour CME event. You can register for this event at

Finally, a word about your NCPS membership dues and advocacy. Because of the financial stability of NCPS, your District Branch dues will continue a 15% reduction for the 5th year in a row. The exact amount of a member’s dues reduction will vary, depending on your dues category.  If each of our 1100 members gave $30.00 of that dues reduction as a donation to the California Psychiatric Association PAC, CPPAC at, we would collectively give $33,000.00 toward psychiatric advocacy. If each of us gave $30 00 per month for one year (about six Frappuccino's a month) we would fund advocacy with $396,000.00. In the next President’s Message I will review some of the current advocacy issues for psychiatry in California.

Enjoy the NCPS reception at the APA Annual Meeting!

Newsletter Reference: 
March/April 2019


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



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