Leadership Opportunities

Residents with an interest in organizational psychiatry can apply for these leadership positions:

  • Resident-Fellow Member (RFM) Trustee
  • Assembly Committee of RFMs
  • APA Representative to the AMA-RFS
  • Resident Representative to the RRC

Nationally Elected Leadership Position - Resident-Fellow Member Trustee (RFMT)

The Resident-Fellow Member Trustee position was created by constitutional amendment in 1987. Each year, a Resident-Fellow Member Trustee Elect is elected at large and serves on the Board for one year without a vote. At the end of that year, the Resident-Fellow Member Trustee Elect advances to Resident-Fellow Member Trustee and serves on the Board for one year with voting privileges. A new Resident-Fellow Member Trustee Elect is elected.  These positions provide national APA leadership opportunities specifically for Resident-Fellow Member. The Resident-Fellow Member Trustee (with vote) and Resident-Fellow Member Trustee Elect (without vote) are members of the Board of Trustees, the governing body of the APA. The power to make policy is vested in the Board, and the Board's primary function is to formulate and implement the policies of the Association. The Board exercises all powers of the Association that are not otherwise assigned.

What meetings will I be expected to attend?

The Board customarily meets five times a year: in May at the APA Annual Meeting (an organizational meeting with newly elected officers and trustees is held at this time); in September or October (sometimes during the Institute on Psychiatric Services), December and March. The Board may meet more often at the discretion of the President. Most meetings, except for the May meeting, are held in or around Washington, D.C., at a hotel near APA headquarters. The meetings generally last one and a half days, usually over a weekend (except during the annual meeting) but dates and times are set well in advance. A schedule of the upcoming board meeting may be found at www.psychiatry.org/about-apa--psychiatry/governance. Travel lodging and meal expenses are covered for both the Trustee and Trustee-Elect to all Board meetings, except for the APA Annual Meeting. This is a brief ceremoninal Board meeting. If the Fall board meeting coincides with IPS, travel funding is provided for attendance at the Board meeting, not for the full IPS meeting.  

Who is eligible?

Residents who will be in residency or fellowship training classified as APA RFM members for the duration of the two years of this position are eligible to apply. The Trustee-Elect and Trustee positions each last for one year and begin the May following the January Annual Election. PGY-3 residents must remain in training through PGY 5 so as to be in training through the term as Trustee (through May two years after the election) and must submit a signed statement of intent to do so, prior to nomination. If a PGY 3 resident is elected Trustee-Elect, but changes plans such that he/she is no longer in training during PGY-5, he/she will forfeit the Trustee position. Residents may recommend themselves or be recommended by others.   The resident elected as Trustee and Trustee-elect cannot, while serving, simultaneously belong to or hold a position in the Assembly Committee of Area Resident-Fellow Members, APA Public Psychiatry Fellowship,  APA Minority Fellowship or APA Leadership Fellowships.

What materials to submit for consideration?

1. Completed Disclosure of Interests and Affiliations Form;
2. Curriculum Vitae (no more than two pages);
3. One-page personal statefment from the resident supporting his/her recommendation, including answers to: What would your particular skills and experience bring to the APA? or In your opinion, what is the major issue facing the psychiatry and how should APA address it?;
4. Letter of recommendation (optimal);
5. Completed RFM Trustee Nomination Release Form; and
6. Contact and demographic information: Name, Mailing address, Daytime phone, Fax, Evening phone, Email, District Branch, and APA member number.

Who do I contact?

Chiharu Tobita by email or at (703) 907-8527

Assembly Committee of Area Resident-Fellow Members (ACORF)

The Assembly Committee of Area Resident-Fellow Members (or ACORF) provides Assembly representation for members of the American Psychiatric Association who are enrolled in psychiatric residency and fellowship training programs. Committee members are elected by their Area Councils (seven in all), and serve two sequential one-year terms: the first as Area RFM Member Deputy Representative, and the second as Area  RFM Representative. Area RFM Representatives are voting members of the Assembly while Deputy Representatives are not. ACORF members serve on Assembly committees, including the Rules committee, Reference committees, the Assembly Executive Committee, and the Assembly Committee of Planning. Submitted to APA Assembly by A. Evan Eyler, M.D., M.P.H. Chair of ACOM, 2002-2003 

What does ACORF do?

ACORF Representatives and Deputy Representatives serve as:

  • a reference and referral group for the Assembly when seeking input on actions or  proposed actions affecting RFMs.
  • a centralized coordinating group with other groups representing MIT interest in the APA.
  • a voice regarding issues before the Assembly and Area Councils.  

ACORF History in the APA

The ACORF (then called ACOM) was added to the Assembly of the APA in 1987, during the speakership of Roger Peele, M.D. The concept of providing representation for APA members during psychiatric postgraduate training developed during the mid-1980’s, during the era of transition from the “Assembly of District Branches” to the “Assembly of the APA”, which would include specific representation for under-represented an d professionally distinct groups within the organization. The formation of ACORF was preceded by inclusion in the Assembly of delegates representing women psychiatrists, racial and ethnic minority identifie d psychiatrists, and gay and lesbian psychiatrists, and followed by the addition of representation for allie d professional organizations and international medical graduates. Since that time, ACORF has provided a crucial link in the chain of responsible professionalism and future orientation that characterizes the Assembly of the American Psychiatric Association. The current members of ACORF take pride in this role, and send our best wishes to our young colleagues in the generations to come. Submitted to APA Assembly by A. Evan Eyler, M.D., M.P.H. Chair of ACOM, 2002-2003  

What happens at the Assembly meeting?

The whole Assembly gathers, which is about 300+ people, and we are seated according to Areas, and there is a top dais with the Chairpersons of each area, the trustees, the president and other executive officials, and of course the speaker. We meet in Plenary sessions, which include the whole Assembly. There will be the opening one Friday afternoon, then one on Saturday morning, Saturday afternoon and Sunday morning.  After the plenary sessions there usually are Area Council caucuses. We gather together in a room, usually with light refreshments provided, and debate what is coming up, what we might be bringing up, and sometimes we are "lobbied" such as by candidates for senior positions, or occasionally by people from other Areas wanting to 'push' an action paper or issue of theirs. The other addition is that many people from each of the Areas get appointed to what are called Reference Committees, which look over new Action Papers and attempt to evaluate them, sometimes suggesting major revisions, if necessary. This will then be brought to the Assembly plenary, and the author (s) of the paper will be given the choice to go ahead (which is risky if it has already been viewed negatively by the Reference Committee) or to withdraw it and have another go at it in the months before the next assembly. There are also various awards, eulogies if people who were well-known have died, and sometimes presentations by APA staff people or others on interesting issues. Adapted with permission from Joseph Berger, MD


APA Representative to the AMA Resident & Fellow Section

The APA has two positions in the AMA-RFS who are also part of a larger APA delegation at AMA meetings.

Resident Representative to the Residency Review Committee

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