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"Excellence, not mere competence, is the hallmark of an APA Distinguished Fellow."

Congratulations on taking the next step in your psychiatric career and being nominated for Distinguished Fellowship of the American Psychiatric Association (APA).

Distinguished Fellowship is awarded to outstanding psychiatrists who have made significant contributions to the psychiatric profession in at least five of the following areas: administration, teaching, scientific and scholarly publications, volunteering in mental health and medical activities of social significance, community involvement, as well as for clinical excellence.

Distinguished Fellow is the highest membership honor the APA bestows upon members, and in addition:

  • You are recognized by your colleagues in the Association as a member of a very select group.
  • You demonstrate your dedication to the work of the APA and signifies your allegiance to the psychiatric profession.
  • All newly appointed Distinguished Fellows are publicly recognized at the Convocation of Distinguished Fellows, which is held every year during APA’s Annual Meeting.
  • You receive a lapel pin and medallion in recognition of your status.

To create your application and for further resources, please login with your APA credentials, click "My Applications" from the dashboard, followed by selecting "Distinguished Fellowship of the American Psychiatric Association (DFAPA)" from Your Application Options.

*Distinguished Fellowship nominations must be submitted by the district branch to APA by July 1*

Key dates for the DFAPA nomination, approval and recognition process

Mid-February District branches receive a list of its DFAPA eligible members who have been APA General Members or Fellows for a combination of at least eight years and have held board certification. APA recommends a thorough review of this list to ensure accuracy and to identify potential ideal candidates.
February-June District branches conduct local outreach campaigns to encourage eligible members to apply.
July 1st Deadline for receipt of completed application. Those being sent via mail must be postmarked by this date.
July-October The APA Membership Committee scores each application and makes recommendations to the APA Board of Trustees.
December The APA Board of Trustees votes on the Membership Committee’s recommendations.
December-January District Branches and nominees are notified of approval/deferral status for Distinguished Fellowship.
January Members’ status officially updates on APA membership rolls.
May The Convocation of Distinguished Fellows occurs at the APA Annual Meeting. Distinguished Fellows are recognized and receive a Distinguished Fellow pin and medallion.


1. Login

Click on the “Log in” button and enter your username and password.

2. Create

Create your online application.

3. Save

During the DFAPA application cycle, your application can be saved as DRAFT until all the required information is completed and attachments uploaded. As each section is complete, you will see a appear in the category tab when the application is saved. At any time, you can download and print your application by clicking on the icon in the Application Summary section.

4. Submit

On completion, save your application as FINAL. Download and print a copy of your application for your records by clicking on the icon in the Application Summary section in the right column. Note: If an update is required prior to the Application closing, you can make the update and resave as FINAL.

If you require assistance or additional information, please contact your district branch or

Contact Us

Please contact your District Branch
American Psychiatric Association - Membership Department
800 Maine Avenue SW, Suite 900
Washington, DC 20024
Phone: (+1) 202-559-3900
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