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By: Christopher Howell.  Identified as the first black psychiatrist in the United States.  Born in Liberia to previously enslaved Africans who purchased.

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Presentation on theme: "By: Christopher Howell.  Identified as the first black psychiatrist in the United States.  Born in Liberia to previously enslaved Africans who purchased."— Presentation transcript:

1 By: Christopher Howell

2  Identified as the first black psychiatrist in the United States.  Born in Liberia to previously enslaved Africans who purchased their freedom and emigrated to the United States.  Attended and graduated from Livingston College in Salisbury, North Carolina.  Received his M.D. from Boston University School of Medicine in  According to Charles Pinderhughes, Fuller received his psychiatric training at Boston University, Long Island College Hospital, and Westborough States Hospital between

3  Pursued further post graduate medical training at University of Munich, Germany.  Upon returning to the US, he did groundbreaking research in Alzheimer's Disease.  Went on to teach at Boston University for more than 30 years. He retired as an educator.

4  1928 graduate of Meharry Medical College  Became certified in psychiatry and neurology at Mason General Hospital in New York and Hines VA Hospital in Illinois.  Hernandez was the Chief of Neurology Services at VA Hospital in San Juan (‘47-’54) and Tuskegee VA Hospital (‘54-’56).  In 1960, became director of the Negro section of VA Hospital in Murfreesboro, TN.  To gain the position, Hernandez needed letters of recommendation from his white colleagues to American Psychiatry Association, who expressed in their letters the need of a minority leader in their workplaces because of the racism that existed.

5  Founded the department of psychiatry and neurology at Howard Medical School in  His medical career started at Howard, he was a medical student from  Able to do rotations at St. Elizabeth’s Hospital in Washington, D.C.  His ability to interact with patients in the psych ward won him a 2 yr. fellowship to Columbia University College of Physicians and Surgeons. Became head of Psychology Department in 1952.

6  Very first black psychoanalyst  Well known because he has a lot of firsts under his belt: First black psychiatrist appointed to a Mental Health Commission.  Interesting fact! Known for fighting for desegregation of schools; he was the individual who went to the APA to gain support for overturning school segregation.

7  Charles Wilkinson, M.D was the driving force behind involving Black psychiatrists in the Civil Rights Movement.  He created a small group of psychiatrists that scrutinized the effects of the Civil Rights Movement on the mental health of Black Americans.  From this group, the Black Psychiatrists of America, BPA, was formed.

8  Numerous publications discussed the impact of racism on Black Americans (Harrison & Butts ‘70, Jones ‘70, Pinderhughes ‘66, ‘68, ‘69, and Spurlocke ’73)  Each of these publications focused on specific issues, for example, Jones’ work focused on Black students in white programs.

9  Established in May of  The first chairman and vice chairman were Chester Price and Alfred Cannon.  When compiling their list of goals for the BPA, members focused on the involvement of Black psychiatrists in the deliberations of the APA

10  Prior to its development, there were no psychiatric services at Meharry.  The push for a psychiatry department came from Robert S. Anderson, director of the Department of Medicine.  Surprisingly, he was met with a lot of professional pushback. Many faculty members wondered if the department was relevant. Many patients were skeptical; they chalked up their problems to stress, and sometimes the supernatural.

11  Dr. Knight Aldrich, head of U of Chicago, and Anderson decided to groom a Black psychiatric resident to head the new department.  Lloyd C. Elam wanted to involve himself with history-making events and started in the position in 1961; he had support from the staff at Meharry.  Their biggest change was the curriculum. There were lectures on psychology before the department was created, but they were focused on personality, and sociological aspects affecting mental illness.  Elam wanted to equip his students with the knowledge necessary to deal with non-white, middle class patients. Meharry wanted to make sure their students were able to help all socioeconomic levels.  Faculty members stepped up as full time teachers: Henry Thomas, Evelyn Kennedy, Ralph Hines, and Raphael Hernandez.

12  Black psychiatrists became heavily involved in the recruitment of minority medical students in the 1960s.  Black psychiatrists found that they needed to obtain leadership positions to not only influence the recruitment of minority medical students, but also to help recruit future black psychiatrists.  Dr. Alvin Puissant and Dr. James Comer (Dean of Harvard University and Associate Yale University).  In those positions, and as black psychiatrists, they were able to address a multitude of issues that went overlooked in the recruitment of minority medical students (negotiating college life, active discouragement, racism, etc).

13  Solomon Carter Fuller Fellowship was started by Robert Sharply. This appealed to many minority medical students because it opened the door for many black medical students to have access to residency opportunities all over the United States.  1974, American Psychiatric Association and National Institute of Mental Health allowed and funded minority students to attend their meetings. The students gained knowledge of navigating the profession, the professional organizations associated with psychiatry, and also the organization gained a larger minority perspective that was underrepresented at their meetings.

14  In the 1960s, the armed forces began training Black American psychiatrists to careers as military psychiatrists.  But what about before that?  There are no official records that identify military psychiatrists by race or ethnicity. However, through verbal testimonies and the membership directories of the American Psychiatric Association, around two dozen black American psychiatrists can be identified as having served in one of the braches of the military.  First known were: Drs. Leo Oxley, Jay Randall Henry Edwards, James Collins, Thomas Gueydan.

15  No extensive records exist that go into detail about specific black faculty members in the departments of psychiatry.  However, it’s obvious that a professional sacrifice had to be made for the sake of academia and teaching, rather than pursuing a private practice medical career.

16  Spurlock, Jeanne. Black Psychiatrists and American Psychiatry. Washington, DC: American Psychiatric Association,  "Ernest Williams, 90, Psychiatry Professor." The New York Times [New York] 17 Feb. 1990: n. pag. Print.  "Solomon Carter Fuller." Wikipedia. Wikimedia Foundation, 25 Apr Web. 30 Apr


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