Approaching his 50th year in Suicidology and suicide prevention, Dr. Berman will present a look backwards and forwards, relating the history and evolution of the field to the present and his perspectives on what is yet needed to accomplish our shared mission to help those who are suicidal and save lives lost to suicide. The learning objectives of this presentation are to identify key milestones in the history of American Suicidology and suicide prevention, recognize challenges to successfully preventing suicide, and list at least three ways to change the direction of suicide prevention.
Dr. Berman holds a B.A. degree from the Johns Hopkins University and a Ph.D. from the Catholic University of America. Concurrent with a 40 year outpatient practice of psychotherapy, he has been a tenured professor of psychology at American University, Director of the National Center for the Study and Prevention of Suicide at the Washington School of Psychiatry, and Executive Director of the American Association of Suicidology (AAS). Dr. Berman is a Past-President of the AAS, their 1982 Shneidman Award recipient (for Outstanding Contributions in Research in Suicidology), and recipient of AAS’s Louis I. Dublin Award for outstanding service and contributions to the field of suicide prevention. He was twice elected President of the International Association for Suicide Prevention (IASP); he is a Fellow of the American Psychological Association and the International Academy of Suicide Research, and a Diplomat of the American Board of Professional Psychology. He has published more than 160 professional articles and book chapters and is author or editor of seven books in the field of Suicidology and Suicide Prevention. In addition, he serves as consulting editor to four journals. Since retiring from full-time employment in 2014B, Dr. Berman has been appointed as an Adjunct Professor of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences at the Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine where he teaches and conducts research. He currently serves as co-chair of the Fatality Review Committee of the MD Governor’s Commission on Suicide Prevention and as co-principal investigator of as major suicide prevention project in the State of Minnesota. He continues to provide legal testimony and consultation with regard to cases of suicide both nationally and internationally.