Featured Psychologist: Richard Suinn, PhD

Richard Suinn, PhDRichard Suinn, PhD, obtained a bachelor’s degree from the Ohio State University and his doctorate in counseling psychology from Stanford University. He was the third ethnic minority and the first Asian-American president of the American Psychological Association when elected in 1999. Previous to serving in this leadership role, Dr. Suinn was very involved in APA governance. He was one of the first members of the Committee on Ethnic Minority Affairs in 1979.

Suinn has conducted extensive research in the areas of sport psychology, behaviors and ethnic minority issues. Much of his career was spent at Colorado State University as a professor and department chair. During his time there, he established a program that served to recruit and retain ethnic minority students. He was involved in the early establishment of the Asian American Psychological Association and in 1972, became the first psychologist to serve on a U.S. Olympic sports medicine team. Additionally, he has served as city councilperson and mayor of the city of Fort Collins, Colo.

Suinn was the recipient of numerous awards including the honorary doctorate of humane letters, the Tomes Lifetime Contribution to Ethnic Minority Psychology Award, the Career Contribution to Education and Training Award and the Raymond D. Fowler Award. Because of his outstanding leadership in the field of psychology, the Office of Ethnic Minority Affairs established the Suinn Minority Achievement Award in his honor in 1999. This annual award recognizes doctoral programs in scientific and professional psychology that demonstrate excellence in the recruitment, retention and graduation of ethnic-minority students.

1999 APA President. (2012). Retrieved Apr. 13, 2011.


Good Governance Project Team Biographies. (2012). Retrieved Apr. 13, 2011.
SPSSI Representative to APA Council. (n.d.). Retrieved Apr. 13, 2011.