Renée Binder selected to receive prestigious Isaac Ray Award

By Nicholas Roznovsky

UC San Francisco professor of psychiatry Renée Binder, MD, has been chosen as the recipient of the 2018 Isaac Ray Award by the American Psychiatric Association (APA) and the American Academy of Psychiatry and the Law (AAPL) in recognition of her outstanding contributions to forensic psychiatry and the psychiatric aspects of jurisprudence.

The award, considered one of the highest honors in the field, is named in honor of Isaac Ray, MD, one of the APA's original founders and its fourth president. Binder will be presented with the award at the 170th Annual Meeting of the APA next May in New York City. 

A UCSF faculty member since 1988, Binder is a professor of psychiatry, founding director of the UCSF Psychiatry and Law Program and UCSF Forensic Psychiatry Fellowship, and Associate Dean for Academic Affairs in the UCSF School of Medicine. In 2008, she became first woman to lead the Department of Psychiatry as Interim Chair and Interim Director of the Langley Porter Psychiatric Institute, holding both positions through 2011.

In 2014, Binder was elected as the 144th president of the APA, becoming only the second UCSF faculty member (following Karl M. Bowman, MD, in 1944) to be so honored. She is also a past president of the Northern California Psychiatric Society, California Psychiatric Association, American Academy of Psychiatry and the Law, and Association of Directors of Forensic Psychiatry Fellowships. In addition, she has chaired the APA’s Committee on Confidentiality, Isaac Ray Award Selection Committee, Council on Psychiatry and the Law, and Committee/Commission on Judicial Action, and was an APA Health Policy Fellow in the U.S. Senate.

In 2006, Binder received the highly competitive AAPL Seymour J. Pollack Distinguished Achievement Award in recognition of her contributions to forensic psychiatry education. In 2014, she was awarded the organization’s prestigious Golden Apple Award for her significant contributions to the field of forensic psychiatry.

Binder received her medical degree from UCSF and completed psychiatry residency at Mount Zion Hospital in San Francisco. Her research focuses on clinical and legal aspects of the relationship between violence and mental illness, and she is the author or co-author of more than 100 peer-reviewed publications.

About UCSF Psychiatry

The UCSF Department of Psychiatry and the Langley Porter Psychiatric Institute are among the nation's foremost resources in the fields of child, adolescent, adult, and geriatric mental health. Together they constitute one of the largest departments in the UCSF School of Medicine and the UCSF Weill Institute for Neurosciences, with a mission focused on research (basic, translational, clinical), teaching, patient care and public service.

UCSF Psychiatry conducts its clinical, educational and research efforts at a variety of locations in Northern California, including UCSF campuses at Parnassus Heights, Mission Bay and Laurel Heights, UCSF Medical Center, UCSF Benioff Children's Hospitals, Zuckerberg San Francisco General Hospital and Trauma Center, the San Francisco VA Health Care System and UCSF Fresno.

About the UCSF Weill Institute for Neurosciences

The UCSF Weill Institute for Neurosciences, established by the extraordinary generosity of Joan and Sanford I. "Sandy" Weill, brings together world-class researchers with top-ranked physicians to solve some of the most complex challenges in the human brain.

The UCSF Weill Institute leverages UCSF’s unrivaled bench-to-bedside excellence in the neurosciences. It unites three UCSF departments—Neurology, Psychiatry, and Neurological Surgery—that are highly esteemed for both patient care and research, as well as the Neuroscience Graduate Program, a cross-disciplinary alliance of nearly 100 UCSF faculty members from 15 basic-science departments, as well as the UCSF Institute for Neurodegenerative Diseases, a multidisciplinary research center focused on finding effective treatments for Alzheimer’s disease, frontotemporal dementia, Parkinson’s disease, and other neurodegenerative disorders.

About UCSF

UC San Francisco (UCSF) is a leading university dedicated to promoting health worldwide through advanced biomedical research, graduate-level education in the life sciences and health professions, and excellence in patient care. It includes top-ranked graduate schools of dentistry, medicine, nursing and pharmacy; a graduate division with nationally renowned programs in basic, biomedical, translational and population sciences; and a preeminent biomedical research enterprise. It also includes UCSF Health, which comprises top-ranked hospitals – UCSF Medical Center and UCSF Benioff Children’s Hospitals in San Francisco and Oakland – and other partner and affiliated hospitals and healthcare providers throughout the Bay Area.