Past APC Award Recipients

The Association of Professional Chaplains® is proud to honor and remember the contributions of these individuals who have received honors in previous years. This list represents awards given by the APC® as well as its predecessor associations, the College of Chaplains and the Association of Mental Health Clergy. Please note that not all awards are given in every year and names and criteria for awards may have changed since their inception by one of the original founding organizations.

Award Recipients By Organization


(May 1998- through the Present)



The Distinguished Service Award celebrates the contributions of any individual or organization that promotes the standard of professional chaplaincy in an exemplary manner. This award does not require membership in the APC.

Criteria for Selection:

  • Nominee may be (but not limited to) a pastoral care provider, clergy, layperson, systems supervisor and/or administrator, researcher, theologian, educator, faith group official, benefactor, author, physician or other healthcare professional, etc.
  • Nominee must have made a significant contribution in promoting the standards of professional chaplaincy or in advancing pastoral care that impacts upon the advance of clinical chaplaincy.
1998William D. Razz Waff
1999Richard E. Stewart
2000Walter Smith
2001Reginald Hislop, III
2002Robert B. Inhoff
2003Not awarded
2004Anne Underwood
2005Paul E. Derrickson
2006Earl E. Johnson
2007Jimmie C. Holland
2008Elisabeth McSherry
2009Paul Lorenzo Yeun
2010Col. Herman Keizer Jr.
2011Not awarded
2012Rhonda Anderson
2013Wendy Cadge
2014Christina M. Puchalski MD FACP
2015Kevin J. Flannelly
Kenneth I. Pargament
2016George Pickle PhD
2017Dallas Little DMin BCC
2018Not awarded
2019Dr. Jacob George ThM DMin BCC
2021Anna Lee Hisey Piersen BCC
Aaron Jager
2022Not awarded
2023Jan McCormack BCC
Maurice S. Kaprow BCC
Melinda Plumley BCC


The Anton Boisen Professional Service Award honors one of the early pioneers in clinical chaplaincy and pastoral care education and is given each year to a Board Certified Chaplain (BCC) of the APC who demonstrates a commitment to excellence in professional chaplaincy and has offered a unique contribution to contemporary pastoral care.

Criteria for Selection:

  • Nominee must be a current Board Certified Chaplain (BCC) in good standing of the Association of Professional Chaplains or one of its predecessor organizations (College of Chaplains or Association of Mental Health Clergy) for at least three (3) years.
  • Nominee must have served as a professional chaplain for at least three (3) years.
  • Nominees will have made creative and innovative contributions to professional chaplaincy in their setting of ministry. Examples of area of contribution may include (but are not limited to) education, ministry to the marginalized, spiritual care planning, quality, delivery, counseling, research, multi-disciplinary involvement, bioethics, multi-cultural or interfaith ministry, publications, advocacy, etc.
1998   Frank S. Moyer, Brice Wayne Kinyon, James T. Gullickson
1999Kenneth E. Reed
2000Robert E. Cullum
2001Larry VandeCreek
2002Greg Bodin
2003Dick D. Millspaugh
2004Lerrill White
2005Delois Brown-Daniels
2006George Fitchett
2007Not awarded
2008James T. Denley
2009The Late Arthur M. Lucas (presented posthumously)
2010Martha R. Jacobs
2011George Handzo
2012Not awarded
2013Susan Wintz
2014Rev. Bonnie J. Meyer DMin BCC
2015Robert L. Grigsby
2016Robert A. Kidd MDiv BCC
2017Daniel H. Grossoehme DMin MS BCC & Susan L. Jelinek MDiv BCC
2018Patricia E. Murphy RSCJ PhD
2019Rev. Al Miles MDiv BCC
2019Rev. Valerie Storms MDiv BCC
2021David Johnson BCC
2022Darryl Owens BCC
2023Harry Burns BCC
Stephen King BCC


The Retired Chaplain Award honors a retired APC member who has made significant contributions to the fields of chaplaincy and pastoral care or to APC during his/her retirement years.

Criteria for Selection:

  • Nominee must be a retired Board Certified Chaplain (BCC) of the Association of Professional Chaplains.
  • Nominee must have been a member of the APC or one of its predecessor organizations (College of Chaplains or Association of Mental Health Clergy) for at least three (3)  years.
  • Nominees will have made significant contributions during retirement years in either or both of the following categories:
    • outstanding contributions to the field of chaplaincy or pastoral care;
    • outstanding contributions to the APC as an organization.
1998  Keith W. Keidel
1999Cloyd E. Kress, Robert E. Otto, Dolores M. Pelletier
2000Ramon Runkel
2001John Shaw
2002Ray Lanham
2003Ronald D. Ropp
2004Ray E. Dice
2005Not awarded
2006Jerry J. Griffin
2007John Rea Thomas
2008Richard J. Lehman
2009George R. Robie
2010Louis H.G. Bier
2011Kenneth J. Siess
2012Clarke A. Mundhenke
2013Emanuel Williams
2014Rev. Dr. Milton P. Snyder BCC
2015John C. Wilson
2016not awarded
2017Clark S. Aist, MDiv STM PhD
2021Michael Dunn BCC


The Outstanding Local Leadership Award is given to a member in good standing who has exhibited outstanding dedication to and promotion of the APC through active involvement and initiative at the local level, including sub-state, state, or multi-state levels.

Criteria for Selection:

  • Nominee must be a member in good standing of the Association of Professional Chaplains.
  • Nominee must have been a member of the APC or one of its predecessor organizations (College of Chaplains or Association of Mental Health Clergy) for at least three years.
  • Nominees will have made significant leadership contributions at the local level to the APC’s effort support to work and development of professional chaplains and/or enhance membership in or growth and development of the organization.
1998    Kathryn M. Reed (Arkansas)
1999Robert J. Long (Illinois)
2000Terry Ruth Culbertson (New York)
2001Marcia L. Marino (Wisconsin)
2002Clarke Mundhenke (Nebraska), George Robie (Nebraska)
2003George A. Burn (Pennsylvania), Robert A. Young (Virginia)
2004Valerie R. Storms (Florida)
2005Gerald Nussbaum (Ohio)
2006Floyd G. O’Bryan (Minnesota)
2007Jeffery N. Murphy (Mississippi)
2008James A. Stephens (Alaska), C.H. (Skip) Wisenbaker, III (Georgia)
2009Steven Spidell (Texas), Mark LaRocca-Pitts (Georgia)
2010Joseph F. Perez (Texas)
2011Carolynne Fairweather (Oregon), Jodie Futornick (Illinois)
2012David J. Zucker (Colorado)
2013Melanie D. Childers (North Carolina)
2014Russell N. Myers (Minnesota)
2015not awarded
2016Rev. Laurie Peterson Jeddeloh BCC
Dirk van der Vorst MDiv BCC
2023John Michael Betz BCC
William “Gary” Creech BCC

(1946 – through May 1998)


1972     Dr. Gaines S. Dobbins, Rev. Frank Moyer
1973Dr. John M. Billinsky, Dale S. Benson, MD, Dr. Carl A. Nighswonger (presented posthumously)
1974Dr. Wayne Oates, Dr. Charles D. Phillips
1976Dr. Robert Preston, Rev. Walter J. Baepler, Rev. Donald R. Piper
1977Dr. Myron C. Madden, Jack A.L. Hahn, Dr. Richard H. Jesse 
1978Dr. Christian A. Hovde, Dr. Kenneth E. Reed, Dr. John A. White
1979Rev. Lawrence E. Holst, Rev. Clyde Shallenberger
1980Rev. Lawrence W. Gudmestad
1981Rev. Herbert W. Hilldbrand, Louis B. Blair
1982Rev. Edward J. Mahnke, Rev. Harold Wilke
1983Rev. William A. Wagner
1985Rev. Leicester R. Potter, Rev. James H. Burns, Rev. G. Howard Linton
1986Rev. Myron Ebersole, Rev. Don Gum
1987Dr. David Belgum, Rev. Harold Nelson
1988Leroy G. Kerney, Ramon Runkel
1989Terry Ruth Culbertson, Albert Brendel
1990Kathryn S. Turner, Raymond E. Lanham
1991Kenneth H. Buckwald, Walter E. Kloss
1992Rev. George P. Polk, Rev. John & Carolyn Twiname, Rev. Granger E. Westberg 
1993Dan Kratz, Aid Assocs. for Lutherans
1994William F. Adix, Darrell Nicola
1995F. William Spindler
1996Harvey Berg
1997Fred L. Brown, Frank P. Snow


1985   Rev. Joan Hemenway
1986Rev. Earl Hackett, Dr. Frank King
1987Robert Duvall, Jerry J. Griffin
1988John & Margaret Thomas, Tim Vanduivendyk
1990Dale Knuteson, Pamela Shier
1991Jane F. Viera
1992Sister Michelle Harmon, Rev. Leo J. Poirier
1993Larry A. Burton
1994John Grindler Katonah
1995Timothy H. Little
1996Raul Guilarte, James T. Wagner
1997Pastoral Care Department of Columbia Presbyterian Hospital,
Oklahoma City, Oklahoma, Kenneth C. Blank, Sherron Hughes-Tremper


1987   Joe Fred Luck, Richard Johnson, Harvey Schroeder; John J. (Jack) Shepard
1988Loren Pretty
1989Albert E. Brendel, Wesley E. Crowie, James W. Swafford
1990William N. Beachy, Howard E. Mueller, Russell C. Striffler
1991Harley Dixon, James E. Flinchbaugh, Donald E. Knick, Alquinn Toews
1992Vern H. Albrecht, Louis L. McGee
1993Harold R. Nelson
1994T. Warner Davidson, Edward F. Dobihal, Jr., Clyde Shallenberger
1995George E. Johnson, Roy E. Olson
1996Theodore Hoffmann, David Voorhees, Theodora Waring
1997Frank E. Havens, Joseph M. Wilcox


1993Robert E. Hamilton (North Carolina)
1994Paul A. Bierlein (Ohio)
1995George F. Handzo (New York)
1996Alice Farquhar-Mayes (Idaho)
1997Woodrow Hamilton Rea (West Virginia)


The Russell L. Dicks Memorial Lectures was sponsored by the College of Chaplains from its inception in 1971 until 1998, after which it was sponsored by the Association of Professional Chaplains and renamed as the Russell L. Dicks/Anton Boisen Memorial Lectures. In order to maintain continuity with this award, we have included in this one list all presenters from the College of Chaplains (1971 – 1998) up through the Association of Professional Chaplains (1998 – present).

1971        Dr. Carroll A. Wise, The Institutional Ministry: Retrospect or Prospect
1972Dr. Albert L. Meiburgm, Chaplains & Change
1973John M. Bilinsky, The Identity and Power of the Chaplain – Faking it or Facing it? 
1974Dr. Wayne E. Oates, Theological Motifs in the Care of the Sick
1975Dr. Fredric M. Norstad, Where have All the Prophets Gone? 
1976Dr. Rollin J. Fairbanks, Alone with God and Suffering
1977St. Mary Concilia Moran, Alfie’s Own Question – What’s it All About?
1978Dr. Charles F. Kemp, The Caring Pastoral Care Department
1979J. Lennart Cedarlleaf, Listening Revisited
1980Robert B. Reeves, Jr., Selfhood in Health and Sickness
1981Myron C. Madden, Responsible Ministry in a Changing Society 
1982Dr. Henlee H. Barnette, New Frontiers in Pastoral Care
1983John R. Thomas, Forty Years of Chaplaincy: Reflections & Projections
1984Lawrence E. Holst, Hospital Chaplaincy – A Ministry in Paradox 
1985Julian Byrd, A New Age for Ministry
1986Stuart A. Plummer, Future Shock Revisited: Doing More with Less – and Enjoying It Less or More
1987P. Wesley Aitken, Russell Dicks Gentle, Powerful and Compassionate Colleague of Richard Cabot
1988LeRoy G. Kerney, The Art of Ministering to the Sick: A Book that Serves as a Touchstone for Hospital Ministry
1989Harold Wilke, Emerging Lessons from the Life and Though of Russell L. Dicks: A Personal Response 
1990Granger E. Westberg, A New Vision for the Chaplain of Tomorrow from a  Personal Friend of Russell Dicks
1991Harold Nelson, Awaking Pastoral Intuition
1992Frank S. Moyer, Which Mantle Will We Wear?
1993Peggy Way, For Living Creatures: World Connectors and Resident      
1994Harvey M. Berg, Chaplaincy: Some Future Challenges
1995Gerald Durley, Fields to Plow, Alliances to Create
1996Ronald M. Buch, History, Heritage, and Hope: Our Future is Now
1997David C. Thomasma, Bioethics, Culture, Spirituality


1998       No Lecturer, Joint Conference
1999Jeffrey M. Silberman, The Metaphor of Chaplain
2000Delois Brown Daniels, The Real Risk of Real Partnership
2001L. Robert Keck, The Sacred Quest of the Human Soul
2002L. H. Mayfield, The Roots That Strenghten Our Reaching
2003No Lecturer, Joint Conference
2004Richard J. Lehman, Some Footnotes on a Glorious Tradition
2005Sr. Monica Ann Lucas, Chaplaincy, By Whose Authority?
2006John Patton, Relational Wisdom: The Chaplain’s Specialty
2007Marie M. Fortune, Morality and Abuse: Let’s Get Real
2008Peter VanKatwyk, The Living Human Document: From Anton Boisen to the Postmodernists
2009No Lecturer, Joint Conference
2010Ronald Ropp, Memories That Mold Us

(1948- through May, 1998)


The “Criteria for Selection” for the Anton T. Boisen Award Recipient is reproduced from the 1961 AMHC HANDBOOK.
The recipient shall be a clergyman [sic] who is a member in good standing in his particular faith group.

  • He [sic] shall have completed at least five years of mental hospital chaplaincy service to the mentally ill.
  • He shall have been a member of AMHC for at least five years.
  • He shall have demonstrated that he is above average in pastoral insights and skills.
  • He shall have evidenced some concern for relating his study of ‘living human documents’ to the great truths of Religion and Theology.
  • He shall have demonstrated in the hospital setting, through appropriate teaching opportunities, his insights about Religion and Health and/or his ability to conduct clinical pastoral training.
  • He shall have demonstrated that he is capable of developing satisfactory multi-disciplinary relationships with the hospital.
  • He shall have been recognized for his contributions to the community through having shared his insights in Religion, Social Welfare and Health activities.
  • He shall have demonstrated at least some interest and/or skill in appropriate research.
1959    Anton T. Boisen
1960Thomas T. Klink
1963William F. Rogers
1964Jospeh J.Quinlan
1965J. Obert Kempson
1966Donald C. Beatty
1970Ernest E. Bruder
1971John I. Smith
1974Charles J. Scott
1975John R. Thomas
1980Emanuel L. Lifschutz
1981Earle T. McKnight
1982Joseph F. Woodson
1986Clark S. Aist
1987George E. Doebler
1990Richard J. Lehman*
1991Timothy H. Little
1992Milton P. Snyder*
1994Thomas A. Summers
1995Terry R. Bard
1996Victoria B. Cowell, Melvin Sabshin
1997Patricia W. Barrett, Jack W. Frost, Paul B. Janke, Paul C. Tomlinson
1998David E. Carl, Jr.

*The list prior to 1990 may have omissions. Please forward any corrections to the APC office.


The Oskar Pfister Award honors the Rev. Oskar Pfister, a distinguished Swiss pastor/psychoanalyst and life-long colleague of Sigmund Freud, who promoted the dialog between psychiatry and religion. This award is presented to an individual who is dedicated to continuing that dialog. Conferred conjointly by the Committee on Religion, Spirituality and Psychiatry of the American Psychiatric Association (APA) and the Association of Professional Chaplains, the award and its associated lecture are presented at annual meetings of the APA.

Criteria for Selection

Recipients of the Oskar Pfister Award are those who have:

  • Made sustained professional contributions to the interfaces of psychiatry, religion and spirituality through research and clinical practice,
  • Have disseminated findings through lectures and publications that have clinical relevance to practicing psychiatrists and clergy, and
  • Been recognized by their peers for creative and original contributions to the dialogue between the fields of religion and psychiatry.

The Oskar Pfister Award was co-sponsored by the Association of Mental Health Clergy from 1983 to 1998, and thereafter by the Association of Professional Chaplains. In order to maintain continuity with this award, we have included in this one list all recipients from the AMHC (1983 – 1998) up through the Association of Professional Chaplains (1998-present).

1983       Jerome Frank, An Unprecedented Challenge to Psychiatry and Religion
1984Wayne Oates, Some Functions of Belief in Illness and Health
1985Viktor Frankl, Man in Search of Ultimate Meaning
1986Hans Kung, The Repression of Religiosity
1987Robert Lifton, The Psychology of Genocide
1988Oliver Sacks, The Unique Case
1989William Meissner, The Pathology of Belief Systems
1990Peter Gay, A Godless Jew Revisited
1991Robert Coles, The Spiritual Life of Children
1992Paulus Mar Gregorios, Religious Masters as ‘Psychiaters’: The Therapy of Disciplined Love and Discerning Judgment
1993Paul Fleischman, The Healing Spirit
1994James Fowler, Healing Spirit: Psychiatry and the Dynamics of Faith
1995Prakash Desai, Taking the Psyche Out of Psychiatry: The Case for Hindu Medicine
1996Ann Bedford Ulanov, Ritual, Repetition and Psychic Reality
1997Ana-Maria Rizzuto, Belief as a Psychic Function
1998Allen E. Bergin, Religion and Mental Health
1999Don Browning, Internists of the Mind or Doctors of the Soul
2000Paul Ricoeur, The Difference Between the Pathological and the Normal as a Source of Respect: Therapeutic and Ethical Implications
2001Irvin D. Yalom, Existential Psychotherapy and Religious Consolation: Convergence and Divergence
2002David Larson (posthumous), The Nearly Forgotten Century: What a Difference a Decade Makes
2003Abraham Twerski, Is There a Place for Spirituality in Therapy?
2004Elizabeth Bowman, Dialogue from the Rims of the Grand Canyon: On Bridging the Post-Freudian Chasm Between Religion and Psychiatry
2005Armand Nicholi, Jr., The Conflicting World Views of Sigmund Freud and Oskar Pfister: Keys to Understanding Patients
2006Ned H. Cassem, Psychiatry and Spirituality at the End of Life
2007William R. Miller, Spiritus Contra Spiritum: The Strange Case of Spirituality and Addiction
2008Dan G. Blazer, Prozac and the Spiritual Self
2009Kenneth I. Pargament, Religious Struggles: A Fork in the Road to Growth or Decline
2010George E. Valliant, Toward a New Psychiatry: Valuing Positive Emotions
2011Clark S. Aist, “The Oscar Pfister Dialogues: A Search for Meanings”
2012Harold G. Koenig, “How Is Religion Relevant to Psychiatry?: Research and Applications”
2013Marc Galanter MD, “What We Can Learn From Alcoholics Anonymous About Addiction Treatment, Spiritually-Oriented Recovery, & Social Neuroscience”
2014C. Robert Cloninger, “The Three Aspects of Being Human” 
2015Allan Josephson
2016James W. Lomax MD 
2017James Griffith, MD, “Hope Modules: Brief Psychotherapeutic Interventions to Counter Demoralization from Daily Stressors of Chronic Illness” 
2018John Swinton MD PhD, “A matter of Faith? The Role of Faith in the Experiences of Christians Living with Severe Mental Health Challenges”
2023 Rev. William Gaventa