S. Perlin

Dr. Seymour Perlin

Faculty: Emeriti

Professor Emeritus of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences

A summa cum laude graduate of Princeton University, Dr. Perlin received his medical degree from the College of Physicians and Surgeons, Columbia University, which awarded him a Bicentennial Medallion for Achievement in Psychiatry.  He took his internship at the University of Michigan, his residency at the New York State Psychiatric Institute, and completed psychoanalytic training at the Washington Psychoanalytic Institute.

Among other positions, Dr. Perlin served as chief of the Section on Psychiatry in the Laboratory of Clinical Science at the National Institute of Mental Health, followed by a fellowship at the Center for Advanced Study in the Behavioral Sciences in Stanford, California.  He then served as chief of the Division of Psychiatry at Montefiore Hospital in New York and later as a professor of psychiatry and director of clinical care and training at the Henry Phipps Psychiatric Center at the Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine, where he established the first postgraduate fellowship program in the United States for the study of suicide.  Dr. Perlin also served as a Senior Research Scholar in bioethics at the Kennedy Institute of Ethics at Georgetown University.  In 1974, Dr. Perlin joined the George Washington University clinical faculty, becoming a full-time faculty member as a professor and director of residency training in 1977, a position he held until 1993.  Dr. Perlin was named Professor Emeritus in 1996.

Dr. Perlin is recognized for his pioneering work in the field of suicidology.  He has made significant contributions to the scientific literature in the areas of suicide, aging, and medical ethics.  He has authored or edited more than fifty articles, book chapters, and books, including the Handbook for the Study of Suicide and Ethical Issues in Death and Dying.  Dr. Perlin has held a number of prestigious positions, serving as the president of American Association of Suicidology and as a member of the editorial board for the journal Suicide and Life Threatening Behavior.  In addition, he also served as chairman of the Board of Directors of the Youth Suicide Center and as a member of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services’ Youth Suicide Task Force.  Notably, Dr. Perlin also received the Louis I. Dublin Award for outstanding service and contribution to the field of suicide prevention.

Since becoming emeritus, Dr. Perlin has co-founded the Friends of Luther W. Brady Art Gallery at George Washington University, which has contributed to the support of the gallery’s exhibitions and educational endeavors.  He is also a co-chair of SAFE, the George Washington Medical Senior Alumni, Faculty, and Emeriti Society.  Finally, in recognition of Dr. Perlin’s superb work in his field, his colleagues, former students, residents, and family have established an annual lectureship in Suicidology in his name in the George Washington Department of Psychiatry.