CHOC neuropsychologist Dr. Alexander Tan has been nationally recognized by the American Psychological Association (APA) with the “Early Career Psychologist Achievement Award.” He is one of just three psychologists from across the country to receive the APA honor, which distinguishes early career psychologists across all specialties who have demonstrated significant impact and provided outstanding service, advocacy, scholarly contributions, education and/or practice.
Dr. Tan, who directs CHOC’s cardiac neurodevelopmental services, was honored by APA for his numerous contributions to the field of neuropsychology, including advancing equity, diversity, and inclusion by supporting the development of the Asian Neuropsychological Association and the Cultural Neuropsychology Council.
Additionally, Dr. Tan has played an active role in supporting the training and leadership pathways for trainees and early career professionals from underrepresented backgrounds by co-founding KnowNeuropsychology, a free didactic lecture series providing equitable access to education and training in over 60 countries and across six continents, and the Clinical Neuropsychology Trainee Forum, which has unified student and trainee representatives across all major neuropsychology organizations and facilitated impactful advocacy in neuropsychology around the world.
He currently serves as an advisory board member of New2Neuropsychology, which has increased representation of historically underrepresented groups within neuropsychology through outreach initiatives on over 20 college campuses across the nation.
“CHOC and our patients and families are fortunate to have Dr. Tan among our defenders of childhood. He is passionate about his work here at CHOC as demonstrated by the expansion of our cardiac neurodevelopmental services. He is also dedicated to advancing his field and training the next generation of neuropsychologists,” says CHOC Chief Psychologist Dr. Heather Huszti.
Dr. Tan has co-authored more than 50 peer-reviewed journal articles and scientific presentations. He has held over 30 different positions of leadership across various neuropsychology organizations. Dr. Tan has won multiple national awards, including the Tony Wong Diversity Award in 2021 in recognition of his efforts to promote public education, advocacy, and research in brain health in culturally diverse and minority communities.
“I appreciate the chance to share this recognition from APA with my colleagues and am grateful for the opportunity to work alongside many patterns and role models of advocacy here at CHOC,” says Dr. Tan. “Throughout my professional journey, I was fortunate to have access to many high-quality opportunities for education, training, and leadership. In return, I have spent much of my early career advocating for others to have the same access to such opportunities and addressing as many barriers in their way as possible. As a field, this is an important way we can improve the care we provide to our increasingly diverse patient population.”