Stephen M. Stahl Short Biography


Dr. Stephen M. Stahl received his undergraduate and medical degrees from Northwestern University in Chicago, as a member of the Honors Program in Medical Education, and his Ph.D. degree in pharmacology and physiology from the University of Chicago.  Dr. Stahl has trained in three specialties:  internal medicine at the University of Chicago; neurology at the University of California in San Francisco; and psychiatry at Stanford University.  He is board certified in psychiatry.

Dr. Stahl has held faculty positions at Stanford University, the University of California at Los Angeles (UCLA), the Institute of Psychiatry London, the Institute of Neurology London, and, currently Clinical Professor of Psychiatry and Neuroscience at the University of California Riverside, Adjunct Professor of Psychiatry at the University of California San Diego and at the State University of New York Upstate Medical University at Syracuse and Honorary Visiting Senior Fellow at the University of Cambridge (UK).  He also directs psychopharmacology services and academic programs for the five facility, 6500 patient California Department of State Hospital System where he has a leadership role in addressing violence and decriminalization of the seriously mentally ill. Dr. Stahl was formerly Executive Director of Clinical Neurosciences at the Merck Neuroscience Research Center in the UK for several years.  Dr. Stahl’s major interests are dedicated to producing and disseminating educational information about diseases and their treatments in psychiatry and neurology.      

Dr. Stahl currently serves as editor-in-chief of CNS Spectrums.  He is also past associate editor of Acta Psychiatrica Scandinavica, former clinical field editor for the International Journal of Neuropsychopharmacology and is currently or previously on numerous editorial boards of other leading journals including the ACNP’s journal Neuropsychopharmacology.  He has conducted numerous research projects during his career awarded by the National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH), by the Department of Veteran Affairs (VA) and by the pharmaceutical industry.  Author of 600 articles and chapters with an H index of 72, and more than 2000 scientific presentations and abstracts, Dr. Stahl is an internationally renowned clinician, researcher and teacher in psychiatry with subspecialty expertise in psychopharmacology. 

Dr. Stahl has written more than 60 textbooks and edited 15 others, including the best-selling and award-winning textbook, Stahl’s Essential Psychopharmacology, now in its fifth edition, and the best-selling and award-winning clinical manual, Essential Psychopharmacology Prescriber’s Guide, now in its seventh edition.  Dr. Stahl has also published a novel, Shell Shock, a thriller that recounts the history of PTSD (post traumatic stress disorder) and a biography of Nicola Tesla, showing the interaction of Tesla’s bipolar disorder with his genius.  Lectures, courses and preceptorships based upon his textbooks have taken him to dozens of countries on six continents to speak to tens of thousands of physicians, mental health professionals and students at all levels.  His books have sold over a million copies and his lectures and scientific presentations have been distributed as more than a million CD-ROMs, internet educational programs, videotapes, audiotapes and programmed home study texts for continuing medical education to hundreds of thousands of professionals in many different languages. 

His courses and award-winning multimedia teaching materials are used by psychopharmacology teachers and students throughout the world.  Dr. Stahl serves as a fellow of the ACNP (American College of Neuro-psychopharmacology), of the British Association of Psychopharmacology (BAP) and of the CINP, where he was formerly vice president and is a Distinguished Life Fellow of the American Psychiatric Association (APA).  He also has served on numerous medical and scientific advisory boards for the pharmaceutical industry, for the biotechnology and medical information industry, and for various nonprofit and public service organizations, including appointment by the State of California and past Chair of the Medi-Cal Oversight Board for Medicines (Drug Utilization Review Board). 

Stahl has been awarded the International College of Neuropsychopharmacology (CINP) Lundbeck Foundation Award in Education for his contributions to postgraduate education in psychiatry and neurology, the Aristotle Gold Medal from Greece and the Sapienza University of Rome award and the Paykel Lecture from Cambridge University, all for his lifetime achievements in psychiatry.  His books have won the British Medical Association’s Book of the Year Award, and again in 2022 for his Handbook on Suicide Prevention, and First Place Award for his Digital Masterclass in Psychopharmacology accredited by Cambridge University Health Partners and the Department of Psychiatry at the University of Cambridge, UK, where he is a Fellow.  His CME institute, the Neuroscience Education Institute (NEI), has been awarded accreditation with commendation, and his medical education company Arbor Scientia has been awarded the business of the year award from the local chamber of commerce. 

Dr. Stahl is also the winner of the A.E. Bennett Award of the Society of Biological Psychiatry, the APA/San Diego Psychiatric Society Education Award, the UCSD department of psychiatry residency teaching award, and has been cited as both one of “America’s Top Psychiatrists” and one of the “Best Doctors in America.”  He was honored with the Distinguished Psychiatrist Award of the APA and gave the Distinguished Psychiatrist Lecturer for 2013.  His alma mater Northwestern University has honored him by naming their annual award for the best medical student going into psychiatry the Stephen Stahl award.  Dr. Stahl was named the 2016 David A Mrazek Memorial Award Winner by the American Psychiatric Association and delivered the Mrazek Lecture at the 2016 annual meeting of the APA.  In 2018 he was awarded an Honorary Doctorate of Science by Üsküdar University in Istanbul.

Also in 2018, Dr. Stahl was invited by the Vatican in Rome to cofound a School of Psychopharmacology, Psychopharmacology and Neuroethics at the Vatican’s European University of Rome in Vatican City, to deal with policy issues to lessen the burden of the seriously mentally ill by bringing together leaders in psychiatry under the auspices of Pope Francis, along with world leaders from government and academia.   


July 20, 2023