About AMCD

The Association for Multicultural Counseling and Development seeks to develop programs specifically to improve ethnic and racial empathy and understanding. Its activities are designed to advance and sustain personal growth and improve educational opportunities for members from diverse cultural backgrounds.

AMCD is charged with the responsibility of defending human and civil rights as prescribed by law. It encourages changing attitude and enhancing understanding of cultural diversity. Provisions are made for in-service and pre-service training for members and for others in the profession. Efforts are made to strengthen members professionally and enhance their ability to serve as behavioral change agents. Operationalization of Multicultural Counseling Competencies by AMCD represents a benchmark for the counseling profession and the American Counseling Association.


The mission of the organization, from its inception is to:

  • Recognize the human diversity and multicultural nature of our society;
  • To enhance the development, human rights and the psychological health of ethnic/racial populations and all people as critical to the social, educational, political, professional and personal reform in the United States and globally;
  • To identify and work to eliminate conditions which create barriers to the individual development of marginalized populations;
  • To develop, implement and/or foster interest in charitable, scientific and educational programs designed to further the interests of marginalized populations;
  • To secure equality and access of treatment, advancement, qualifications and status individuals and families in counseling, wellness and mental health work;
  • To publish a journal and other scientific educational and professional materials with the purpose of raising the standards of all who work in providing counseling, wellness and mental health.

Message from the President

July 1, 2018

Dear AMCD Members!

I am honored and humbled to serve as the incoming President of our awesome AMCD Division. I would like to say thank you to Dr. Diane Estrada and her 2017-2018 leadership team, to the AMCD Elders and to all stakeholders, past and present for your collective contributions to AMCD and our members.  AMCD stands on solid ground and since 1972, has stood for the recognition of human diversity and the multicultural nature of our society; the enhancement of human rights development; and to publish materials with the purpose of raising the standards of all who diligently work to serve our clients as socially active multiculturally and social justice competent helping professionals.

As we enter our 46th year as a division, I wish to build upon the momentum and continue the efforts of the Past-Presidents while addressing the current concerns of AMCD.  “Leadership, Action, Research and Change” will serve as my theme for this year as we address the mental health disparities gap among all marginalized people.  I have outlined areas on which I will focus during my term. As the leader of AMCD, I wish to continue and expand upon the already established efforts and create several new initiatives, to include:

  • Host our first Mental Health Disparities Summit
  • Develop AMCD leadership at the regional level
  • Develop a 4-year strategic plan for AMCD
  • Create ongoing initiatives for international, women and multi-ethnic issues and concerns
  • Establish a reclamation, recruitment and retention plan for increasing membership
  • Enhance our current graduate student mentoring efforts, which also provide guidance to new professionals
  • Advance collaborations with our sister divisions CSJ, ALGBTIC, ASERVIC, ARCA, ACES and ASGW

I am honored to continue fueling the legacy of this great division, and I look forward to leading by joining you in service.

Shon Smith Headshot

Shon D. Smith, Ed.D.
President, AMCD 2018-2019