Introducing the Board of Psychedelic Medicine and Therapies’ New Board of Directors: Pioneering the Path to Ethical and Accessible Healing

August 23, 2023 – The Board of Psychedelic Medicine and Therapies (BPMT) is proud to announce the appointment of its esteemed new board members, each distinguished in their respective fields, who will lead the charge in advancing research, innovation, and the responsible integration of psychedelic therapies in the pursuit of mental health and well-being.

BPMT is at the forefront of a transformative movement, recognizing the tremendous potential of psychedelic medicines to revolutionize mental healthcare, and the new board is committed to fostering a progressive approach to the therapeutic application of these substances. With their combined expertise and passion, the board aims to drive the organization’s mission of promoting evidence-based, compassionate, and ethical practices in the field of psychedelic medicine.

Allow us to introduce the distinguished members of BPMT’s new board:

NiCole Buchanan, PhD (Interim CEO & Board Chair)
Dr. Buchanan (she/her), a licensed psychologist professor at Michigan State University, is extensively trained in MDMA and Ketamine-assisted therapies, a Fellow of the American Psychological Association and the Association for Psychological Science, and a prolific consultant, speaker, writer, and scholar with 120+ publications, focusing on equity, inclusion, organizational climate, and professional development, featured on global platforms like TEDx and NPR.

Sean T. McAllister, Esq. (Board of Director)
Sean McAllister (he/him) is an attorney specializing in psychedelic medicines and therapies, licensed in Colorado and California, whose extensive work includes advising on psychedelic-assisted therapy, regulatory compliance in decriminalized cities, religious freedom exemptions, DEA licensure, and key roles in organizations like Chacruna Institute, Zendo Project Inc.

Oxaku Tehu Kax’Oxo II (Dr. Xak | Ranger-0), M.Ed, EdD (Board of Director)
Dr. Xak (he/him) is a distinguished professional with expertise in environmental biodiversity conservation, human biocultural heritage preservation, traditional Indigenous Medicine, GeCCO-Ranger, Marine Biodiversity Research, Climate Action Resilience & Continuity (ARC) Engineering, and BiOKULTURE-4 DeSDEV Consulting, Dr. Xak offers a unique and multifaceted approach to his work.

Michael D. Fratkin, MD FAAHPM (Board of Director)
Dr. Fratkin (he/him) is a rural palliative care physician known for merging psychedelic science with compassionate end-of-life care and community access, focusing on psycho spiritual challenges, death, and complex grief.

Courtney Watson, LMFT, CST (Board of Director)
Courtney Watson (she/they) is a Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist and AASECT Certified Sex Therapist who foundedDoorway Therapeutic Services in Oakland, CA, utilizing ketamine therapy in prioritizing mental health for marginalized communities and overseeing a diverse team of 20+ therapists, nurses, and physicians.

Rafaelle Lancelotta, MS, LPC (Board of Director)
Rafaelle Lancelotta,(she/they) a Nationally Certified Counselor with a Master’s in Mental Health Counseling, is a PhD student at The Ohio State University focusing on the role of human relationships in psychedelic-assisted therapy and contributing extensively to scientific articles on psychedelics.

Dr. Nathaniel Mills, PhD (Board of Director)
Dr. Mills, (he/him) a Licensed Clinical Psychologist and organizational consultant in Sacramento, CA, is the founder of the Sacramento Institute for Psychotherapy (offering Ketamine-Assisted Psychotherapy), co-founder of the Society of Psychedelic Psychotherapists, and a subject matter expert for the Heroic Hearts Project’s psychedelic decriminalization initiatives.

Bill Freimuth, BA (Board of Director)
Bill Freimuth (he/him), a dedicated member of the psychedelic community with expertise in criteria, certification, consensus-building, and governance; previously leading the Grammy Awards program for 17 years, he championed equity and decolonization efforts to elevate underrepresented voices.

Caroline Dorsen, PhD, FNP-BC, FAAN (Board of Director)
Caroline Dorsen (she/her), a professor, nurse scholar, educator, and clinician, focused on health, substance use, and social justice at Rutgers University School of Nursing as Associate Dean for Clinical Partnerships across nursing and public health faculties.

Erica Siegal, LMSW (Board of Director)
Erica Siegal (she/her), a Licensed Masters of Social Work, psychedelic-assisted psychotherapist, and community organizer, has dedicated two decades to fostering impactful, connective experiences while prioritizing community safety and wellness.

Anad Thomas, MNP, CRNA (Board of Director)
Anad Thomas (she/her), a Certified Registered Nurse Anesthetist, combines compassionate care, advocacy for well-being, and co-founder of Overgroundmed’s Ketamine-assisted intervention; holding certifications in Psychedelic Research and Therapy and MDMA-assisted psychotherapy, she’s dedicated to the potential of psychedelic-assisted therapies while pursuing Mental Health Nurse Practitioner certification.

BPMT’s mission is to certify psychedelic-assisted therapists to ensure the competent, safe, and ethical delivery of psychedelic medicine in an equitable and accessible manner for members of diverse populations. With the expertise and perspectives of our board members, we are confident in our ability to uphold this mission and establish high standards of practice within the field.

Comprising accomplished professionals from diverse fields, the board shares a collective dedication to propel the realm of psychedelic medicines and therapies to new heights. Under the stewardship of this exceptional board, our focus lies in pioneering substantial progress across research, education, advocacy, and the responsible integration of psychedelic medicine. Our collaborative efforts aim to shape a future where competent and compassionate psychedelic-assisted therapy is accessible to all, fostering healing and transformation for members of diverse populations.

For more information about the Board of Psychedelic Medicine and its Board of Directors, visit us at

To address media inquiries or seek further information, please contact:

Gina Magana, Program Manager
Email: [email protected]
Phone: +1 281.245.0170

An important acknowledgement and update announcement from the Board of Psychedelic Medicine and Therapies to our valued community

Dear Psychedelic Community,

I am NiCole T. Buchanan and I am writing to you as the interim CEO for The Board of Psychedelic Medicine and Therapies (BPMT) to update you on several significant changes that have occurred at BPMT.

First, I want to acknowledge that early on BPMT made some foundational mistakes that caused harm to members of our beloved community. Our desire to fast track the credentialing exam left us vulnerable to prioritizing the ultimate outcome (the exam) over ensuring the process meets the needs of the larger psychedelic community. Several of you took the time and bravely shared your concerns about our process and encouraged us to slow down, recenter on our values and our mission. As a representative of BPMT, I want to thank you for helping us see our faults and challenging us to better embody our values moving forward. You cared enough to hold BPMT accountable for our missteps and the harm we caused. This is a gift that I take seriously, and I am grateful for the opportunity to grow BPMT and to earn your trust. In the coming months, I hope that you will see the ways BPMT has re-centered on our mission and vision, making BPMT stronger as an organization in service to our broad psychedelic community.

In November 2022, the Inaugural Board of Directors and Interim Executive Director resigned from BPMT to allow for new leadership during this transition. I am grateful for their leadership and thank them for their contributions to BPMT. Although they are not formally working within BPMT, many of them have graciously offered their expertise, consultation, support and unwavering commitment to BPMT’s success as we continue moving forward to fulfill its mission. While I understand that transitions are challenging, I am also excited about our new directions to restructure the organization and renew our approach, systems, and processes to embody diversity, equity, and inclusion in our efforts to promote an accessible and inclusive credentialing test and processes.

I want to reiterate that BPMT is committed to ensuring that our certification exam and process are equitable, ethical, and meet the highest standards for quality. To achieve this, I have been gathering an excellent team to guide BPMT’s reboot. Since joining BPMT in January 2022, Gina Magaña, BPMT’s Program Manager, has been a valuable addition to the team, bringing a wealth of experience in project management and organizational processes. Gina not only acts as the project manager, but she also plays a key role in mentoring and guiding the consultants of the team. Her leadership skills and extensive knowledge have been essential and are critical to our continued success as an organization. Gina’s impact on BPMT has been significant, and her experience and leadership skills will continue to be valuable assets as BPMT moves forward.

Governance & Board Elections
Our governance review, board nominations and seating process is being led by Vernetta Walker, JD,expert in board governance, leadership, and diversity, equity, and inclusion (DEI) in non-profit organizations. She has been reviewing the current state of governance and making recommendations for how to embed inclusive excellence within our governance policies and processes moving forward. Toward this goal, she has conducted interviews with former Board of Directors and Subject Matter Experts (SMEs) for insights regarding BPMT as we move forward with a complement of the leadership, equity and inclusion skills needed to advance the work of the organization.

Although we are still finalizing details, we are pleased to announce that we will have an open call for applications to reseat the BPMT Board of Directors. We intend to recruit a Board that will bring a wealth of experience in non-profit governance and best practices, DEI, Indigenous practices and ancestral wisdom, and psychedelic science and training to guide the organization through this transition. This broad range of expertise will effectively guide BPMT towards fulfilling its mission and embodying BPMT values.

Certification Exam & Credentialing
We believe input from our Subject Matter Experts (SMEs) is essential in creating an equitable and effective process moving forward. Historically, the SMEs were divided into the licensed and the unlicensed SMEs. As we assessed the composition of these two groups and consulted with SMEs about the language used to describe the two groups, we have renamed them as the Clinical and Research (C&R) SMEs and the Lineage and Legacy (L&L) SMEs. We believe these names better highlight the unique contributions that each group provides and reduces some of the negative attributions that are sometimes applied to the term ‘non-licensed’ SMEs.

We also understand that the certification exam and credentialing process needs to be inclusive of a diverse array of medical and mental health disciplines as well as indigenous and ancestral wisdom and practices within the larger psychedelic ecosystem. Therefore, we are adding testing and DEI consultants and SMEs to ensure that the certification exam includes the essential content needed to achieve these goals.

In January, Keeno Ahmed-Jones joined BPMT to support our efforts in test assessment and measurement. Keeno is a curriculum and assessment development expert with a Masters in Sociology and Education Policy from Teachers College at Columbia University. She has led policy, advocacy, communications and government relations strategies to help close the opportunity gap for historically underserved and marginalized populations. As a Fellow at the Regents Research Fund, she oversaw the strategic planning and implementation of the High School Equivalency (HSE) exam for New York State. Her work as a diversity, equity and inclusion consultant combines a lifelong commitment to social justice with expertise in organizational development, program evaluation and community engagement. Keeno is also a founding member of BPMT’s DEI Committee and will ensure DEI is implemented throughout the test development process.

In summary
Once again, the entire BPMT team wants to thank you for your support during this period of transition. We recognize that this process has been tumultuous, and we appreciate your patience and understanding as we work to improve the organization and its processes. We are committed to ensuring that BPMT is an inclusive and equitable organization that reflects the diversity of the communities it serves, and that our certification exam and policies are of the highest quality and integrity. We value your experience and knowledge, and we look forward to continuing to work together towards a better future for psychedelic medicine and therapies.

Thank you again for your ongoing support.


NiCole T. Buchanan, Ph.D. and the entire BPMT Team

Certification Board for Psychedelic Medicine Launches and Receives $900,000 Grant

June 16, 2022 – The Board of Psychedelic Medicine and Therapies (BPMT), a non-profit public benefit corporation dedicated to education and certification for psychedelic medicine, today announced that the Steven & Alexandra Cohen Foundation has initiated a $900,000 matching grant to support BPMT’s mission of ensuring the competent, safe, and ethical delivery of psychedelic medicine in an equitable and accessible manner.

“BPMT is a critical infrastructure project focused on improving the safety, accessibility, and quality of psychedelic medicine within the U.S. healthcare system,” said Alexandra Cohen, President of the Steven & Alexandra Cohen Foundation. “We are pleased to support this important initiative.”

BPMT was recently established to certify healthcare professionals in psychedelic-assisted therapy in the United States, which will help standardize the clinical quality of psychedelic-assisted therapy treatments, enhance patient safety, increase provider accountability, and facilitate reimbursement by insurance providers.

Certification is essential for the field. It will assist in establishing safety and credibility in psychedelic therapies and provide a pathway for insurance reimbursement in the future. Insurance coverage for these services will make these therapies a viable option for those in need throughout the United States.

BPMT has been supported by funding from a wide range of visionary philanthropists including Mike Cotton, The Evolve Foundation members of the Psychedelic Science Funders Collaborative, and others who see certification of psychedelic providers as critical for the successful roll out of psychedelic services in the US.

Currently, clinical standards for psychedelic medicine lack consensus definition and no current metrics exist to assess skill and competency for practitioners. Training options vary in depth and without agreed-upon requirements. Insurance reimbursement, provider liability, and equitable access for patients remain important unsolved issues for psychedelic medicine, which creates an uncertain frontier of practice for any professional to enter.

BPMT plans to offer certification beginning in 2023-2024 for licensed healthcare professionals. In addition, BPMT is also exploring how to offer a certification for non-licensed practitioners, who are typically the second provider in the treatment setting, from a variety of backgrounds including chaplains as well as individuals from indigenous and traditional lineages. Certifying non-licensed practitioners will expand the supply of certified practitioners as well as potentially reduce overall cost and increase equitable access to psychedelic medicine.

To create a coordinated effort, BPMT will continue to work closely with a wide range of stakeholders and leaders in the psychedelic field. As an organization, BPMT is dedicated to an innovative, equitable, and paradigm-shifting vision of mental health care. For more information, visit