Mark D. Cunningham, PhD, receives National Award for Excellence


The National Register of Health Service Providers in Psychology (National Register) Board of Directors today announced the presentation of the Alfred M. Wellner Distinguished Career Psychologist Award to Mark D. Cunningham, PhD, of Plano, TX.

Upon receiving the award, Dr. Cunningham said, “It is an extraordinary honor to be recognized by the National Register, an organization that is at the forefront of advancing the professional practice of psychology. This award is shared with my coauthors and research colleagues, as well as the forensic psychologists and attorneys who have been so generous with their knowledge, mentoring, and counsel during my career.”

The award is named for the National Register’s first Executive Officer, Alfred M. Wellner, PhD. The Wellner Award is the National Register’s highest honor bestowed on a psychologist to commemorate numerous and significant contributions to psychology during a distinguished career.

In her nomination letter, Mary E. Connell, EdD, praised Dr. Cunningham’s career. Dr. Connell wrote, “Dr. Mark Cunningham’s practice, teaching, and scholarship have fundamentally framed the standards and scientific foundation for the participation of mental health professionals in capital sentencing cases. He has made prodigious contributions to the profession and science of psychology, as well as to a more informed administration of justice in death penalty cases throughout the United States. As a nationally recognized scholar, lecturer, and practitioner in a capital sentencing arena of unequalled national and international interest, Dr. Cunningham has had a national impact on jurisdictional and federal advocacy. His research and conceptualizations have illuminated appellate decisions, informed juries, educated attorneys, elevated the practice of psychologists, and contributed to the training of psychology students.”

Dr. Cunningham received his PhD from Oklahoma State University. He completed postdoctoral training at Yale University School of Medicine. Board certified in clinical and forensic psychology, Dr. Cunningham has spent many years in independent practice.

Dr. Cunningham has been credentialed by the National Register since 1981.

About The National Register

The National Register is the largest credentialing organization for psychologists. The independent, non-profit organization was created in 1974 with the help of the American Psychological Association and the American Board of Professional Psychology. Today, the National Register is the leading source of information on nationally credentialed psychologists in health care. Psychologists who are awarded national registrant status have achieved the highest educational and professional standards in health care. Early career psychologists can accumulate the necessary credentials during their training so that when they apply for a license to practice, they also are ready to become registrants of the National Register. It is the only independent, credentialing body with a national level standard for verifying education and training qualifications, licensing, and ethical standards with more than 11,000 doctoral level psychologists in its database. The National Register is relied upon by the health care industry, state and provincial licensing boards, and consumers. National Register also provides this valuable information to consumers as a free referral service to top quality psychologists at

1200 New York Ave NW, Ste 800

Washington DC 20005

p: 202.783.7663

f: 202.347.0550

Endorsed by the National Register