South Dakota Mental Health Counselors Association

The purpose of the South Dakota Mental Health Counselors Association is to promote the profession of mental health counseling; to provide programs for mental health counselors to assist in updating and enhancing competencies of professional mental health services; and to provide a forum for mental health counselors to address public policy(advocacy issues).

2021-2022 SDMHCA Officers


  Robin Svendsen      Jessica McLaughlin   Stephanie Lund      Jamie Peterson

      President               President-Elect              Past President             Treasurer



                           Joy Anderson                                Becky Glover

                         Recording Secretary                       Membership Chair



SDMHCA Board photo-taken at the 2019 SDMHCA Luncheon. Pictured l to r: President Duane Kavanaugh, Recording Secretary Joy Anderson, President Elect-Elect Robin Svendsen, President Elect Stephanie Lund, Treasurer Jamie Peterson, Government Relations Chair Sarah Shortbull, and Past President Brian Dannen.

Howard B. Smith Award Winners

Howard B. Smith had a very significant role in the development of counseling in the state of South Dakota.  He helped the state recognize Licensed Professional Counselors by helping pass the licensure law, guided South Dakota State University’s counseling program through national accreditation in 1994, and he was the National President for AMCHA while a faculty member at South Dakota State University.  He started as a faculty member and then became the Department Head.  He worked for ACA full-time as an ethics coordinator after leaving South Dakota State in the late 1990s and finished his career at South Dakota State as Associate Dean of Education and Counseling.  While Associate Dean, Howard helped bring the Rehabilitation Counseling specialty to South Dakota State. This is the first and only program of its kind in South Dakota, and he helped it achieve national accreditation.  Howard B. Smith was a true pioneer for counseling in the state of South Dakota.

Clark Perkins

2021 Award Winner

Find Nomination information HERE

SDMHCA Documents

Become a Member

Membership in SDMHCA is encouraged to any person actively engaged in counseling, human development, mental health delivery, or guidance services. Licensed Professional Counselors, school counselors, counselor educators, counseling students, and others who are interested in the advancement of counseling profession are welcome.

Association Profile

  • SDMHCA is a recognized chapter of the American Mental Health Counselors Association.
  • SDMHCA is a division of the South Dakota Counseling Association (SDCA).
  • SDCA is a division of the American Counseling Association.